Smart Ways to Increase Your Income

Jan 23

Smart Ways to Increase Your Income

Do you wish you had more money? While some people are perfectly happy with their financial situation, many more would rather have a bit more spare cash. But when you’re already working full-time, how can you have any more money without reducing your spending? If you want to earn a bit more but you don’t know where to start, you’re in luck because there are lots of ways you can increase your income. Some of them will require that you put in some time and effort, but there are some ways to make more without doing much of anything. Have a look at some of these methods for earning extra money and find one that will fit into your lifestyle.

Get a Part-time Job

This option isn’t for everyone, but if you have the time to spare, you can get a part-time job. The best positions to look for are ones with flexible working hours. You can choose when you work, and perhaps fit your hours around school times and holidays. If you find a job to do around your full-time occupation, whether that’s work or being a parent, you want an employer who is dedicated to caring for their employees. For example, Applebees seem to care about local people. You can apply there right here. You don’t have to work too many hours to make a bit of extra cash, and you can use your weekends, evenings or work when the kids are at school.

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Photo by fsecart

Start a Business on the Side

If you have some time to spare, but you don’t want to get a part-time job, you could consider starting your own business. There are many companies you can run from home with hardly any supplies or facilities. If you have a computer with an internet connection and a phone, you have all the tools you need to get started. A lot of people like to take their hobby and turn it into a business. For example, if you enjoy crochet, you could sell your creations online or at craft fairs and markets. You can get an online store set up in minutes and start selling whatever you want.

Another option is to use one of your skills to offer a professional service. Perhaps you work full-time as a teacher, and you could provide tutoring services in your spare time. You can run your business in person or over the internet. You can even give people lessons, for example in English or another language, using a webcam. It’s very popular to offer virtual services, from writing and graphic design to admin and PR tasks. Just make sure that you do everything legally and declare your extra income with the tax man.

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Philip Taylor

Look for a Good Savings Account

Some ways to increase your income don’t require much effort on your part. One method for bringing in a bit more money is looking for a good savings account. If you have some money to put aside, you can make your savings go further. Don’t settle for inferior interest rates when you could be bringing in more, just by putting money in your account. It might not be a lot in the grand scheme of things, but it’s better than your cash just sitting there doing nothing.

Make Sure You’re Claiming Benefits You’re Entitled To

If you’re past retirement age, don’t forget to ensure that you’re receiving the pension that you’re owed. If you’re not quite there yet, you can think about putting more money toward your future, so the money is there when you need it. There are other benefits you could be entitled to as well, such as child tax credit and child benefit, working tax credit and housing benefit. If you’re struggling with money, check to see if you can get any help.

Have a Clear-out

Everyone has things lying around their house that they don’t want or need. Although it’s not a long-term solution, if you want some extra cash it’s a good idea to start selling some surplus possessions. You might have DVDs, jewellery, electronics and more. Even if your items don’t look like much on their own, you could make a nice sum once you’ve added up the money you earn from all of them. There are a few ways you can sell your stuff, both online and offline. You could go to a car boot sale or take things to second-hand shops to see if they will buy anything.

Online, you can use sites like eBay or advertise your items on local Facebook selling groups and pages. For DVDs, books and similar items, you can use websites such as musicMagpie, where they will buy them from you and sell them on. If you use eBay, remember that there are fees to pay. You can reduce them by listing things when they have no-fee promotions on.

Rent Something Out

If you have a commodity you’re not using, consider renting it out to other people. Some common things that people hire out include garages and parking spots, spare rooms and storage space. If you have a garage, driveway or parking space in a prime location, people could be willing to spend a lot of money to park closer to their job or home. Taking in a lodger isn’t for everyone, but it’s a great use of a spare room that’s going to waste. Just ensure that you do your research to make sure that you’re complying with the law. If you have other space that you’re not using, you could also rent it out for storage. You can use websites like Storemates to put up a listing to advertise.

If you want to try something a bit different, you can also let filming crews use your house as a set for movies or television shows. If your house is chosen, you could earn hundreds a day. However, it does mean vacating your home for however long the crew needs it and having strangers in your house.

 

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A Quick Guide To Slashing Your Monthly Outgoings

Jan 21

A Quick Guide To Slashing Your Monthly Outgoings

Every time your pay check lands in your bank account, there’s that brief feeling of joy. Unfortunately, it’s always short lived as your bills, car payments and food purchases cut it in half. These essential payments can decimate our hard earned cash flow. Taking control of these outgoings is the first step to freeing up your money. Many people are paying for more than they need to on these bills.

Of course, they are all necessary. Bills, car costs and food payments are unavoidable. The trick is to find little costs to cut. Shave off small amounts every month and you’ll see a big difference. You’ll boost your disposable income that can be used to treat the family. On the other hand, you could just free up more money to invest or put in the savings account. Whatever your reasons, there’s always a cost to be cut.

