January Update

january tick

Where on Earth did January go? I’m pretty sure it was only last week I was making my first post and now here I am posting my first update.

January seems to have gone well, it has been a learning curve to say the least. As a fair few of the things I am trying are new, it has taken time to figure out what works for me and what doesn’t. All in all I am happy with the progress I have made so I shall share my thoughts with you now.

What hasn’t worked?

For me, instaGC. I feel that because I am seeing better results elsewhere that I am just not clicking with this site and I don’t completely understand it. I have seen others have so much success with it but it just isn’t for me at the moment.

New finds

Two weeks ago I was introduced to a couple of survey sites, one of which is fantastic and the other I’m still getting around to using properly. OnePoll is my new best friend and I am looking forward to writing a post about them. Global Test Market is slowly getting there.


Now for the bit I’m sure you’re all eager to find out, how well have I done?

Swagbucks: 681 SwagBucks – What does this mean? If I keep it up at this pace I can cash in 2 x £25 iTunes gift cards or 8 x£5 Amazon gift cards before Christmas.

Clixsense: $7.78 – This is better than I thought it was going to be, especially as it took me a good few weeks to get my head around using it.

OnePoll: £12.10 – This is my new favourite, I joined on the 16th and have earned this already.

Nectar Points: 264 points + 12 points in interest in The Hive – A slow month for Nectar Points, as it is January so the spending it tightened.

Top CashBack: 80p – For signing up to a free offers site. There is currently a Bingo cash back offer I am planning to take up in February which is £28 back for a £10 deposit.

YouGov: 50 points – I haven’t paid much attention to this site this month as I have been busy learning others.

Global Test Market: 60 points – Need 867 to cash out a £25 Amazon Voucher, but I need to get 1000 points before I can cash out (hope that makes sense). Again I have only had this site for 2 weeks and not spent a lot of time on there.

FindItForLess: 316 points – 1000 points needed to cash out a £10 voucher.

At the moment I am looking at around £250 for the year, that is if I keep my current pace which I am not planning to do. This month has honestly been bare minimum while I learn the ropes; especially with things like Clixsense.

Plans for February

Yesterday I set up a new YouTube channel, I am planning on making videos which explain how to use certain sites and answer any questions given to me (feel free to ask questions by the way); so you can subscribe to that if you wish. I’m not going to guarantee how often videos are posted just yet, as I am unsure myself.

I would love to increase eyes on my blog, I think over 1000 views in the first month is fantastic so thank you to everyone who has read it. I’d like to increase my social media presence too. I do have Facebook and Twitter, you can get to them by clicking the floaty buttons that follow you down the page.

Obviously February is a shorter month and thrown into it is a half-term so my son is off school. My husband is also off so I know that week is going to be a little slow on the earning side; oh and I have a 50th Birthday cake to make during the last week.

I just want to again say thank you to everyone who has read this, is following and those who are commenting. It is nice to see people take an interest in you and what you do.

Bring on February!

The Money Shed


Until April 2014 I assumed that working for home either involved direct selling such as Avon or Ann Summers, both I tried and failed at, door-to-door sales or being very lucky and having a company that is willing to let you stay at home to work. I was proven very wrong when I was introduced to The Money Shed by it’s founder Jon.

I had been trawling the forum of a popular parenting site when I came across a post about working from home, I commented and not long after Jon was there to tell us about opportunities that were available which weren’t any of those I have previously listed. One of the opportunities caught my eye more than the rest, 63336, the text answering service, I queried Jon about this job in which he pointed me over to The Money Shed. At first, like many I am sure, I was a little put off by a random link to a forum I had never heard of; slight warning bells rang but I made a leap of faith and found myself on a very new forum. It had only been running since January and you could still tell it was finding its feet but I looked passed that and started to interact with the members. Jon gave me the referral details for the 63336 job, he coached me through what to expect and before I knew it I was officially a Researcher for them. Jon did this for many people who signed up for the company as he had been with them a little while and before that worked for another similar company called ChaCha.

As I had found my feet on the forum I started paying attention to what the other members were doing to earn an income. Some were very into mystery shopping, others into surveys but not the kind you get paid pennies and spend half an hour completing one. Many though blogged. I had blogged in the past but nothing serious and certainly didn’t know there was any money in it. This is again where The Money Shed came in handy, all the members were more than willing to help; no question was too stupid. They still do, as I move onto this new path in my life I find that I am asking more and more questions about setting up and running a blog.

What most people don’t realise unless they are already in this world is that there are so many ways to earn online or from home and you can bring in a full-time wage, the likes of Lionbridge or Leapforce who pay per hour (around $14 per hour) and you can basically choose your hours. Then there are people who just want that little extra spending money each month who choose to do things like Roamler/StreetSpotr/Click&Walk/Field Agent which are all mystery shopping apps; if you are in the right locations then these can bring in an excess of £100 per month. I have chosen at the moment to just top our household income up rather than diving into a full-time wage; I like to have my finger in many online pies so I never get bored of the same thing.

