Working Part-Time in Retirement

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Working Part-Time in Retirement

You may have noticed that Americans are remaining in the workforce longer these days. It’s not uncommon for workers approaching retirement age to entertain the idea of continuing to work well into their 60’s and even 70’s. According to Gallup’s Economy and Personal Finance Survey conducted in April 2017, more Americans say they will retire after, rather than before, age 65. While only 25% of employed U.S. adults polled said they would stop working completely once they retire, 63% claimed they will continue to work, but on a part-time basis.

The good news is that the decision to continue working part-time is more likely a matter of choice rather than financial necessity, as revealed in the Gallup survey. People work later in life for many reasons. There’s the obvious advantage of earning money to supplement the retirement nest egg. Perhaps more important is the social interaction that working at a job provides, and the purpose that it adds to a person’s life.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us the labor force for older Americans will continue to grow through the year 2024, with the 65-74 age group representing a growth rate of 55% and the 75 and older age group at 86%. That’s compared with a 5% increase for the labor force as a whole. If you fall into these age brackets, you may have realized that you actually like your job but want to work fewer hours. Or, perhaps you’d like to earn some extra cash to finance your golf outings or vacation getaways. If staying active is important to you, a part-time job may be just the right remedy. Here are 5 ideas for part-time jobs that might interest you.

  • Seasonal Retail Work. The idea is to keep it stress-free, so finding the right place to work is key. You’ll want to find a retailer that specializes in the same things you’re interested in. If you live in or near a vacation destination, you might consider a “touristy” shop where you can enjoy the surrounding scenery.
  • Turn a Hobby or Skill into Money. Making money doing something you already love, and for which you have a talent, can be especially rewarding. Whether you have handyman skills or you’re a great seamstress, you can set your own hours and fee schedule. There are plenty of people who can’t fix their own leaky faucets or hem a pair of slacks. If you speak a second (or third) language, consider being a translator. This is a skill sought after by customer service centers, the court system, and social service agencies.
  • Usher, Ticket Taker, Museum or Tour Guide. Do you have a love of the arts or history? Take your people skills to the local theater, museum, historical site, or even a winery. You can apply your existing knowledge and work experience in an environment you feel passionate about.
  • Bookkeeper. Depending on where you find work, you may need a CPA certification, or relevant work experience in accounting or auditing services may be sufficient. Small businesses often can’t afford to hire someone full time, so your financial background may be in demand. An organization such as the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers can help with your job search.
  • Pet Sitter or House Sitter. If you like the company of furry critters, you can earn some cash by sitting for other people’s pets when they’re out of town. Word of mouth is good advertising, so let your friends and family members know that your services are for hire. Posting fliers around the community will also help to spread the word. As an alternative, find work with a business that cares for animals, such as a pet groomer or pet supply store.

Whether you find part-time work in an area related to your profession, or you decide to strike out and do something new, there is an abundance of opportunity to keep you active, engaged, and employed. However, before you begin filling out job applications, take into consideration the work schedule you desire, the amount of responsibility you’re willing to accept on the job, and how much money you wish to make. You’re free now to do what you want, and “freedom” is the operative word here. You are “retired” after all, so you don’t want part-time work to feel like the daily grind. Focus on what you like to do and what makes you feel fulfilled. If you have truly chosen to work post-retirement, it only makes sense to spend that time at a job that you enjoy.

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