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Food – Supermarket bills can stack up fast when you’re feeding an entire family. Just stocking up with the essentials can get expensive. Then we all nip to the local corner-shop for extras. We buy lunches out at work and pay for coffees on the commute. We may also splash out on takeaways. Take a look at your food spending habits and see what can be cut down. Try buying in bulk to keep costs down. Ordering online is another good tactic. You can bunch together the best deals. You’re also less likely to impulse buy when shopping for groceries online. Finally, try to cut out the frivolous food costs at work. Avoid spending money on coffee and lunches away from home.

The car – Anyone with a car will know how expensive they can be to run. There’s monthly car insurance payments and annual tax bills. Then there’s filling up the tank which feels like pouring money down the drain. After that you can be hit with huge maintenance bills if anything goes wrong. You can cut costs on every one of these aspects when you look hard enough. Look at an sr22 insurance cost. It may be cheaper than what you currently pay. Running a more efficient car can lower your taxes and save you money on fuel. Try to alter your driving methods to preserve petrol and last longer between fill ups. Finally, do basic maintenance yourself. Keep the tyre pressure at the correct level and inspect your fluids regularly. The car will run more efficiently and spend less time at the garage.

Your bills – Most of us stick to the same suppliers through loyalty. However, that’s not always the best plan. Nowadays, it doesn’t always pay to stay loyal. Search around for better deals on your energy supplier, internet connection and phone bills. Simple energy saving tricks around the house can work wonders too. Turn off all appliances and lights when not in use. Switch to energy efficient light bulbs and knock the thermostat down a notch or two. These small savings will free up an extra bit of cash.

There you have it, folks. These are just a few small changes in your day-to-day life that will help free up some disposable income. Which ones can you implement to your spending?

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How I Get the Best Deals on My Car Insurance, Every Time

Jan 14

How I Get the Best Deals on My Car Insurance, Every Time

Car insurance is something all drivers need to have, but paying it off can be a painful experience. Whether you decide to pay it all off at once or go for the monthly repayments, getting the cost as low as possible is at the top of everybody’s priority list. 3 factors that lower car insurance that you can’t change are age, amount of years no claims, and the amount of experience you have. The following ideas will help you to lower your insurance the best you can:

Put Some Thought into the Model of Your Car

Don’t just go out and buy the nicest car you see. Sure, you’ll be driving round in a cool motor. But have you even considered how much this will cost you in insurance? Research insurance premiums for different models before making your decision. There’s no point spending all that money on a car if you can’t afford the insurance!

Consider Adding a More Experienced Driver

In many cases, adding more drivers on to your policy needlessly will make your premiums go up. However, if you’re a fairly new, young driver, adding somebody more experienced could make your premiums go down. You’ll need to experiment with this though to see if it actually works. Make sure you tell the truth over who is the main driver and who is an additional driver, otherwise your insurance could be void. Plus, if you only put yourself down as a named driver, you won’t get any no claims bonuses!

Protect Your No Claims Bonus

Once you’ve started driving, you need to do everything you can to protect your no claims bonus. It’ll only cost a small amount on top, and it’s worth it compared to what it can save you over the course of your driving life. If you don’t protect your no claims bonus, it can be taken away even if you have an accident that wasn’t your fault. Don’t risk it!

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Add Extra Security Features

Consider adding extra security features to your car to make the insurance premiums go down. The safer your car is in general, the cheaper your insurance will be as people will have a tough time stealing it.

Shop Around

Don’t just take the easy route and renew your insurance with your old provider. You need to shop around if you want to find the best deals. Make a note of all of the quotes you’ve had, then call your current insurer and see if they can match or beat your quote. This will be easier than swapping over insurers.

Have a Higher Excess (Only if you can Afford it)

How much could you realistically afford to pay if you were to be in a car accident or something went wrong? Consider setting a higher excess for yourself, but bear in mind that you will have to pay it if anything should happen. Don’t be silly with the price you set!

Try to Pay it Off at Once

If you can pay all of the money off at once, you’ll be doing yourself a favour in the long run. While paying monthly is often easier, you’ll be paying more interest and admin fees. Try to save up a few months before your insurance is due so you can pay the absolute best price out there.

Don’t Drive as Much

If you can walk sometimes instead of drive, then do so. People who drive less automatically have lower premiums, as they are at less risk of being in an accident. Make sure you’re honest about the amount you drive though; if you carry on driving the same miles and lie about it to your insurance company, your policy is void.

Keep Your Car in a Safe Place

If you have a garage, make sure you keep your car inside of it. The place you keep your car at night can affect the price you pay. If you leave it in a public carpark or on the street, your payments will be higher as your car is at more of a risk. A private carpark, a garage, and even on your drive is the best place to keep your car.

Sign up to be a Blackbox Driver

Blackbox drivers need to be confident in their driving abilities. This box that’s fitted to the car is designed to monitor the driver’s habits, and the insurance premiums are reduced or increased as a result. If you’re a very safe driver, you could get much cheaper premiums this way.

