50 ways to boost your income as wages fall and cost of living hell hits

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THE cost of living crisis is seeing households across the UK doing what they can to cut back on unnecessary costs.

And there are ways to boost your cash without even leaving your home.

There are many ways you can earn extra cash on the side

We’ve compiled a list of some 50 ways to earn a bit of extra dosh on the side, from selling your old clothes or becoming a part-time product tester.

If you’re unable to work, have a full-time job or are maybe a stay at home parent, there are loads of things you can do to earn some extra money.

And the extra cash may go a long way for millions of households who are battling against a cost of living crisis.

Soaring energy bills and rising inflation has meant households are having to fork out more just for everyday essentials.

If you are looking at making some extra money on the side, don’t be put off by the thought of paying more tax on the cash you make.

Normally, you’d have to pay tax on any earnings over the personal allowance for basic tax-payers, which is £12,570 for the current tax year running from April 6, 2022 to April 5, 2023.

But rules brought in back in 2017 means you can make some cash on the side tax-free.

There’s separate allowances for different money-making ventures, most of which are capped at £1,000.

That means you don’t have to declare your earnings to HMRC unless you earn over this amount.

And you can use several allowances in one year, which means you could potentially earn thousands without having to declare the earnings.

We’ve rounded up the easiest ways to make extra money.

Online tasks for cash

1. Fill out online surveys

Online surveys are a quick and relatively easy way to get hold of extra cash.

You can get paid up to £6 per survey – and it’s a great way to make money, according to both Emma Drew of Emmadrew.info and Francesca Mason of From Pennies to Pounds.

There are lots of sites you can use, but these are the easiest to navigate:  YouGov.co.uk and Prolific.ac.

2. Go mystery shopping

What could be better than being paid to shop for nothing?

Some brands pay you to shop free of charge, and you can even do it online in some cases.

MoneySavingExpert forum users have put together a comprehensive guide to how you can start mystery shopping.

You could make hundreds as well – we previously spoke to one dad who makes a whopping £1,500 a year from filling out online surveys and mystery shopping.

3. Complete easy tasks

Money-earning website 20Cogs gets you to complete 20 tasks over a period of a few weeks.

One savvy consumer made £180, in just a few short weeks.

They can be things like questionnaires and signing up to offers.

Conveniently, the questionnaires and offers can be cancelled at no cost.

4. Test products

Marketing companies, supermarkets and brands often send out products to consumers – either to test claims or spread influence.

Some will just send you free items, but others will even pay you extra to test products on top of getting the items for free.

We previously put together a guide to becoming a tester and the brands that offer these schemes, including some major names like Tesco and Philips.

5. Snap photos of receipts

Some apps will give you cash or Amazon vouchers just for taking photos of receipts, and it doesn’t matter what you buy.

Receipt Hog will give you points that you can redeem for a £3 voucher once you’ve earned 1,000 of them.

Each receipt is only worth a few points but it quickly adds up if you snap every receipt you get.

And it has surveys you can fill out for cash.

Shopprize is a similar app that gives you 100 coins for each receipt (and bonus coins when you level up).

When you hit 7,500 coins, you can cash out a £5 Amazon voucher.

6. Snap a photo of a derelict house

This is a good way of making money when you’re out and about, and gets your steps up.

If you see a derelict house in London or outside, you could earn yourself a quick buck.

All you need to do is fill out the address and upload a picture of an abandoned home to the YouSpotProperty website.

If you’re the first to find it, then you’ll win a £20 voucher.

Even better, you get one per cent of the purchase price if YouSpotProperty helps bring the property back into use.

So it could be quite the earner.

7. Become an Avon seller

Don’t forget about Avon, just because the company’s been around since 1886.

Avon representatives sell beauty products that are provided to them and you can keep 20 per cent of each order.

8. Get paid to watch TV

Theviewers.co.uk puts together research panels for broadcasters and programme makers so that they can get feedback on TV programmes before they hit the box.

You can either attend face-to-face research groups, fill in surveys online or do both.

You can earn between £40 and £70 for a discussion group and it’s usually cash in hand.

9. Clinical trials

Drugs companies are often looking for people to test new medicines on.

You could get paid to take part in clinical trials to help find treatments for ailments such as Crohns Disease.

There is obviously the risk of nasty side effects but companies like Trials4Us can pay £120 for every 24 hours you spend on a trial.

Make free money

10. Get paid for music

SliceThePie will reward up to 10p for every song you listen to and rate.

The more you listen, the more they’ll reward you.

11. Share deals

LatestDeals hand out vouchers for people who share deals on its website.

You get points which add up to Amazon vouchers.

You have to get to a minimum of 5,000 points before you get a £5 Amazon voucher.

There’s a guide to how many points you can earn for different activities on the LatestDeals.co.uk website.

12. Earning cashback

Just as you’d expect from the name, cashback websites give you cash back when you spend online.

TopCashback and Quidco are two of the most popular and sometimes you can earn hundreds.

