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Do you have a guest room or a second car? These things could help you earn extra income to alleviate this crippling household budget. And, given the growing number of different services in the new “sharing economy”, participation has become easier than ever.
Related: 5 Reasons Why You Should Join The Sharing Economy Revolution
“For the first time, consumers are able to monetize some of their assets they already have and from which they were earning no income,” said Rowan Benecke, president of the New York-based Burson-Marsteller Global Technology Practice. “Some assets could be overtime [people] have at his disposal to run errands and do odd jobs; they could be an extra room in your apartment or a tool in your closet for a special project. “
Technology has contributed to the growth of the demand market. According to a survey by Burson-Marsteller, 45 million Americans today offer goods and services in the sharing economy used by 86.5 million Americans.
The best way to make ends meet is usually to downsize, whether to sell that second car or move to a small house. But if you’re not ready to do it, the sharing economy could help you fill the gaps in your budget. “It’s a way to earn extra income and people are very keen to do it,” says Jane Bryant Quinn, personal finance expert at New York-based AARP. “It’s perfect for someone who isn’t working full time or hoping for extra money on the side.”
To get started, you need to familiarize yourself with the different websites to determine which ones are best for you. Whether you drive or do small jobs to earn money, or rent your house or other property, these offers require work and effort; and you must decide if you are willing to devote the necessary time to this effort. Interested? Here are the answers to some of the frequently asked questions.
1. How can you make money?
“[The sharing economy] is an opportunity to reuse or monetize the assets you own, and buyers or tenants are willing to pay you for their use, “says Benecke.
Driving for a taxi service like Uber or Lyft can be a perfect option to make money for someone with a few extra hours a day. “[For] People who have taken early retirement or who have a reduced workforce and who live on social security and a little savings, this is ideal because you can do something part time, without the need to put a lot of capital and work when you want, “says Quinn.
You can also sign up to board someone’s pet (provided you love animals and know how to take care of them) and do odd jobs. You can now publish these services on the Internet: although the business model is not new, it is marketed.
If you rent your entire house or room, this income can be significant depending on the location. Many tourists prefer to stay in someone’s house rather than a hotel. “You provide the service, like a [bed and breakfast]; you can eat them a meal or not, ”says Quinn. “For people who come, it’s cheaper than hotels and probably more comfortable.”
Snowblowers, tools and second-hand cars are all great items that you can’t use regularly, but someone else may need them. “People praise all kinds of things,” says Quinn. “It could be common in a community where a person puts money for a particular tool and leases it to neighbors who need it.”
2. How much can you earn?
What you decide to rent, how often you decide to rent it and your price will affect how much you earn. If you do odd jobs for $ 25 an hour, you will earn a lot less than if you rent a room in a house with a desirable location, “says Quinn.” The beauty of [the sharing economy] is that you can find these opportunities and work as little or as much as you want. “
Related: The sharing economy takes off: get on the rocket or risk being left behind
3. How often should you work?
“You have the opportunity to participate in the sharing economy according to your own priorities and initiatives,” says Benecke. If you do odd jobs or drive, you can set your own schedule and work as many hours as you want. “People who participate in the sharing economy do so as an independent entrepreneur and they have more flexibility,” he says. “You have the opportunity to dive in and out, participate as much as you want and set your own price.”
4. Are there any security issues?
Responsibility is always a concern. If someone has an accident with your car, if you rent part of your house for storage and a fire breaks out, or if someone rents your room and slips on your floor, you could be sued or owed replace someone’s items.
Many companies in the sharing economy offer insurance, but you must first call your own provider to explain what you are doing. At a minimum, work with your insurer to make sure it covers you.
There is also a security issue every time someone enters your home. Once he or she contacts you to arrange a rental, get a name, address and credit card information.
5. Are my opinions important?
There is a lot of transparency in the sharing economy. “Markets are usually peer-to-peer markets where you can determine the experiences of others with you,” says Benecke. “If you rent a particular service, a community can rate a particular service. Users rate suppliers, and users are rated by buyers.”
Related: The sharing economy is not a niche. This is the future of market capitalism.
It is easy to discover people in the community and people are more likely to trust someone with established service and good reviews.