Real Life Retirement:  what real people are doing after age 55 


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How retirees earn extra money in the 'gig' economy

Some people call them 'gigs'.  Other people call it 'freelance work'. Still others regard it as 'short term tasks'. Whatever term is used, it is an ideal way for retirees to pick up extra income doing short term assignments like drive your own car or write a message in the sand.  And short term means work that can be completed in a few minutes, or a few hours, or at the most, a few days. 

At the end of the gig--when you have finished whatever you have agreed to do--you get paid.  While some gigs allow you set your own hours, you will always have a specific completion deadline to meet. 

A 'gig' is definitely different from working part time. As a 'gigster' you are an independent contractor, rather than an employee of a company. You will be hired to do a specific assignment with no particular promise that a part-time or full-time job with that company could be in the future.

While the word 'gig' has been around for ages and was commonly used to describe one night of work for a musician, the term has come into broader usage because of a company called  At this site the basic price for any service offered is $5.  Promote ebooks on Facebook: $5. Record a video birthday wish using puppets: $5. Write an ad message in the sand, take a photo of it: $5.  Before you start shouting "That's not enough money", take a look at the site. Every successful gigster has a $5 service, which can usually be completed in a very few minutes.  Then they have add ons, each costing from $5 to $40 more.  Some gigsters also offer the option of leaving a $5 tip. Suddenly $5 doesn't look so meager anymore.  (For whatever it is worth, I have had two ebook covers designed by Fiverr artists including the cover for my best-selling guide, Working After Retirement, and have been very happy with the results!)

Another company,, also hires people to do short term tasks.  They only operate in large cities and most of the work seems to be manual or personal assistant-style assignments: house-cleaning, grocery shopping, household moving, handyman repairs. (I've had no experience with this company, so I can offer no opinion of its service.) 

Now you may be thinking "I'd like a work from home" gig.  I advise you to BEWARE of most of the work from home listings on the internet. They are scams designed to get personal information and money from you. Identity theft could be the result you get-- instead of a paycheck.

A Real Life Retirement: 
One of the most well-known gigs in today's gig economy is driving for Uber or Lyft.  All you need is a nice, clean and relatively new car, a smart phone and a few extra hours. For Sam, a semi-retired contractor who wanted to add stability to his income, driving for Uber was the answer. During slack times between contracting jobs he spent a few hours a week responding to Uber calls and added a nice sum to his income. When he got his next remodeling contract, he stopped checking into to Uber until another slack period came along.

There is one company, however, that screens the people/companies who are looking for part time workers: it is ratracerebellion. While the jobs offered on the site are not necessarily short term gigs, many... and there's more  


NOTE:  All names on this site have been changed to protect individual privacy.  The stories are real, the names are not. 

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