Supplemental Income - 15 Top Tips for Creating Extra Cash

Many baby boomers are going to need a supplemental income if they are going to enjoy the type of retirement they dreamed about.

The pension pot is a little disappointing to say the least, and that's if you're lucky enough to have one. The savings you spent year's building up to help fund your retirement are not earning enough interest to keep pace with inflation, yet the thought of carrying on working in your 9-5 job has lost it's appeal then it's time to start thinking "outside of the box".

The first thing you need to do is decide how much supplemental income you are going to need to live a comfortable retirement. Be realistic and take some time to do the sums. Go to Retirement Income Planning and assess what income you are likely to have coming in and then go through your monthly outgoings and see how much the shortfall is going to be.

Don't forget when you stop working there are some costs that are reduced, for instance you won't have your commuting costs, no need to buy smart suits for work, no lunches to buy from the sandwich shop. More time at home means you can cook fresh food rather than expensive ready prepared. You'll probably be surprised that the gap isn't as bad as you think.

Earning a bit of extra cash can help towards those long holidays you promised yourself or going out for some nice meals and perhaps a theatre trip now and again. Or perhaps you just want to spoil the grandchildren.

Here are some ideas for earning a supplemental income whether you need a substantial amount to bridge the gap or whether it's just a bit extra to spend on something special.

15 Top Tips for Creating Extra Cash

1. Freelance or Contract Work

If you have a lifetime of work experience behind you consider whether your skills and knowledge could be used in a consultancy role or short term contract work.

Many professional roles can earn supplemental income by just doing a few days a month. I have friends who have previously been teachers, engineers, trainers, surveyors, accountants, solicitors, administrators and secretaries who still do regular work on an adhoc basis to earn extra cash.

They either work for agencies or with their own contacts. Working either as and when the need arises, or they accept short term contracts working, 2-3 days a week in a regular part-time job.

If you're good at decorating or jobs around the house and garden You can earn a great supplemental income this way. There are lots of people who would love someone to do small jobs that the professionals aren't interest in, advertise in your local shop.

2. Become a Tutor

If you're a retired teacher, or you speak another language fluently, or play a musical instrument why not consider private tuition to children or adults. This is a great way to create a supplemental income.

Families are prepared to pay £25. an hour for extra coaching to get children through key exams. Or perhaps you have a hobby like art or woodwork that you could give lessons on.

3. Seasonal Jobs

During the summer months there are local National Trust venues, museums, garden centres and various tourist attractions that take on staff for a vast array of jobs, usually on a part-time basis. If you can link it to a hobby or interest so much the better.

During the winter months you have all kinds of Christmas jobs, particularly in the retail sector, which can see you through the January sales.

4. Rent Out a Room

Supplemental income can be earned if you have a spare bedroom you can rent out. You can earn £4,250 in any tax year and be exempt from income tax.

If you earn more than £4,250 in a year, you can either pay tax on your whole profit, minus any expenses and capital allowances, or your profit minus £4,250. If you choose this option, however, you won't be able to deduct any expenses or capital allowances.

You can get your tax relief and allowances by filling in your Self Assessment tax return.

5. Host a Foreign Student or a Traveller

If you have a spare bedroom you can earn supplemental income by hosting a foreign exchange student, you can earn thousands a year for taking an exchange student. You can host them for a full academic year or just for a few weeks. Google for a list of  local language schools in your area.

They’ll have an accommodation officer who’ll be in charge of a database of host families. To get on the database you’ll probably have to undergo a home inspection and be within a reasonable distance of the school.

Or you can become a host family for all kinds of individual travellers or families depending on the accommodation you have.  Go to to find out how to become a host.

6. Rent Out Your Driveway

If you don't have a car and are not using your driveway there are three ways to rent out your drive.

  • A neighbour may be quite happy to rent your driveway if they have more than one vehicle of their own. Car insurance is less if a driver can state they park in a driveway rather than the road.
  • If you live near a railway station where people are commuting to work each day then advertise in a local shop to rent out your drive during the day.
  • If you live near a sports venue then rent it out on event days.

