Second job: ideas and tips for second jobs

Second job is more than just an idea — second jobs are becoming increasingly necessary for many people. More than seven million Americans hold second jobs. And although you might think most people who have second jobs are in minimum wage positions, studies suggest that teachers, police officers, engineers, nurses and other professionals often hold down second jobs. Having a side job can help you with your financial goals.

Benefits of second jobs and side jobs

If you can fit a second job around your existing job, you can more easily pay off student loans, save for a downpayment, pay off a car, eliminate credit card debt, fund vacations, top up retirement savings — or make ends meet. Just make sure your second job doesn’t interfere with your main job. Look for work that accommodates your existing position and lets you get eight hours of sleep at night.

Of course, if you become a consultant and hang on to your day job, you’ll have a great second job. But if you’re looking for other ideas, consider these:

Second job / side job ideas


  • Teach ESL
  • Teach courses at your local community centre, college continuing studies program, or community college
  • Get a job at a retail or department store, especially during the holiday season. You may even get discounts on purchases.
  • Tutor
  • Cut lawns
  • Do landscaping
  • Babysit
  • Clean houses
  • Become a handyman/woman
  • Bar tend
  • Deliver pizza
  • Pet sit
  • House sit
  • Walk dogs
  • Run errands
  • Type
  • Do desktop publishing
  • Grade SATs — check out the College Board website
  • Sell stuff on eBay and other online auction sites

Again, consulting makes a great second job choice — and may pay anywhere from $35 to $300 an hour! Incidentally, many people take up consulting as a side job while they raise families, care for elderly family members or ease into retirement. (For mentorship and guidance in starting a consulting business, check out Become a Consultant: How to Make the Leap.)

Check out my book on Side Jobs:

 Side Jobs - Second Jobs, Side Gigs & Part-time Businesses Ebook

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13 thoughts on “Second job: ideas and tips for second jobs”

  1. How fortuitous that I check out your blog today, Andrea. Once again, I’m trying to think of ways to pay the bills during my summer down time. I could always temp, but I’d rather not. I’ll explore some of your ideas further. Thanks for the tips!

  2. Hi,

    Is it illegal to have the same type of second job?
    I am working in a financial company but I want to have my own company as a financial cosultant.

    Thank you for your help!


  3. Jill the Jewelry Lady

    I am a teacher and I found it necessary to supplement my income too. I found this wonderful company called that will give me 50% commission! In addition, this is a Christian-based company that works to serve God and enhance the lives of others. I have never been so happy! There are some start-up costs involved, but I made this money back with my first couple of shows. I have so much fun that I wish I could do this full time and give up all of the political drama involved with teaching.

  4. What about:
    House Cleaning
    Carpet Cleaning
    Personal Assistant
    Pool Cleaner, etc. Heres a great company for all Dana Point House Services if your interested.

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