When you’re shopping, make sure you click through the websites to get some extra cash.

Both have widgets you can download so you never forget.

They are free to use but there are plus memberships which cost £5 a year and can give you a higher rate of cashback.

13. Surf the web for cash

One way you can earn and surf is by downloading and registering with the Qmee app or browser add on.

It works by helping advertisers reach specific users – so the adverts will be more tailored for you. If you click on one of the ads you like, you’ll be paid.

Usually it’s around 7-15p a search but you can earn up to £1.

14. Install an app

With Ipsos Media Cell – consumer data tracking software – you will earn a £20 voucher just by installing an app on your phone.

You also have to fill in a quick survey.

You then get £10 every month that you keep the app installed on your phone.

The app is owned by renowned research company IPSOS Mori.

It’s designed to get more information about how people consumer media, what they watch and listen to and what devices they use.

15. Refer a friend

“Recommend a friend” schemes are where you refer a pal to buy a service and you both get a cash bonus or freebies if they sign up.

One woman previously revealed that she made £600 a year just from referrals.

So it’s a win win basically.

16. Enter competitions

It’s always worth a pop!

Some websites have free competitions where you can win treats, cash or huge prizes, including LatestDeals.co.uk and Magic Freebies.

17. Cashback at the checkout

You can earn cashback when you upload receipts of an item on offer with CheckoutSmart.

Cashback can be as much as 100 per cent of what you paid.

It’s not just for supermarkets either as you can earn with the likes of Superdrug and Boots too.

18. Free postcode lottery

There’s a lottery called Pick My Postcode, which is free to enter and you could win sizeable cash prizes in its daily draws.

You win if your postcode is drawn. It’s not likely you’ll win, but as it’s free, there’s no harm in having a go.

19. Other free lotteries

There are other free lotteries you can play online, too.

Freemoji Lottery is where you choose a combination of your five favourite emojis and check the website to see if you’ve won with prizes in dollars.

Meanwhile Free Birthdate Lottery is when you enter your birthdate into the draw to win. Prizes of up to £50.

Boost your savings

20. Switch and earn 

Some banks offer incentives for you to switch accounts and save with them instead.

For example,  First Direct will offer you £175 to switch your current accounts.

If you’re looking to switch accounts, make sure your new bank is offering good overdraft and interest rates.

21. Use apps

Plum is a free chatbot app that uses Facebook Messenger to automate savings for you.

You can also use it to compare bills and switch suppliers too.

22. Get a cashback credit card

Some credit cards will give you cash for spending – but they have to be used with caution.

If you don’t repay your balance in full each month, you’ll start paying interest and that will wipe out most – if not all – of the cashback you’ve earned.

But if you can clear your balance each month, then they could be worth it.

MoneySavingExpert has rounded up the best credit card reward deals currently on the market.

23. Premium bonds

Premium bonds are just like normal savings accounts that let you take money in and out whenever you want – with one key difference.

Instead of interest being paid every month, the money you put into the account works as tickets for a monthly prize draw.

It could earn you anywhere between £25 and £1million, tax-free.

24. Reclaim cash in old bank accounts

Brits have £15billion lying forgotten in old bank accounts, pensions, life assurance and investments.

We’ve put together a guide on how to trace your old accounts and reclaim cash – because after 15 years, the Government could take it.

25. Track down lost pension pots

Save for the future by making sure you haven’t lost any money in a forgotten pension pot.

You will be auto-enrolled into a pension scheme with a new employer if you switch jobs – which means your old pension pot may have been lost.

There are around 1.6million missing pension pots with an average of £13,000 in each – one Brit managed to find his worth £27,000.

26. Activate debit card cashback

Many major banks partner with high street and online retailers to offer cashback when you spend money at certain stores.

Deals change all the time, but it’s worth checking with your bank to see what cashback offers they have.

27. Compare interest rates

Martin Lewis has previously told consumers to always keep on top of savings and mortgages rates as they can go up and down.

We’ve got a guide on how to find and compare home loans so you can get the best deal.

Sell your skills

28. Transcribe for a fee

Many companies will pay for someone to transcribe audio recordings of conferences or meetings by a set deadline.

You can sign up to global sites like waywithwords.net who will pay $0.40 per audio minute.

It says it’s best transcribers earn up to $1.38 per hour, working out at $82 dollars for an hour’s work – or £61.

29. Start a blog

You can make some real good cash from blogging.

Emma Drew told us she was earning £100,000 a year just from blogging after struggling to get a job after university.

30. Sell your photos

If you’re ever at the right place at the right time, or just take a really good snap, you could make money from your pictures.

Photo agencies such as Alamy and 123rf.com will pay you for your pictures if someone downloads them.

And you might even see them used as stock pictures in news articles.

31. Do odd jobs

You can make a few pounds by doing odd jobs on the side for other people by using websites such as TaskRabbit.

An events planner told us he was making £9,000 a year by assembling furniture and doing DIY work for others in his spare time.

32. Use Fiverr

Fiverr matches creatives with one-off projects.

