Have you ever asked yourself, “Should I work two jobs?” You’d be able to earn some extra income or try out a different industry. On the other hand, you might face more stress. So, is working two jobs worth it?
That depends on a lot of different factors, such as your current work schedule. Keep reading to learn more about getting another job and how to decide if it’s right for you!
Should I work two jobs and is it worth getting a second job?
When is it worth getting a second job?
That depends on your financial situation. Everyone’s lives are different, so it’s difficult to say if a second job is worth it for you.
However, a second job means you’re making more money. Earning more can help you achieve financial freedom.
When is working two jobs worth it?
You're not alone if you decide it’s worth getting a second job.
According to data from the US Census Bureau, the number of people holding two jobs has gone up over the last 20 years. The data also shows that women are more likely to hold a second job than men.
Why would someone decide they should work two jobs? Even a little bit of extra money can mean reaching your financial goals sooner, including:
To pay off debt
Debt like credit card debt or medical debt can make it difficult to save for the future. Dealing with debt can also have negative effects on your overall well-being. Stressing from debt, for example, can cause physical pain.
Getting another job is a great way to earn extra money that can go toward your debt payments.
Saving for a goal
Are you saving up for your dream wedding, an exotic vacation, or to go back to school without student loans?
Earning more money from a second job will cut the time it takes to reach these savings goals. So you could start a savings account dedicated to your financial goal and deposit all of your second paychecks into it.
Increasing the money you have to spend
You don’t have to get a second job to reach lofty savings goals or pay off mounds of debt. You can get one even if you just want some extra money to spend. In this case, putting extra spending cash in your budget lets you splurge without feeling guilty.
If you're wondering, is working two jobs worth it, know that just getting another job for spending money can make your second job less stressful as well. You’re not relying on the income for necessities like housing or food. That means you can walk away from the job if it becomes too much to handle.
Exploring new careers or skills
Second jobs also don’t have to be about money. Sure, earning more is always nice. But a second job can help you advance your career or try out different options.
For example, let’s say you’re a nurse who works night shifts four days a week. You’re feeling stressed from your main job and are considering moving to a more administrative role. So you pick up a second job working part-time at the front desk at a physical therapy clinic.
You’ll get valuable work experience and the chance to see if this is a move you’d like to make. Plus, you still earn extra money to spend how you like.
Is it worth getting a second job: pros and cons
You want to make more money. But, getting a second job means new workplace politics and extra working hours. So is working two jobs worth it?
Let’s look at the pros and cons to find out if it’s worth getting a second job.
Pros of working two jobs
Working two jobs definitely has its upsides. Here are some great things if you're on the fence and need to know if it is worth getting a second job.
Earn more income
By far the biggest benefit of a second job is more money. A second job increases your monthly income. You can use that money for anything from paying down debt to buying that handbag you’ve been eyeing.
Meet new people
Do you like meeting new people? Has your main job gone remote and do you miss the office camaraderie?
An additional job lets you meet new people. This might be your new coworkers, such as working a restaurant job. Or, you might try a customer service role where you talk with customers over the phone.
Sometimes coming home from work and binging hours of Netflix gets boring. Maybe you’ve tried a few new hobbies but are still feeling bored.
Taking up another job could be a way to bust your boredom and earn some extra cash at the same time. Some jobs will get you out of the house. Even remote jobs can give you something to focus on while you’re lounging at home.
Increase job security
Having two jobs increases your job security. If you lose one job, you still have the other one to help you stay afloat. Even if your second job doesn’t pay as much, it can help pay the bills if you lose your main income.
Learn new skills
Second jobs are an excellent way to pick up new skills — whether they’re related to your current job or of personal interest.
Say you want to learn how to garden. So you get a second job at the local nursery. There, you get to learn all about different plants and keeping a garden. Not you’ve got a new skill you can use in your career or just as a new hobby.
Cons of working two jobs
Still wondering is working two jobs worth it? There are some negative things you should know about, as well, before deciding.
Less personal time
You have to work at your second job to earn that extra money. So that means having less personal time. In this case, you might have to cancel or adjust plans based on your new work schedule.
More job-related stress
Every job has its stressors. A second one adds more stress to any existing work stress. All that extra stress might burn you out or affect your health.
Poor health habits
Stress isn’t the only way a second job could hurt your health. Overworking can lead to less-than-healthy habits, such as:
- Neglecting personal relationships
- Not getting enough sleep
- Skipping meals
- Not getting adequate exercise
Hurts performance at your main job
Is working two jobs worth it if it causes you to perform poorly at your main job? Probably not.
Depending on the job you choose, a second job could impact your performance in your career. So some employers even discourage employees from getting a second job.
If you’re worried about your performance after getting a second job, it might be a better idea to ask for a raise at your current job instead.
Is working two jobs worth it for me?
Knowing the potential pros and cons of getting another job isn’t the same as deciding if working two jobs is worth it or not.
