10 ways to make extra cash while self-isolating

Now that Covid-19 has taken hold across the world, people are being encouraged to ‘self-isolate’ or socially distance themselves from others. This includes working from home and many companies are actively encouraging their employees to do this, including the big tech giants like Google and Amazon.

While ‘working from home’ you may discover that you have a little extra time on your hands. Afterall, there’s no commute to the office if your laptop is in your bedroom! You needn’t even spend as long getting ready in the morning – who’s going to care if you work today in your pyjamas!

Here are 10 easy ways to use that spare time to earn yourself a little extra cash. Now that the boss isn’t looking, you can get on with your own money-making enterprises. Thanks Coronavirus!

  1. Sell your old trinkets on eBay
    Now is the time to sort out your house and find things that you really do not need anymore. Old mugs and plates, trinkets and collectables that have been sitting in the back of your cupboards for years, collecting dust, can all be sold for cash. And don’t forget gifts you no longer want or never even opened. Look through the children’s bedrooms too. Do they have toys they no longer play with? Who knows, there may be a valuable toy in there that could earn you a fortune! It’s all perfect for listing and selling online. Take the time to list your items carefully, though, and use all of eBay’s functions to get the best results from shoppers.
  2. Sell books, music, DVDs and games
    In this era of digital streaming and downloads, do you really need all those CDs, DVDs and computer games? If they are simply taking up space on shelves, now is the perfect time to get rid of them. And if all your books are on your Kindle, then why keep your bookshelves fully stocked of novels you’ve already read? Instead, use apps like MusicMagpie and Ziffit to scan your items and send them off for a bit of extra cash quickly and easily. Plus, there’s no fee, just sell your stuff and keep all the cash!
  3. Sell your old clothes
    Now that you’ve got a bot of extra time, go through your wardrobe and find the clothes you no longer wear, don’t fit, or you just don’t want anymore. Shpock and Vinted are ideal for selling your unwanted clothes and you can get great cash rewards for things you don’t use anymore. Take the time that you would spend commuting to the office to clear out wardrobe of all those shirts, dresses and blouses you no longer need. Keep a beady eye out for designer labels. They, naturally, attract the very best prices, allowing you to earn the most from your old gear.
  4. Make stuff to sell on Etsy
    If you are the crafty type, use the extra time to create beautiful and bespoke pieces that you can sell online. Etsy is the perfect website if you make, or want to make, beautiful things like handmade cards, art and crafts. If you don’t know what you could make, look around your home for inspiration. Do you have any personalised gifts, or gifts you could easily create? People like sites like this for the ability to personalise, so think of initials, letters or monograms. They’ll need to really stand out, though, as there is a lot of competition on sites like Etsy, but with the additional time you now have you can perfect your craft and see your beautiful products in other people’s homes and spaces.
  5. Create a blog, channel, or social media page
    Blogs may be a bit old fashioned now, but they still provide a space for advertising. As do YouTube channels, so whatever your message is, use the extra time you have now that you’re self-isolating to build your audience. Blog or post new content regularly, the more the better. Then use this to your advantage by turning on adverts. Ensure that you get the maximum revenue for this by continuing to update your content and produce new posts or videos once you’ve built your audience.
  6. Take surveys and watch videos
    These don’t pay as massively as some of the websites suggest, but they can be a nice way of getting a little extra cash for Amazon shopping. It can be a little frustrating when surveys screen you out, but when you find yourself with an extra 20 minutes, apps like Swagbucks give you the opportunity to earn points that can be converted into PayPal credit or Amazon gift cards. Swagbucks also has the option of watching videos to earn points, although this is capped at a maximum of 10 points, which is not that many, but is a quick way to earn a few extra points when you’re not getting through the surveys.
  7. Write for blogs and lists and magazines
    Websites, like Listverse, rely on freelance writers to produce content. This can pay handsomely and, if you have an idea, it’s worth pitching it to the website or blog editor and see if you can write for them. Lists are great fun to write. Don’t be fooled, though. It can be tough to generate ideas, research the content and then write the article, but the payoffs are good. And you get to brag to your friends and family that you are now a published author! Magazines also pay well for stories so keep an eye out in your usual publications. Maybe they pay for letters. Or if you’ve had an unusual experiencer, they may pay for you to tell your story.
  8. Sign up to Fiverr, or similar sites, and earn a gig
    You may be working from home for your employer, but now is the chance to use your skills and keep all of the profit yourself. Well, most of it. Sites like Fiverr and Freelancer give you the chance to bid on projects and work on them directly with the client. You set the price and then you keep the profits, minus a fee from the website. There are all sorts of jobs, or gigs, from writing and editing to data entry and testing apps. It can be a great way to branch out and earn cash using your existing skills and knowledge.
  9. Write a story
    Everyone, it is said, has a book in them. You might not have the time, or the inclination, to compose a whole novel, but you may have a short story or piece of flash fiction. There are plenty of websites that pay for your stories and there are sites for specific genres, like sci-fi and horror too. Even fan-fic sites pay for contributions, so if you have a creative idea you can sell your idea and earn a little extra cash for it.
    There are chances for poetry writers too, and there are websites that cater specifically for poetry writers and can pay around $25 for a single poem. You could try and pitch your story to a print magazine too. Women’s magazines often have a fiction section and so need freelance writers to submit stories to their sites.
  10. Enter competitions
    Now that the boss isn’t looking, you are watching daytime TV and reading all the gossip magazines. As you’re at home, working in your pyjamas, you can also call and text in to competitions, potentially earning cash rewards or even dream holidays. And the bonus of working from home is that you’re available to receive those all-important phone calls to accept your prize live on air! Listen, too, to radio stations that pay simply for hearing the same artist play a number of times. Simple competitions that you may have missed in the office.

Self-isolating needn’t be boring. Yes, you may have work to get on with, but it is also a chance for you to earn a little extra cash while the boss isn’t looking!

Published by Nick Taylor | Editor & Proofreader

Editor and proofreader specialising in LGBTQ+ writing, both fiction and non-fiction.

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