No fear students, flogging your kidney isn’t your last resort

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Summer is pricey; whether yours consisted of sun-soaked holidays, mud splattered festivals or even a cosy ‘staycation’ at home, the cost of bikinis, wellies or picnic goods is sure to have added up. This, coupled with the fact that it is increasingly difficult to find summer jobs means that when student finances come mid August, bank balances are checked with bated breath and flogging a kidney seems quite reasonable. However, before turning to the drastic, consider some of these ingenious ways to refuel your finances before Freshers’ Week.

Being paid to go shopping sounds too good to be true, but it isn’t; mystery shoppers are wanted by more and more retailers who are eager to get feedback from customers. Mystery shoppers are employed by clothes stores, restaurants and even bars and hotels. The task may involve simply visiting or buying an item from the store in question and giving feedback to the company on grounds such as efficiency, politeness and cleanliness of the staff and surroundings.

To be a mystery shopper you must first register with an agency, which is free to do and they can be easily found with a quick Google search. Through the agency you could then be requested to take part in mystery shops! You may be paid a small hourly fee or simply receive your purchase (be it your new top, your lunch, or glass of wine, depending on the location of the mystery shop) for free.

Carrie Bradshaw once said “I like my money right where I can see it, hanging in my closet,” and with the rise of Ebay she may have been right. As many people now buy their clothes solely from Ebay, there is no excuse for clinging on to those trousers that no longer fit; your unloved threads could be someone else’s new favourite outfit and your new bank balance. Scour your wardrobe and be brutal; if it hasn’t seen the light of day in the last year, are you likely to ever wear it again?

To maximise your earning potential on Ebay always take clear photos of your items from all angles and give as much information as possible. Details of size, brand and fit are the key to a sale.

Whilst on the topic of turning trash into treasure, last year’s textbooks (if unneeded, of course) are a potential goldmine. You could advertise your textbooks on a flyer around campus, on LUVLE or you could sell them on Amazon.

Amazon may be a good choice if in a revision frenzy you attacked your textbook with highlighters, as you can specify the condition of your book, and even the most raggedy of books will be snapped up by thrifty students looking for a bargain. If you do want to sell your textbooks, don’t forget to check if there is a new edition of the book pending as this will affect the selling price of your book.

If all else fails, one final way to grab cash; “Daaaaaaaad….”

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