Sharing is caring: How to save (or make) serious cash

The sharing economy isn’t simply here to stay, it’s a thriving part of the Australian business landscape. Here are four platforms to keep an eye on.

Looking for a private room in a little coastal town? Chances are you’ll scout around online using AirBnb. Need to get out to the airport? It’s likely you’ll catch a ride on Uber.

More than two thirds of Australians now spend and earn money through the sharing economy, according to new research from P2P lender RateSetter.

Established players Ebay and Gumtree are the most popular P2P platforms, while a quarter of Australians now use Uber (24% of Australians) and one-in-six Australians use shared accommodation platforms such as AirBnb.

Here’s another four areas worth keeping an eye on that can both save and make you money.

Freelance hire and supply

Do you own a small business and are looking to set up a website? Or maybe you’re a web developer looking for temporary work?

Platforms such as Freelancer, Upwork, Airtasker and Fiverr link contractors with flexible clients.

While Airtasker focuses on linking people and businesses to staff for short-term tasks – such as cleaning, handyman services, or gardening – Freelancer and Upwork enable companies to advertise specific projects and receive competitive bids from freelancers.

Vehicle rental

Vehicle purchase and maintenance can be one of the biggest costs for people starting up or running a small business. Added to this is the frustration that, when the car is not in use, you’re paying for idle capacity.

So why spend big bucks for something you can rent cheaply from others?

Car Next Door allows you to rent your neighbours car (or van, or truck) for as little as $19/day, including comprehensive insurance.

For the car provider, this means you can make money from an otherwise dormant asset. As a car user, you only pay for what you need – so no more vehicle-related overheads.

Another vehicle related platform is startup Parkhound, which helps its 10,000 members find a carpark in an empty garage or driveway nearby.

Food and beverage

The foodie revolution means many of us not only want to provide our families with tasty home-cooked meals, we also want to entertain friends with MasterChef-worthy creations.

But what if you’re time-poor, cooking-impaired, or simply don’t enjoy spending time in the kitchen

FoodByUs is an Australian startup which aims to address these issues by linking a fleet of home cooks with hungry buyers.

Unlike UberEats, which links customers with restaurants, FoodByUs taps into the market of home-based chefs who have the talent and the time to cook for others.

This system ensures that great cooks are rewarded and less talented chefs stick to their day job.

Home-based care

In 2011-12, health spending in Australia was estimated to be $140.2 billion, or 9.5% of GDP.

With the cost of aged care ever increasing, entrepreneurs are looking for ways in which to reduce the burden on governments and individuals.

Better Caring is a revolutionary concept in the field of aged and disability support, linking care service users with care providers on an easy and accessible online platform.

The platform focuses on facilitating best practice individual-centered, home-based care, so users don’t have to access support from large centers or nursing homes.

Final word

The sharing economy will undoubtedly only continue to grow.

And while it might not be at the point where you can quite your day job, there’s no shortage of systems out there that can turn your idle assets or under-utilised skills into money making machines.

So if you’d like to know more about the sharing economy and other ways to get closer to your financial goals, book an appointment today.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

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