It’s no secret that times have gotten tougher and there doesn’t seem to be as much surplus income as there was previously.
Sure you can (and should) review your expenses. You should be looking for the best home loan rate, the best insurance rate, etc. however cutting your expenses can only go so far. After exhausting the cutting expenses route, the only way for a bigger surplus is increasing your income. How to do this? What’s the best way, the quickest way?
Take a look at how much extra you would want to earn and look at what skills you can utilize to bring in additional income. It might be the maths degree you can use to earn additional money tutoring or the piano and guitar experience you can parlay into teaching lessons or it may be something simple such as offering your service to help with someone’s house cleaning or gardening.
Below are 5 side hustles you can start today to bring in a little (or a lot) of extra income to your household.
1. Join the gig economy (Part 1) – Offering your services for part time/casual work
This can be either advertising your services through your local paper classifieds or local online classifieds. Alternative specialist online service provider websites such as Fiverr, Air Tasker, Freelancer or Upwork also offer a market place that allows you to promote your services.
So what can you earn extra money doing? You could look at tutoring (either online or in person) if you have a skill or expertise in a certain area. You could be a maths teacher or science teacher with some spare time on your hands, you might be skilled in a musical instrument and have a great way in teaching this gift to others, or you may be fluent in a foreign language that others have in demand.
You might be employed as a graphic designer and can spare some time on the weekends for freelance jobs, you might have experience in video technology or editing that someone is interested in using, you might be a talented amateur photographer who people would be interested to hire or to learn from or you could even apply to be someone’s virtual assistant. The options are endless!
Sites like Fiverr, Upwork or Freelancer tend to focus on more digital or online service offerings while sites like Air Tasker and Task Rabbit have a focus on physical service offerings.
Online classified sites such as Craigslist or Gumtree (depending of the country you live in) also offer an advertising option for your services.
How these sites work is that you set up an account and profile with these providers and you will either bid on or be chosen to provide a relevant service that you are offering. The provider takes a small fee from the amount that you will receive on completion of your service.
2. Join the gig economy (Part 2) – Offering your services as a driver (for people or food).
Unless you have been living on another planet ride services organisations like Uber, Lyft and Ola have taken over the personal transport industry that was once ruled by taxi services. These services started with the disruption of the traditional taxi offerings and have now branched out into other areas such as food delivery.
Providing you have a reasonably new car and don’t have any law/legal issues then this may provide you with an additional way of earning additional income for your household. The process to sign up with the major service providers involves the following:
Sign up online, apply to join the driver’s program (must be at least 21 years old with a valid driver’s licence with at least a years experience), must have a car that is less than 10 years old and in good working condition and you must pass a background check.
Examples of major ride service providers (depending on your location) include Uber, Lyft, Ola and Didi.
There is also an option to apply as a driver to deliver food, with the main food delivery providers including Uber Eats, Deliveroo & Door Dash.
3. Rent out your car, house, tools, etc.
Looking to make a little more money and have an unused room or two in your house that you could rent out? Or do you take an annual holiday where you could rent out your house to earn an income during this month? Airbnb is the biggest provider in this area offering property owners alternative to unlock income earning opportunities.
Do you have a whole heap of tools (in good condition) that are lying around your garage or shed gathering dust? Or do you do the daily public transport commute to work barely using your car during the week? If you are interested in earning an income by renting these out you may be in luck.
Sites like (depending on your location) Turo, Share Now or Car Next Door offer the option to rent out your car. You can even find a site to rent out your RV or Caravan through sites such as RV Share or Outdoorsy or even your unused boat through sites such as Boatsetter or Get My Boat.
Looking to rent out your tools, sites like Sparetoolz or ToolMates Hire can provide help you with this. A popular site to rent out your equipment such as sporting, electronic or photography is Rentle.
Basically if you have good unused or underused products or equipment you may be able to earn an income from them!
4. Sell your creations or unwanted items online
Is your garage or closet overflowing with items that you just don’t use anymore? Why not sell all of these unused or unwanted items? If there is a local flea market or general market you may be able to sell these items there or alternatively you can sell these items online through a site such as EBay?
Or you can take this to another level by looking at arbitrage opportunities at your local shop or supermarket looking for discounted items at one location and selling these at full or a higher price online. For those of you with a craft streak why not sell some of your creations through a site such as Etsy?
Etsy is an online marketplace for creators selling items ranging from hand made jewellery to personalised hand made gifts and can offer a nice little income stream to your household income.
5. Set up your own online business or website based around your skill or service.
Further to Point 1 and Point 4 above if you have success with finding additional work in your chosen field or if you get successful in selling your own products, you could look at building a business around this. This might be offering one on one coaching or group instructions or even creating digital courses based around your chosen field. The options are endless!
You might even wish to create a website or online business based on your favourite hobby or sport. Should you wish to look into this option a little further read this post about creating your own online business.
One point to note on this, make sure you do your testing before putting all your time (and other resources) to this new venture. If you have offered services or products and the feedback (and income) has been rather positive then by all means explore this further. We wouldn’t want you to invest 3 to 6 months of your time (and money) working on an idea that didn’t have much of a chance to succeed.
Whatever your skill, time and resources situations, I’m sure that there are several ideas on this list that you could tackle to add a little (or a lot) more income to your household and who knows you might end up creating a successful business from this.