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Ask for a raise. If you’re unhappy with your compensation at your 9-5 job, asking for a raise is one way to beef up your bank account. Most employers offer an annual review of your work – which could be the perfect time to negotiate a higher salary or ask for better perks. If your employer doesn’t offer such an opportunity, it might be time to initiate a review yourself.
Websites like Survey Junkie will pay you a decent chunk of change for the low-maintenance, borderline mindless task of completing surveys. Companies want to understand consumers better, and one way they do that is by compensating survey-takers (a.k.a. you). Most surveys pay between $0.50 and $1.25, and many of them take less than 5 minutes to do. You can read our full Survey Junkie review for more info.
Sell photos. If you have a decent camera and a good sense of light, color, and composition, you can take and sell stock photos – i.e. nondescript images that lend themselves to many applications and are commonly used to illustrate online articles or products – with minimal effort. Stock photos of locations (a fire hydrant, a bare wall near an interesting tree, or anything you might find as a default background image on your computer) are easier to take, but stock photos of people (i.e. people arguing, people kissing, people laughing) usually sell for more, as they have more uses and require the written legal consent of your subjects. Hunt for a reputable stock photo dealer or database that will pay you fairly before signing on with anyone.
I paid the man, and drove off. I took it home, gave it a good scrub down, installed new carpet remnants that I acquired on craigslist's 'free' section. Then I painted the interior with some liquid truck bed liner paint that I purchased at the auto parts shop for $17. I took pictures with my phone, then wrote an ad with a headline that made every potential buyer click on it in curiosity, and of course, re-listed it on craigslist.
Landscape. Look for brush-clearing, mowing, or woodcutting jobs, some of which may land you regular customers. This can save you money at the same time: if you are hired to pick up pine needles, use them to mulch your roses, which will appreciate their acidity and smothering effect on weeds; if you are hired to cut and clear a fallen tree, use it to heat your house that winter.
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You can either organize a yard sale yourself (which is kind of a hassle), or better sell the items through ThredUp, which will pay somewhere around $2-$25 for staff from Gap, Banana Republic, H&M, etc. You can browse around to see how much different items are worth. The best thing about ThredUp is that all you need to do is pack your clothes in a box and then just ship it to them (shipping costs are covered by the company).
While Etsy is fantastic for handmade goods that you’ve already created, if you’ve got killer designs that would look good on phone cases, t-shirts, or even wall hangings, pillows, and duvets, you can sell them on Society6 without paying anything to start. Society6 lets artists upload their designs and create their own shops where they choose what products their designs can be used on. That means one design can be used to make a whole range of awesome products that are printed and shipped on demand whenever someone buys from you. With top creators making thousands every month just from selling their designs.
2. Contact the C.A.C, Community Action Committee. The CAC pays up to $300 once per year, towards your gas or electric bills if you are a low income person, or family. Eligibility is determined annually and your household income must be at or below 30% of the Area Median Income (AMI). Be prepared for a ton of paperwork, but once you qualify, you will be so relieved. They helped my family a few years ago, and paid $300 for my Gas bill. My heating bill usually runs about $8- a month, but at one point I had gotten several months behind and I couldn't catch up. When the CAC helped me by sending the utility provider $300 all at once, I had a credit balance with the Gas Company for almost two years.
Join a startup accelerator: Another great option is to apply to a startup accelerator like Y Combinator, 500 startups, or TechStars, where a group of investors will help coach you, connect you with potential partners, and provide startup cash in return for a small stake in your company. The competition is tough to get into these, so don’t rely on them as your only path forward.
Copywriting. Bloggers and business owners are out there looking for freelance writers to help them with their internet marketing campaigns. If you can write a good video marketing script, sales copy, press release, product reviews, website content and advertising copy, you can make money doing exactly that. You may need basic SEO skills since most of these copywriting jobs require some knowledge on how search engines work. These people are looking for traffic, and they will only hire you if you can deliver that.
Keep in mind though, you don’t need a website to do sponsored content since you can also get paid if you have a lot of social media followers. My wife has a pretty big Instagram following, and she gets all kinds of sponsorships. Not only does she get paid in cash, but we get a lot of free stuff, too. We’ve received free rugs, free lights, and free carpet cleaners. She only promotes things she loves though, so this strategy works really well for her.