Should You Get a Second Job?

9 Year Mortgage on Considering a Second Job

When the government reports unemployment rates they don’t factor in the ever growing percentage of people who are “underemployed”.  Underemployment can be the result of a variety of factors. Maybe your employer recently cut your hours back, or your were laid off and have been forced to take a job paying less than your previous job.  And let’s not forget the droves of students graduating with a variety of college and post-graduate degrees who are forced to take jobs outside their field of study. All of these examples could be considered underemployment. 9 Year Mortgage is aware of the economic crisis and we highly recommend taking a fine toothed comb to your expense budgets, as you can see from our other posts, but there is another way you can help make ends meet–consider taking on a second job. Studies estimate that 27 million Americans are already taking advantage of a second part-time job, but before you take the plunge, here’s what 9 Year Mortgage suggests you consider.

Do you have the time?  Time is money as the saying goes, but do you have any of it to spare?  How many hours are you working already?  Do you have a family and in particular young children that require your attention?  Are you involved in community, church, or other organizations that take a lot of time?  If so, can you handle cutting back on everything else to make room for a second job?  Only you know the answer to that question. 9 Year Mortgage knows that a lot of you simply don’t have time to get a second job, but if you’re an early riser or a night owl, you could have a couple spare hours where you could earn a little extra cash.

Before Getting a second job think through these points from 9 Year Mortgage:

  • Getting a second part-time job can cut into your social and family life and leave you physically and mentally tired.
  • If you are planning on getting a second part-time job you need to plan it carefully, ensuring it is worth your time and effort.
  • You need to protect your first job. This may require you tell your boss that you are taking a second part-time job; this should not create any problems but clarifying this with your manager could save you time from questioning later on.
  • Promise to put all of your extra money earned directly to the financial goal that you are working towards. Tell your spouse or family member that this is your goal— if you tell someone your goals (besides yourself), it is more likely that you will stay on track because you are being monitored.
  • Avoid overworking yourself. You need time to relax every day. If you get burnt out you won’t be able to perform either of your jobs to your fullest potential and that could leave you worse off.
  • Determine what your good at. Knowing your personal skill set and what you enjoy (like hobbies) will help narrow your job selection.

Once you are in the right mindset and know that you are capable of taking on a bigger workload, it is time to start thinking of possible second jobs.

Here is a list of 21 jobs that 9 Year Mortgage believes could help you earn a little extra cash each month:

1. Freelance – As a freelancer you open the door to do basically anything. You could self employ yourself by doing various things like hanging Christmas lights, cleaning out gutters, or selling arts and crafts you make. Or you can work from the comfort of your own home by writing, typing, proofreading, graphic designing, video production or advertising on your blog. To find freelance projects check out

2. Virtual Assistant – If you are detail-oriented and have strong computer and communication skills then this could be the job for you! As a virtual assistant you get to work from home doing things like creating a  monthly newsletter, updating a database, making hotel reservations, setting appointments or meetings, typing letters or buying supplies for the business. With this profession you can set your own hours and rates, where average virtual assistants charge $25 per hour when they start off but can charge up to $100 per hour.

3. Clean Houses
– This has very low start up costs and will only take you a couple hours a week per house. If you only cleaned one house you could earn up to $300 month. Try getting your name out there by social networking sites or ads in local stores. Always do an exceptional job and mention to your clients that you take referrals.

4. Pet Sit – Watch your friends and neighbors dogs while they take a weekend trip to see their grandchildren. Have your friends tell their friends; by word of mouth you could watch three pets a month and earn $200.

5. Creativity, Passions, and Hobbies – Do you like doing arts and crafts? How about scrapbooking or painting? Offer to finish parents scrapbooks (you know it will take them years to actually get around to doing it) or paint murals. Sell those bracelets or hair bows you can make. Try selling your talents at a local farmers market, online sites like craigslist or advertise through friends and family. Once again, word of mouth is your best friend.

6. Sell Items – De-clutter your house and make a profit off of it! Go through every room and get rid of all your unnecessary items. Another tactic is to go to thrift stores and find things of worth. Often you can find items like a silver serving tray or a grandfather clock for a couple bucks. Take what you find at consignment shops and the items in your house and sell them on Ebay or Amazon. Whatever doesn’t sell online sell in a garage sale.

7. Take Surveys – Use an hour of your time to complete some online or phone surveys, or participate in product trials. By voicing your opinion you can sometimes earn up to $150. If you are interested in such a simple money, visit FreePaidSurveys or FindFocusGroups.

