Summer Expenses Rising? 3 Ways to Scrounge Up Extra Cash

by Maurie Backman | Published on July 17, 2021

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A group of young adults laughing and enjoying drinks and food at a restaurant patio table.

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Here's how to eke out more money for summer spending.

If your credit card bills keep rising and you're spending more money than you have in a long time, you're in good company. Inflation is causing everything from gas to groceries to cost a lot more, and it's putting a strain on a lot of people's budgets.

Meanwhile, you might be spending more money this summer in general. The weather is warm, the pandemic situation doesn't seem as dire, and maybe you're ready to socialize after having spent the past 16 months cooped up at home. Or, you may be traveling for the first time since the pandemic began.

Either way, the last thing you want to do this summer is end it with a pile of debt in your name. If your expenses keep climbing, here are a few things you can do to eke out extra money.

1. Get a side job

Nobody wants to spend the entire summer plugging away at a job, and if you already work full-time, a side hustle may seem like a difficult thing to take on. But remember, any second job you get can be as flexible as you need it to be.

Don't want to commit to a preset evening schedule? You don't have to. You can sign up to drive for a rideshare company and shuttle passengers around town at your convenience. Similarly, you can find other gigs that can be done remotely and at your own pace, like content writing, web design, or even data entry. It pays to explore your options, because earning a little more money on the side could make it easier to enjoy the summer rather than stress your way through it.

2. Sell items you don't need

We all have items sitting around taking up space in our closets. Rather than let those things continue collecting dust, aim to unload them to the highest bidder.

Host a yard sale with some friends where you peddle your unwanted goods, or list bigger-ticket items, like electronics, online to reach more buyers. You can use sites like eBay for that, though with eBay, you'll pay a fee if your items sell. So you may be better off advertising the things you have for sale on social media instead, where you won't be charged.

3. Use the right credit cards

The great thing about credit cards is that they reward you for the purchases you're already making. If you upgrade your go-to credit card to a new one that offers more generous cash back on things like gas, groceries, restaurants, and travel, you may be able to squeeze out enough money to cover your rising costs.

Some people are spending more money this summer because they're going out more. For others, their bills are climbing not because they've changed their habits, but because everyday essentials have simply started to cost more. No matter which camp you land in, do your best to make some extra cash so you can avoid racking up debt. That way, you'll be able to end the summer of 2021 on a high note.

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