20 Ways to Make Money in Retirement!

Isn’t it ironic that when we retire we have the time, but not the money to travel and play? Or at least we are more money conscious. “Money is not the only answer but it makes a difference.” Barack Obama

There are many ways to travel cheaply- house sitting, hostels, couch surfing with friends and travelling in the off season, working farm holidays and travelling to countries where the cost of living is low. But what about the other side of the equation? How can you make money without returning to full time work…and have some fun!

As a starting point think about these things

  • Start with what you like doing – what do you enjoy?
  • What skills do you have?
  • Estimate how much time in your week you have available.
  • Think about the impact extra income may have on your entitlements ( if any)
  • Can you work set hours or do you need flexible hours? e.g. if you have carer responsibilities
  • Is this an ongoing need for more income or a once off, pay for a trip type of need for money?
  • Who can help you? What resources are available in the community/
  • Are start-up/ ongoing costs involve or ongoing costs? E.g. equipment, consumables such as paper and toner or travel costs

Here are 20 ideas that may work for you

  1. Virtual Assistant- many business people are hiring VA’s in places like the Ukraine and Vietnam to support their businesses. VA’s do research, updates, run online support and anything required. Extend this idea if you have PowerPoint skills to create presentations, use excel spreadsheets- you provide admin support for an online business and you can charge more than overseas VA’s because your English is great! Use Facebook to advertise and contact small to medium size on line businesses


  1. Sit on an advisory board for a business- many do not pay but some do
  2. Sell vintage. If you have lots of old, good quality clothes that would appeal as vintage check out markets and online (Amazon, EBay, Etsy) if clothes or vintage furniture are a passion some friends I know have made a profitable business from buying them at garage sales and house clearances, cleaning them up and reselling on line or at vintage markets


  1. Sell your skills. Can you bake birthday cakes or cater for a dinner party? Are you a photographer and you can sell your photos on line? Can you assemble IKEA furniture? There’s a huge market here. When I travelled to Northern Australia on holiday all the “Pool Boys” at the resorts were men and women with grey hair! Some on working holidays! Can you fix a TV to a wall? Paint a deck? Repair some venetian blinds?


  1. Language Based work- Can you write, design, translate or interpret in English or another language? There’s money to be made from these skills. Start blogging and eventually you may make money. Contact migrant resource centres, health centres, legal aid. These organisations often need second language speakers.
  2. Pet Services. Doggie Day Care is a big thing in inner city living! You may want to offer dog walking, training, grooming or day care in your home. You may want to transport dogs between houses and take them to the vets for injections. Busy people buy services. Dogs and cats are children to some young couples but they don’t have the time to look after them. “Socialising and educating dogs” is big business in apartment living!



  1. Cleaner -We all love a good house cleaner! But have you thought about other forms of cleaning – spring clean someone’s wardrobe- dry -cleaner drop off and pick up, shoes and handbags cleaned, ironing and steam cleaning. A professional 30 something whose family lives overseas has hired a “mum” who cleans her house, stocks the ‘frig and makes sure her wardrobe is organised once a week. I saw a bright little red van parked in a street saying “Pram Cleaning Services!”
  2. Organiser -Become a personal assistant, a declutter queen, a business assistant, a party planner, a 50th Birthday planner, or a travel and tour organiser www.timetotidy.com.au
  1. Educator  Become a personal coach, mentor or tutor. Teach languages, piano, help foreign students write essays, teach dance and movement, and help older people use the computer, run courses and seminars or provide online instruction. Write resumes for a living and teach interview skills.
  2. Staging & Styling Property – I was at an art gallery recently. It was closing down and the photographs and art work were heavily discounted. I saw an older woman loading her car with about 10 art works she had purchased. Fascinated, I made some comment about her new collection. “Oh it’s not for me. I stage open houses and apartments and work with sellers and real estate agents to style houses. My husband is really annoyed because I’ve taken over the garage as a warehouse for all my homewares.”


Link staging with home repairs and garden renovation and you’ve got an end- to end business

  1. Personal Stylist– Help people look good and live well! Learn the basics of design and do personal styling or home or event styling

www.meaghansmith.com.au           www.vaultinteriors.com.au

  1. Shopper!  Become a mystery shopper for an industry or brand or offer shopping services for busy people- food, gifts. A very stylish friend of mine was hired by a CEO to buy Christmas presents for clients and acquaintances… but not her family!

Check out places like www.theshoppercollective.com

  1. Arts and Crafts. Can you turn your hobby into something you can sell? Another friend became a grandmother and made a luxury baby blanket out of organic cotton. It was beautifully made and other grannies wanted one too!  This became an online business with a range of baby products. Can you make children’s’ clothes? Make handmade toys? Create essential oils?  What about handmade paper and journals?


  1. Become a local guide. At a course about Instagram that I attended last week there were 2 people who had set up businesses as tour guides in their town. One did food and wine tours of the district. Another did walking tours of the town. I know another couple who 4 times a year held house concerts at their property. Another renting out her garden as a wedding venue.
  2. Relocation Tour Guide

Work with companies who provide relocation services and familiarise new arrivals with your city. Take them to key places of interest, where to buy food, teach them how we travel, banking, and travel and generally fit in to their new country. Also there’s a big expat market with English speaking tour guides in other countries


16. Children -Huge opportunities here from nannying, rent a granny, Organising and running children’s parties, catering, school holiday excursions. You’ll need a “working with children” clearance here in Australia.


  1. Think garden clean-ups, garden design. Floristry, growing plans to sell at markets, botanical artist, garden furniture making, bird houses and ornaments and becoming a vertical garden specialist (a big market in the inner city), vertical herb gardens, building garden structures and constructing sheds out of those silly flat packs!


  1. Garage Sale. I know you’ve done this. But I mean a really good one. Where presentation counts, cups of tea are on offer, everything is labelled in large print and well displayed. I made $2,000 in one garage sale a few years ago.
  2. Growing things like hydroponic lettuces or mushroom farming. People love farm to plate culture where I live and home grown produce. Supply restaurants. Sell at markets or farm gate. Grow and sell in summer. Travel in winter!
  3. Activity based. Becoming a yoga teacher, a Pilates or dance instructor or personal trainer will require some certification but it can be a very rewarding post retirement career. Organising and running walking groups, camping tours or bike riding holidays can also be lucrative




8 April 2019 | Living Well


    1. Thanks Penny….sorry for the slow response to your lovely comment…yes we just need to be creative and bold and the money does arrive! Thanks for connecting..

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