Making money online is one of the main topics of this blog. Extra online income became extremely important to me when my wife quit work to take care of kids. I needed to find more income, and I needed to do it fast.
I had already worked in the fast food and retail sectors, and I knew that they did not pay all that well. My memories also told me that they took up a great deal of time away from home. This was all well and good for a single guy who lived at home. It was not, however, a great idea for a married man with kids.
This need for money drove me to look for ways to supplement my income via the Internet. Over time, I learned about some really good ways to make extra online income. I’ve also found that there are some important goals that make earning money online more sustainable.
Having A Plan For Extra Online Income Is Key
Looking at making some extra income “just because” is a reason to start earning. However, it’s probably not going to make most people sustain their efforts.
At first, I absolutely needed the income to make ends meet. This need to keep my bills paid was a pretty good motivating factor. I still need some income to supplement my income, but this need is not as urgent as it once was. This is where a plan comes into play.
I’ve recently been tracking my monthly extra online income. I have a few different streams that I tend to make money from each month. Whether it’s freelance writing or earning from Swagbucks, I try to make a few hundred extra dollars each month.
It’s easy to make money with Swagbucks. All you need to do is search the web with the site, and you could make a few bucks each and every month that you can use on anything from Amazon.com gift cards to PayPal cash. I’m currently using mine to build up a passive income stream via dividend-paying stocks. These dividend payments might help me retire a bit earlier than I could without them.
Paying Down Debt With Extra Online Income
Another goal, in addition to investing my online income, is paying down debt. Some people might look at this strategy as a form of investing. After all, I’m getting an automatic return that’s equal to my interest rate.
I still have about 26 years left on a mortgage. This is a long time, I know. I also know that I’ll pay quite a bit of interest on that loan over the long haul. While my current interest rate is not all that high, I don’t like the idea of having this debt until I’m nearly 70.
Therefore, I’m using some of my extra online income to pay down my mortgage. In the early days of my loan, most of my payment goes toward paying the bank interest. I remember a previous mortgage that I had at 6.125 percent interest rate (this was a few years ago, but a good rate at the time). About $70 of my initial payment went to paying down the loan. The rest, nearly $400, went to the bank.
I could have paid an extra $70 to $80 a month that first year and cut a month off the end of the loan for each extra payment. It’s not that hard to earn $70 or even $170 a month via online efforts.
While it might seem that answering surveys does not pay well, it might actually pay more than an actual job that you have to drive to. I’ve written about a scenario in which a woman making about $19,000 a year actually earned about $0.64 an hour after deducting expenses that came from working outside the home. In this instance, yes, answering surveys might improve your finances more.
Small Steps Make Big Differences
There are expenses that come from driving to work and dressing the part. If you already have a computer and Internet access, your cost is basically electricity. This could be a whopping $8 a YEAR! to charge. That’s a little more than $0.02 a day.
Just this last month, I paid an extra $14 toward my mortgage from small payments that I earned from GiftHulk and Clixsense. This might not sound like much, and it’s not. However, if I continue to add just $14 to my mortgage payment each month, I’d pay it off nearly 1.5 years earlier than the scheduled payoff date. I’d also save more than $3,000 in interest payments over the life of the loan. I’m sure I could find a better use for $3,000 than handing it over to the bank!
There’s a cool amortization schedule at Bankrate.com that allows you to play with the impact of extra payments. That’s where I came up with these numbers.
Small steps can make a big difference over time. This is why it’s important to have a plan for what you can do with your extra online earnings. Seeing progress toward these goals can help keep you motivated toward achieving them.
Perseverance Is Key With Extra Online Income
My goal is to see these earnings and passive income streams grow over time. If I’m able to do so, my mortgage payoff might come quite a bit quicker than what I’ve listed here. I might also be able to quit driving to work every day a few years earlier than most people–by choice, not by necessity.
You, too, can earn some extra money online, whether it comes from searching the web on Swagbucks or GiftHulk or answering some surveys on a site like CashCrate. There are also many freelance opportunities that can help you earn additional income. What will you use the extra online income you earn in your pajamas for? Having a plan can help you improve your finances, and the quicker that you can improve your finances, the better off you’ll be.
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links. I may be compensated should you sign up using my link. You will get the same benefits regardless of how you sign up, but I appreciate any support.
If you enjoyed this post, be sure to sign up for the monthly newsletter that will keep you up with the latest posts. Also, you can follow me on Twitter.