For a richer life

Money-making ideas for the over 60s

Money-making ideas for the over 60s torbakhopper/Flickr

For people over the age of 60, money-making opportunities may seem scarce, but there are actually loads of fun, simple ways for seniors to earn money. We’ve put together a list of the best money-making ideas for the over 60s so take a look and see what suits you.

Jasmine says...

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Don’t forget to put any money you make into a high-interest savings account.

At the moment, regular savings accounts are likely to offer the best rates on the market. They’re also ideal for putting away reasonably small amounts each month (most start from as little as £20). So even if you’re not making a fortune, this should stop you from spending it all! Find out more about them here.

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Use your life experience

Be a doula: Sorry men, this one tends to be for ladies only. Basically, this involves using your experience as a mother (or grandmother) to help families with a new baby. You support the mum-to-be during her pregnancy and often after the birth too. Sign up to an agency which will train you and place you with families. Doulas in Britain make, on average, about £10–12 per hour for post-birth work and £200–400 for a birth. See if being a doula’s for you by reading more about it here.

Tutoring: Do you play a musical instrument? Or speak another language? Perhaps your talent lies in writing or pottery? Whatever your skill is you can make money from it by tutoring people or groups and charging by the hour. In fact, if you read our article here you’ll find out how to make as much as £80 an hour tutoring.

Ironing: If you can iron a basket of crumpled shirts with your eyes closed (don’t try it!) then providing an ironing service could be the answer to your cash-flow problems. Best of all, you can do it all from your own home and the set-up costs are minimal. Find out how to get started here.

Make up to £20 an hour

Market research companies are always looking for people to join focus groups. There are plenty of opportunities if you look around. Most will only be asking you to work for an hour and the pay won’t be much (probably £10–20) but it may be quite interesting and could lead to more work.

Here are some market research companies you may want to contact. Simply call them up or send them an email explaining that you would like to attend any focus groups they have in the future:

  • Saros Research
  • The Research Box
  • Category Consulting (this links directly to the registration page)
  • Focus4People

Another very useful site is Gumtree where you can do a job search for ‘focus groups’ or ‘market research’ to get a list of most recent work opportunities in your area.

Have a scan through to see what sounds right for you. There may be age, sex or lifestyle conditions but if you aren’t suitable for one particular job try to get the contact details of the company anyway and let them know you’re interested in some part-time focus group work.

Now read our full article on making money doing market research.

House sitting

One of the best things about house sitting is that over 60s are usually much more in demand as house sitters than younger people. This is because they tend to have more experience running a home plus the flexibility to sit during holidays and weekends.

House sitting is a job that you can do as a couple, so it’s a fantastic way to spend some time together and make a little extra money.

You can start by joining an agency like Homesitters, who’ll match you up to suitable clients. Working with an agency may be the best option if you’re a little nervous about house sitting for a stranger.

They will often arrange a meeting between client and sitter to make sure you know exactly what’s expected of you. They should also have insurance to cover you should anything go wrong. Click here to apply to Homesitters.

The other option is to advertise yourself as a house sitter. Post an ad on Gumtree – place it in the ‘work wanted’ section explaining how much you charge and where you want to house sit.

Now check out our full article on house sitting.

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Cash in on your hobby

If you’ve got green fingers or love to bake then there are plenty of ways to make money with your talent. Why not sell your baked goods at a car boot sale or even a local shop?

If you’re no longer working you can use your free time to offer your gardening services during the week when other part-time gardeners may be unable to work. You can do anything from basic upkeep of gardens to pruning and planting flowers.

You could also grow your own fruit or vegetables and sell them for a profit. Start by gardening for friends and neighbours. If they spread the word you could end up with more paid work.

You don’t have to be an expert either;  if you don’t know where to start there’s loads of help about:

  • Buy a good gardening book like the one by Alan Titchmarsh, or the RHS Gardening Month by Month guide
  • Get some advice from a local garden centre helpdesk
  • Check out the Royal Horticultural Society and Garden Advice websites

Don’t forget that you can also make your own compost and sell it. Get a discounted compost bin from your local council. Enter your postcode into this search box to see where you can get one from and how much it’ll cost.

Now take a look at these articles:

How to make ultra-easy money!

Dog walking

If you love the companionship of dogs but don’t want the responsibility of owning and looking after one full time, dog walking could be the perfect way for you to earn some extra money. Your first stop should be our essential article on how to make £60 an hour by dog walking.

