You'll have to leave your house for this one, but hospitality consulting firms like Coyle rely on secret shoppers to evaluate their clients' services. Sign up to be an evaluator and you could get paid to receive spa treatments, dine at restaurants or stay at a hotel. There are lots of opportunities in other fields, too, ranging from entertainment (hello, amusement parks!) to automobiles. However, watch out for scams; check the MSPA for a list of legitimate mystery shopping companies. Earning potential: About $10 per hour
They say that a penny saved is a penny earned. Actually, when you consider that you pay taxes on every penny you earn, you really do make more money by saving than by increasing your income, especially if the extra income will increase your tax rate dramatically. For example, let's say you have a choice between saving $100 or earning an extra $100. If you pay 15% taxes, then when you earn an $100, you only get $85. But when you save $100 off of your existing budget, you keep it all. To sweeten the deal further, if you take advantage of compound interest as found in most savings accounts, over time you'll start making money on the amount saved plus previous interest paid on that amount saved. It'll be pennies at first, but eventually the amount will multiply exponentially.
Getting a raise is an excellent move because it doesn’t require you to trade more time for more money. You are putting in the same amount of time, but pulling a bigger paycheck. But, it’s always a bit tricky to ask for a raise when your company already has you at your current salary. You’ve got to make a strong argument you deserve the increase. Here are the top 10 mistakes to avoid when asking for a raise.