Online Money Gunny | Resources, Tips and Tricks

  • The Most Important Money Tip This article is about Basics

    Personal finance is easy. It’s simple. There is one fundamental law that governs your money. If you master this, you have mastered the entire game: To gain wealth, you must spend less than you earn.

    In David Copperfield — one of my favorite books — Charles Dickens wrote:

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery.

    That’s all it takes. Think of it another way. Think of it like an arithmetic equation:

    [WEALTH] = [WHAT YOU EARN] - [WHAT YOU SPEND]

    If you spend more than you earn, you are losing wealth. You are accumulating debt. You are heading in the wrong direction. However, if you are earning more than you spend, you are accumulating wealth. The greater the gap you can create between earning and spending, the faster you will accumulate wealth. There are only two things you can do to gain more wealth: spend less and earn more.

    Spending less is something that you can do right now with little or no effort. Just stop spending money. Seriously. That’s it. Don’t buy things. Sure, you need to buy some things, but if you learn to pay less for the essentials (food, shelter, clothing), and if you can learn to reduce your wants, you can trim spending by a shocking amount. Learn how to shop for groceries and to make your own food. Develop a frugal mindset. Live simply.

    Earning money is the other half of the wealth equation. If you can increase the amount you earn, you will accumulate wealth more quickly. Because earning money is so important, many personal finance books stress that your career is your most important asset. Your most important asset is not your house; it’s not your investment account; it is not — heaven forbid — your car. It’s your career. This is why a college education is so important: it can help you land a better job, can increase your earning power. This is why your professional reputation is so important: what your employer thinks of you, what your co-workers think of you, what your customers think of you all play a role in your success. If you treat your career like a prized possession, you’ll have greater success at finding better paying, more-fulfilling jobs.

    This may seem petty or obvious. But smart personal finance really is this simple: spend less than you earn. Everything else — the paying yourself first, the investing ten percent of what you make, the emergency fund, the debt snowball — everything else is simply done in support of this fundamental law. When you grasp this concept, most financial decisions become obvious.

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  • Great Ways to Earn More Money This article is about Entrepreneurship, Money Hacks

    The fundamental law of money is: To gain wealth, you must spend less than you earn. If you want to increase your wealth, you must spend less or you must earn more. (Doing both is even better.)

    Often personal finance writers focus on the “spend less” half of the equation. Frugality is quick and easy to implement, and it’s something that anyone can practice. For good or ill, self-denial is easier for people than self-promotion. Yet often it’s this self-promotion — increasing what you earn — that can yield the greatest results.

    Last week, Free Money Finance shared eleven great ways to earn more money. FMF writes:

    I spent last year trying to earn an extra $10,000 above my salary. I’m doing the same this year, and I thought many of you would like to join me. As a starting place, I’m identifying all the major ways I’ve compiled on how to make more money.

    His suggestions include:

    1. Ask for a raise.
    2. Earn a promotion.
    3. Change jobs.
    4. Earn income from your hobbies.
    5. Start a side business.
    6. Maximize your investments.
    7. Trade or barter your skills.
    8. Make the most of your current job skills.
    9. Sell stuff you own but do not need.
    10. Use credit cards strategically.
    11. Get money owed to you.

    Though I’m wary of recommending credit card tricks to anyone struggling with debt, the rest of the list is solid. I’ve used several of these strategies to boost my income during my own financial journey. With a little creativity, you can probably boost your earning power, helping you to reach your financial goals more quickly!

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  • More Money: 5 Ways to Earn Extra Cash in Your Spare Time This article is about Career, Entrepreneurship, Odds and Ends

    The discussion yesterday about how to earn money when you’ve lost your job got me thinking about ways to earn extra income outside regular employment. None of these are quick fixes, but they’re ways to generate cash in your spare time.

    Get a second job
    A second job can be an excellent way to earn extra money if you have the time and energy. Why have a second job?

    • To pay off your debt
    • To build up your savings
    • To get more experience
    • To ease into a career transition

    Real-life example: In 2000, I took a second job programming computers. For several months, I was working sixty hours a week. I’ve never been so flush with money in all my life. Too bad I was a spendthrift back then — it was all wasted on computer games, comic books, and Magic cards.

