These days just about everyone is looking for ways to earn extra money.
- Budgets are tight.
- We have massive amounts of student loan debt.
- Credit card and other high-interest rate debt are hampering our ability to reach our financial goals.
- Millions of American consumers are living paycheck-to-paycheck, barely able to meet their monthly obligations.
- Saving for emergencies, retirement and life goals seems an impossible dream.
Finding Ways to Earn Extra money is one way to Improve Your Financial Situation
If your fixed expenses exceed your income, then you can either reduce your expenses or increase your income. If you have already pared your budget down to the essentials and cut out all the unnecessary spending and you still don’t have enough money to pay the bills, then increasing your income is your only option.
There are a few ways to increase your income. One is to demand a raise in salary. Pull together documentation of your contributions to the company and make your case for a raise.
Another option is to find a new job. But many have found a better way in the gig economy. Gig jobs not only provide a way to earn extra money but in some cases, they become full-time jobs or a gateway to launching a new business.
What is the Gig Economy?
The financial pages, print and digital, are filled with stories about the gig economy. TechTarget defines the gig economy as “a free market system in which temporary positions are common and organizations contract with independent workers for short-term engagements.”
The gig economy includes everyone from full-time independent contractors to people moonlighting as drivers for Lyft or Uber. Pay scales run from the senior executive level to the service-based level, such as delivery drivers or tradespeople.
Of course, technology has played a huge role in pushing the gig economy into the mainstream. Online platforms and e-commerce have enabled millions of people to earn extra money during their after-work hours.
A recent DaVinci Payments study reveals that approximately 72 million Americans have joined the gig economy. The study found that earning extra money was the primary reason people have taken on gig assignments. Their average gig income is a little less than $17,000 per year.
Earn Extra Money While Keeping Your Full-Time Job
The gig economy has provided millions of people in America and Europe with full-time employment, but in this article, we want to focus on how the gig economy can help you earn extra money while you keep your full-time job.
The advantages of staying with your full-time job is a steady income and employee benefits. When you have a lot of bills and not enough money to cover your financial obligations, you must have at least one reliable source of income. If you decide to go into full-time freelancing, be sure to read our article on how to budget when your income fluctuates.
Where Do You Find Gig Economy Jobs?
The most popular freelance sites are:
- People Per Hour
According to an article in Entrepreneur, one of the highest paying gig economy jobs in 2018 was Instagram marketing. If you love Instagram and have already figured out how to exploit this platform, you could make extra money and have fun at the same time. Upwork, for instance, is filled with postings by brands looking for help with their Instagram marketing.
But there are other gig jobs that will help you meet your financial goals.
For instance, virtual assistant is a job you can do from home. With the popularity of remote work, you can become a virtual assistant in a geographic location that allows you to complete your tasks during your evening and weekend hours. You can easily transfer your office skills to helping busy executives succeed in their business ventures.
If you prefer something less labor-intensive and have a spare room, consider becoming a host on a platform such as Airbnb. The platform has become a favorite among international travelers who are looking for a less touristy experience. All you need is a nice room or suite, comfortably furnished and a love for meeting different types of people.
If you have skills such as teaching, landscaping, home repairs or renovations, you can sign up with a platform such as TaskRabbit. The platform notifies you of independent contract positions available where you live. Alternatively, you can market yourself on Whatsapp groups or community boards.
There are many ways you can earn extra money by joining the gig economy. Be sure to carefully check out all opportunities that come your way and don’t be tricked by any advertisement for quick money. Your immersion in the gig economy can be short-term until you get out of debt and/or reach your savings goals, or it could become a permanent part of your routine. And there is always the chance that your gig job could become a full-time freelance profession, with all the work-life balance freedom gigs provide.