Most Americans look forward to relaxing and living off their existing income in retirement, with no need to work.
Yet, some may find that they don’t have quite enough saved for a comfortable retirement. Others might just be looking for additional spending money, or simply a diversion to keep them occupied during retirement.
If you were an English major or just developed writing chops throughout your professional career, you may be able to make some extra money in retirement as a freelance writer or editor. One of the main benefits of this type of income is that you can often pick and choose when you want to write, so it doesn’t become a full-time job. If you’re a subject matter expert and have decent writing skills, you can likely find many opportunities in this field.
Hosting Backyard/Pool Parties
If you’re retired and you have a nice backyard, you might consider renting it out for parties or special events, like wedding receptions. If you have a pool, summer graduation parties or other events might be a good option as well.
While you can rent out your whole house for these events, if you keep them in your backyard, you can avoid lots of concerns regarding damage to your house and privacy, for example. With just a few events per year, you can earn a significant amount of money, as wedding receptions, corporate events and other large types of parties are generally high-paying.
Renting Out an RV
Many retirees have RVs or converted Sprinter vans that they may not use as often as they once did. If you fall into this camp, you can rent out your vehicle to road trippers and make a pretty penny for your efforts. There are now numerous websites you can use to list your vehicle for rent, much like Airbnb or other property rental sites. Just be sure to read all the fine print regarding things like insurance, liability and how much money you’ll actually be earning. Also, you’ll have to accept the fact that others might not treat your vehicle as well as you do, and there will inevitably be wear and tear when you receive it back.
Renting Out an Extra Room
If your kids and grandkids have moved on and you are an empty-nester, you might have an excess of rooms in your home that are just sitting there. If you rent those rooms out, you can generate a significant amount of additional income without having to put in much work. If you’re the type that would like to make new acquaintances, you can keep your house open and mingle with your tenants. If not, with a few simple modifications you can likely keep your renters separate from the rest of your house.
You might be surprised to learn that you can earn additional money in retirement just by answering questions. If you’re a subject matter expert in nearly any field — and if you are retired, you likely are in at least one area — there are online websites that may pay you for your knowledge. For example, if you were an attorney while you were working, you can make a lot of money answering legal questions online, as many people are in need of answers but can’t pay $500 per hour for a high-priced attorney.
If you’re comfortable with public speaking, that’s another great way that you can share your expertise with the world and still get paid while you are retired. Countless conferences and organizations are in need of speakers with professional expertise and/or great inspirational stories to share with their audiences, and if you fit the bill, it can be a lucrative way to spend the occasional evening or weekend. If you’re a naturally outgoing person, it can even be an enjoyable experience as you get to share your words with others and interact with them in person.
Do you know that some people will pay good money for you to just sit in a house? If you find yourself spending most of your time around your own home anyway, why not house sit for others in their houses and earn extra income while doing it? If you’re willing to go the extra mile, you could also offer services as a caretaker or pet sitter and perhaps make additional money. Neighborhoods are often in need of these types of services, so if you make one client happy, you’re likely to find that many others will be requesting your services.
Lecturing at a Community College
Another way to capitalize on your professional experience or personal skills is to be a community college lecturer. Although you might need specific credentials to qualify for this job, many community colleges are in need of experts willing to lecture on topics from math and science to law and business and everything in between. You may also be able to lecture on art or photography, if that is your specialty, or even more physical topics like woodworking.
If you don’t really want to go back to work but you have a house full of things you longer need, you could be sitting on a gold mine. Sites like eBay and Etsy allow anyone to sell items to third parties easily, and you might be surprised to learn how much you can earn from things you own that you might consider to be junk. In some cases, you can even trigger a bidding war for your items, especially if they are collectibles. Selling your unused stuff carries the added benefit of cleaning out your house as well!
Giving Walking Tours
One way to earn income while getting out of the house and getting exercise is to offer walking tours in your local community. If you have been a long-time resident and have insightful stories about your town or city, you might find that your services are in demand, for both locals and tourists alike. This type of business can be slow to build, but in the meantime you are remaining fit and every time you go out on your walk, you can think of new ways to make your tour more interesting, which will generate more revenue over time.
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