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Ways to Supplement a Single Income

With interest rates at near record lows and the squeeze on consumer finances always posing a risk, more people than ever are looking for ways in which to supplement their income source(s). This may be necessary due to an expanding family, unexpected financial emergencies or just one’s wages not going quite far enough.

Positively however, depending on a person's precise circumstances and their financial needs, there are a number of ways in which under-performing finances can be supplemented, even increased to an extent. Depending on the reason additional funds are needed, being able to borrow or earn that bit extra can make all the difference and can help make things easier in the short and medium term and even the long term in some cases.

Some of the most common ways in which to increase one's income or acquire funds for a specifically needed purpose include temporary or secondary employment and short term loans; both secured and unsecured.

Temporary and Secondary Employment

There are various industries where temporary staff and contract roles are particularly commonplace. This includes catering and hotel staffing as well as hospitality agency jobs in the UK, all of which are seasonal industries. This means that at peak times of the year; usually around the summer and winter holiday seasons, they require an uplift in staff numbers. Hence, most employers and businesses in these industries will outsource their recruitment needs to a third-party agency who can provide them with the increase in staff they require for a temporary period.

Other industries that rely upon and can accommodate temporary staff include the likes of 24/7 call centres across the country, domestic services agencies (such as cleaning companies) and university or school-based roles, all of which work on a seasonal basis, or have higher turnovers of staff in order to keep their costs down.

For those requiring an injection of money to cover a financial emergency, or perhaps to help save up for something significant such as a mortgage deposit, new car or family holiday, temporary roles provide the flexibility and short term nature to ensure that a job is available for the amount of time necessary. There is also little commitment required, compared to full time roles. In practice, this means that the temporary employee is often able to make themselves available or unavailable at different times of the year and at their convenience. (Source: Jaffe and Co)

Short Term Unsecured Loans

The most well-known of these types of loans are payday loans which allow a borrower to acquire smaller amounts of money; usually up to around £1,000 over a period of time, usually up to 12 months. It is important though that these loans are used properly and in a sensible way as it may otherwise be possible to end up in a spiral of debt. However, should one borrow what they can reasonably afford to pay back over the agreed period of time, these loans can help get people out of a rut in the short term.

The way a payday loan works is by lending the borrower the amount of money they need, say £500 over a predetermined and fixed period of time, say 30 days, at which point the borrower will need to repay the lender in full plus interest.

In the case of something like a boiler breakdown or emergency property repairs, these loans can be a useful way to tide people over until such time their wages come in (usually at the end of a calendar month.)

There are however, other forms of personal credit that may be used and these include:

  • Instalment Loans – These are similar to payday loans in that they usually only lend up to around £1,000. However, unlike payday loans that are ideally designed to be repaid within a month, instalment loans are specifically designed to spread the repayment costs over a longer period of time; 3, 6,9 or 12 months, making the repayment process more manageable and the repayments more affordable
  • Logbook Loans – Logbook finance is a secured form of personal finance and is secured against the borrower's vehicle, so if applying for this finance, it is important you own your vehicle and hold the V5 document of ownership. Borrowers can acquire loans of up to £50,000 depending on the value of their vehicle which acts as collateral for the loan
  • Credit Cards – Although it is ideal to pay off credit card debt within 30 days, it is possible to make only the minimum repayments. This allows cardholders who are in tighter financial circumstances to spread their repayments out over a longer period of time and whilst in the long term the costs of borrowing will be higher than if the card were repaid in 30 days, the repayment amounts are much more manageable and a credit card can act as a vital safety net.
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