General Topic: > Make Money

Summary: Learn how to make more money from your career, start your own business, and/or how to create passive income. (Tweet This)

We recently covered Spending Less Than You Earn. In it we established there were two ways to financial freedom - make more money or spend less money. Let's start with how to make more money.

Make More Money

Making more money isn't a magic trick

Earn More Money in Your Career

Perhaps the most obvious way to make more money is to look at your main source of income and looking to see if that can be increased. For most of you out there, that would be the 9-to-5 career.

  • Make yourself more valuable to your company - If you can find a way to be more productive at work, you can take on extra responsibilities. When you take on more responsibilities you can make a much better case for a raise.
  • How and when to ask for a raise - I've made the mistake of asking for a raise when business wasn't the best. I found that it didn't matter how good of a case I made, I wasn't going to get that raise.
  • Get a raise by switching jobs - Get out of that dead-end job. Most places don't evaluate raises based on performance - many times they feel that if they are giving a "good raise" based on your previous salary, you should be happy. Your view might be that you are worth a lot more. You might have to start with a fresh slate.
  • Get ahead with an advanced degree - An advanced degree isn't a guarantee to more income, but for the right professions it can push you into another salary tier. It can also help if you are switching jobs.

Get a Second Job

I know a lot of you out there are thinking that the last they need is more work. I'm with you on this one. However, there are times where it just makes sense. I have a friend who is a great freelance cartoonist/artist. Some years back, I was at an amusement park, when I recognized some of his art was featured. Being an artist wasn't his only gig, though. He also worked at a local bar at night. It got him out of the house, put some guaranteed cash in his wallet, and provided some much-needed health insurance benefits.

Another friend of mine, because a seasonal tax advisor for H&R Block. She's really good with numbers and enjoys numbers

Start a Business

Did this elicit another groan from all of you? Starting a business can be a lot of work. For 6 years, I lived in Silicon Valley where businesses are started every day, and the people starting them work 16 hour days. If that's the kind of thing that excites you, I'm cool with that. Feel free to donate me some stock options. However, if you'd like a more balanced lifestyle there are still some options available.

One idea for a starting a business is to get money from your hobbies. For example, if you are into crafts, you can sell them on Etsy. You get the fun of creating the craft, the joy of knowing that you made someone's day, and made a little money in the process.

Need another tip? How about a dog walking or sitting service. Sign up at DogVacay and you could earn an extra $25 or $30 a night... sometimes even more. To be fair, dogs are so awesome, you should be paying the owners for the privilege of spending time with them. When I look at it that way, any money you get is just gravy.

Create Passive Income

Finally a cheer (I hope)? Who doesn't love passive income? Getting money for doing nothing? What's not to like, right? Unfortunately it can be very difficult to find passive income sources. If you are really good with a guitar perhaps you can write a song. If you can get it on the radio, you'll earn some royalties. You can do the same if you are an actor. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to make it as a musician or actor. There is only so much room on the airwaves.

I found success with blogging. While some say that I have a talent for blogging, I didn't start out with it. It took a lot of trial and error to learn how to write interesting posts. Beyond that though, I got lucky. I fell in with the right crowd and we pushed each other and shared tips. It would be a stretch to call blogging passive income. While I do have the freedom to go to Australia for a month and still make money, I have to bust my hump, to not only write articles, but market them, and monetize them. Over the years, I've found blogging a lot like being a musician... there's only so much attention-span to go around.

One of the best ways to create passive income is through investing. You can buy stocks that pay dividends. You can buy businesses such as a Subway franchise. You can buy an apartment building and be a landlord. The downside to all these is that you have to have money to make money. The Subway franchise and the apartment building don't run themselves.

Putting it All Together

It's very unlikely that anyone other than rich, old uncle Bob is just going to give you money. Like anything else, it is something you are going to have to work at. For some people it will come easier than others.

Even if you are having trouble making extra money, take a lesson from The Christmas Carol. The Tiny Tim's of the world are often more happy than the Ebenezer Scrooges.

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Income, Make Money, Money / Personal Finance

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