By: Laura Walton AFC®
We typically think of saving for retirement as a spending issue. A spending issue usually translates into cutting back on the very things we enjoy – travel, eating out, shopping, etc. That’s hard to get excited about. But what if we framed it differently?
We know that if you save $2400 a year for 10 years starting at age 20 – and never saved a dime more – your account balance will be $377,842 when you turn 60 (assumes an 8% return). Not bad.
But where does that $2400 a year, $200 a month, come from – especially in your 20’s? Even small savings here and there (insert Starbucks) can add up quickly but, instead, what if we brainstormed around how to earn an extra $200 a month?
A fun post in Learnvest featured four individuals doing just that – earning a bit of extra money in interesting, out-of-the-box ways: an attorney/birth doula, a general counsel and VP at a venture capital firm/weekend DJ, a non-profit outreach coordinator/Lyft driver and a software engineer/custom diaper maker “Poopsa Daisy”.
I have a friend who, among other things, is a travelling notary. When we refinanced through an out-of-state lender, an individual came to our home to handle signing and notarizing the documents – I’m guessing she got a nice fee for that. My cousin, a court reporter by trade, records oral histories for families – she gets to hear some great stories. And, I have another friend who’s a secret shopper and recently dined at one of the restaurants at La Encantada in her line of duty.
And, oh yeah, I used to guide hikes for Canyon Ranch on the side – remind me to tell you sometime about hiking with the CEO of Revlon.
The side benefit is the opportunity to do something you’ve always been a little interested in but maybe isn’t career worthy. Plus, you get to meet new, different people – who knows what might come of it?
The answer isn’t always about cutting way back on this or that or getting the promotion and big raise; rather, it’s in the margins. Earning a bit more doing a little something on the side could easily fund your nest egg while making your life just that much more interesting!