    Become a consultant
    Earlier this year, Andréa wrote a guest entry about becoming a consultant to defeat debt quickly:

    “Consulting” may sound intimidating. It’s really just a fancy word for someone who trades their knowledge and expertise for pay. Every time you make a suggestion, recommend a process, draw up a plan or manage a process, you’re using consulting skills. To get into consulting, you just need to find someone who can use your expertise.

    Read more advice about how to become a consultant at Andréa’s site.

    Real-life example: After I decided that computer programming was not for me, I set up a small computer consulting business. I designed web pages, maintained networks, and repaired computers. Though I didn’t have much work (I never pursued the business as much as I could have), my hourly pay was the highest it’s ever been in my life.

    Earn money from your hobbies
    If you’re like most people, your hobbies cost money. They may cost lots of money. For example, I used to spend hundreds of dollars for new camera lenses just so I could take better photos of my cats. Is there a way to turn your hobby into a money-making proposition? Even if you make just a little cash, you can help offset your costs. Get Rich Slowly readers have been sharing their stories about money-making hobbies in an ongoing (though irregular) Sunday series:

    • Selling digital photos (more here)
    • Binding books and printing buttons
    • Mystery shopping and belly dancing

    Here are some more ways that you can use your hobbies to bring you wealth.

    Real-life example: After spending a fortune on lenses and camera equipment, I’ve actually been able to make a little money on my hobby. The $750 I’ve generated from prizes and sales is peanuts compared to what I’ve spend on the hobby, but it’s a start.

    Make money online
    Wait. Didn’t I just write that blogging is no way to get rich quick? Absolutely. But blogging can be a way to supplement your income. If you have subject that you’re passionate about, and if you like to write, a blog can let you earn extra money from your expertise.

    But blogs aren’t the only way to make money online. You could open an online store. You could sell things on eBay. Here’s a list of 10 ways to make money online from Web Worker Daily.

    Real-life example: This blog.

    Sell stuff
    A final way to earn some extra cash is to sell things. Look in your closets. Check your bookshelves. Walk out to the garage. See all that junk? How much of it do you actually use? Couldn’t you borrow books from the library when you need them? When was the last time you played Mario Kart 64? Wouldn’t you feel better if your house were less cluttered?

    As long as you don’t try to sell it all at once, it doesn’t take much time and effort to sell your used stuff to generate some extra cash.

    • Sell your most valuable items on eBay. (My eBay tips.)
    • Consider selling certain specialty items to specific stores: sell your used CDs to a music store, your used Nintendo stuff to a game store, etc.
    • Use Craigslist to sell bulky items, or to get rid of stuff that just won’t sell. (My Craigslist tips.)
    • Hold a garage sale to purge everything else. (Our annual garage sale is just a month away — I can’t wait.)

    Real-life example: Once or twice a year, I sell extra stuff I’ve accumulated. Each year at our garage sale, I make about $300. Every couple years, I sell more valuable items on eBay. Last year I made $1500 for a few hours of work.

    Use your extra money wisely!
    What should you do with the extra money you earn using these techniques? Establish an emergency fund, pay off debt, and then save for retirement!

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  • Six Tips for Money Making Hobbies

    You can make money from your hobby.

    Whether you knit, or write, or make photographs, or grow a vegetable garden, or tinker with cars, or build web sites, or collect ancient coins — you can make money from your hobby.

    I’m not saying it’s possible to get rich by playing your violin at weddings, or by weaving baskets from pine needles, but earning money from a hobby is a nice way to get paid for doing something you would do anyhow.

    This article is the first in a series that will explore how to turn a hobby into a source of side income. In the weeks and months ahead, I’ll describe general best practices, discuss potential pitfalls, and provide case studies culled from my friends, and from the stories of readers like you. (If you’d like to share your experience, please drop me a line.)

    First, by way of introduction, here are some ground-rules for making money from hobbies.

    Focus on something you love


    Pursue something you’re passionate about. Choose a hobby that you enjoy, and find a way to make money from it. Don’t choose a hobby simply because it might make money and then dive into it with that aim in mind. You should be doing this hobby because you love it; any side-income should be secondary.

    I love to write. I was struggling with debt. I began to read personal finance books, and then to summarize what I’d learned for my personal web site. From this, Get Rich Slowly was born. Now I make over a thousand dollars a month writing about personal finance. But I didn’t start this for the money — I started this because I was passionate about the subject.

    Keep it fun. Don’t let it become a chore.

