10 easy ways to increase your income by $1,000 a year

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A little effort here and there can add up over the course of the year.

Key points

  • Earning an extra $1,000 a year means saving about $85 a month.
  • You can monetize your skills, your hobbies or just your time.
  • With a little know-how, a few hours a month can give you a good return.

These days, who doesn’t need a few extra dollars in their bank account? Whether you’re building an emergency fund, planning a vacation, or just need a little more wiggle room in your budget, even $1,000 a year can go a long way.

At first, this may seem like a big ask. $1,000 isn’t exactly a small change. But when you break it down over the year, it’s not as bad as you think. In fact, $1,000 a year is less than $85 a month. And $85 a month is totally doable — without spend every weekend working an exhausting scramble.

To help get your brain juices flowing, here are some easy ways to boost your annual income by an extra $1,000.

1. Ask for a raise

Okay, so asking for a raise isn’t always easy. It can sometimes be intimidating. But earning an extra $1,000 a year doesn’t require you to demand a massive raise. Raising your salary by just $40 every two weeks would mean earning an extra $1,040 per year.

2. Home, child or pet

Many people are happy to pay a decent rate for a trustworthy person to look after their home or family (and yes, we’re talking pets too!) while they’re away. Rates can vary depending on the type of session you do and where you do it, but a few days a month could easily turn into an extra $1,000 a year — or more.

3. Teach or tutor

No matter what kind of skills you have, chances are someone else wants to learn them too. The going rate for a good tutor can vary greatly depending on what you are teaching. Simple elementary school tutors tend to charge $15-$25 per hour, while more advanced lessons in specific skills could easily net you up to $50 per hour. Either way, an hour or two a week (or less) could get you to that $1,000 a year goal.

4. Do market research and surveys

Almost every industry relies on market research and user surveys to create and refine their products. Dozens, if not hundreds of websites help them do this by paying ordinary people for their opinions. How much you earn depends a lot on how much time you invest, but a few hours a week can add up quickly over time.

5. Earn credit card rewards

One of the ways credit card companies compete for customers is by offering rewards to people who use their cards to make purchases. The simplest form of rewards are cash back, which can be redeemed as statement credit to pay your bill – or even cash directly into your bank account.

If you maximize your rewards, you can easily turn your daily purchases of hundreds of dollars into cash back or points over the course of a year. And when you add a sign-up bonus or two each year, you can easily hit the $1,000 mark. Just make sure you don’t spend beyond your budget and pay off your balance in full each month to avoid interest charges.

6. Optimize your invoices

Although your first thought when considering increasing your income is to make more money, you might be able to get that extra $1,000 just by optimizing your spending. But that doesn’t necessarily mean deleting anything. It could be as simple as doing a little research to see if you can get a better deal.

For example, when was the last time you shopped around for car insurance quotes? Or have you considered switching internet or cell phone providers for one of these lucrative new customer offers? It might mean a bit of hassle — these companies tend to make the switch on purpose — but it might be worth slashing $100 or more off your monthly bills.

7. Clean up your trash

Very few of us can seriously say that we don’t have a little junk cluttering up the garage or attic. And why? So you can shake your head in disgust twice a year thinking, “Man, I really should do something about all this mess.” Well, now is the time. Stick this garbage on your local classified ad website or social media group and let someone else store it – while they pay you for the privilege of buying it.

8. Rent (or give up) your car

Are you working from home for good now and done with the daily commute? Are you a homebody who rarely uses the car on weekends? Either way, you can use car-sharing apps like Turo to rent out your car to others who need a temporary set of wheels.

Better yet, depending on the frequency of use (or rather, don’t use) your car, it may even make more sense to sell it and rely on car-sharing or ride-sharing apps yourself.

9. Sign up for a coupon app

We’ve all heard the stories of the goofy couponers who turn a pile of bills into ceiling-high stock. But you don’t have to be that dedicated to make decent savings. In fact, you don’t even need to own scissors. These days, you can just download a coupon app or two and turn your regular purchases into decent savings. Some of the apps can even be integrated into your web browser for automatic savings when shopping online.

10. Sell your photos and videos

If you love taking photos or videos of all your adventures, you may be able to monetize them. There are dozens of websites dedicated to stock photos and videos that are used by everyone from content creators to big marketing companies.

The profit per image you’ll make is often low – we’re talking pennies per download – but you can download as many as you want. Over time, you can build up a huge catalog of images or video clips that create passive income year after year.

Work smarter, not harder

Every little bit you can add to your budget can help you make ends meet. These are just a few simple ways to increase your annual income that don’t require wasting your entire weekend. Choose one or two to try or let them inspire your own ideas.

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