The last few years have been tough. There has been a pandemic that, apart from being a massive health concern, has also disrupted the economy, causing job losses and retrenchments. People have had no choice but to tighten their budgets and try to squeeze all their needs for them, all while the cost of living increases. For many people, this leaves very little or no wiggle room in their budget for savings, let alone other expenses that inevitably creep during the year.
Life happens, and there are always times you will need the extra money that your budget can’t accommodate. These can be emergencies like if your car breaks down or a pipe bursts and you need to repair it. It can also be situations you are aware of but don’t have the money for, like the beginning of the new school year when you will need to purchase back-to-school supplies and pay for fees, or Christmas or the holiday season when you will be entertaining. Despite knowing that these events are upcoming, it is almost impossible to save for them if your budget is stretched.
Still, there is little way to avoid these situations, and you will need to find the money to pay for them. There are two ways to do this: you could make extra money to cover these expenses or borrow money.
Ideas to Make Extra Money
It’s helpful to supplement your income, even if it’s sporadic, to cover these anomalies. If you’re only planning on earning an extra income on an ad hoc basis, depending on when you need extra money, it’s not worth investing in things you would need to do the job. So, think of things you can do that don’t require you to spend money. Alternatively, you can start a side hustle with the equipment you already own.
For example, suppose you’re skilled at photography and have a camera and photography equipment. In that case, you can offer to take pictures at a wedding or do a few photoshoots for individuals or small businesses on weekends until you make enough money you need. But, if you don’t have a camera and equipment, it isn’t worth buying it if you don’t plan on running a photography business long term.
Here are some other ideas that are easy to implement:
Turn Clutter into Cash
Take some time to look through your home, closets, and garage – you will be surprised at how many things you’ve bought over the years that you no longer use. As long as it’s in good condition, you can resell it. The used goods market is massive at the moment for two reasons. The first is that since people are on a tighter budget, they can no longer afford to buy the things they need brand new. The second is because people are becoming more conscious of the environment. Many would prefer to purchase previously used items as this prevents them from being dumped in landfills when their original owners no longer need them.
Items you can sell include electronics, laptops, tools, sports equipment, furniture, and clothing.
Pet Sitting or Dog Walking
A service you can offer that requires no investment or equipment is to be a dog walker or pet sitter. During the pandemic, there was mass adoption of pets as people, especially those living alone, felt isolated and needed company.
Now that people are free to go out and more people are going to work, there is a demand for pet services. If you’re good with animals, you can offer a dog walking service in your neighbourhood for folks who don’t have time to walk their dogs. You can also pet sit for people who want to go away overnight and need someone to look after their pets.
You can borrow money if your schedule is slammed and you don’t have time to add anything else to your to-do list. A loan can be helpful since the lender will give you the lump sum you need, and depending on the loan type, you usually have to repay it in monthly instalments, making it easier to pay off.
Let your credit score guide where you apply: if you have a high credit rating, you can apply for a personal loan with a bank. Bank loans usually have lower interest rates and better terms, making it easier to pay your debt.
If you’ve got poor credit and cannot secure a personal loan from a bank, don’t panic. There are several options for online loans that are worth investigating. Bad credit loans are specifically designed for people with bad credit, and there are various types.
Personal Instalment Loans
Some lenders offer personal instalment loans for people with low credit. The application process is quick, and you are likely to borrow a larger amount compared to other bad credit loans. Instalment loans are also easier to repay since you can pay back the amount you owe in instalments over a few months rather than have to pay the total amount at once.
Payday loans are also easy to apply for but come with high-interest rates. The amount you can borrow is based on your income since you will be required to repay the loan in full, including fees and interest, with your next paycheck or within two to four weeks. If you can’t repay it, you can roll the loan over, but more interest is added so that you will pay a higher amount for the loan.
- Self: Side hustle statistics: Everything to know about side hustles
- Forbes: How to Budget for Inflation and Higher Prices
- Investopedia: Best Emergency Loans for Bad Credit
- Nerdwallet: Types of Personal Loans
- Bankrate: The Easiest Loans to Get