7 Ways to Increase Your Income in 2021

This article includes links which we may receive compensation for if you click, at no cost to you.

Money can’t buy happiness. But it’s hard to be happy when you’re worried about your finances.

You can solve most of your personal finance problems by finding a way to increase your income. And today, there’s an endless number of ways you can bring in more money. Here are a few of our favorites.

  1. Ask for a raise
  2. Pick up a side hustle
  3. Reevaluate your career
  4. Sell your unwanted objects
  5. Create a passive income stream
  6. Invest in the stock market
  7. Live on a budget

How to Increase Income — Starting Now

Here are seven tips for increasing your income now.

1. Ask for a raise 

Start with the job you’ve already got. Are you in a position to ask for more money at work? 

If you’re not sure, figure out your current salary and compare it to the regional average for your position. If you’re getting paid lower than average, consider asking your boss for a raise. If you don’t like what you hear, you may want to think about finding a new job that will pay you fairly.

Remember that timing is important when asking for a raise. It’s better to ask when the company is profiting and morale is high. It’s also important to prepare a report ahead of time detailing what you contribute to the team. 

Always remember it’s okay to negotiate if you don’t like your employer’s offer. If your boss offers you a 5% raise, there’s no harm in asking whether it would be impossible to go up to 6% or 7%. The worst she can say is no.

2. Pick up a side hustle

A side hustle is a second job (or third, fourth, etc.) that you work in addition to a full-time job.

TIP: Here are some common side hustles to consider.

Drive for Lyft and Uber

Cars don’t have to be money pits. Thanks to smartphones, you can put them to use by driving for rideshare services like Uber and Lyft. It’s possible to get paid to pick people up and drop them off at various destinations like grocery stores, banks, and airports. 

Complete jobs on TaskRabbit

Those who are handy around the house should look into an app like TaskRabbit. This service pays workers for completing odd jobs. 

TaskRabbit connects users with local community members who need help painting, fixing items around the house, putting together tables, and mowing the lawn, to name just a few examples. 

Pet-sit 

Pet owners often find it difficult to spend time away from their animals. Dogs especially need to be walked and fed multiple times during the day. They also need to be let outside to exercise. 

Pet sitters can earn a decent income helping out with pet-related tasks. If this sounds good to you, check out Rover, a leading dog-walking app.

Learn More:

Pick up groceries on Instacart

Instacart is another community-oriented site that connects workers to locals who need help. With Instacart, you can get paid to shop at stores in your neighborhood for groceries and other products.  

Be a social media manager

Countless businesses today want to be on social media. But many of them lack the staff or expertise to get started. 

If you’re knowledgeable about social media and are capable of putting together compelling and engaging posts, you should consider working with local companies to help manage their social media throughout the day. 

If you’re knowledgeable about social media and are capable of putting together compelling and engaging posts, you should consider working with local companies to help manage their social media throughout the day. 

Learn More:

3. Reevaluate your career 

In some cases, getting a raise or picking up a side hustle may not be enough to make ends meet or reach your financial goals. You may need to reevaluate your career and see if you’re on track. 

For example, if you’re in healthcare, you may think about going to school to advance by becoming a specialist. If you work in construction, you may consider starting your own company.

Making a career switch may involve taking a temporary step back. You may end up taking out loans to go back to school or open your own business. And if you change fields, you may have to start in a lower-paying position and work your way up. Make sure to assess the return on your investment if you decide to make a switch. 

It’s also never too late to talk with a career counselor. The right individual can help get your career on track and lead you to new income opportunities. 

4. Sell your unwanted objects

It’s possible to earn extra money by selling old, unwanted objects on the internet. You may have outdated mobile devices or computers you’re not using, DVDs you no longer watch, and clothes that no longer fit you. All of these objects can potentially earn you money if you sell them online. 

Does this sound up your alley? Look into sites like Decluttr for unwanted tech items and media, along with eBay and Facebook Marketplace for other types of objects. And if you have items that fall into the “vintage” category, check out selling on Etsy.

Learn More:

5. Create a passive income stream

Another great way to increase income is to invest in opportunities that generate recurring payments over time. This is often known as residual or passive income.

One of the best examples of residual income is a rental property. By investing in real estate, it’s possible to generate income every time a tenant pays rent. 

Stock photography is another example of residual income. You can take pictures, submit them to a stock photo site, and collect money every time someone downloads them. 

Passive income is great because — after your initial investment — you don’t have to work to make money. It just requires making an upfront investment and letting time do the trick. 

