We’re spending a lot more time in our homes at the moment, and many of us are strapped for cash too. In this article, Peter Watton from OddsMonkey shares his tips for using your property to make some extra cash.
Last year, our survey found that that three quarters (76%) of Brits owe some form of personal debt, whether that’s from credit cards, personal loans, overdrafts, or car finance. While shockingly common, the impact that debt can have on your life including your mental wellbeing is not to be taken lightly, so this figure is a cause for concern.
One explanation for this could be the fact that one in three British people aren’t making enough money in their main job to cover their living expenses, a number that’s surely set to rise due to the pandemic. However, as a nation of make-do-and-menders, we are getting very good at finding ways to supplement our incomes.
Our research has shown that one in four Brits have a side hustle, with average earnings of around £230 per month to put towards bills and other expenses. In many cases, setting up a side hustle doesn’t even require any special tools or equipment — you can make an additional income using just your home and what you already have in it. To help you get started, below I’ll share my tips for using your house to make money including ideas, legalities, and earnings estimates.
Renting out a spare room
We found that 5% of side-hustlers are renting out a spare room in their home for an average earning of £294 per month, one of the highest figures in our survey. How much you make will obviously depend on factors like your location and how much space you let out, but renting out a furnished spare room, loft, or annexe can be a great way to get that additional income if you have the space.
It shouldn’t affect your mortgage or insurance policies in most cases, but you do have to let your lenders know of your plans. You’ll also have responsibilities as a landlord, such as making sure the space you’re renting is kept to an acceptable standard, and it’s always best to have your tenants sign a contract to head off any potential issues or complications. However, in accordance with government schemes, you’re even allowed to earn up to £7,500 per year before you have to pay any tax.
Renting out your driveway or car
If living with a tenant isn’t quite right for you, you could make around £268 renting out a driveway or parking space that you own (note: you cannot lease out parking permits). This is a great option if you live in the city centre or next to somewhere busy like a train station, hospital, or football stadium, and you stand to make even more money if you own parking space basically anywhere in London.
You’ll have to check with your mortgage and insurance lenders to see if they allow you to do this under your current premiums. But, you can make up to £1000 a year in parking space rent tax-free thanks to another government scheme. Alternatively, why not rent out your car through a third party? You’re probably not getting much use out of it at the moment, so you might as well see what you can get for your make, model, and mileage.
Storing items to online
You can easily turn any unused space in your home, like a garage or spare room, into a storage area to help you start selling items online. This space will really come in handy if you intend to scour charity shops and sales racks to find bargain pieces to turn over for a profit, or if you simply want to organise and sell your own belongings that you no longer have need for.
A whopping 20% of respondents in our survey were selling items on eBay or other second-hand selling sites for an average monthly income of £143. If you’re a dab hand with art supplies, you’re in luck, because making and selling crafts nets an average £220 per month. So, you should definitely consider setting up a hobby area in your home too if you have the time and the skill. Bakers win though, netting £266 a month for selling homemade bakes.
Other online methods
In addition to selling, there are plenty of other ways to make money online from your home — in fact, you can do most of these without leaving the sofa. Blogging was by far the most lucrative side hustle on our list, generating an average income of £333 per month. One caveat is that running a successful blog takes time and commitment, so it’s only really viable if you’re able to give it your full attention. If you’re on furlough or work part-time, then you should be able to manage it without too many late nights and early starts.
Another option to consider is matched betting, which unlike regular gambling can ensure you a small but steady income that’s risk-free (aside from human error). Or, you might want to sign up to an online survey website that will allow you to fill out surveys at your leisure for small payments, or a ‘get paid to’ site where you earn rewards for things like visiting websites, watching videos, or searching using specific keywords.
The tips in this guide can help you find a way to generate some extra income while you’re stuck at home. Bear them in mind and you’re sure to find the perfect way for you to make money using your property.