7 Smart Ways to Make Extra Money
Persistently high unemployment, salary freezes and rising inflation mean that many Americans have much less money to work with than they did before the Great Recession. That recession officially ended in June 2009, but a lingering aftermath of bad economic data remains. To make ends meet, people are looking for smart ways to make extra money. We list a number of these here for your consideration.
1. Get paid for your opinion — Online surveys and in-person opinion sessions can pay off with companies valuing what you think. If looking online, you’ll come across companies such as E-Rewards that give you credit toward airline miles, magazines and a host of other items. Some companies, such as Resolution Panel, provide gift certificates and cash cards. Malls are popular places where interviewees set up shop with interviews ranging from minutes to an hour or two.
2. Become a secret shopper — How do store managers ensure that their employees are treating their customers right? By sending in secret shoppers to buy items and interact with them. You’ll work undercover, never identifying who you really are. You’ll file a report and that information will be used by the company to gauge its customer service capabilities.
3. Sell products directly — Direct selling has been around for decades, with Avon one of the most recognized and oldest names out there. Others include Herbalife, Amway, Mary Kay, Tupperware, Natura and Vorwerk. Most work the same way where you host parties and invite people to sample your products. You get a commission for each sale, with the ability to make even more money if you’re a good seller.
4. Sell your photos — Do you have a flair for taking photographs? You can make that hobby pay off by submitting your best work to stock photo agencies such as Shutterfly, ShutterStock, iStockPhoto, Fotolia and Dreamstime among the 15 places listed by Sitepoint that will take your photos. Typically, commission- or fee-based.
5. Check your coins — You know that jar of coins you have in your living room? Well, that money can be wrapped and redeemed for cash. But, hold on — check your coins carefully because old or unusual coins can fetch far more than the amount that they are worth. Coins consisting of more than 50 percent silver can fetch you a lot of money. Half dollars made before 1970 are particularly valuable.
6. From hobby to business — You don’t have to launch a formal business to make some money. Instead, if you have a hobby, then you might be able to turn it into a moneymaker. The best approach here may be to offer your talent to others, people who might be interested in taking piano lessons, having your detail their car or build their website. You can advertise on Craigslist or simply by word of mouth.
7. Hold a yard sale — What sort of “stuff” do you have in your house? Likely, there are things on hand you no longer want. You could give it away, but you can also sell it. Set up shop on a Saturday morning, put up some signs and get selling. Follow our tips to ensure that your sale is a successful one.
When it comes to truly smart ways to make extra money is making money that won’t take a lot of effort. True. some direct sellers work their Mary Kay like there is no tomorrow, but then these people are full-timers, not individuals who are looking to make extra money.