Five ways to generate some extra income whilst job hunting

Grads Corner
29 January 2019 | Grads Corner | Guest Author

We’re often told that job-hunting is best treated as a full-time job. Sadly though, it’s an unpaid one. Searching for that elusive dream job can be frustrating enough without knowing that you’re losing out on income at the same time. When the cash flow dries up it can become tempting to take a permanent position simply to get the bank balance looking healthy again. If the job isn’t right though, you may find yourself back on the hunt in six months’ time. So here are some tips to keep a bit of money coming in to give you longer to find the permanent role that’s right for you:


Tutoring is a flexible and rewarding way to earn some extra money. Tutors are always in demand and parents are prepared to pay high rates for people who can help their children. What specialist knowledge do you have from your studies that would make you a desirable tutor? If you’ve studied anything to degree or A-level, you could be well positioned to help out students at GCSE level, or even above if you’re confident.

It doesn’t have to be academic either. Do you speak a language, play an instrument, or play a sport to a good level? You don’t have to be a professional, just good enough to pass on some valuable skills to others. Tutors can make between £30-50 an hour for the most in-demand subjects. One thing to bear in mind however, is that you’ll need to get a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check which can set you back about £40.

Online freelance work

Is there a skill you’re particularly good at that you could apply to a freelance role? Whether it’s writing, editing, or web design, there is a huge online market for freelancers. Sign up and create a profile at one of the major freelance sites such as UpWork, Freelancer, or Fiverr where people post quick jobs they need doing to a high standard.

Competition is high but the pay can be good – some people even make a whole career out of picking up jobs on these sites. Be selective about what you choose to take on though, and don’t charge a low rate just because others are. The quality of projects can vary but there are definitely hidden gems out there, so it’s worth keeping an eye out.

Quick online jobs

I’ll refer to this as ‘unskilled’ online work, as in comparison to the above suggestion you don’t really need any prior skills or experience for these kind of tasks. The pay won’t be amazing, but the benefit is that these sort of quick and easy jobs won’t take up too much of your time and energy that should be devoted to job hunting.

A quick online search will turn up plenty of options for jobs such as filling out surveys, writing product reviews, or evaluating search engine results. If you’re quick on the keyboard and a good listener, signing up with a transcription service can be another great option.

Temporary local work

You might be thinking you’re too old to be babysitting… remember though, this is only temporary whilst you’re job hunting. Ask for permission to post a notice at a local primary school and you will likely get plenty of requests for a mature and responsible sitter. You can relax on somebody else’s sofa and get paid to write your cover letters!

If you enjoy being outdoors and fancy being a bit entrepreneurial, then start a temporary dog-walking or gardening service. Alternately, if you drive and don’t mind being out in the car, driving for a food delivery service can be a great way to earn a decent wage in the evenings and weekends. The hours are completely flexible and all the money and customer service is handled by the company apps.

Sell unwanted stuff

I’m not suggesting pawning off all of your treasured possessions… but have a look around and you may be surprised how much of your stuff you don’t really want or need. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure, so why not put it online and see if it garners any interest? If you’re artistic it might be fun to do some things up and improve them before trying to sell-on. There are major online marketplaces such as eBay, Amazon, Facebook marketplace, as well as plenty of smaller more specialised sites.


Freelance content writer Marcus WhiteMy name is Marcus, I’m a freelance content writer who specialises in creating engaging and authentic blog posts. Feel free to check out my personal blog where I offer more advice for young people who are unsure of what they want to do for a living.

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