I’ve now been a member of The Money Shed for 9 months and with that I have discovered many of the opportunities I have listed on My Money Making Websites page as well as being given tasks by Jon that companies have approached him with. One of those was a sort of audio-transcription job, I had to say 400 phrases into my microphone which took less than an hour and if I remember rightly it paid £13. Another was a bit of a research job hunting down footballers alias and writing 3 clues about their identity; this took about 2 hours and paid £25.

Recently the site has allowed direct sellers/MLM representatives to join the board, now while I don’t plan to sign up to anything it is interesting to read about these different companies and provides a real insight for anyone considering joining one.

With over 20,000 posts and a member base of almost 1000 people, The Money Shed is now the largest UK forum dedicated to working from home; oh that’s another point, it is only available to UK residents. This ensures that every opportunity is available and relevant to the members.

If you want to read more about The Money Shed then give these blogs a read:

Eeep I’m A Blogger

From Aldi To Harrods


Alternative check out The Money shed Blog HERE and I highly recommend reading through the Working from home Toolkit to anyone looking to get started earning at home.

If you have any questions about The Money Shed or anything else in my blog then please feel free to ask. I hope this helps some of you find your feet in the confusing world of working from home.

Top Cashback


The idea of Top Cashback is pretty simple, buy something via their site and you will earn cashback. They offer cashback on everything from free trials and surveys to insurance and utilities. The amount often depends on what the product or service you are purchasing is.

For example, Sky are currently offering a whopping £157.50 cashback for new customers that purchases the Movie or Sports Bundle.

It’s not only purchases that qualify for cashback, simple comparison searches can give you a few quid and even more depending on if you take up any of the services. Then there are the “free cashback” offers that are no purchase offers or free trials, places such as Experian will give you a nice amount of cashback (usually around £5) to take out their free 30 trial for your credit report; just make sure you cancel it so you don’t start getting charged.

I have been a member for many years now and quite often forget to check it before buying something but with that said I have almost made £400 back from purchases, the biggest being places such as BT and Sky.

Another added bonus of this site is it’s very generous “Tell-A-Friend” scheme which sees members earning £5.00 per sign up (subject to the friend earning a minimum of £10’s themselves). There is also the option to upgrade your membership which costs £5 and is taken from your first set of earnings for the year rather than being an upfront fee. This upgrade gives you 5% extra on cashback earnings, “Tell-A-Friend” bonus of £7.50 which is often boosted to £10 and many other offers to boost your earnings.

Payout is pretty varied too, the obvious choice is Paypal and for some purchases you can select BACS. Then there is the option to be paid in gift cards which can sometimes be the better option with many receiving a bonus for using them; payout using an Amazon Card and you will see an extra 5% of your earnings added on top. This gift card bonus is the reason I am including it in the Cash Free Christmas Challenge as I will get more to spend.

I’d say the only real downside to Top Cashback is the time it takes for the cashback to be tracked, verified and ready for payout, don’t expect it to be a quick way to have some cash the next day. In my experience it takes on average 12 weeks for the whole process to complete and your earnings to be payable but it is a great way to save as you have to physically cash-out.

Some of the best offers on Top Cashback at the moment include :

 upto £25 cashback.

 upto £157.50 cashback for new customers.

 upto £147 cashback for new customers.

  upto £42 cashback

Click the company name for more details such as T&C’s of each offer.

I hope this has been useful to those who have never heard of Top Cashback before. There are other similar sites such as Quidco, many people will compare offers and go for the better deal. I have always preferred Top Cashback though, I actually started on Quidco. I shall keep you updated throughout the challenge on my progress; total earnings will appear on the My Money Making Websites at the end of each month.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask and I will try my best to answer them.


Nectar Points


When most people think of Nectar points they immediately assume that they are only for people who do their food shop in Sainsburys, which is correct but also far from the only place that offers these beautiful golden points of awesomeness. So for my first money making post of the year I will explain exactly how these can be of use to those who don’t necessarily shop at this particular supermarket.

Like most savvy shoppers, the husband and I don’t put all our eggs in one basket when it comes to our monthly shop; we tend to split it between Aldi and Sainsburys with Aldi being our main shop of the month. There are some things, however, that we need to get from Sainsburys such as the cats food because she is a fussy thing. Also our local is situated in a shopping centre/retail park so if we need to be out that way we will do a top-up shop while there to save on petrol. The bulk of our points do come from our shops and this year will be no different.

