Unconventional money-spinners

As a new academic year looms, Condor Properties looks at some unconventional money-spinners used by students.

As the summer recedes and a new academic year looms, students have much to look forward to; endless parties, a lack of real responsibilities and a new found freedom away from the parental home. However, this new lifestyle doesn’t come without its problems, which mainly revolve around money, or a lack of it.

Most students balance the books by getting a part-time job, but some have employed some lateral thinking when it comes to getting out of tight situations. We wouldn’t recommend any of them really, but Condor Properties had to share some of the more bizarre money-spinners we’ve come across...

Name your price

An impoverished New Zealand student started a bidding war for the rights to his middle name this summer, promising to change it to anything the winner wants. Alex Brown put a reserve of NZ$1,000 on his middle name (currently James), although he’s hoping it will fetch at least NZ$5,000, which will be used to pay off his student loan.

Cheeky adverts

Earlier this year, another skint New Zealander, this time a young lady called Tina Beznec, auctioned off advertising space... on her bottom. The innovative 23-year-old started an auction whereby she agreed to have a 9x9 inch advert tattooed to her bum to the highest bidder. An Auckland strip club won the auction with a bid of NZ$12,450; Ms Beznac now has the strip club’s logo on her bottom. She donated some of the proceeds to charity.

Sock sale

A cash-strapped American student helped fund her education by flogging her used socks online. Lily Haze, who also works as a part-time model, claims she is profiting from an underwear underworld, where people with alternative inclinations buy her smelly socks. Apparently each pair can fetch as much as $50.

Kidney trade

A hard-up Chinese student with a penchant for Apple products sold one of his kidneys last year, buying a new iphone and ipad2 with the proceeds. However, cash strapped students should definitely not take a leaf out of Wang Shangkun’s book; he has been suffering from health problems ever since.

Discount dinosaur

In 2011 a Saudi student was alleged to have sold a common desert lizard to a dim-witted American, who somehow thought he was buying an extinct dinosaur species. The commonsense-deficient Yank paid $7million for the reptile, prompting the US Court of Justice to issue a warrant for the arrest of the Saudi seller, who had gone over to America to study.