When I checked in with you at the end of June, I expressed frustration that I wasn't more actively pursuing money-making opportunities. Just after writing that post, I took the bull by the horns and posted some items on Craigslist, bringing in $155 in one weekend. That got me feeling good so now I'm cleaning out closets looking for more to sell. In the meantime, I'm a lot happier with this month's total of $1,106.96 in extra income. I was right to anticipate some car repair expenses, but we chose to do the minimum needed on the van to pass the safety inspection, postponing the rest because we plan to purchase a new-to-us van in January 2010. Even with our crazy house projects (fixing the kitchen ceiling and two bathrooms from the flooding in June), we came out ahead. Here's where my extra income came from in July:
- Craigslist: I sold some leftover items from my May yard sale plus some others that were cluttering up my basement to the tune of $155.
- Gift Cards: I earned a $10 AmEx gift card through my Washington Post Points. I picked up $25 in CVS gift cards by using pharmacy coupons on new prescriptions. I also received $37.94 in rebate cards and checks from Staples purchases last month.
- Swagbucks: This has become enough of an income earner that it gets its own category now. I redeemed $240 in Amazon gift cards thanks to Swagbucks.
- Prizes: Whoo hoo! I've told you before how much I love blog giveaways because the odds are good that you'll win. I won a $100 gift card to Home Depot over at Freebies4Mom.
- Blog Income: At the beginning of 2009, I set a goal to earn $500/month with the blog by the end of the year. I'm think I'm getting close, though it's hard to tell because many of the affiliate companies pay every three months or whenever you hit a certain threshold. I hit several of the thresholds this month, because I was paid $539.02. That won't happen again for a while!
Looking ahead at August, we're not anticipating any big expenses (knock on wood). I've decided to splurge on something that will make me really happy, but of course I'm doing it the thrifty way. I've hired a housecleaner, a local college student who is eager to earn money for school, to clean my bathrooms. Not the whole house–just the bathrooms. She does it a lot faster than I can with the kids underfoot, and it makes me SO happy to have the bathrooms sparkle, all for just $50 a month (she comes twice during the month). A little splurge with a big impact!