So, why should you get a Nectar card when you don’t shop at Sainsburys?

  • Petrol: If you drive then filling your car up at Sainsburys or BP garages will reward you with points. You’ll gain 1 point per litre of regular fuel purchased at BP and 1 point per litre of fuel at Sainsburys garages.
  • Gas & Electric: If you receive your energy supply from British Gas then you could be earning points by simply paying your bill, they also offer points when you take out other services such as boiler cover. If you are thinking of switching Sainsburys fuel offer points too.
  • Credit card: The Nectar Credit Card offers 2 points per £1 spent on the card with additional bonus points when buying things with Nectar partners.
  • Online: The biggest earner for many in this area will be eBay, for every £1 you spend on the auction site you will gain 1 point which is great for all you bargain hunters. That said eBay isn’t the only site to offer points for online purchases; we recently discovered that Just-Eat also offer 1 point per £1 spent. You can also collect online with Argos, DHL, Oxfam, Expedia, First Trains and Virgin Trains.
  • In Store: As well as the obvious supermarket purchases you can earn points on every spend at Homebase and Hertz rentals.
  • Bonus points: Certain sites will also offer double or triple points for limited periods. At the time of writing Mothercare were offering 4 points per £1 spent. Check out bonus point offers here.
  • No purchase: Believe it or not there are a couple of ways to earn bonus points that don’t involve a purchase. The first is having the Nectar Toolbar installed on your web browser, it is pretty unnoticeable but will alert you to any sites you can accrue points on (which is how I found out about Just-Eat); just for installing it you get a bonus 100 points. Then using it to search the internet will earn you 1 point for every 2 valid searches (up to 200 points per month)

A full list of where to collect can be found here.

You may be thinking that collecting these points is all well and good but you don’t have a Sainsburys near you to use them. Not a problem! Whilst I will be saving my points to pay for gifts and food in Sainsburys for Christmas there are still many other ways to spend your accrued points. Handing over your card at selected stores and venues can see £2.50 per 500 points knocked off your purchase, even more at certain retailers. Argos, VUE Cinema, Pizza Express and eBay are a few of the companies that will allow you to use your points for payment. Where to spend them can be found here.

If that wasn’t enough, selected members can “bank” their points in what is called the Hive which is currently in beta, I will do another post about this if/when it comes out of beta and is launched.. Points transferred to the Hive will collect 10% interest which is paid every Friday; great if you are wanting to save for something special, like Christmas.

To get your Nectar card click HERE to be taken to the registration page.

I started this challenge with 1658 (£8.29) already collected which are being discounted for this challenge and so far, 6 days in I have accrued 264 points. I will admit we did a rather large shop on Saturday which will have added to this.

I hope you have found this useful. There are many other places that offer rewards like this such as Tesco with their Club Card and more recently Morrison’s with their Match & More card, so if a Nectar card still doesn’t appeal to you then check those out. I don’t use them so don’t feel that I can honestly tell you all the benefits.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask and I will try my best to answer them.

Happy New Year: What is the Challenge?


Happy New Year from Cash Free Christmas Challenge.

Happy New Year to all my readers, I hope Christmas was a nice and relaxing time for you and your families; now on to 2015 and the challenge.

Today is the start of my Cash Free Christmas Challenge for 2015, and if you are wondering what it is then this is the post for you. Over the next 11/12 months I have set myself the challenge to earn an additional income online that is purely for Christmas this year. I am hoping that I won’t need to spend a penny of my husband or my own wages on anything from presents to treats.

How will I do this? I will complete this by using a variety of websites and phone apps. This year is a learning process for myself more than anything. Certain sites I already know how to use such as Swagbucks others are very new to me so I will be learning as I am earning. Each week I will produce a blog post about the opportunities I am using so I can give you a more in-depth view of how it works (or doesn’t) which means if you want to take up the challenge yourself then you know where to start.

I will also have some posts about my other sources of income that I will not be including in my own personal challenge because some months they can bring in a pretty good income for the family; such as December saw one Mystery Shopping company pay me £100 for that month. For now check out my money making website page for an idea of the sites I will be using.

Most of the sites being used will allow me to collect points which can be redeemed for gift vouchers or paid out via Paypal, for me these are appealing as I can allow the balance to build up through the year and not be tempted to spend the money. This is the main reason why I have opted out of using sites that pay monthly into Paypal or my bank as the money will get lost on bills or treats. I will also be saving my Nectar Points over the year which will allow me to pay for all the food and drink over the festive period, topping these points up a daily visit to the ads site.

I would also love to hear from anyone who decides to take on the same challenge, we can share ideas and update our progress; please feel free to leave a comment or follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

I look forward to sharing this journey with you, hopefully it will be a successful one, and one that I can continue with for years to come.