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Earn spare cash as a university student (how to!)

12th February 2016

How to earn spare cash when you’ve run out of options

If you haven’t run out of cash at some point at university, don’t be proud – clearly you’re either Norwegian or just doing it wrong. There comes a time when we all hit rock bottom: the river dries up, mum and dad are getting tight after the last loan they gave you and the overdraft is at maximum. You’ve got to eat, but you’re not about to do anything as drastic as getting a job. Here are some ways to earn spare cash as a university student…

Earn spare money doing “cash in hand” jobs

I might or might not have had a “cash in hand” job.  I’m definitely not telling you to get one. I’m also not telling you that club promoting is easy money and that it’s usually instant cash in hand. I’m certainly not telling you any of the following benefits: that it enables you to do university networking, that you get free drinks from the people you conned into coming to your club, and that you get free entry into the club from then on. Cash in hand jobs are not actually illegal. Your employer should declare your payment in their tax return and you should tell HMRC that you are self-employed and pay any necessary tax and NI. However, your annual personal allowance is £10k, so unless you’re doing a serious amount of club promoting, you should be safe! It’s a great way to earn spare cash while your mates are out spending theirs on the weekend. Your call…

Babysitting is a great way to earn spare cash:

Woman asking if she can trade in the children she is babysitting for more cashNothing’s easier than spending your university printer credits on a few pages of business cards and cutting them up back home. People are always after babysitters and since you don’t have any spare cash to go out on the weekend and definitely could use a quiet night in for some work (or TV), why not post a few cards around? The worst-case scenario is that nobody gets back to you; the best-case scenario is that you don’t even see the kids and earn money for snacking on actual house food.


Easily earn spare cash by selling on eBay:

We’ve all got crap we don’t use. Do what I do each year before university: pack all your stuff into boxes at the beginning of the last month you’re at home (I mean, everything!). Only take out what you use as you use it. After one month, take a look at what’s left in the boxes. You’ll know what’s of little use or no use at all. Forget weak emotional attachments and clear your room and mind of clutter. Ask yourself: is that project really going to happen or can I sell that guitar and pick up a cheaper one later? Stick the items on eBay or Gumtree for a pretty price and enjoy watching the bids pile up! People actually buy my used hippie clothes. Throw you’re own Joke Wills tops up there and you might be surprised at how much spare cash you can earn!

Are online surveys a good way to earn spare cash?

If you’re looking to make quick money, forget online surveys. They’re a con and you won’t have the time or patience for them.

Helping at university events is a sure-fire way to earn spare cash

All those people who greeted you on open days weren’t actually happy to show you around. They were most likely battling hangovers and the only thing pushing them through was the £20 that Barclays was paying them. There are always plenty of open days that need volunteers and most come with a nice little present or at least a free t-shirt to throw on eBay (if you’re that desperate). Take a look at the “Careers” section if you need real money and see what they have to offer.

Work backwards: earn spare cash by saving

If all else fails, there are always savings to be made. If you cut out one box of fags for the week, you’ve made a £7 saving. Substitute the Boots Meal Deal for a homemade sandwich for another £3 and cut out the nightly pint for another £3.50. Switch to Tesco-value whiskey (it’s actually alright) or, even better, head down to your local Aldi or Lidl for your shopping needs.

Money is rough at university. Make it easy on yourself and get a job during the summer. Malia isn’t all that great. Instead of burning through money, focus on ways to earn spare cash or, at least, save it.

Homer Simpson telling car vallets he has counted the pennies in the ashtray of his car

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