Make money in your spare time

Money At Home 650 X 300A little bit of extra money is always useful and helpful, whether you want to supplement your income or save a bit extra. It’s not only about the money – these ideas can also help you boost your social life, or if you’d prefer to work from home, provide a way to fill in the spare time.

Here are five ideas, but there are many ways that you can earn extra money – you just need time and some imagination.

1. Use your skills: Become a tutor
Make a difference and make money by becoming a tutor. Most tutors help students with their homework or to prepare for exams, although you may want to create your own curriculum if that better suits your area of expertise. Either way, you’ll be putting your skills and expertise to good use.

With a little preparation, experience, and advertising, you’ll be able to start tutoring students in subjects that you love. For more information about becoming a tutor, please click here.

2. Share your things: Rent a spare room
Did you know that you can earn up to £7,500 tax free by renting a room in your home? You can find out a lot of useful information, including your responsibilities as a landlord, here.

If you’d prefer to host people on a temporary basis, for example if they’re on holiday or in town for business, there are a few online rental platforms you can advertise on. 

If you’d prefer a longer-term lodger, the Citizens’ Advice Bureau has put together a useful list of things for you to consider.

3. Use the web: Sell handmade products online
Do you have a skill for making things? Perhaps your friends and family have been the grateful recipients so far, but you could reach millions of buyers in the UK and around the world by selling the things you make online.

When deciding how much to charge, you will need to consider how much your materials will cost and how you can get your products to your buyers. Could they be posted? How much would it cost? It would also be useful to find out what other people selling similar items are charging.

4. Get out and about: Become a mystery shopper
Retailers want to continually improve their service standards and so use ‘mystery shopper’ agencies to try out their products and services. If you’re over 18 you can apply for ‘assignments’ at places such as restaurants, cafes, sandwich shops, shops, trains and in gyms – it all depends on your interests and what’s available where you live. You then produce a report that rates the service quality.

The genuine mystery shopping sites are completely free to use – so if at any point you’re asked for cash, stop; the site you’re using may not be legitimate. The first step is to create an account and complete a questionnaire.

Three popular Mystery Shopper sites in the UK are: Grass Roots, GBW and Retail Maxim.

5. Earn money from home: Get rewarded for your opinion on TV programmes
Media companies value your opinion as it helps them to understand what the general public think about TV shows and other services.

There are a number of ways you can get involved – you could be asked for feedback on what you watched on TV last night, be asked to fill in surveys or quizzes, or even attend face-to-face research groups (these are typically in larger UK cities).  You could receive cash, earn points or win prizes which include cash, but also vouchers, gadgets and experiences. 

The Viewers is a unique TV research panel that provides a range of opportunities and GFK Media provides a daily survey about what you watched on the TV or listened to on the radio last night. 

Don’t forget to tell the taxman
Any sources of extra income need to be declared to HM Revenue & Customs. You can let them know you’re self-employed via its website or on the Self-employed Helpline on 0300 200 3504. It’s straightforward and they provide online resources for help and support.

Make sure to use your personal allowance: depending on your other job status and age, the first £12,500 of any income is tax-free in the 2019/20 financial year. There is also a ‘Trading Allowance’ which means the first £1,000 you earn each year 'trading' is tax-free.

Keep all of the receipts for things you buy for your business, as they are tax-deductible.

You might also be interested in...