Register yourself with a dog-walking company like Narps, or keep it simple and look after the pets of people you already know. Expect to make from around £6–10 per walk.

You could also take it a step further and actually look after an animal in your own home while the owners are away. Join a company like Barking Mad as a ‘host family’.

Rent out your…

  • Garage/parking area

If you live near a sporting or music venue, university or hospital there’s a very good chance you could make money renting out your driveway or garage space. Also, if you live in a tourist or coastal area you may be able to rent out your parking space during the holiday season.

You can also rent out your garage for storage of equipment. This is particularly useful in big cities where storage is an issue for many people.

Register with Parkatmyhouse and Park Let to let thousands of people know about your space. Find out how much you could make here.

  • Spare room

If you’ve got a spare room that you don’t need then turn it into a moneyspinner by renting it out. You choose who stays and for how long, so it really is a good way to make money with little hassle.

Advertise your room for free on Easyroomate or Gumtree. Now go to our full article on renting out your room here.

You should also consider taking in foreign students on a short-term basis. Depending on where you live and how nice your place is, you can make between £35 and £150 a week. Read this article on hosting foreign students to find out more.

For a long-term money-making scheme running a B&B is another option. You could make anything from a few hundred quid a month to a few thousand a month, depending on where you live and how many rooms you have. However, it can be hard work and it’ll take a lot of effort initially to get things going, so do consider it fully before you make any decisions.

  • Garden

For those who are 60 and over, a big garden can eventually become a bit too much to look after. If this sounds familiar then you could divide up your garden and offer people your unwanted space to grow vegetables. Allotment patches are booked up for years in some areas so you can really cash in by offering someone a patch in your garden for them to use.

Spareground is a useful site where you can register and advertise your garden space (or anything else) for free. Again you should also post a free ad on Gumtree.

Jasmine says...

Quote 1

If you want to spread the word about your services, have 250 free business cards printed courtesy of Vistaprint.

Quote 2

Other options

If taking it easy isn’t really your style and you’re full of good ideas, why not set up your own business? It doesn’t have to be as scary as it sounds. You’re older and probably much wiser than you were 10 years ago and – if you’ve paid off the mortgage already – now could be the perfect time to venture into something new.

We have a whole section on making money and loads of helpful articles so take a look at these to get you started:

If you’ve discovered any money-making ideas we haven’t covered here then get in touch by commenting below!

  • Davey

    One problem for over 65′s is the Poverty Trap. In the UK in 2012 the State Pension (AKA the Old Age Pension) is about £112 per week. Means-tested Pension Credits will top this up to about £140 per week. As this is still officially the poverty line one also becomes entitled to Council Tax Benefit which for a small property is worth about £20 per week. Nett “income” £160 per week. Would a NMW job match this? Even 40 hours at £6 per hour would only gross £240. Less stoppages (tax and National Insurance) what would one actually get? Needless to say one only needs to earn 1p over the poverty line and the council will demand Council Tax. How does one solve this conundrum? (assuming of course that there might be any jobs available for over 65s) I am still a “7.5 ton driver” until the age of 70 but I don’t think that there is much call for this type of work.

  • andrea parker

    Can anyone tell me, please, how to get a job teaching/talking on a cruise ship – are the agencies genuine or just a money making ‘scam’
    Thank you

    • campergal

      Hi Andrea, I used to work on cruise ships (many years ago!). It depends really on what you want to talk about or teach. Most positions on board are recruited via agencies or third parties, only engineering staff, officers and purser staff are usually hired direct by the cruise liners. You could contact the cruise lines direct and ask who they use as their providers of Guest Lecturers or Port & Cruise Consultants.

      I have some info regarding onboard Guest Lecturers and Port & Cruise Consultants recruiters but my info may be a little out of date due to the amount of time since I worked onboard.

      Guest Lecturers:
      Programme Expects Inc – based in New Jersey
      Karp Enterprises – based in Coral Springs Florida
      Lecturers International – based in Arizona
      Posh Talks – based in Palm Springs

      I also found this link that you might find useful speakernetnews.com/post/cruisespeaking.html

      Port & Cruise Consultants
      On Board Promotions Group – based in Miami Beach Florida
      International Voyager Media – based in Miami
      Panoff Publishing Inc – based in Florida

      The contact details I have will, no doubt be out of date but a quick google search should provide you with their latest details.

      Good luck finding the info you need and with getting work on board ships……it’s a fantastic experience and a good way to see the world!