To figure out if a second job makes sense for your situation, consider these steps:
- Compare individual benefits and drawbacks
- Consider the effects on your current job
- Understand potential tax changes
- Discuss with family
- Research jobs worth doing in your situation
Compare the pros and cons using your personal lens
Carefully consider the pros and cons listed above using your own perspective. Are there pros or cons that you don’t agree with? Can you think of any not listed above that could make your decision to get a second job easier?
Let’s say you don’t like meeting new people. In this case, what might be a positive for some people is a drawback for you. Even a second job that’s remote requires you to virtually meet a new boss and coworkers.
Consider your existing job
How does your current employer feel about you getting a second job? Will you tell them that you’re looking for an extra job? Is working two jobs worth it if you have to juggle the two schedules?
Some employers — especially if you’re salaried — don’t want employees getting second jobs. This could cause a rift at work or add more stress.
Know the tax implications
Your second job will probably affect your taxes. For example, the extra income might push you up a tax bracket, meaning you owe more in taxes each year. Plan to adjust your current W-4 if you pick up a second job.
Thinking of starting your own business or being a contractor? Your tax implications will be even more important. As an independent contractor, you’ll have to take out and pay taxes on the money you earn.
The smart thing to do is to talk with an accountant to figure out how another job could change your tax situation.
Talk with your partner or family
You should always discuss important financial decisions with your immediate family, such as a spouse or partner.
Your significant other deserves a chance to discuss you taking on a second job. If you have children, it’s even more important that you talk with your partner before taking a new job.
Be sure to ask for your partner’s perspective on the pros and cons. Simply asking them, "should I work two jobs?" may bring up interesting insights you didn’t think of.
Research which jobs make sense for you
The type of job you choose is important to the success of your second job.
Bartending at a club probably isn’t a good fit if you hate staying up late. Neither is bookkeeping for small businesses if you don’t like working with numbers.
Consider these things when researching jobs:
- Your interests — you want to find a second job you’ll enjoy!
- Your time — can you work a day shift? Weekends?
- Your environment — burnt out at an office job? Try a job where you’re outside or moving around.
- Your skills — what are you good at?
Are you worried you don’t have any skills? Don’t be!
You bring a lot more to the table than you probably realize. So try taking an inventory of your skills to determine where your skillsets fit.
Good second jobs worth doing
Now that you've decided, is working two jobs worth it, know that not all second jobs will be worth your time. However, some jobs make great second employments.
This list is a good place to start brainstorming second job ideas:
Childcare and pet sitting jobs
Do you love kids? Are you a longtime pet owner?
A sitting job might be the perfect fit. There are a lot of ways to earn money watching kids or pets.
For example, you could offer to babysit for friends or family members directly. Consider reaching out to your extended network to see if anyone needs babysitting when you’re available.
For pets, apps like Rover make it easy to find pet sitting jobs. You simply sign up and follow the verification process. Then you can list your services and start winning clients.
Remote jobs worth doing
Remote work has exploded in recent times. And it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere. Just the opposite.
Researchers even share that remote work is here to stay and will only increase from here.
What does that mean for your second job hunt? It’s easier than ever to get a high-paying remote second job! Some common remote jobs include content writing, web design, and customer service.
Ride-sharing and delivery apps
If you own your own car you can make money driving for ride-sharing apps or delivering groceries or food.
Apps like Lyft and Uber let you earn money by turning your car into a taxi service. You can earn even more by driving during peak periods.
If you don’t want to drive strangers around, you could deliver goods, groceries, and food using apps like Instacart or Postmates.
However, be sure to think about the costs of maintaining your car for work. With higher gas prices, it might not make sense to offer ride-sharing if you drive a large SUV or pickup truck with lower gas mileage.
Are you unsure if working two jobs is worth it, especially since you already have a job? A seasonal position might be a good way to test the waters of a second job.
Seasonal jobs only last for a few months. You can make some extra money during the season and get to relax afterward.
Summertime seasonal jobs include lifeguarding or working at a summer camp. During the winter holiday season, you can earn extra money as a retail employee or gift wrapper.
Start your own business or side hustle
Is working two jobs worth it or should you start a business instead? Being your own boss — even just part-time — can have a lot of benefits. One of the biggest is that you get to choose when you work.
The downside to starting your own business? It can take a lot of hard work to be successful.
Consider your existing hobbies or work skills to find the side hustle that’s right for you.
For example, do you enjoy making jewelry or painting? You could open a boutique and sell your goods on a website like Etsy. Are you a thrifting wizard? Can you refinish old furniture? In that case, a resale business might be a good fit.
Or, do you like helping people stay organized? You could start a virtual assistant business.
One of the best parts of running your own business is that the possibilities are endless and completely up to you!
Final thoughts: is working two jobs worth it?
A second job helps you bring in extra money. You could use it to pay for your dream vacation or get out of debt.
At the same time, getting another job could mean a lot of unnecessary stress. So the key is to decide if a second job is right for you.
Is working two jobs worth it for your financial situation? It can be — just be sure you find a second job that fits your schedule without adding extra stress. That means taking some time to research your second job options to find one that works for your lifestyle.
Clever Girl Finance has a lot of resources to help you when you're choosing a new career or even negotiating a pay raise. And our completely free financial courses can guide you as you pursue your money goals.