The Best Ways to Generate Higher Income to Reach Your Financial Goals

By Todd Kunsman

Make Money

Published on

Updated on

No matter what your financial goals are or where you are in your finances, you’ll need to generate higher income.

There is no question about it.

It’s also something the personal finance community needs to discuss more. There for sure are some great articles about it, but I feel like increasing income does not get the support (or attention) it should.

Why do I think generating higher income matters?

  • Cutting back expenses only gets you so far, there is a point where you can’t budget any further.
  • Your income has no limits (although it can be challenging at points to grow).
  • Higher income can elevate and exponentially help you reach financial independence.

While I don’t think a high income always means you’ll succeed in personal finance, it can have a major influence if you are prepared and have the right mentality.

Below are the best ways to generate higher income.

Increase Your Career Worth

If you are working full-time or developing your career, there is no doubt you need to increase your work value.

Unfortunately, you can’t always expect to receive a raise, even if you are doing a great job. It’s not necessarily fair, but it’s the way it is a lot of times.

But the most obvious thing you can do, is improve your career worth. If your current company is not valuing your worth, start applying elsewhere. I’ve been down this path before as well.

How can you improve your career worth? The paths to doing so may vary pending your professional career, but there is some overlap:

  • Monitor your profession’s demand, the salaries, what your next levels are, etc. You can use Glassdoor for this kind of insight.
  • You might be taking on a lot at your job already, but do extra tasks. If something interests you, ask to tag along or to learn what it’s about. Take initiative and find out what it may take to get to the next desired income.
  • Learn outside of your job. Read books, take an online course, research, find ways to prepare you and show your value.
  • Ask for a raise, you’d be surprised how often this might work if you can back up why you deserve one. Most managers will be receptive if you just ask. And if they say no, you know that you should probably consider working elsewhere.

For me, I realized I enjoyed digital marketing in 2014. So I pivoted my path towards this. I took free marketing certifications from Google and HubSpot, created a blog to practice, applied for freelance and contract marketing work, and then worked for a marketing agency to learn even more.

In 3 years, I went from barely $36,000/year to almost 2.5x that. My next pay trajectory takes me into the mid six figures. Crazy!

Invest in Income Generating Assets

Another way to start generating higher income, is to buy assets that will pay you on some recurring basis. This means, with the money you are making from your job, you should put a percentage of that money to work.

Think things like stocks, bonds, real estate, or anything that you buy that will generate some extra income for you by just owning a piece.

There are a lot of options and variations of things you can do with your money. The goal is to let this compound overtime and continue to add more as well. As your investments grow, so does your returns for just owning and continuing to invest.

Many of these assets will pay dividends (either monthly, quarterly), which can really start to add up. Of course, don’t expect to get rich overnight as you get started.

But once you start getting some serious money invested, your payouts can start to even cover many of your monthly expenses!  My investments are now generating $3,000-$4,000 a year, just by owning these assets! And these numbers are growing every year that passes and as I add more money.

Higher Income

Create Your Income Generating Assets

Another path to generating higher income, is to create your own financial assets. This is by no means a fast track to more money, but most of these on this list do require some time.

Your income generating asset could be starting an app, building a website, starting a business of what you know, dropshipping, Amazon FBA, etc. The possibilities are endless.

For me, I started Invested Wallet. Blogging has low maintenance costs and low up front fees. Downside is, it can really take time to find your rhythm and make some income.

Related: Interested in creating your own WordPress blog? Easily get started with Bluehost here.

But, I also enjoy growing and building websites. Plus, the income potential can be HUGE if you’re patient enough to not make money for awhile. I’m 8 months in and I’m just starting to make a little bit of money now.

My goal is, this will cover all my monthly expenses and maybe even more. In the future, I could also flip the business for a nice lump sum.

Side Hustle Part-Time

The side hustle hype is real. It’s funny because I’ve been doing this since 2010, but never called it side hustling until the term seemed explode a few years back.

But, the above three can take months or over a year to start making extra income. And that’s not guarantee or that the money will even be that great at first.

I know that may not sound promising, but I want to keep it real with you. But, in the meantime you can side hustle part time to really generate a higher income.

What are you good at? Even if it is outside what you do professionally.

You can become a freelance writer, provide some digital marketing services, teach online, rent your place on AirBnB, flip things on eBay, detail cars, etc.

There are countless ways to make consistent side money, even if you have limited time each week.

In order to improve my career worth and make extra cash, I took on freelance marketing work. It started off small with some social media and email work, then it expanded to content marketing and paid advertising, and so on.

Related: Some side hustles also have potential to become lucrative full-time gigs. Here Are 7 Side Hustle Ideas That Have Full-Time Income Potential.

The Keys to Generating Higher Income

After you read the above four ways to creating higher income, you might have realized a common theme. Not all of these happen overnight and most can take months to a year to really start working well.

But if you stay patient and consistent on the above, you’ll be well on your way to higher income and your pockets will be rewarded.

Of course, you could always inherit a sh!t ton of money. But, that isn’t something you should really be thinking about or even necessarily rely on.

To me, the above four areas are the best ways to start increasing your income.

What do you think? Are there other ways? How are you generating more money?