Fees vary depending on the task but users will pay from £5 with the potential for earning more on bigger projects.

33. Or try FiveSquids

Similar to Fiverr, FiveSquids is a website which connects people who need a job done with skilled workers who can do that task from as little as £5.

There’s opportunities to earn up to £20 for an hour’s work.

34. Freelance on the side

Freelancer.com is another website which lets you sell your skills to the highest bidder.

People often hunt for website designers, graphic designers, copywriters and marketing professionals.

35. Sell your crafts

Are you crafty? You could sell your creations online.

Set up an Etsy shop and make items to order.

36. Do household chores

Advertise your services on websites such as Facebook and Fiverr and set up your own household chore side business.

You could set your own fees and take on other people’s chores when you fancy, from ironing to gardening.

37. Set up a Youtube channel

We live in the age of the vlogger.

Ones like Zoella have made millions from sharing tips or views on subjects from beauty to sport.

You may not become a millionaire from it but thousands of non-celebs earn extra cash from uploading their clips to the video search engine through the YouTube partner programme.

Use your home to earn

38. Rent out your driveway

You can charge people to use your driveway.

Apps and sites like JustPark connect drivers with a nearby free driveways, and you can decided what times you don’t mind yours being used.

For instance, if you know your car won’t be on the driveway between 9am and 5pm then you can advertise your space.

You can choose how much you charge and get paid straight into your bank or Paypal account.

You can register your driveway for free but bear in mind they’ll take a commission so you’ll need to factor that in.

We spoke to Tarek Fergani who has pocketed more than £400 since February by hiring out a spot in a car park where he lives.

39. Rent out stuff you don’t use often

You can make easy money by renting out anything from toys to bikes or camera equipment on sites such as Fat Lama where you can set your own prices.

The company will take a 15% cut if someone accepts your offer but it also has an insurance policy to protect your items against loss, theft or damage.

40. Rent out a room

Landlords who rent out rooms to lodgers now have a rent-a-room allowance of £7,500.

Alternatively, you could rent out a room, or even your whole house, on Airbnb.

You can set your own prices, but UK users in London report typically earning almost £3,000 a year through Airbnb.

One woman told us she makes £14,600 a year from renting out a spare room.

Of course, if you make more than £7,500, you’ll have to fill out a tax return and pay tax.

41. Rent out your car

Rental companies such as Easycar match car owners with renters.

The website says average earnings can reach £1,500 while regular users can earn up to £3,000 per year.

For example, you could get paid £128 a month for renting out a Ford Escort for just five days.

42. Store stuff for a fee

All that space in your loft or shed could be gathering money rather than just dust.

Websites such as StoreMates let you list space for free and you can earn up to £40 a month and there is also a 15 per cent service fee for the renter.

Just make sure your home insurance covers you for whatever is being stored.

43. Cook meals for neighbours

You could sell your baked goods or offer to host and cook dishes for people on meal-sharing app EatWith.

You can sign up, create a profile and take bookings from people wanting to pay to eat in your home or share in a delicious foodie experience with you.

44. Put your home in a film

You can rent out your home for photoshoots or even a film shoot and make some serious money.

There are location agencies such as AmazingSpace in London which will pay you to rent out your home or garden.

You could be paid up to £1,500 a day.

Sell your stuff

45. Sell unwanted giftcards

You can sell your unwanted giftcards on websites such as Cardyard.

You might not always get the full value – someone might pay you £18 for one worth £20 – but it’s cash you can spend where you actually need to.

46. Sell your hair

If you’ve got long locks and you’re thinking of getting the chop, you can make money out of it by flogging it online.

London based Hair Harvest buys hair by the ponytail to make bespoke wigs made from real hair that’s ethically sourced in some kind of modern-day version of Les Misérables.

Bloomsbury Wigs – the side of the business that makes the wigs – mainly sell to cancer patients who’ve lost their hair through chemotherapy, alopecia sufferers and members from the trans community.

The amount they pay depends on the length, the colour and the condition, but you could earn up to £250 for the right type.

Simply put your hair in a ponytail and cut above the band, pop it in the post and the experts will assess it. If they don’t want it they’ll send it back.

47. Flog stuff on eBay

It’s obvious but selling unwanted items such as clothes and homeware on auction website eBay can earn you extra cash.

You don’t even need to go to the post office anymore – you can choose to have couriers pick up the items from your home.

48. Or avoid eBay’s fees

eBay will take a cut of whatever you make from selling your items.

So it may be worth looking for other ways to flog your items, such as on Gumtree, Preloved or Facebook Marketplace.

49. Sell your rubbish

It’s not just old clothes and trinkets that can make you money.

People will pay a surprising amount online for what you might think is rubbish, such as toilet roll cylinders and empty perfume bottles.

50. Sell electronics

There are lots of websites dedicated to specifically reselling your electronics.

MusicMagpie will give you an instant price for old music or mobile phones.

For example, MusicMagpie would buy a 16GB iPhone 5 in good condition for £84.