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Money matters

Ready cash

  • I sell stuff on Trademe when some extra cash is needed. - LM, Kapiti coast.

Junk mail

  • Many people think they can get good pocket money by delivering junk mail. THEY CAN'T! I did it for a few years and I wouldn't pay young kids the hourly rate it works out at!  And also it's hard work! If you live in an urban area ask your local real estate agent if they want circulars delivered. They tend to be a bit tight until you can satisfy them that you're reliable but YOU set the pay rate, and if they don't want to pay that much they can do it themselves. Once you have a couple of regular clients, ask around local businesses for the same work, but tell them you'll give them a cheaper rate to deliver in areas where you're already going. I charge real estate agents $70/1000 flyers and have been told by 2 clients that I'm not charging enough! Add-on work is $60/1000 which can give me a return of about $23/hr  cash! and it keeps me fit and healthy so I'll live longer. I'd kill myself trying to earn that much from a junk mail company - their average is about $4/hr overall. - SWB, Auckland

Kids money

  • Let kids save for their own college fund by encouraging them from a very early age to earn money by getting paid for what they enjoy doing! Our little boy who is now three loves dogs, so we offered to walk the neighbours’ dog for $5 a week. It makes us get out for exercise and gives the dog half an hour of much needed attention while their owner is at work. I know it doesn't sound like much but each year he earns himself $260 for his college fund so I'm calculating by the time he is 18 he will have well over $4,000 towards his college education - just from this hobby alone. Similarly our daughter enjoys baking so every week we invite her friends over to a baking session making simple things like scones, biscuits, raisin buns etc. They are learning something new and having fun. The mums are more than happy to contribute $5-$10 for the ingredients and the pleasure of not having to mess up their own house. We put half in the kitty for the ingredients and half goes to my daughter’s college fund so she can save between $10 and $20 each week. If we are able to do something like this every week until she is 18 she would have over $8,000! - Stephanie. 

Money making ideas

  • If you have time enter online competitions at winstuff.co.nz. Also if there's a competition in the paper or on a chocolate wrapper enter it.  I have won loads of stuff over the years.  From prams to make up, label clothing and more.  Lucky Break and That's Life are very generous and have sent me cheques for photos i sent by email and forgot about!  Not only do your children get published in a magazine you get $50! My children have also won prizes from these magazines.  Go for it - its fun and great receiving prizes in the post! - V.M, Levin.

  • If you are retired like me and have the time, sign up for online surveys. I enjoy cashing in the points I earn for $20 Farmers gift cards and some send cheques. Also I hate waste so when my plants grow too big I divide them and pot them up, once established I sell them on trade me. - Canny Scot, Christchurch.

  • I am on a low income and started a coin jar in Feb 09, I only ever took money out for the bus and I just took it to the bank and cashed in (July 09), it turned out to be $309. Just goes to show how quickly it builds up!! - Natz, Nelson.

  • I love going to second hand shops. I have a friend who has a clothing recylce shop and every 2 weeks it's a have price day, thursday and saturday. Boy do I get bargains, big bags of toys for $2. I save them up and then have a garage sale. The knitted items I unravel and either chrocet or knit toys and blankets, or ask around your mates for their spare wool. GET CRACKING. - Dianne.

  • Make computer games, do typing (word processing) for others, or make custom-made greeting cards. Come up with your own funny messages. – O.R.

  • How about gathering golf balls - water traps are the best so put on your wet suit and get into it. But be careful as the tail of one good keen oily ragger from the UK shows. He plunged the depths, retrieving up to 1200 golf balls at a time. At around 50cents each for poor quality ball it was a nice little earner. But his initiative landed him in jail. He got sentenced to 6 months for theft, but after a public outcry was released after only 9 days! The moral of the story: there's money in golf balls, but ask first. 

  • I taught children to play the recorder for 25 years. The last 10 years were the most enjoyable because small groups of children came to my home for lessons. There were no distractions or pressures, no parents hovering nearby. There was time for fun as well as tuition. Home tutoring is nothing new - but it is particularly effective when it takes place in the tutor's home and the pupil does not feel his parent's worries, hopes, ambitions on his shoulders. All kinds of tuition would be successful if conducted in the tutor's home, not the pupils home - both adults and children could benefit. Reading, computer skills, confidence building, making party desserts, anything. - C.B. 

Mortgages (repayment)

The general principle is to repay as much as you can as often as you can.

  • Use windfall gains to make lump sum repayments (eg an inheritance, the sale of a second vehicle, an unised boat or varavan, etc).

  • Have a coin tin. If you are collecting coins at a rate of $20 a month, use this to increase the repayments.

  • Hold an annual garage sale. use the proceeds for a lump sum mortgage repayment.

  • Work overseas for a spell. Rent the property out. Use your extra savings from a better paying job and the rental income to increase repayments.

  • Take on a part-time job with all of that income going to mortgage repayment.

  • Negotiate a lower interest rate and use the interest savings to increase the capital repayments.

  • Use any one of the money making ideas suggested above to increase repayments.
  • Break fees. About 80% of all housing loans are fixed rate mortgages. That means the interest rate is fixed for anywhere between 6 months and five years depending on the term. Because interest rates have fallen most homeowners have missed out on the falling interest rates, and would have to pay a “break fee” to the bank if they repay early. But one fine-print reading oily ragger has discovered that they were able to repayment up to $12,000 a year off their fixed rate loan without incurring break fees. The thing was they their mortgage was split into two fixed rate loans with different terms so they were able to repay $24,000 a year without getting stung with break fees. This is the way to go for those paying say 9.5% on a fixed rate loan and receiving 4% (less tax!) on savings in the bank. Ask your bank if they allow partial repayment of fixed rate loans without incurring a break fee.



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