As more of us are working fewer hours, there's never been a better time to put your skills or knowledge to practical use to earn you some extra cash. Whether you want to help make ends meet, or just be able to put a little more cash in you back pocket, here are 19 ways to help you increase your bank account by doing something you enjoy in your free time.
Dealing in Collectibles
If you know a thing or two about certain collectible items, be it trading cards or retro video games, why not put that knowledge to use and make a profit on trading sites like eBay? This can be a great way to make money from a hobby.
Car Boot/Garage Sales
What better way to rid your house of all that junk than to sell it to someone else? Pitches are usually a one-off fee, and the remainder of your sales goes right into your pocket. And if doing a garage sale, there's no pitch fee to worry about!
There a few simpler ways to make some extra cash than looking after the child or children of parents who want to get away for an evening.
Bed and Breakfast
If you have a room or two spare in your house, why not offer your services to tourists? You'll most likely need permission from several areas such as your mortgage lender, but this can be both easy and enjoyable.
Rent Out Your Driveway
This is becoming more and more common these days. If you live near a city centre or in a popular tourist location, people will happily rent your unused parking space to beat the ever increasing public car park fees.
Making Biscuits and Cakes
Enjoy baking? This is a great way to make some extra money doing something you really love. If you make them to a good enough standard with good packaging, you could even try selling them to local gift shops.
This is a step up from the previous suggestion, but if you have a decorative flair, then decorating cakes (either pre-bought or home-made) can make you plenty of money on the side. Furthermore, the results can be incredibly satisfying!
Growing and Selling Vegetables
If you have an allotment or a large garden, you could make some extra money selling your vegetables. Many restaurants like to use locally grown produce, so try selling to them!
This is a good one for clean-freaks – getting paid to make cars spotless. Many people are more than happy to pay for this service as they often have neither the time or the motivation to do it themselves.
Some people still find the thought of doing anything non-standard with their computer. If you know the ins and outs of a PC, you could offer your services to people who need their computers fixing.
If you love animals, offering your services as a pet groomer could land you some easy money pretty quickly. Additionally, you could offer to look after people's pets while they go on holiday.
As above, if you love animals, especially dogs, you could charge people to take their pooch for a walk, and charge by the hour. As long as the other dogs are friendly, you could take several at a time to increase your profit.
Many small businesses will pay people to distribute their leaflets to advertise their services. If you have a side business of your own, you could deal out your own leaflets or business cards while getting paid to distribute someone else's!
This can offer both a steady and flexible source of income, which usually pays by the number of entries rather than by the hour. Working this way means you can do a little at a time so you don't get too bored.
Many people love their gardens, but don't have enough time to tend to them. Use your green fingers to spruce up people's flower beds, and mow their laws, all while earning some decent cash.
Who loves ironing clothes? Nobody, that's who. Offer to take the burden off people for a set amount per item, per lb of clothing, or per hour, and people will be throwing money at you in no time.
With this you can either set up on your own, or apply for a position at the money house-cleaning companies, allowing you to remain flexible while not having to search for the work yourself.
If you and your sewing machine get along well, then offer to repair peoples clothes for them, or make alterations. Similarly, knitting various garments and selling them can be both profitable and enjoyable.
If you happen to be fluent in a certain language, then you could take advantage of the current high demand for translation services. This is fine on a casual, informal basis, but you'll need qualifications in order to make big money doing this professionally.
Some things to consider
While earning some extra cash doing something you enjoy can be fun, you should always be weary or any laws that may apply where you live, and who you might be affecting. For example, you don't want to go creating new competition for your employer, or you might not keep your job for much longer.
Also, consider the tax implications. Visit your government website to find out what is and isn't acceptable when making money on the side. Sometimes undeclared earning are fine, and sometimes everything has to be declared.