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Boost your nest eggs 25 ways to do it

by Jim ONeil on April 18, 2011

in Personal Finance Tips

If you’ve got cash in the bank you’re in a fortunate position as there are many simple ways to help it grow.

Despite the economic downturn, not everyone is struggling to make ends meet.

And even a small amount of spare cash could be sufficient to really help it go further.

There are endless ways to do this, and here are 25 ideas for starters:

Think long term

Although the average bank or savings account will do little to bolster your lump sum, there are still good rates to be had on longer term, fixed rate bonds if you’re happy to keep your money in the same place. These could earn you up to four per cent.

Online savings

Forget bricks and mortar banks, online banking will by far offer you the best rates on your savings as their overheads and administration costs are lower – so they can pass the savings on to the consumer. Check out providers such

Lend a hand to borrowers

Have you ever thought about the return you could make by lending to the average consumer? There are all kinds of websites which deal in small peer to peer loans, which keep rates cheap by cutting out the middle man. So the borrower gets a better interest loan and the lender gets a higher return. And the risk gets spread because you lend to multiple borrowers. Check out for more details.

Overseas economies

Keep tabs on the performance of other countries’ economies and you could benefit from their own sluggish financial climate. Japan is one country where its decade’s worth of deflation could make the  local consumer start to spend,  as prices rise.


Think metals – gold has always been a popular choice but silver is an equally safe bet and it’s a metal which has multiple uses, so its versatility is a definite plus and could be worth your cash. Platinum is a great alternative too as demand from the Asian market continues.


The recession has seen a significant peak in the pawn brokering industry, with consumers needing to turn their possessions into cash to make ends meet. The steady rise of this sector is reflected in the stock markets too of course, with listed shares worth closer inspection. Check out for more.

Investment trusts

Significant discounts can be had across many investment trusts. For example, a trust trading at 20 per cent discount is equal to paying just 80 pence per one pound of assets.

Up and coming artists

You could discover the next Banksy or Hurst – your bucks could really benefit from spotting burgeoning artists who turn out to become top talent on the arts scene. Check out websites such as to check out some of the latest hot favourites.

Stamp collecting

Did you know that in the last ten years the FTSE 100 stock exchange and gold have been outperformed by the humble stamp? And the Royal Wedding is set to increase the popularity, and in turn boost sales, of commemorative collections, so get collecting today. Check out major stamp sellers for more details.

Hedging your bets

Hedge funds can be a risky way to make money but aim to make positive returns in all kinds of conditions. So if they perform well, they’ll definitely give your investment a major boost. Sound advice is a must though so be sure to get some before you commit.

Sound shares

As the price of food continues to climb, investing in companies which are intrinsic to the consumables process, such as those which supply fertilisers to aid harvests.

Repossession properties

Repossessed properties offer an excellent opportunity to the buyer – new builds especially can be bought at an excellent price and kept as an investment until the housing market picks up again.

Look after your pennies..            

..and the pounds will look after themselves. One and two pennies pieces made prior to 1992 are around ninety seven per cent copper. The high price of this metal means each coin is actually worth over three pence, so sell them in bulk and you could pocket a fair profit.

Think Europe

We’ve all heard of the BRIC countries as destinations to make a sound investment, but it pays to think outside the box, so go against the stream and consider how Europe could perform.

Regular savings

Markets, as we all know, can be volatile, but if you’re setting aside a regular amount each month, you’re in for a smoother ride as the ups balance out the inevitable downs. For example, a monthly outlay of £100 in something like Gartmore China Opportunities from its inception back in 1983 now has a value of £433,000. So start thinking long term as a regular approach is likely to give you the steadiest return over the years.

Consumer habits

Keeping an eye on the general consumer trend can be an excellent indictor of the companies worth investing in. Since the recession hit, dining out in fancy restaurants is taking a definite back seat. A cosy night in with a pizza is now proving the popular, and cost effective, alternative. So it figures that companies like Domino’s Pizza will be performing very well in this climate and are therefore worth some closer inspection beyond the pizza menu.

Retirement planning

The humble pension is still a great way to reap massive tax savings – by paying into one each month you can benefit for the huge forty per cent tax relief. There are many providers out there so shop around before you decide on which to invest your hard earned dough in.

House price dip

The continuing fall of house prices isn’t all bad news – for those already on the property ladder, it’s an excellent opportunity to climb higher and get hold of a property that may otherwise have been out of reach.

