A second job can bring much-needed money into the household to help get out of debt, pay off specific bills, or even save up for large purchases or vacations that are important to you. Before you dive in with dreams of a financial Easy Street ahead, there are a few considerations to keep in mind.
Making More vs. Spending Less
The big question is, can you do more good for the household budget by spending less money rather than taking on that second job, hoping to make more? How much extra money do you need to make each month to ease your budget concerns and solve the bulk of your financial problems? Can you find a way to cut $200 per month in spending? $400?
Start simple with your afternoon coffee run, explore your mobile phone plan, and consider nixing Netflix and borrowing DVDs from your local library instead. You will be surprised by how quickly your savings can add up. Even forgoing take out or dining out can make a world of difference to your household budget.
Consider the Added Costs of a Second Job
Don’t forget to take into account important things like the added costs involved in taking that second job. Things like child care expenditures, added vehicle expenses, the potential interference with your current job, impact on your health and health expenses, and the costs of convenience meals and food because you may not have the time or energy to cook. All these, and possibly more, may need to be factored into the question.
There are also costs that don’t show on a spreadsheet. These are things like the costs of time lost with friends and family, and the quality of life when you sacrifice sleep and entertainment because you are too busy working to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
Other Pros and Cons
While the promise of a second income certainly sounds attractive, it is an excellent idea to consider the pros and cons below before making your final decision.
Pros of a Second Job
These are just a few of the benefits you might enjoy when you take on a second job. They are not inconsequential in the least.
- Additional income for your household.
- The satisfaction that comes with accomplishing financial goals.
- Children see a good role model for honoring financial obligations.
- The feeling of paying off your debts.
- Financial security is its own reward.
Considerations for a Second Job
However, there are some things you must consider before making a decision that can take time away from your family or friends, like those listed below.
- You may find yourself in a higher tax bracket, which impacts your actual income from that second job.
- You could miss out on precious moments with your loved ones.
- It may cause a strain on your close personal relationship if it's harder to find time for each other.
- Health concerns related to working long hours and getting less sleep.
Depending on how great your financial need is or how crucial your goals may be, you might find that it's better to cut costs rather than make more money. One good option might be to work with a financial planner to help get your budget under control and look for ways to cuts costs while getting more mileage from the money coming into the household budget. In the end, deciding whether or not to get a second job is a decision that only you (and your family) can make after considering the pros and cons.