Learn More:

6. Invest in the stock market 

If you’re looking to make more money, you might also want to invest in the stock market. You can either invest in a taxable brokerage account or a tax-friendly retirement account

By investing in the stock market, you can make money from capital gains and dividend distributions. Dividends are particularly great, thanks to their steady payments.

How much you make on the stock market is based on how much you put in, your strategy, your patience, and the types of stocks that you invest in. Always make sure to do your due diligence before diving in.

7. Live on a budget

When looking for ways to make money, it’s a good idea to put together a budget. Look for recurring expenses that are draining your bank account and providing little value and, if possible, eliminate them. 

As they say, a penny saved is a penny earned. Start by plugging the leaks in your budget and see how much money you can reclaim on a monthly basis. 

Who knows? You may be able to reclaim $50 to $100 or more.

Why You Should Generate More Income

In case you need more motivation for making money, here are some top reasons to increase income.

Put more aside for retirement

Retirement will be here before you know it. Unless you want to spend your later years living off Social Security payments and government assistance, you’ll need to put money aside now. 

By generating more income, you’ll have an easier time funding your retirement. The more money you bring in, the more you can set aside for growth.

Remember: Think of planning for retirement as sharing your money with your future self. 

Pay down debt faster

Nothing is more damaging to wealth than high-interest debt from credit cards or student loans. Those who are in problem debt need to get out quickly. If left unchecked, debt can be very dangerous.

By bringing in more income, it’s possible to pay down debt much faster and prevent it from spiraling out of control.

Provide for your family 

Everything can change once you start a family. Simply put, you have to bring in more money to support those depending on you.

Of course, bringing in more money can increase financial security — leading to a more comfortable living situation for everyone involved. You’ll be able to take more vacations, buy better gifts, eat better food, and go on more fun family outings. Of course, you’ll also be able to pay your mortgage and monthly bills, too. 

Have more fun

Many fun activities cost money. If you’re thinking about attending sporting events, going to concerts, starting a new hobby, vacationing, or dining out, expect to pay out the nose. If you lack the means and aren’t careful, your expenses could quickly add up to serious problems.

The more money you have, the easier it is to budget for fun. Always ask yourself if the fun you’re having is worth the price tag. Why go out to a bar when you and your friends can sit around a campfire? 

Eat better

Most people feel better when they eat better. However, food can be very expensive. 

When you’re making more money, it’s easier to pay for top-notch meals and healthy food. With more cash in your wallet, you’ll be able to chow down on nutritious and delicious meals and snacks.

Build an emergency fund

The average person should have at least six months of emergency savings to cover unexpected expenses. Unfortunately, most people have far less than that saved up. 

Generating more income can make it easier to put money aside into secure deposit accounts — where it can stay safe and earn interest (however modest that might be). 

Tips for Making More Money 

Watch out for lifestyle creep

It’s not what you make — it’s what you keep that counts. As you make more money, be careful about lifestyle creep, also known as lifestyle inflation. This tends to occur when folks bring in more income and start living a more expensive lifestyle. 

No matter how much money you’re making, it’s important to maintain a budget and avoid rising expenses. 

Get a tax advisor

As you start bringing in income, you’ll quickly realize that you owe the IRS a lot more money than you did last year. This is especially true if you’re working as a 1099 contractor who doesn’t get any taxes withheld from checks.

To avoid problems, get a tax advisor who can help cut taxes and make sure you keep more of the money you’ve earned. Take my word for it: This is one of the best investments you can make. 

Learn More:

Think like an entrepreneur 

As you start looking for ways to make more money, consider branching out and launching a business. When you’re an entrepreneur, you can earn unlimited amounts of income and be your own boss. 

Going off on your own can be risky. But if you can swing it, the decision can be a life-changing experience. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I increase my income without working more?

You can make more money without breaking a sweat by setting up a passive income stream. Passive income requires little effort but pays on a recurring basis. For example, you could sell stock photos online or rent out a storage area in your house.

How can I increase my income fast?

Unless you win the lottery or receive an inheritance from a millionaire aunt, there’s no way to get rich overnight. But there are plenty of things you can do right now to increase your income. Try asking your boss for a raise or trimming expenses from your budget. Every little bit counts.

How can I increase my income at home?

Many of our favorite ways of earning extra income — including side hustles like teaching English online or selling stuff on eBay — can be done from the comfort of your own home.

The Bottom Line

There are countless ways to generate more money. For most people, it’s just a matter of discovering opportunities and making the right moves. 

Increasing your income is one of the best personal finance decisions you can make. Those who aren’t where they want to be on their financial journey should take action — even if it means trying something new. 

With the right attitude and the right approach, financial freedom will always be within reach.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

In This Article