Spreading the risk

Spread betting can be a risky business, and you’re set to make huge losses if you’re don’t make the right call. But pick well and the gamble (which is exactly what many people see this form of investment as) can certainly pay off, with major financial rewards.

Bet on the betters

Another way to profit from spread betting is to invest in the experts in the field. Firms like IC Group pay a fair dividend although their performance hasn’t been overly strong.

Top tipsters

Check out daily tipsters from the likes of The Telegraph’s share tipster Questor for all kinds of ideas of where your money can go. See more at:

Funerals and funds

It may be a morbid idea for many, but death is one of life’s few certainties, which is why funeral firms are worth consideration for your spare cash., for example, is performing well on a regular basis and is the favourite of many stock brokers.

Uncharted territory

Undiscovered markets, and therefore on the whole untapped, can be an excellent investment opportunity. Think of the BRIC countries ten years ago and the associated level of risk, and now look how the economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China have grown. Now think about the next upcoming economies, such as Africa and the Middle East, and get in there early. But be prepared to take the risk as there are of course no guarantees.


Although India hasn’t steered a completely steady path since the start of the year, it definitely presents a clear opportunity for the investor who is prepared to take a risk on this economy full of potential.

It could be you

Someone has to win the lottery, so why not you? Even if you have no significant cash for major investments, the simple one pound purchase of a lottery ticket or scratch card could turn your fortunes around in a matter of seconds. So dig out your spare pennies because it could be your lucky day!


you will need £200,000.00 to £500,000.00 to get your £2,000.00 per month income .

There are some high paying dividend stocks that are secure to invest in paying as much as 5% to 10% or even higher.

Nice post though


Thanks Schman

We are producing more free reports each month and really appreciate feedback from our readers


Nice tips, could do with another 25 and then might be able to retire:)

Jane Kerr

Hey, these are really good tips. It’s not like tips about stock picking or investment picking. Your tips are really diversified and are not all related to the financial markets. Can we have some more please? Cheerio Jane


You certainly can Jane, we are putting together lots of free reports and money saving guides over the next twelve months:)

Nathan Robinson

Dominos Pizza ! It’s cheaper to have a night out at a restaurant and stay in and order from these guys. My girlfiend and I ordered a pizza each, a bottle of pop and a pudding and it came to over £20 quid. We could have eaten out at an Italian restaurant for the same price!! Anyway, the reason i’m writing is not to slag off Dominos, it’s just to say that the strategy you talk about worked very well for me as a sector strategy. I don’t have the budget to single stock pick but did have the money to buy into a good unit trust which has done well over the last 18 months. Cheers Nathan

Ravi Guptha

Not sure about art as an investment. If you buy a Damian Hirst or Banksy limited edition print, they are printed in such large numbers, perhaps editions of 1000 that even though they will hold their value (the work will sell through auction and therefore has a track record) it is unlikely that they will increase substantially because of the large print run.
Then we come to emerging artists. It is difficult to spot the next Damian Hirst. Artists that have completed an undergraduate course might disappear off the face of the earth in a couple of years. Its like searching for a needle in a haystack.
If you want to discover the next Damian Hirst go to graduate shows but not undergraduate shows, you should go to MA shows. The reason is, artists have to wait two years between a BA and an MA course. That means they will have been working as an artist for two years between the BA and the MA and will have honed their practice. Of course it will mean that they will have lived and worked as artists AND surviving. It means they may well be around in ten years and more likely to become the next Damian Hirst. All the Best Ravi


Thank you Ravi for one of the most constructive and insightful comments I have seen in quite a while.Fancy doing some guest posts? You are more than welcome


new and…classic ideas…I like


My husband and I are both business owners, so when I had my son I had to close my business for four weeks before going back. I saved enough money to cover what would have been made in those weeks of lost wages. I typically profit about $9500 a month after expenses are paid and we needed at least half of that to cover any unforseen loss in my husbands company for that month. (We still need to be able to pay his business expenses if something happens and he doesn't profit as much as he usually does). Perhaps my situation is a little different, but it's still a good idea to have about half of what you are losing for the time you are taking off. I also had to prepare for a significant loss because after I came back from my hiatus, I took less clients and made more time for my family. I could no longer work 70-80 hour work weeks, and had to cut back to around 50-60 AND hire a full time caregiver for my son. This is all why we waited almost 9 years before having a baby, and in this tough economy I'm not sure we could afford to do it again.

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