Take Extra Driving Courses

Consider taking extra courses to improve your skills and get your insurance premiums down. It’ll cost you a little money up front, but it’ll be worth it when you’re paying less for insurance. You could take a motorway driving course, and a pass plus course for instance.

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Don’t Have Features You Don’t Need

Don’t have features on your policy that you don’t need. The idea is to have a policy with all of the features you need at the best price. That means looking for a policy that is the best value for money, and not the cheapest or the one with the best features.

Buy Online

Buying online is often cheaper for a lot of drivers, as processing the application is easier and cheaper. Instead of ringing up or doing it in person, always browse online. Check this site first before looking at the rest.

Avoid Modifications

Adding modifications to a car can make it look better and sometimes even perform better. However, this isn’t a good idea if you want to keep your premiums low. The more modifications you have, the more expensive your premiums will be.

I make sure I follow most of these rules when it’s time for me to renew, and I always get the best possible price. It goes without saying that you should also be a safe driver to avoid having accidents and having to pay more. Let me know if there’s anything else you do to lower your premiums; I’d love to hear it!

 

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How to make the most of your finances online

Jan 14

How to make the most of your finances online

We’re constantly being bombarded with advice on how to manage our money these days – whether it’s pay day loan companies or those sweet Barclays adverts telling us how to use our computers, it can be hard to decide which is best.

With the former in mind, I’ve found that the digital age has come in pretty handy when it comes to managing money. If you’re looking to budget yourself a little better or even make some extra income, here and some tried and tested methods of how to make the most of your finances online.

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Recent Findings Show Part-Time Workers Have Less Disposable Income than the Unemployed!

Dec 13

Recent Findings Show Part-Time Workers Have Less Disposable Income than the Unemployed!

As Christmas is fast-approaching, it isn’t surprising that budgeting is in everyone’s mind right about now. We all know the clichés; Christmas is about spending time with loved ones, about making memories; about appreciating what you have. It’s not about the number of presents you give/receive (it’s the thought that counts, after all!), or expensive food, or nights out.

Except it is a little bit. Maybe not the receiving of gifts part, but everyone likes to be able to give nice presents to the people they care about, pig out on gorgeous food (pigs in blankets, chocolate money and cheddar cheese with apple are my tri of guilty pleasures!) and be able to go out with friends and celebrate the holiday season.

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But budgeting isn’t just a part of Christmas; it’s something we do all year round. We have our essentials – bills, food, car expenses, etcetera – and then we have our disposable income – the fun bit of our wages we can blow on anything we like!

However, this month a report has been released by Scottish Friendly suggesting, after bills and the essentials, on average, the unemployed have more disposable income left than part-time workers or those in zero-hours jobs. Admittedly, the report shows there isn’t a huge difference, but it is a significant finding.

Scottish Friendly’s ‘Disposable Income Index’ shows that the unemployed, on average, have 9.3% of their monthly income as disposable, while a part time worker’s disposable income is 7.9% of their income, and a zero-hours worker has a disposable income of 7.8% of their monthly wage.

These findings certainly do spark some questions! For starters, it seems, if these findings are indeed correct, there’s less of an incentive to take on part-time or hourly work…

But Perhaps it Does Pay to Work?

Piggy Bank On Pennies

It is important to look at all the facts and stats Scottish Friendly have released before we go jumping to the belief we’d be financially better off jacking in our jobs before the Christmas hols. Scottish Friendly’s report the unemployed have an average disposable income of £174, whereas part-time workers have an average of £192. The difference isn’t massive, but the findings do suggest you have more money at the end of each month through working – as you would expect!

Wait – there’s some Good News!

Apparently, the average levels of disposable income across the UK are on the rise! Woo hoo! The report suggests levels of disposable income have risen by an average of 2.3% in the last 3 months. Might be enough for a new pair of shoes…

This is a sponsored post from Scottish Friendly

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How to Have a Great Night in with Friends!

Dec 09

How to Have a Great Night in with Friends!

In our cash-bedraggled times, Friday and Saturday nights have become rather boring affairs compared to their mid-noughties counterparts. Many might bolt at the idea of going out to an expensive restaurant or night out in town, but just because those purse strings are firmly tightened doesn’t mean that you social life has to suffer; there’s plenty of ways to have a hilarious and fun night with friends at home, so to help, we cobbled together some tips on how to get the most out of your night-in!

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Take Action and Manage Your Debts!

Dec 04

Take Action and Manage Your Debts!

I used to struggle managing my money. It requires fingers from both hands – and probably my toes as well – to count the number of financial crises I’ve found myself in. I’ve missed payments of rent, my credit cards, had to pawn jewellery for some quick cash, have tried payday loans – even had a prepayment electricity meter installed in one property a number of years ago because I’d been so bad at managing my energy accounts.

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