    Be creative


    If you’re interested in making money from a hobby but don’t know where to start, think outside the box. What skills do you have that others don’t? Define the term “hobby” broadly. Find something that you can do that most others cannot, something for which other people might be willing to pay.

    At my day job, I have a customer whose wife loves to cook. She turned this hobby into a part-time job as a personal chef. She prepares meals in advance for wealthy clients. She spends a few hours a day preparing a week-long menu for people who pay her handsomely for her time.

    I have a friend who likes to travel. One day he discovered that he could subsidize his journeys by writing about the places he visited, and by taking photographs. Now every couple of years he takes an all expense paid vacation. He’s doing something he’d do anyhow, and it doesn’t cost him a dime.

    Don’t force it


    Your hobby will not make you rich. In most cases, it won’t even net you enough to allow you to quit your day job. It’s quite possible, however, to earn enough money to make the hobby self-sustaining, to keep yourself in new tools and equipment.

    My brother builds speakers and works with audio equipment as a hobby. He makes some money at it. (”Spending money,” he says.) Jeff notes, “It’s not hard to make money from a hobby. What’s difficult is trying to turn it into an actual business. Moving from a hobby to a business is a pain-in-the-ass.”

    Often when you try to take your hobby to the next level, the joy goes out of it. Suddenly the extra income just isn’t worth it. When I tried to turn my computer-building hobby into a business, I hated it. There’s a balance to be achieved, and if you can find it, you can have a fun while earning extra income.

    Don’t underestimate your ability


    It’s easy to discount your abilities. When you truly love something, your prolonged experience can give you skills and knowledge that you don’t appreciate.

    For example, I have a love for early 20th-century American pop culture. My brain is filled with facts and anecdotes about once-famous recording artists. I sometimes find myself under the impression that everybody knows who Billy Murray was, or is familiar with the song “Ukulele Lady”. But this isn’t common knowledge — it’s specialized.

    The same concept holds true for you and your hobby. Know a lot about Napoleonic warfare? Start a blog about Admiral Nelson. Spend time tinkering with bicycles? Open a small-scale bike repair service. Not everybody knows what you know. Don’t sell yourself short.

    Market yourself


    This can be difficult. In order to actually earn income, you need customers. But just as most people have a tendency to underestimate their abilities, they also tend be uncomfortable with self-promotion.

    There’s no shame in mentioning your money-making hobby to friends, family, and neighbors. You needn’t be pushy. Just mention it at natural points in the conversation. If you’ve decided to do some woodworking for cash, mention this when your uncle mentions he wants to buy a new bookshelf.

    Marketing can be subtle, but it’s an absolute necessity if you hope to earn money from your hobby. People need to know you’re available before they can hire you.

    Hone your skill


    Practice, practice, practice. The more time and energy you’re willing to devote to your hobby, the better you will become. The better you become, the more likely that you’ll be able to earn money from it.

    Photography is a terrific example. If you’re willing to make a hundred images a day, you can improve your skills quickly, especially if you teach yourself about composition. You may never become a professional photographer this way, but you can develop your skill to the point where you can sell images to stock photo agencies, or enter (and win) photography contests.

    Some people are born with natural talent. Most of us have to work at it.

    Conclusion


    Why should you care about making money from hobbies? Remember: the wealth equation has two sides. You accumulate wealth by reducing expenses and by increasing income. Often we only focus only on our careers when it comes to “increasing income”. But there are other ways to make money. One of the best is to harness a hobby.

    This is an especially good technique if you’re stuck in a low-wage job. And sometimes a person can turn a money-making hobby into a career. Who doesn’t want a job doing something he loves?

    Future articles in this series will cover topics such as:

    • Making money from photography
    • Using the web to make money from a hobby
    • Making the leap to full-time
    • Creating web sites about your hobby
    • Teaching your hobby (thanks, Donna!)
    • And, of course, plenty of anecdotes from people who have turned their hobbies into money-making ventures

    Most of all — whether or not you make money from your hobby, enjoy the time you spend with it! Hobbies help make life fun.

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  • Making money from classified sites I stumbled across an ingenious way to make money from a site last week and it’s something I plan to possibly try out and put into practice when I get a chance, if you already know about it then I apologise but it did seem rather a sneaky and clever way to generate income while on the face of it looking after your visitors interests so worth sharing.

