The earlier one starts planning for their retirement, the better. The final decade before leaving the workforce will have a critical impact on how ready you’ll be when that day finally arrives. 

“It hits about 10 years out—this train is coming to me,” Danielle Byrd Thompson, a financial professional at Equitable Advisors in Washington, D.C., told Barrons.

“It’s like a time clock is starting.”

Of course, the final stretch is easier without the official interest rate increasing monthly since May 2022 – it is now at its highest since May 2022. Add to that Australia is now one of the most expensive countries in the world, with an inflation rate this month of 6.8%.

How to improve your equity in 2023

“While the coming year certainly won’t be without its challenges, we are tipping a modest gain for the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index in 2023 of 4-7 per cent to near 7,350-7,550 points,” CommSec Chief Equities Economist Craig James said in a statement.

If you are thinking of earning some additional cash, it’s important to understand that any additional income will be taxed accordingly by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

If you take on additional work through an agency, second employer or as a freelancer with an ABN, you can nominate to claim the tax-free threshold of $18,200. This means that the first $18,200 you earn will be tax-free, thereby reducing your bill come tax time. You can nominate the employer from whom you would like to claim the tax-free threshold, which is usually the payer whom you earn the most income from.

If you do not plan to earn more than $18,200 a year in total then you can opt to claim the threshold from each and every payer.

How about these ideas?

1. Rent out your driveway

Parkhound claims that owners can make up to $300 per month for renting out their driveway and up to $450 per month for an indoor or lock-up garage. Earnings are higher the closer you are to transport links, shopping centres, attractions or hospitals.

2. Hire out your storage space

Spacer or SpaceOut list your extra storage, which may come in the form of a storage cage or unit, shed, spare bedroom, carport or even a garage. Before renting out your storage space, contact your home insurance provider to check your existing cover will still be valid and if you will be covered if a renter causes damage. If you live in a unit or a villa, check to see whether the body corporate allows for this type of arrangement.

3. Sell what you don’t need

Gumtree estimates Australians could make an average of $5,800 per household by selling about 19 unwanted items — be it a chair, fridge, clothes or tech equipment. There’s also eBay and Facebook Marketplace.

4. Sell unwanted electronics

Online marketplaces, We Buy Back and Greener Mobile, will buy your mobile phones, tablets and computer games.

5. Rent out a spare bedroom

Renting in capital cities is becoming very expensive, so If you have a granny flat or studio at the rear of your home, or wouldn’t mind some company in the form of a flatmate, you can advertise your spare residential space.

Short-term rental sites are perfect for those who only wish to let out their rooms some of the time, while flatmate sites are better suited to those who are seeking a long-term tenant

6. Rent out your car for a fee

With working from home commonplace, your car could be sitting unused on your driveway. It is saving money on fuel and you could earn some extra cash by renting out your car through Australian sites like Car Next Door, Drive Mate, Go Get and Drive My Car.

7. Use your skills

Whether you work in education, you’re a keen writer or an avid photographer, there are plenty of ways to use those skills to help boost your income.

Demand for online tutoring has risen since the Covid-19 pandemic. Take a look at Australian tutoring sites including Learnmate, The Tutoring Company or Superprof. Superprof estimates that the average rate for a Year 11 or 12 tutor is just under $40 per hour.

Photographers can sell snaps online to stock photography sites like Alamy which lets you earn up to 50% of any sale.

8. Turn your home into a film location

Businesses such as Pure Location or Set Book specialise in connecting homeowners with location scouts for film, TV or even photography. Pure Location offers more than 1500 location houses across Australia and New Zealand for photo shoots, filming and corporate events—and specialise in everything from outright luxury to suburban homes.