Five ways to boost your pay packet

8 October 2009

It's never a nice feeling to have to start counting the pennies the week or days before your next wage packet, so here are some of our best tips to top up your cashflow to get you through to pay day.

Luckily, there are ways you can boost your income - here are five of Moneywise's favourites:

1. Rent out a room

You can rent out a spare room, and provided the total annual rent doesn't exceed £4,250, you won't have to pay tax on it. Depending on location, short-term lets could be the most lucrative option: if you live near a major annual event such as the tennis at Wimbledon, the Edinburgh Festival or this year's Olympics, for example.

Alternatively, renting out your driveway or car-parking space, especially if you are close to a football stadium or airport, can be particularly profitable.


2. Sell unwanted stuff

Instead of chucking your junk into a skip, see if you can sell any of it at car boot sales or on online auction websites such as Go to, or to search for the nearest car boot sales to you.

3. Get a second job

Your skills or hobbies could generate some extra pocket money, whether it's book-keeping, dog-walking or teaching the piano. Advertise in your local shops or library, or list your services on the website

4. Give your opinion

Register online with market research companies such as Ipsos Mori, Torluna and Lightspeed to fill out surveys. You'll receive points, which you can then use to buy prizes and vouchers at places like and Sainsbury's.

5. Be a mystery shopper

You can also apply on these websites to become a 'mystery shopper'. You will be asked to buy specific items or to spend approximately 20 minutes in a shop, and can earn between £8 and £25 for each assignment.

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