    It goes like this, you run a free classifieds website letting buyers and sellers list their ‘for sale’ and ‘wanted’ adverts in a niche, be it fish, dogs, birds, cars, music or whatever! It’s a free service and you want to keep it clean and user friendly but you also want to monetise the traffic without plastering Adsense everywhere!

    The solution
    You protect the privacy of your advertisers, aww bless :)
    When people place adverts for unwanted goods or pets they have bred they may be wary about giving out their phone number, fear not, your classifieds site operates privacy protection so that their phone number is not actually displayed on the site, instead an 07096 number is displayed (in the UK), this number forwards calls on to the advertisers real phone number and costs £0.50 per minute generating shared revenue for the website owner.

    The result


    The website is clean, user friendly and free to use, more than that as detailed in the privacy policy all private numbers are hidden and a forwarding number is used to protect the users from spammers and canvassers obtaining their number. The website owner is on a revenue share, as long as the cost element of the phone call is NOT EXTORTIONATE and clearly stated, I think it’s a great way to monetise a service you can offer, generating income from premium phone numbers is not new and older than the internet but it seems to me a nice way of bringing them both together, indeed if you could find a well established high traffic classifieds website you could remove existing advertising and implement this and give a better user experience and make a good income from it buying it cheap on a multiple of it’s present income. Win win.

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  • Archive for the ‘Money Making Tips’ Category


    The internet is awake and so are most who live in and around it, while it’s rare to find a high ranking site not monetised with Adsense or the like there ways to buy websites and advertising that not may strike as obvious.

    Competitive markets like insurances and debt management look like they will thrive in 2009 while the mortgage market suffers, approaching a top 10 ranking website for debt management will NOT provide you with a cheap gem to buy but that doesn’t mean traditionally difficult markets are to be avoided. Thinking outside the box can offer cheaper inroads to high paying niches and the example I will give can be applied as always to many ideas and markets, for this one let’s presume you want to tap into the high paying debt management market.

    Liken your task to that of a profiler who works for the police, if there had been a complicated murder and the police call in a profiler to get a profile of the murderer they expect to be given an overall picture with accurate behavioural detail. The profiler won’t tell the police to wait until there is another murder and then you’ll find them, instead behavioural patterns are given to try and find the offender and narrow them down through everything else apart from the murder, so work, social life, habits and hobbies.

    Take this back to your debt management leads, worth say £50 a pop, people who are heavily in debt have a profile, finding them at the top 10 ranking sites for debt management would be expensive, as it would for finding them through Adwords. You can however find these people at other cheaper places through profiling, cheaper websites and cheaper advertising places that have a direct correlation to your desired lead can give you great profit with albeit a poorer conversion rate. People get up to all sorts online and a great many of them fit patterns and profiles.

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  • Start an Online Home Business with the best Internet Business Ideas I work from home full time online, on the internet. I'd like to welcome you to my website that will inspire you with internet business ideas and opportunities and explain to you how to choose, start and build the best online business for you, regardless of your age, your level of experience or where you live in the world.

    Are you are tired of working for somebody else? Do you hate your boss? Or are you just wanting to learn more about starting a home business or making some extra cash online in your spare time?

    On this website you will find a varied selection of the best and most profitable internet business ideas & home business ideas that have all been personally tried and tested over the last four years.

    I will also provide you with a simple and easy to understand step by step explanation of how to start an internet business from home online and how to market a home business on a budget
    The majority of the online internet business ideas and opportunities on this website are global, so you'll find some inspiration whether you live in the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, Asia, Europe, Africa or elsewhere in the world.

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  • 10 Successful Online Home Business Ideas 1. Michael Senoff has stumbled upon a perfect online home business opportunity – reselling old seminar materials. He was really impressed by Jay Abraham. The only problem was that it costs $20,000 to attend Jay’s workshops (no wonder the press called it, “the world's most expensive seminar"). So he did some digging and managed to find a guy from Northern California who had attended the seminar, asking to buy seminar materials off him. He bought the entire set for … 50 dollars. He later found out that Jay’s materials are being sold on eBay for several hundred dollars. He broke up the original package (that he got for $50) in several pieces and sold items for $1700. Thus, his perfect online homebusiness was born. Michael now resells old seminar materials for dozens of marketing gurus, easily profiting over $1000 a day.

    2. Catherine Keane, the owner of Hungry Pod, makes over $100,000 a year, uploading music to other people’s iPods. This online homebusiness idea came to her when an acquaintance offered her $500 to load his CD collection onto his iPod. Thanks in part to a small story in The New York Times, Keane's advertising efforts on Craigslist and word-of-mouth, HungryPod has expanded to three employees and four computers, and has annual sales that exceed $100,000.

