3 Reasons to Start a Side Hustle

Thanks to the recently sluggish economy, as well as the rise of technology, the interest in earning money on the side has been growing. The idea of a little extra cash is appealing — especially for those who have had their hours cut, or lost their jobs. Even if you think that you have a secure job, though, it can still make sense to start a side hustle. Think you don’t need the money? Think again.

Here are 3 reasons to start a side hustle:

Twenty dollar bills

1. The Extra Money

It’s pretty obvious that the biggest reason to start a side hustle is to make extra money. Making money can help you improve your financial situation, even if you think that your secure job with “the man” will last a long time. Some of the ways that you can use that extra money include:

  • Boost your emergency fund: Put all of the extra money from your side hustle into creating a solid emergency fund.
  • Reduce your debt: Super-charge your debt pay down plan with the extra money from your side hustle. You’ll pay less in interest, and you’ll be out of debt sooner.
  • Max out your retirement account contributions: Use your side hustle money to max out your retirement account contributions. That money can help you push closer to the maximum contribution for your IRA and even your 401(k). It’s a great use of your extra money.
  • Help others: You can even use that extra money to do a little good in the world. If you wish you could do more, your extra cash can help.

Making extra money doesn’t have to lead to lifestyle inflation. You can still live frugally and contentedly, even with the extra money. Use it to secure your future and help others, and your side hustle will have even more meaning.

2. Rely Less on Your “Day Job”

You might feel as though your job is secure, but is it, really? Do you really want to rely on someone else so much for your livelihood. If something happens to your day job, you are in big trouble in this case.

A side hustle can help you reduce your reliance on others for your financial security. Let’s be honest: When your entire income is from a single employer, you are relying on that employer for your financial well-being. So, it doesn’t hurt to cultivate diverse incomes.

Income diversity can help take the edge off if something happens to your primary source of income. Start a side hustle, and you are taking more of the responsibility for your financial success into your own hands. You will have a source of income to fall back if your hours are cut. And, if you have been using your side hustle earnings to build your emergency fund, you have something of a safety net — a safety net you won’t deplete as quickly if you still have money coming in from your side hustle.

Uncertain economic times mean that your job is never completely safe. Your side hustle can leave you less vulnerable, and help you achieve true financial independence.

3. Do Something Fun

A side hustle can help you enjoy life more. You can use the extra money from your side hustle to build a fun fund that allows you to go on vacation, or enjoy entertainment. You can have a little more fun without putting the rest of your financial life at risk.

Use the fun money for your kids’ extracurricular activities, or for your own activities. You can also use the money from your side hustle to offset the cost of your hobbies. In truth, there are some hobbies that you can actually monetize. Monetize something you love to do, and you can use the income to offset the costs that might be part of enjoying your hobby.

Your side hustle doesn’t need to take up a lot of your time. Whether you make $100 or $1,000 (or more) a month from your side hustle, you can use it to improve your quality of life, as well as improve your financial situation.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.



Author

By , on Sep 25, 2013
Miranda Marquit Miranda is a professional personal finance journalist. She is a contributor for several personal finance web sites. Her work has been mentioned in and linked to from, USA Today, The Huffington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and other publications. She also has her own personal finance blog: Planting Money Seeds.

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{8 Comments}

  1. A side hustle is a MUST. Fro me it’s a combination of blogging and ebay. I love the escape that it brings and the fact that those hard earned extra pennies can go towards my family’s future plans.

  2. A little bit of extra money never hurt anyone. That is why so many people are taking second jobs or looking for passive incomes. These are great tips you have offered here.

  3. Progress is impossible without change; and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. George Bernard Shaw

  4. dojo:

    Another excellent reason would be that, if all goes well, you might actually make your side hustle a legit business.

    I’ve been doing web design since 2002. It was my hobby and I would just enjoy the money (when it came) together with my salary. Then my job got cut in 2009 and I started working full time on my ex-hobby. Now it pays the bills and gets me 3-4 times more money than the job I used to have.

    You never know …

  5. Tom:

    And don’t forget, “So you can stop complaining about the economy and actually do something about it”.

  6. Very good tips here although i wouldn’t agree much with how you put “2. Rely Less on Your “Day Job”.

  7. Miranda,

    You make some great points here in regards to the benefits of side hustles. There several things that you can do to get extra cash. One thing that I’ve done with extra money that I’ve generated is actually invest it to make even more additional income. I think this is a very wise thing to do because you’re actually multiplying your side hustle money into even more income.

    Thanks for writing this post and thank for sharing this on BizSugar.com. I appreciate it!

    Ti

  8. I, like many Americans, am looking to make more money. Do you have any ideas / tips on how to do this?

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