Working a side hustle sounds a lot more appealing once you see all the ways that extra cash can make your life better.

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Are you tired of never having enough money for emergency savings, large purchases, or vacations?

If so, a temporary side hustle could be the means to ensure that you have money for emergencies so you don’t have to charge unexpected expenses to a credit card or harm your credit by making late payments on an already high credit card balance.

Don’t think you have it in you to add more hours to the week? You may change your mind once you see all the ways that taking on a side hustle for a while can help you get ahead in 2023.

Read on for five ways that a temporary side hustle can improve your finances and your life.

1. Save for emergencies

How many times have you charged unexpected car or home repairs, vet bills, medical bills, or other unexpected expenses to a credit card with a balance that’s already more than you can afford to make payments each month?

If you earn as little as $400 a month from a side hustle that you enjoy and work at it for a few months, depositing all earnings into an emergency savings account, you’ll quickly have $1,200. That’s enough to cover small emergencies or maybe even one big one.

If you enjoy your side hustle enough to work for several months and continue with regular deposits, you can save even more.

Find out: 8 Signs You Need to Fatten Your Emergency Savings

2. Tackle burdensome debt

If your credit card or medical debt is out of control, working a side hustle is one of the fastest ways to knock down balances and hammer away until you reach a zero balance. Once your credit cards are paid off, you’ll have more money each month to save and/or spend on things and activities you enjoy.

Work a little longer at your side hustle, maybe even a year or two, and you can apply the extra earnings to car loans, student loans, or the principal on your mortgage loan to pay them off sooner.

3. Save for vacations

I used to pet sit for my neighbors and stash my earnings in a coffee can until they amounted to enough to pay for a vacation. That way, I’d have enough to pay for a hotel, airfare, and rental car, plus extra cash to spend on dining out, sightseeing, and souvenirs.

Find out: Don’t Get Burned by These 4 Vacation Scams

4. Save for large expenses

I also used pet-sitting money to pay for the renovation of a screened porch on my home, new furniture, and occasional splurges for items to make my home cozier and more stylish. That way, I didn’t have to charge services or items on my credit card.

If you’ve got your eye on items you can’t afford right now, it’s time to get old school and take on an extra job so you can save enough to pay cash for what you want and stay out of debt.

Find out: How to Make Focus Groups Your Next Side-Hustle

5. You might even enjoy yourself

Most people don’t want to spend evenings working at a second job after grinding away all day at work. But if you choose a side hustle that you enjoy, that second job may not feel like much work at all. You could even look forward to it.

If you like animals, you could pet sit or walk dogs for pet owners in your neighborhood. Maybe you like being outside and can pick up extra cash mowing lawns or performing other types of yard work. Or if you’re highly organized, you could offer home and office organizing services.

If you have a skill to teach, you could provide consulting services for business or another profession. If you’re a good writer, you could dip your toe into freelancing, writing articles for websites and other publications.

Develop a side hustle mindset

If you’re reluctant to take on more work, don’t assume that a side hustle just isn’t for you. Look over this list of all the ways that cash from a side hustle can help you get ahead and stay out of credit card debt. Then set a short-term goal of working a side hustle for a few months or maybe even longer.

With a side hustle, you’ll also meet new people, learn new skills, and feel good about accomplishing savings goals.

Who knows? You may enjoy the extra cash and all the ways it makes your life easier so much that you keep your side hustle around long enough to save for a down payment on a house, pay off your student loans, or even sock away enough to get married and start a family.

Find out: You Can Work Side Jobs to Make Extra Money

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About the Author

Deb Hipp

Deb Hipp

Deb Hipp is a full-time freelance writer based in Kansas City, Mo. Deb went from being unable to get approved for a credit card or loan 20 years ago to having excellent credit today and becoming a homeowner. Deb learned her lessons about money the hard way. Now she wants to share them to help you pay down debt, fix your credit and quit being broke all the time. Deb's personal finance and credit articles have been published at Credit Karma and The Huffington Post.

Published by Debt.com, LLC