10 Ways to Make Extra Income During Retirement

November 17, 2020

During retirement, even a bit of extra money a month can make a big difference - especially when you’re living on a fixed budget. Fortunately, it’s easy to make extra income during retirement. Here are 10 of the best ways to earn money after retirement.

1. Sell some items

If you’ve got too much stuff and not enough room, consider padding your pockets by selling items. Things like vintage clothing, antique furniture, and even books, art, and dishware can fetch a pretty penny. In fact, many retirees are surprised by the value of overlooked items in their home. Take any well-maintained items to your local antique or vintage shop, and sell smaller pieces on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. 

2. Rent your space

Thanks to the sharing economy, everyone can become a landlord. Even if you don’t have a separate guest property, it’s easy to make money by renting a spare room via Airbnb or VRBO. While some people imagine having strangers in their homes will feel like an imposition, others find it an exciting way to meet new people. Here’s a handy guide to help you get started renting out your home or a room in your house.

3. Take a temp job

Going back to work doesn’t have to mean picking up another full-time position. If you want to make some extra income, keep an eye out for temp jobs. These are short-term projects available in a variety of industries. Depending on your chosen industry, temp work may include administrative work, seasonal work, or filling in for an employee on maternity leave or out on sabbatical. 

To find temp work, check local job boards, or enlist the help of a staffing agency. And don't be afraid to try something new. The right seasonal work can become something to look forward to year after year while boosting your income on a reliable basis.

4. Become a babysitter or caregiver

One of the easiest (and most fun) ways to make money as a retiree is as a babysitter or caretaker. Depending on your preferences, you can provide short-term childcare to busy parents (Care.com is a great place to build a profile) or a company like Rent a Grandma.

If you prefer to work with adults, you may be able to find adult caregiving openings at your local hospice or assisted living facility.  Keep in mind that being a caregiver may require specific skills or certifications, so it’s wise to check the job requirements. 

5. Become an animal caretaker

If you love pets, it’s easy to monetize your passion by becoming an animal caretaker. Simple things, like walking dogs or pet sitting, are easy ways to earn some extra cash each month. Whatever you do, make sure that your chosen line of work is compatible with your fitness and strength levels. Walking dogs, for example, requires stamina and upper-body strength. 

To get started as an animal caretaker, all you need to do is create a profile and advertise yourself on sites like:

Depending on the specific job, being an animal caretaker may require feeding, bathing, walking, exercising, or taking the pet to veterinary appointments. In some cases, you may be able to get paid to house sit a pet at your own home while its owners are away. Most animal sitting sites require a small sign up fee, so make sure this is something you can do often enough to cover any membership fees.

This is an excellent option for people who already have pets and don’t mind taking on another for a short period. 

6. Become a tutor

You have decades of experience. If you have a particular expertise — like you used to work as an English teacher — consider becoming a tutor for kids or adults. You can sign up with a tutoring company that pairs you with students who need help in a given subject. You can also tutor online. Virtual tutoring options allow you to connect with students from the comfort of your own home, via digital platforms like FaceTime and Google Hangouts. 

As more and more people flock to remote learning, tutoring sites and even personal consulting is becoming easier to do, more trusted, and more profitable every year. Find your niche and start teaching. You'll be surprised by how many people want to learn from experts — even if it's only a few hours a week.

7. Meet with a financial advisor

If you’re looking for ways to maximize your existing investments to make extra income during retirement, meet with a financial advisor. Sometimes the best way to improve your financial situation isn't just about income, but expenses. Find ways to consolidate any outstanding debt, and reassess financial products like annuities and pension benefit guarantees to help you secure guaranteed retirement income and live more comfortably during your golden years. 

Comfortable retirement isn't just about savings and income. Make sure you have an expert help you take a comprehensive look at your finances to uncover any missed opportunities and set up structures like trusts for your loved ones.

8. Become a mystery shopper

Love to shop? Have some spare time on your hands? Become a mystery shopper! Mystery shoppers are professionals who get paid to shop at a store and provide feedback about their experience so companies can improve their service. While the job usually only pays minimum wage, it can be a fun way to put some extra money in your pocket. 

9. Work as a copy editor

As the world becomes more and more digital, the need for copy editors and copywriters has increased. People need more than spellcheck, which is where you come in. As a copy editor, you’ll review written material for accuracy, grammar, spelling, and readability. But great copy editors also search for tone, storytelling, and style. Heck, if you're a great reader you can even find work as a professional script reader or proofer for fiction, non-fiction, and screenwriting competitions. There are literally thousands of writing competitions, companies, and publications looking for dedicated, detail-oriented copy editors and proofreaders. And the best part is that you can usually do this kind of work remotely and on your own schedule.

Copy editors are typically required to abide by stylistic guides like the Chicago Manual or the AP Stylebook, so it’s helpful to have a background in English or teaching before applying for these positions. But if you have the necessary experience, you can work in fields ranging from the financial industry to the nonprofit sector. 

10. Work as a transcriptionist

If you have fast typing skills and some extra time, take a job as a transcriptionist. Transcriptionists take an audio file and type it into a text file. The job pays depending on the audio file’s length, so it’s a smart position for people who can type quickly and accurately. All you need to get started is a pair of high-quality headphones, a computer, and a word processing program. 

How to Make Money During Retirement

Retirement is an excellent opportunity to relax and spend time doing the things you love. But you can stay active and engaged in your community while earning a tidy income with a range of part-time work. Don't limit yourself to the 10 items on this list. Explore local community job boards and online listings, reach out to friends, and find work that you enjoy.

Fortunately for modern retirees, there are dozens of ways to put your ample skills and expertise to good use, and supplement your retirement income safely and easily.

At Pillar, we specialize in helping you get your finances organized so you can enjoy a worry-free retirement. Learn more about how our personal organization and fraud monitoring services can help prepare you and your family for what happens after retirement. 

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