I was listening to a podcast episode of So Money with Farnoosh Torabi this week and came across a pretty awesome side gig from the person she was interviewing. I know, I suck, because I forget which exact episode it was. BUT, she was cat sitting part-time for her neighbors.
Imagine getting paid $20 for 20 minutes just to play with a cat and take pictures to send to the owner to show everything was okay. It literally sounds like the best job ever. You know when you hear people say “do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life”? Yea, I think they were talking about this.
Just think, if you were able to schedule even just 2 hours of “work” each Saturday and Sunday or some other two days of the week, you could make $240 extra that week. In only 2 days! For playing with cats! Man, if I wasn't allergic to fur, I'd be all over this, especially living in the city. There's definitely so much opportunity to chill with some cats. Maybe there's a hypoallergenic filter online. That'd be cool.
If you stuck with this side gig for say 48 weeks out of the 52 in the year and saved all of the extra money, you would have saved $11,520! How crazy is that? Just from playing with pets for a part of the day. That's over twice the Roth IRA/IRA limit of $5,500 for 2018.
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Even if you only did this one year and invested the entire $11,520 in an S&P 500 index fund, you would have around $172,505.75 after 40 years. If you stuck with this or a similar side hustle that allowed you to save the same amount each year, you would have around $2,633,288 extra, if you saved and invested all of the extra money you made into your retirement account.
When you start out, it's hard to realize how much of a difference it makes when you have time on your side. If you think you'll have plenty of time when you're older to save because you want to enjoy life now, you're dead wrong. Now is the time when your only responsibility is yourself. If you're fresh out of college or in your mid twenties without kids, this is your time to literally invest in yourself. Take advantage and put your money to work. You don't need to always buy that Starbucks latte or that $10 salad from Panera.
Enjoy life now, but work your ass off so when you're older, you don't have to deal with the stress of getting up every morning to go to work, only because you didn't prioritize paying yourself first towards your nest egg.
The Top Cat Sitting Sites Online
Here are some great cat sitting sites I found. They also include other pets, but cats are the least maintenance of them all in my opinion, so I figured that's a more preferable option. Here they are:
I found the average rates on these ranged from like $12/hr to $50 a day/night. Even so, if you put in four hours one weekend day or at least two hours twice a week to hang out with the same pet, instead of a different one every 20 minutes, that's still great. It takes away the time commuting to each place! Even doing this for 48 weeks at a $12/hr rate would bring in $2,304 for the year. Saving this amount and investing it for 40 years gives you around $526,657.
And on top of that, if you have any doubts, maybe you're looking for ways to improve your health. This article I found by WebMD shows the health benefits of people around pets even if you don't own one.
So basically, it's out of your hands, you don't have a choice. Just tell your friends or significant other or whoever that if they love you and want you to have a healthy life, they will let you chill with some pets to be the best person you can be. I mean after that argument, what're they gonna say??
These sites also have options to pet sit for dogs if that's more your cup of tea. While some sites may not be able to pay the rate I first heard about on the podcast for $20 for 20 minutes, these are still great options. It's not like you really have to go learn a new skill before you give it a try.
You might be better off creating your own flyers around town with the $20 hourly rate like I did for my soccer lessons when I was in high school. It gave me more control and people didn't think twice to pay me such a high rate of $60/hr. If they pick you, they're voluntarily accepting your rate. Also, psychologically, if you price your services higher, it'll make people think your services are higher quality than the rest of your competition, even if that's not actually the case.
People always want to get the best services available, even if it costs them a pretty penny. If it teaches them an invaluable skill, is something to make their lives easier, frees up their time, etc., there's a huge opportunity for you to make more money.
If you're interested in pet sitting, if I were you, I would kill two birds with one stone and register on the sites I provided above and also put flyers out around town. In no time, you'll be able to make more and save more for your retirement.
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