    3. Joshua Opperman has his ex-fiancée to thank for his thriving online home based business. After the breakup, he was stuck with the engagement ring he paid dearly for. He went back to the jeweler where he'd bought it three months earlier, but found he could only get 32 percent of its original cost. Josh didn’t like that one bit, so he set up a site, where people in the same situation can sell their engagement rights for a better price.

    4. This is a great online home-based business idea that requires no money and that anyone can start. PickyDomains is a risk-free domain naming service that got a lot of publicity and ‘blogtalk’ in Europe lately. This is how it works. A customer deposits $50 dollars and describes what kind of domain he or she wants. Domain pickers then send in their suggestions of available domain names. If the customer likes one of the domain names and registers it, the service gets $50. Otherwise the money is refunded at the end of the month.

    5. Reading a business magazine in the doctor's office inspired Joseph Tantillo to try his hand at online retailing. At the time, he and his wife were expecting their first child and wanted to work from home. An article about starting an online store jumped out at him, he recalls—and, as a member of a fraternity in college, he decided to sell personalized Greek apparel to that market. After setting up shop for just $79.95—the cost of a merchant account with Yahoo!— he began researching what kind of products his former fraternity brothers might like. Using the strong Greek network worked, as he's built GreekGear.com's yearly sales to $1.9 million.

    6. Rick Field, a Yale graduate and former TV producer for Bill Moyers, is a perfect example of how you can start successful home business out of a hobby. Field learned the art of pickling when he was growing up in Vermont. About eight years ago, gripped by a sense of nostalgia, he took up pickling again. In his tiny kitchen, Field made family recipes and then quickly began experimenting. People’s wildly enthusiastic response to his Windy City Wasabeans (soybeans in wasabi brine) and Slices of Life (sliced pickles in aromatic garlic brine) told him he was onto something. Read how Rick took his homebusiness online

    7. Karin Markley set her online business right out of home. Having 15 years of experience working in a civilian employment agency and knowing that companies value employees with military backgrounds, and she wanted to provide a one-stop link between the two. Karen contacted the Department of Defense for permission to use its seal on her Web site. It took months to get it, but MilitaryExits.com is now linked to all the military bases. Markley, who projects annual sales of $600,000, points to her biggest reward: "Helping the military. Getting the letters and phone calls from these people thanking me so much for what I'm doing for them."

    8. If I told you that you can make $200,000 blogging about hot sauces, you wouldn’t believe me. Yet, this is exactly what Nick Lindauer does. In 2001, while still in college, he launched his online homebusiness then called Sweat 'N Spice out of his Springfield (Ore.) apartment. He sold a few dozen types of hot sauces, packaged each order by hand, and shipped everything from his local post office, barely eking out a profit during his first year of operation. Today, Lindauer sells over a thousand products from some 300 manufacturers. In 2005, the business grossed around $130,000. He got $200,000 in 2006. One day, it’s going to be a cool $1000000.

    9. Amazing Butterflies is really an amazing million dollar homebusiness idea success story. Jose Muñiz's career began when a friend bet him $100 that he could not sell butterflies for a living. Now, seven years later, the former business consultant and his wife, Karen, own Amazing Butterflies, a live-butterfly distributor that generated $1 million in revenues in 2006. Though Muñiz is still waiting for his $100, he says that he has backed his way into a job that he loves. "I could never go back to consulting," he says. "This is just too much fun."

    10. What began as a solution to her chronic back and neck pain is now a line of purses for women who share Kristy Sobel's condition--or simply want a fashionable fanny pack. After three car accidents that resulted in extensive back and neck surgeries, the 35-year-old entrepreneur realized she couldn't do the traveling her then-job required. To ease the weight on her shoulders, Sobel searched for a fanny pack that would accommodate her condition, but realized fashionable ones were nonexistent. So she created one. Before long, family, friends and even strangers were requesting this one-of-a-kind purse. She approached boutiques with her design after successful test runs at her friends' shops, but the door-to-door routine eventually took a toll on her body. Sobel continued her venture from home, found a rep to promote her bags at a trade show and used her and her husband and co-founder Eric's savings to launch LaNeige Purse. Last year she made over $200,000 from her purses.

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