If you're trying to get out of debt, a part-time job can help you accelerate your debt payoff plan. Or maybe you are a parent with kids still at home or nearing retirement and you want extra income to avoid getting into debt, but you don't want to be tied to a full-time job. Here are some of the most lucrative part-time jobs that also offer flexible hours. (Of course, earnings will vary significantly based on experience, geographic location, demand, etc.)
Range: $15 to $30/hour
What you need: A reliable vehicle, smartphone, ability to pass a background check.
"Over the past year, we've seen a huge influx of drivers and a few rate cuts so while it's not as lucrative as it once was," drivers can still make good money, says Harry Campbell, publisher of TheRideShareGuy.com. "Generally, the bigger the city, the better the money." He says drivers tend to make the most money on Friday and Saturday nights. Best of all, he says this work offers "immense flexibility."
Range: $10 to $75/hr
What you need: Training ($250-$600), ServeSafe Certification ($40), uniform and bar kit (about $50 together).
Lea Hatch, owner of the event planning and bartending company, A Shot Above Entertainment, Inc. says that she, her husband and their staff work mostly on weekends, giving them a full-time income for a part-time lifestyle. "A bartender/server with our company will make a minimum of $80 for four hours," she says, "but in general we average $100 to $150 per night. Our most lucrative events net us $800 to $1,200 per staff member." In bartending jobs, income is often heavily dependent on tips, which can vary.
Range: $20 to $30/hour
What you need: Experience requirements vary depending on position.
Companies looking for part-time experienced workers are often in a "high-growth stage" but "hesitant to invest in human capital, just don't have the work to justify 40 hours per week," says Ellen Grealish, co-founder of FlexProfessionals, LLC. "Top part-time roles in terms of number of requests are finance (bookkeeping and accounting), administration (personal assistant, office manager, administrative, etc..) and HR (generalist, recruiter)," she says.
If you have specialized skills — you are a whiz at Quickbooks, for example — you may be able to bring in $25 to $35 an hour, contract specialists often make $50 to $60 per hour, and some attorneys who no longer want the grind of working full time can command $85 to $100/hour, she says.
Special Events Worker
Range: $12 to $15/hour
What you need: Requirements vary, training may be provided.
Special events, such as hotel banquets or concerts are often staffed in part by part-time workers who handle the influx of customers. Companies may find these workers through sites such as Shiftgig.com. "Highest paying gigs come from customer service positions at silent auctions that pay $15/hr and includes a $20 travel stipend," says Shiftgig co-founder and CEO Eddie Lou. "Onsite managers can earn $20/hour."
Range: $13 to $18/hour
What do you need: Clear background check and drug test, CPR and first aid training, speak fluent English.
Working professionals, celebrities and families looking for childcare help when traveling or attending special events often need reliable screened adult babysitters to watch their children. They turn to firms like The Babysitting Company where the screening has already been done for them. "Our professionally trained sitters work both part time and full time," says Rachel Charlupski. She adds that there is a great degree of flexibility and many sitters are students, nurses or retired professionals. "Some sitters work with one family throughout the year and others wait for shorter-term assignments whenever they are available and remain on call. We have even booked travel assignments as 5 a.m. where a sitter had to be at the client's plane at 8 a.m. to travel to Germany."
Range: $20 to $150/hour
What you need: Web design skills
"Designers with strong portfolios can make incredible money, particularly if they team up with small website marketing firms that build/maintain websites for small- and medium- (sized) businesses," says Josh Lindenmuth, CIO with the payroll company Payce, Inc. He says one designer he knows personally made over $15,000 a month on the side. "The key was that he became extremely good at churning out great sites fast. He could get done a $1,000 site every two days, while a less skilled designer/developer may take two weeks," he says. Web design skills — which can be learned online or at local community colleges — and a great portfolio are essential.
Designers with special skills can also command higher incomes. For example, motion graphic designers on the marketplace shakr.com earn 70% of all revenue earned (indefinitely) through their Adobe after-effect templates.
Range: $15 to $75/ hour
What you need: Must love dogs! May also need to be licensed and/or bonded, and purchase insurance.
Earnings depend on locale and will increase if you can walk multiple dogs at the same time. On the plus side, "It provides plenty of exercise and you will meet new and interesting people on your walks," says career counselor and executive coach Roy Cohen. "My dog, Oskar, is walked twice a day by a group of folks who are all artists, actors or students," he says.
Range: $15 to $200/hour
What you need: Ability to tutor children or adults in specific subjects.
"For teachers, ex-teachers, college instructors and grad students this is a great option," says Cohen. It may help to work through a tutoring company initially to learn the ropes, though pay will be lower than if you work on your own. Increasingly, good tutors can work through online portals, which means less travel to client homes, and those skilled in high-demand areas, such as SAT tutoring, can earn more.
Range: $150 to $300/hour
What you need: An MBA from a top-tier business school and/or specialized expertise.
Rather than hiring large consulting firms, some companies are now working on a more ad hoc basis, hiring individuals for strategic planning, process improvement, creating presentations and more. Rob Biederman, co-founder at HourlyNerd.com says technology now makes it simpler and more affordable to connect consultants to companies that need help. Our consultants "make a profile that feeds into an algorithm and when a project gets posted you will be automatically invited to bid on it."
Marisa Goldenberg, whose education included a computer science degree from Princeton and an MBA from Harvard, often earns $250/hour and up as a consultant to top companies through HourlyNerd.com. "Depending on your experience level and what kind of project you are looking for you can set it up to work as much or as little as you want," she says. She says she often sprints for a month, working very hard, then takes a break.
Whatever side income you pull in, just make sure you save it or use it to strategically pay off your debts. (Don't make the mistake I made right out of college when I worked part-time in a retail job where I spent a good portion of my earnings on clothes!) Paying down debt can boost your credit scores (and you can get your credit scores for free on Credit.com to track your progress) which in turn can help you get out of debt faster. And that can make all that extra work worth it!
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