How to make money from your home

There are lots of ways to make extra cash from your home, without having to sell it. Here are a few suggestions to get you started...

Any extra money you make will be subject to income tax and must be declared to HMRC. Make sure you check with your insurer, mortgage provider and/or landlord before renting out areas of your home or your car.
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    Rent out storage space

    Storage boxes

    If you have a bit of extra space in your house and don’t fancy downsizing, renting out your excess space as storage could be a way to make it pay for itself. Register your space online, under cut commercial storage companies and see your previously empty room fill up, along with your bank account.

    Insurance

    Items owned by someone else are unlikely to be covered by your insurance

    Useful websites

    Storemates.co.uk

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    Rent out your spare room/home

    spare bedroom

    List your spare room - or your whole place - on a house-sharing website for the chance to earn a bit for your empty space (up to £4,250 a year tax free for spare rooms). If you live in a city or near stadiums or gig venues, you could make a few bob per night. Take a few attractive snaps of you home, offer guests a warm welcome and you're sure to be a success.

    Insurance

    Your insurer will want to know if you plan to let out your home in part or entirely, even on a short-term basis, and may refuse cover, charge an extra premium or put restrictions on the cover provided. For instance, cover for theft may be excluded unless there are signs of a break in.

    Useful websites

    Spareroom.co.uk

    Airbnb.com

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    Sell energy back to the grid

    solar panels on roof

    Effectively renting out your roof, installing solar panels allows you to save some money on energy while helping the environment. Installation is sometimes free and you get to use any energy generated while the rest goes back to the supplier to sell.

    Insurance

    You'll need to inform your insurer when installed and make sure they're included under your buildings insurance.

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    Get making

    homemade soaps

    Fancy trying your hand at making soaps or bath bombs? If you're already making organic cosmetics at home as a hobby you could try to make a business out of it - start by selling to family and friends and then expand and maybe try your hand at fairs or selling on Facebook. You'll be a rival for Lush in no time!

    Useful websites

    Etsy.com

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    Take pictures

    taking photos

    Selling images to stock photo websites seems easy, but it's important to be aware of the standards they demand and the kinds of pictures they want. Websites like iStock for example tell prospective contributors what kind of images they're looking for, including holiday and seasonal photos and food and beverages.

    Useful websites

    Shutterstock.com

    istockphoto.com

    123rf.com

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    Get online

    make money online

    There are loads of ways to make money online, whether it's entering competitions, taking surveys or using cashback sites. If you've got some savings lying around, you could also make some money by lending it to individuals looking to borrow in peer-to-peer lending.

    Useful websites

    Yougov.com

    Topcashback.com

    Zopa.com

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    Turn your home into a pop-up restaurant

    dinner party

    If you're a dab hand at throwing dinner parties and want to take your hosting to the next level, you could start a pop-up restaurant in your home. You'll need to offer next-level service and cuisine but you'll be able to combine your loves of food and fun. There'll be hoops to jump through - including legal implications, food hygiene and declaring income.

    Useful websites

    Eatwith.com

    Cookening.com

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    Host a product party

    product party

    Whether you fancy selling Tupperware or underwear, hosting a product party is a fun way to socialise with friends while pocketing a bit of cash for yourself. Hosts aren't employed by the company, so you'll have to declare any earnings to the taxman.

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    Rent your home for filming/photoshoots

    terrace houses

    Depending on where you live and what kind of house you own, renting your home out for filming or photoshoots can be a fun and easy way to make cash. If your property's slightly different or unique, contemporary or classic, that could make it more appealing to location hunters. But your home doesn't need to be glamourous to make it appealing - an average terrace in Barry, south Wales played host to sitcom Gavin & Stacey.

    Insurance

    Check that your insurer will cover you for any accidental damage to your property - the company will have public liability insurance.

    Useful website

    Jjlocations.com

    Shootfactory.co.uk

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    Sell unused stuff

    unused books

    Not only will getting rid of unwanted clutter free up space, it could earn you a few pennies in the process. Listing items on websites like Musicmagpie, Preloved and eBay may not make you a millionaire but it'll certainly earn you a few quid.

    Useful websites

    Musicmagpie.co.uk

    eBay.co.uk

    Preloved.co.uk

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    Pet boarding

    Dog sitting

    If you have experience of looking after pets then boarding may be a great idea for you, especially if you're unable to have one of your own or if you have a pet and they're happy to have a bit of company.

    Insurance

    Be aware that home insurance probably won't cover accidental damage caused by pets. You may also need to take out public liability insurance which should offer cover for anyone injured by your business activities. Make sure you ask for the owner's pet insurance details in case their dog or cat needs veterinary attention while in your care, as public liability insurance won't cover that.

    Useful websites

    uk.holidog.co.uk

    Dogbuddy.com

    Pawshake.co.uk

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    Rent out your drive/parking space

    parking space

    If you don't own a car or drive, renting out your empty parking space is hassle-free and easy. If you live in a city where parking is at a premium or near a sports venue your space could be in demand, as you'll be undercutting car parks. Drivers can book online, park up and leave without you ever realising they were there.

    Insurance

    Before renting out your driveway give your home insurer a call to make sure your policy won’t be affected.

    Useful websites

    Justpark.com

    Yourparkingspace.co.uk

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    Advertise on your car

    make money from your car

    If you don't mind driving around with a logo emblazoned on the side of your car, you could make money every month for hardly any effort. You'll need to get a vinyl wrap applied to your vehicle, and some companies may ask you to drive a certain amount before paying you. To be considered, you might need a clean licence, an MOT, insurance and no driving convictions.

    Insurance

    Some insurance companies may consider a wrap a modification and unless you tell them your insurance could be invalid - give them a ring to make sure.

    Useful websites

    Usethatspace.com

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    Rent out your stuff

    power tools

    Have you got a drill, power washer or food mixer gathering dust in your home? Give it a new lease of life by renting it out to someone who needs it more. Let people in your area borrow them occasionally for a small fee and join the sharing community.

    Insurance

    You probably won't be covered for theft as you voluntarily gave them the items - asking for a security deposit should offer some protection.

    Useful websites

    Rentmyitems.com

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    Rent out your car

    row of cars

    If you're not getting value from your car or use it only occasionally, you could think about renting it out. Decide when your car is available - during the day when you're at work, for example - register it online and decide how much you'd like to charge.

    Alternatively you could save money by lift sharing - you'll be able to charge for petrol and upkeep costs, but you won't be able to make a profit. Just make sure you car insurance protects you if you lift-share.

    Insurance

    Some sites have a specific policy that is tailor-made for renting out your car, where insurance is provided for the owner and the user to cover risks separately from the owner's standard policy, a bit like how car hire insurance or temporary insurance would work. If you do rent out your car, it could be considered business use, so make sure you check beforehand.

    Useful websites

    Carclub.easycar.com

    Liftshare.com

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Any extra money you make will be subject to income tax and must be declared to HMRC. Make sure you check with your insurer, mortgage provider and/or landlord before renting out areas of your home or your car.

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