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Save Money and Earn Cash with DIY Projects

May 21, 2024 • Education

Taking on DIY projects can be a fun, satisfying, and cost-effective way to save money, avoid adding to credit card debt, and maybe even generate a little cash flow. Do some self-assessment and think about the things you’re good at. Are you a seamstress, woodworker, carpenter, master gardener, or former teacher? Are you great with fashion, home décor, or antiques? You may have just uncovered a skill set that can help you save and make more money.

Bring Old Furniture Back to Life

We live in a throwaway society. If it’s not brand new, a lot of people just don’t want it. Consequently, the world is full of used furniture that can still have a lot of life left in it if properly restored. Start cruising yard and estate sales, thrift shops, and online platforms like Facebook Marketplace for treasures that a little TLC can bring back to life. Reviving your own furniture can save you thousands over time. Apply your skills to making money, and you can start posting restored pieces online, make a few sales, and watch the cash start rolling in.

Customize Secondhand Clothing

From street style to designer looks, part of how we define ourselves is by the way we dress. As seasons change and looks go in and out of style, the massive supply of gently used secondhand clothing continues to grow. The good news is that if you have the skills, an eye for what’s hot and what’s not, and a little time, you can generate income by upcycling and customizing things that still have utility. Modifying leather and denim jackets, jeans, boots, and other vintage pieces with patches, paint, embroidery, and bangles can turn dull hand-me-downs into objects of desire that someone will pay good money for. Save money by updating your own wardrobe. Or turn your fashion skills into a side project that brings in additional income. Start by repurposing clothes from yard sales and thrift stores, then sell them at craft fairs, farmers markets, and on digital marketplaces. 

Use Your Green Thumb to Generate Green Cash

Lower your grocery bill, improve your diet with healthier choices, enjoy the satisfaction of working outdoors in the fresh air and sunshine, and maybe even generate a little extra cash on the side.

Unless you’re cultivating a rather large yard, your garden may not yield enough for you to make regular trips to the farmers market, but you can offer to sell your excess lettuce, tomatoes, squash, beans, peppers, and carrots to your neighbors, coworkers, and friends. Add a few laying hens to your agricultural endeavor and enjoy farm fresh eggs that will keep you, your family, and potential customers coming back for more.

At the end of the season, think about canning and pickling to preserve your bounty through the winter while keeping your home-grown garden goods on the menu for family and friends.

Home Remodeling Projects

If you’re handy with tools and have carpentry, electrical, or plumbing skills, you can save tons of money on home updates and remodeling. Making your home more energy-efficient for example can reduce your electric and heating bills—and it’s good for the planet.

Here are some ideas to get you started:  

  • Install energy efficient windows. Drafty windows that aren’t properly insulated can increase your home's energy use each year, leading to inflated energy bills and overworked HVAC systems.

  • Install energy efficient lighting. LED lighting comes with a multitude of amazing benefits including long life and high energy efficiency. They’re durable, have zero ultraviolet emissions, and operate in extreme temperatures, so they’re ideal for outdoor lighting projects.

  • Install a smart thermostat. The thermostat’s ability to remember a household’s daily patterns for temperature control and adjust accordingly, reduces the use of heating and cooling systems when nobody is home for significant periods of time.

  • Install a smart water heater. This appliance uses technology to maximize hot water efficiency using personalized timetables, temperature adjustments, and home automation integration to consume less energy and generate low utility bills.


Some projects may involve a little research (consult Google and YouTube) but they’re all well within the bandwidth of a lot of DIYers. Remember, always be cautious when attempting projects that involve extensive electrical or plumbing knowledge and consult with a professional to be sure it’s done correctly and safely.

Get Artsy and Crafty

Crafting can save you money on holiday and birthday gifts throughout the year. If you want to make money, selling crafts is a great way to build an online business through digital marketplaces like Etsy. All you need to do is start creating products you think people might like. Items like candles, wall decorations, handmade cards, and jewelry make affordable and unique gifts that many people might be interested in buying. 

From reducing energy and food costs to creating new streams of income, DIY projects can help you improve your finances, reduce credit card debt, and grow your savings. So, go ahead — if you’re good at it, why not do it yourself?

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