Home Based Business Ideas

Perhaps you see yourself as a baby boomer entrepreneur. According to recent statistics many of us are using retirement to start our own businesses.

If this is you, you'll be interested in a new handbook for baby boomers: Entrepreneurial Bridges to Retirement. The book is available free in pdf format direct from the author Sheila Kelly who describes and analyses this phenomenon and provides guidance on the pathways into self-employment for this demographic.

The Handbook provides links to over 60 online resources that can be used for investigating personal pathways into different forms of entrepreneurial venturing. Click on the link to read more and access this free downloadable

Entrepreneurial Bridges to Retirement handbook.

7. Hobbies & Crafts

Look at your hobbies and interests to see whether you could make a business from them.

If you love baking and making preserves and pickles, or have an allotment and grow your own fruit and vegtables you can sell at local Farmer's Markets or Table Top Sales in Community Centres. Home made items such as patchwork, knitting, card making, jewellery or any other crafts are also very popular at these venues.

Are you a budding artist? Why not sell some of your work to supplement your income. Ask at a local coffee shop or gallery if they would be interested in displaying your work for a small commission.

The internet has opened up all kinds of possibilities to ordinary folk who want either to earn a supplemental income or even create very successful high income businesses. You can earn money in lots of different ways.

8. Car Boot/Table Top Sales

Get rid of your clutter to supplement your income. We all have far to much stuff and you will be surprised at what people will buy. If you are prepared to let things go cheaply you will sell.

The last car boot sale I did I raised over £120.00 for a morning's work selling costume jewellery, cut glass, china, kitchenware, and ornaments I no longer needed. The small surplus I had left I took to the charity shop.

Internet Business Ideas

9.Selling on eBay

Learn how to use eBay to sell unwanted items. I know people who buy items in the sales and then sell them for a profit. 

If you become an expert at selling unwanted items for family and friends you can become a Trading Assistant and sell for other people charging 15-30%. A typical example of someone spending 20 hours a week working for an average of 4 clients can earn up £650 per month, quite a nice supplemental income!

Make sure you have the items in your possession before you start selling so you know what you're trading and dispatch them promptly.

10.Selling on Amazon

If you are a bit of bookworm you can sell either your own books or books that you can pick up in the charity shops for next to nothing on Amazon.  Sign up for a sellers account and search for your books by title, ISBN or UPC and choose a price.

Unlike eBay Amazon sell at fixed prices and listings can last for months or even years. Postage is broken down by item category and is automatically added to your listing, so you needn't bother with a set of scales.

You will be notified by email when an item sells all you need do then is just pop it in the post to complete the sale. Avoid Post Office queues and buy your postage online at direct at the Royal Mail website. Just print the label and glue it to the package and pop in the post box.

11. You can earn a supplemental income  by building a Website

If you are looking to start an internet business which is going to give you substantial income rather than just a supplemental income, consider building a Website like I'm doing. You don't have to have a product to sell and you don't have to be an IT techie.

I'm using Site Build It which is really easy. Take a look here.

The internet is the place where everyone goes these days if they are seeking information. Become an Infopreneur, most baby boomers will be an expert on something. You can create web sites about any subject you're knowledgeable about. You can then earn money from advertising and selling affiliate products.

12.Publish an E-Book.

Perhaps you have always wanted to write a book but have been put off by the fact that it can be expensive or a problem finding a publisher.

Again the internet has changed all of that. There are web sites where you can publish an online book that people download to their computer, or even print small numbers of books as and when you want them.
Self Publishing -

13. Become a Mystery Shopper

Fancy going uncover, earn supplemental income by becoming a mystery shopper reporting on customer service in shops, restaurants, banks, holiday companies, even on transport systems.

You can earn anything from £10-£50 per job. Go to or search on Google 'Mystery Shopping'.

14.Online Surveys

You can earn extra income by receiving payment in vouchers to spend with top retailers such as Marks & Spencer, Boots, Tesco, John Lewis for completing online surveys. Go to /

15. Holiday Reviewer

Become an expert reviewer with write a review of your holidays and get paid a few pence every time someone reads your review, with some reviewers earning up to £80 a month.

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