There are plenty of reasons to take on a second job—you may be looking to supplement your income, save for a big life event, or gain new skills and experiences. Whatever you want to accomplish, there’s a lot to consider before you take the next step. Here are some questions to help you weigh your options and figure out what’s best for you.
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What Are Your Main Goals?
It’s important to consider the purpose of this second job and what it will add to your life as a whole. For example, is your main goal to pad your savings account and have more financial security over the long term? Will this extra income go toward daily expenses if you don’t earn enough in your primary job?
Are you looking to make new connections in a different industry and eventually transition to a new career? If your motivations are financial, it can be helpful to make a list of your monthly expenses so you can see if and where a second job will make the biggest impact on your household.
Are There Any Downsides?
Beyond the benefits of a second job, you’ll also want to consider any potential drawbacks. For example, will a second job increase your commuting time and expenses? Will you need to budget for extra help at home or spend more money on takeout? Are there any upfront costs associated with job training or learning new skills? Will you be too tired from working two jobs to put in your best effort at your primary job?
It’s also important to be aware of how your primary employer views additional employment and whether it’s something you need to disclose. Some employers do not allow their employees to work for a direct competitor, so you’ll want to check your contract and potentially speak to your manager.
What Types of Jobs Appeal to You?
There are many different kinds of second jobs. Your preference will depend on your goals, your current workload, and what fits in best with your lifestyle. If you value flexibility, you may consider freelance work in an area that suits your existing skillset or personal interests.
For example, if you’re a teacher, you might spend a few extra hours a week tutoring. If you love animals, you might pick up some work pet sitting or dog walking. You can also take on a more scheduled part-time job such as bartending or waitressing a few days a week after your regular job.
How Will a Second Job Affect Your Life?
Before you commit to a second job, you’ll want to think about how your lifestyle would change. Are you someone who has a very active social life? How important is it for you to see your family and friends on a weekly basis?
Are you able to balance the long hours of your primary job with the added work of a second job? Having extra income has many benefits, but you want to be careful not to spread yourself too thin. Be honest with yourself about what you can manage and how it will affect all aspects of your life.
What Are the Alternatives?
Above all else, be honest with yourself about how much work you feel comfortable taking on and how a second job will help you reach your personal and professional goals. If taking on a second job doesn’t seem like the right move, consider what the other options might be. For example, if you want to make extra money to cover your rent, think about moving in with roommates instead. If the need for more money is temporary, financing options might make sense.
For instance, you might need a lump sum to take a course or complete a degree program to advance your career. In this case, you might instead consider a personal loan or even borrowing against the cash value of your whole life insurance or universal life insurance policy.
The primary purpose of permanent life insurance is to provide a death benefit. Using permanent life insurance accumulated value will reduce the death benefit and may affect other aspects of the policy.