A bit of extra money always comes in handy and no more so that right now.
If you’re worried about your finances or just want to try to get ahead and build up a bit of a buffer, then you can think about trying to find a second source of income.
It doesn’t have to be a major project or a second job – you can just use the skills you already have and spend a few hours a week on your alternative set of income.
A second source of income is important for two reasons.
First, the extra money is always handy and will allow you to achieve your goals more quickly, be that saving for a home deposit, paying off your home loan or buying an investment property.
Second, it’s a form of insurance in case something happens to your primary source of income such as your job or small business, which unfortunately is an increased risk during this COVID-19 crisis.
Offer a service
As people work longer hours they are outsourcing some of the things they used to do themselves, and this provides an opening for you to earn some extra income.
It needn’t be complicated. You could mow the lawns for people in your neighbourhood; maybe you’ve got a knack for putting together Ikea furniture – a service a lot of befuddled householders would pay for!
If you have clerical skills you could work as a virtual assistant – doing typing, responding to emails and scheduling meetings for busy small business owners. Sites like Freelancer are a good source of this work.
Is there something you can make that people would buy – such as knitting scarves or jumpers for winter? You might have a knack for restoring wooden furniture. You could buy it very cheaply at garage sales or even pick it up free from council throw outs and get it looking good again before selling it on Facebook Marketplace, eBay or Gumtree.
Do something you’re already doing
Another way of thinking about an extra income source is to consider chores you’re already doing for yourself and whether you could charge other people to do the chores for them.
For instance, if you own a dog, you’re probably already taking it for a daily walk, so why not see if there are two or three other people in your neighbourhood who would pay you a small fee to ensure their dog gets some daily exercise.
This is how the Dinner Ladies started. They were already cooking meals for their own families and decided they could also deliver meals to time-poor friends in 2007. Now they – and their staff – cook about 10,000 dinners a week*.
Start a passion project
Is there something you’ve been dying to do for years, perhaps start up a cupcake business or make furniture? Now might be your chance.
Luckily if these are already your hobbies, you’ll already have all or most of the equipment you need to start out on a small scale. If things take off, you can invest more time and money.
If you’re in the fortunate position where you have money to invest, you might be able to make an investment such as a rental property. Once you have paid off the loan, the rent you earn will provide you with another source of income for as long as you own it.
If you need some advice, you can speak to one of our expert brokers who can assess your situation and advise on how to get started.
Even if you’re not in a position to invest yet, the extra income you earn from your side hustle might just start you on that path to investment property ownership.