8. Wrap your Car – Turn your car into a moving billboard. If you spend a lot of time out on the road then a lot of companies will pay you to have your car “wrapped” with advertisements.

9. Paper Route
– This isn’t just for teenage kids anymore. You may lose an hour of sleep, but if you have a reliable car then contact your local newspaper to find available routes and earn a couple hundred extra dollars a week.

10. Tutor/Lessons – Do you possess certain talents or skills? Get paid to teach others what you know. You can tutor kids from elementary school through college in subjects like math, english, chemistry, etc. Or offer your services teaching guitar, voice, piano, sewing, etc. To get potential clients, advertise where parents and students will see your ads,  like on school bulletin boards, public libraries, newspapers or put out fliers in your neighborhood.

11. Deliver Phone Books – Someone has to drop that new phone book off at your door, so why not you? Contact your local phone company to apply for the job.

12. Direct Selling – Sell products you love like Avon, Pampered Chef, Scentsy, or Lia Sophia Jewelery on your own time for an average of only $10 in start up costs. The amount of time and effort you put into selling and marketing yourself and the products you sell will determine how much you earn (I’ll let you know though, that some full-time representatives can earn six-figure salaries).

13. Grounds Maintenance –  Mowing lawns is not a kids job anymore either. With more communities requiring tenants to maintain their yards or else face a fine, grounds maintenance is needed more than ever. Your typical job, if hired, would include mowing lawns, planting, edging, and raking. Go door to door in those communities that you know have HOA requirements to get your devoted customers.

14. Bus Driver – Get paid roughly $17 an hour to drive a bus part-time. Your options include, but are not limited to, public school buses, city buses, airport shuttles or college campus buses.

15. Serving Tables– If you can land a job serving at a nice restaurant you can earn some serious cash from tips. In most cases, working at a local diner will not earn you nearly as much as an established restaurant. Sometimes working just weekends can earn you $300 or more.

16. Teach as Adjunct
– With education costs rising and as the demand for teachers grows it is becoming easier to teach as an adjunct. Are you a lawyer, human resource manager, accountant, or nuclear physicist? You and many other people in a variety of professions can take what you do as a living and teach at a local college a couple nights a week for some extra cash.

17. Medical Transcriber – You will be transcribing audio records for doctors and other health care professionals into readable reports. Some doctors will require you to have specialized training but most will offer on-the-job training for you. Some offices will even allow you to transcribe in the evenings and on the weekends, still earning you roughly $17.26 an hour.

18. Customer Service
– Like to talk on the phone or solve peoples problems? Then this job is for you! Get paid $15 an hour to help customers resolve their issues quickly and easily.

19. Sell Books – Have any college text books or classic novels you no longer need? Places like Barnes and Nobles will take them off your hand or you can do it yourself by selling them online or on university bulletin boards.

20. Secret Shopper – In this job you will be going undercover and reporting on multiple companies operation’s from a customers point of view. Earn anywhere from $100 to $2,000 a month to eat, travel, and shop for your clients.

21. Sell Photos – Do you love photography? Whether you are an experienced and professional photographer or are just camera happy, you can sell your photographs on sites like If your images are accepted they will be available for the public to download for 10 cents a piece. If you put up hundreds or thousands of pictures for people to choose from this could become a very lucrative business.

9 Year Mortgage Wraps It Up

Here at 9 Year Mortgage we know that it is hard and tiring even to think about getting a second or maybe third job. But the truth is, for most average Americans if you have goals of paying off credit cards or adding to your child’s college funds, what you make with just one job is not always enough. Some of the jobs listed above have the potential for a stay at home mom to bring in extra income, while some others will allow you to use an hour or two of your free-time to earn some cash and help you reach your financial goals.

Whatever path you choose to take, 9 Year Mortgage strongly suggests that you stick to your word of putting any extra money earned towards your predetermined goals. Try saving money where ever possible and do not live beyond your means. Once you have reached your goals, you don’t necessarily have to quit your second job. That extra cash should now go to new goals or directly into your savings. Take the advice from millions of Americans who were planning on retiring and found out that they don’t have nearly enough in their savings to sustain themselves for the next 20 years. Don’t find yourself in debt or unprepared for the future, pay off whatever you can and put any extra money into savings. If you are trying to find a second job, the options are limitless. Where you find a job and how much you make ultimately depend on how much effort you put into it.

Read another 9 Year Mortgage article entitled Frugality 101 for more tips on how to save money and eventually reach all of your financial goals.

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Comments on Should You Get a Second Job? Leave a Comment

May 24, 2011

Wow! nice job posting very interesting and have fun reading it… thanks for sharing!christmas lights

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