We have a lot of debt to kill this year. In order to make significant progress towards our goals, we need to make more and save more. I plan on continuing to work hard on my side hustles: stepping up my efforts on those rewards sites and taking on more tutoring students – but these are a few new ideas that we’re going to try in 2015.
1. Start Selling Things On Ebay
We have a lot of unnecessary “stuff.” Although I plan on having a garage sale in a few months, there are a number of items that would likely have a better chance of selling, for more money, on Ebay. Confession: I have never sold anything on Ebay before. But there are tons of helpful resources and tips available with a simple internet search. I already have a decent collection of clothing destined for Ebay. I tried to sell it at a consignment store and it didn’t go so well. Anything that doesn’t sell online, or at the garage sale, will be donated.
2. Make Things To Sell At A Garage Sale
We only made $105 at our garage sale last year. Was it more money for paying off debt? Yes. Did we get rid of some clutter? Yes. One of my goals for 2015 is, however, to “have a bigger, better garage sale.” Last time, on a whim, I ended up making a decent amount of money from selling homemade hair ties. My idea is to supplement our old stuff with handmade items.
Another example is the hidden-treasure books that we made for Christmas presents. We had to make one for Goofball because he thought they were so neat (and he actually took it to show and tell today). I’ve looked on Etsy and there is already a bunch for sale. They look very well made and are pretty expensive. I question whether we could really compete with the established sellers, so the garage sale seems like a better option. We don’t have to charge that much and we should still make a decent profit. There’s no need to worry about shipping. Finally, odds are that many people at our garage sale will have never seen them for sale before. I have a few ideas for other DIY projects . . . stay posted 🙂
I also plan to sell bottles of water and some snacks and baked goods. There is a community-wide sale that takes place in May. My plan is to take advantage of the garage-sale traffic that will be coming through, and all of those hungry and thirsty bargain hunters.
3. Sell Homemade Freezer Meals
In reading mommy blogs, I see a lot of posts about making up freezer meals. They take some work to put together, but can be budget friendly, quite efficient for dinner-prep time, and healthier than store-bought options. I have considered making these for my family. Then, I read this post and got a new idea.
It seems that moms are somewhat discouraged by the effort involved in shopping for ingredients and preparing these meals. I was waiting until maternity leave to assemble some for my family. But what if I took some orders and made extra batches? My thought is to post something up on Facebook, maybe the local online yard sale page. I’ve seen posts on those pages for food before – like Christmas cookies. I could purchase the ingredients in bulk and just make more. It seems like a win-win situation: food for us and money towards our debt.
4. Sell Breast Milk (maybe)
As discussed before, I’m still on the fence about this one. My plan is to make the baby my first priority when it comes to milk. I will build up a freezer stash anyways. If I happen to collect enough that we have extra to sell, then that would be awesome. If not, oh well.
5. Sell My Hair
This may sound like a weird idea, but I think it could work. I have nice, healthy hair. I started cutting it myself last year. It takes a while to get it right because I go very, very slowly – so I don’t cut it very often and it is already very long. As a beginner hairdresser, the cut is all one length. I have “virgin” hair (meaning no coloring or chemicals). For work, it’s usually in a smooth, low ponytail. On my upcoming maternity leave, I suspect that my hair will usually be in a pony tail as well. I can handle a drastic change, because of my experience donating to Locks of Love twice before. And it can continue to grow for another 4 to 6 months, so I won’t have to cut it too short.
It should be an interesting endeavor, feels a bit archaic, and reminds me of “The Gift of the Magi.” We’ll have to wait and see how much my hair will fetch. Ultimately, I would chop it off anyways, just in smaller increments.
6. Blogging and Freelancing
Now that this blog is set up, I can really start building up quality content for readers to enjoy and working to gain exposure. I have a ton of ideas about guest-post submissions to other websites. Also, I plan to look for paying freelance opportunities as well. I’m really enjoying this type of writing. It would be wonderful to earn some extra money with this new “hobby.”
7. Publish My E-Book
I was very lost in my “perfect” life for more than a year. It was a private kind of suffering, only cured after reading blogs and books about priorities, money, time, and different options. I have started drafting an e-book that details the beginning of my journey, escaping from the mentalities of the status-quo, and making plans for a better future. My hope is that it will be a useful resource for others that are searching, like I was, for an answer to an indefinite question.
8. Collect Scrap Metal
This side hustle is for Mr. Smith. He already has some metal to trade in for cash. He will continue to look out for discarded items and this year, he’s going to start checking Craigslist for things like free broken appliances. The last time he filled up his pickup with metal, he brought home $160 in cash. Not too bad.
These are our new side-hustle ideas for 2015. Stay tuned – tomorrow I will be posting our new ideas to save money this year.
We can destroy our debt with hard work, determination, and a little creativity.