During times of unemployment, cash is tight and never seems to go far enough. While you are spending the time necessary to find full time employment, there are many ways in which you can seek to bring in a little additional income in the meantime. While some of these may be fairly common sense approaches, hopefully some of these tips I have gathered from various sources will stimulate additional ideas on ways you can bring in some income.
One thing that you may really want to consider during this time between jobs is trying something new or different than you would normally be inclined to do. Look around for things that you can do that are actually inspiring to you, or outside your normal work focus. Do you have any hobbies that could be turned into an income source? Take a hard look at the various skills you possess; things not necessarily the type you use for your normal career, and see if they can be used for side work. Maybe it is possible to turn your hobby into a full time job over time.
Of course many people do consider finding part time work an option. Rather than sitting and waiting for a “real” job and watching your savings slowly disappear, you may wish to consider part time work at the many various options available, from pizza delivery/fast food, to seasonal or handy man/side jobs when available. Other ways to bring in some cash is to look around the house for items that could be parted with and list them on eBay, Craigslist, etc. or have a garage sale. I know personally I have done this many time through the years when finances were tight, and it can bring in some much needed cash within a fairly short amount of time; depending of course on what kind of items you have.
Scouring the internet for work-from-home opportunities is a viable option too. Things like typing, data entry, transcription, translating, blogging, web work, etc. can be found in such a manner. Be careful however, because while many companies do legitimately offer to issue this kind of off-site work, there are many scams out there waiting for the unsuspected person. If you find some company offering such work from home options but only after you pay some entry fee – that might be a sign of a scam. Research the company well before signing up to do any work for a fee.
Do you have an extra room at your house? Something that could be rented out to someone, or if you live alone, consider taking in a roommate. Sharing the expenses will help you both financially.
Now, if you are receiving unemployment benefits during this time, any income you make through these other side jobs (aside from the selling things idea) may need to be reported. Laws may vary some from state to state, but normally, this income is deducted from the maximum benefit amount allotted to you for the week, and the difference is still paid out to you. Some states, however, allow temporary work without having an effect on your base claims, and even have special guidelines for seasonal workers.
Some people have found that being unemployed eventually turned into a good thing. It forced them out of their comfort zone, and into a new direction that led to a difference in careers that became more fulfilling. So, stay optimistic, and look for new ways to think out of your normal career box, and use this time to move forward.