Side Hustle Income Update #1 – November 2016

So I’ve decided that since I provide monthly updates on my net worth it would also be a good idea to provide monthly updates on money I earn each month through side hustles.

I consider side hustles to be any work that I do and earn money for outside of my primary 9-5 job. Right now I have two main side hustles.

Math Tutoring Center

The first side hustle I have is actually just a part time job. I work at a math tutoring center on Saturday mornings from 9:00 to 2:00. I used to work there 3 to 4 days per week before I accepted my current full time position as a data analyst, so now I’m only able to work there on Saturdays.

The funny part about this tutoring job is that it pays FAR less than my full time job, so when I started working full time I naturally thought I should quit the tutoring job. I had even planned out when my last day would be and how I would let the owners of the tutoring center know that I was leaving.

But something quirky happened when I began to think about quitting this job.

I thought of all the students I had been tutoring at this center over the past two years and how I had grown really close to some of them. I knew which sports and clubs most of the students were involved with at their schools and I had seen them grow both as budding academics and young adults.

I always thought it was cheesy when teachers would say their greatest joy was watching their students learn and grow, but after being in a teaching position myself over the past two years I know exactly what they mean.

To make a long story short, I realized that even if I wasn’t paid at all to do this job, I would still do it. But the fact that I actually get paid to tutor, even if it isn’t much, is pretty incredible!

I had always thought that side hustles were a great idea, and especially helpful in attaining financial independence even sooner. But for some reason I had a preconceived notion that side hustles couldn’t be part time jobs for an employer, but instead had to be entrepreneurial in nature.

I have no idea why I thought this. A job that I can work at only once per week is a perfect candidate for a side hustle.

Getting Paid for Your Hobby

I would encourage anyone that is looking to pick up a side hustle to consider working at a part time job they would thoroughly enjoying working at for one or two days per week. Try to think of some hobby or activity you really enjoy doing and see if you can find a part time job that would pay you to do that, even if it isn’t much.

For me this means tutoring math once a week simply because I enjoy it. The income is an added bonus. My total earnings this month from tutoring at this math center ended up being $200.89. Of course that’s not a lot, but considering I would do the job for free I can’t complain about being paid 200 bucks to do it.

November Math Tutoring Center Earnings: $200.89

Craigslist Tutoring Gigs

My other side hustle involves Craigslist. About a month ago I was researching common side hustles on various personal finance websites and I kept seeing Craigslist gigs show up as one of the easiest ways to make a quick buck.

I was skeptical though.

I didn’t know what services I could offer or if there were people that used Craigslist who weren’t serial killers. I took a leap of faith and made an ad explaining that I offered math/statistics tutoring services for high school and college students, not expecting any responses.

But within two days I had receive three different emails from college students asking if I could tutor them in various math subjects and how much I charged. I was blown away. I had no idea that people actually looked for tutors on Craigslist. It turned out that all three students were middle-aged adults that were going back to school to earn a degree through online courses.

Testing the Waters with Pricing

For the first woman that emailed me I said I charged a rate of $20 per hour and nervously hit the send button. I have very little experience with freelance work so I really had no idea what a reasonable rate to charge was. She instantly said yes and we ended up meeting the next day at a library near my house for tutoring.

For the second and third respondents, I decided to test the waters and say I charged $30 per hour….they both readily accepted with no questions asked. Clearly when someone is in need of tutoring for math or statistics they are willing to shell out the money for a good tutor. I’ve decided I’ll start asking for $35 – $40 per hour for any new students that email me and see how that goes over.

I ended up meeting with all three students several times over the course of the month, typically in the evening when I got home from classes. Each paid me via cash or PayPal. Also, none of them turned out to be serial killers. Added bonus.

So how much did I end up making through private tutoring this month? Drum roll please…….


Considering a month ago I didn’t even know if tutoring gigs were a viable way to make money on Craigslist, that’s an amazing amount of money to me. Of course, November may have just been a good month for tutoring since it’s that time of year when students are panicking about passing their classes before they end in December. I’m excited to see if next month will be a similar story for this side hustle.

Total November 2016 Side Hustle Income: $650.89

This month was fantastic for earning extra money on the side, but it wasn’t passive income by any means. I had to work for it. But for the most part it was stress-free so I have no complaints at all. That’s all for my first ever side hustle income update. I plan on posting these once a month, so stay tuned for more!

Feature Photo Credit: trees

7 Replies to “Side Hustle Income Update #1 – November 2016”

  1. Awesome side hustle income! I don’t have a ton of experience in the tutoring world, but I think there are a number of platforms that have started up recently that could help you get yourself out to more people.

    I know that Wyzant is the big player in this field and might be something you could try out to see if it’s worthwhile.

    Chegg Tutors is the other one.

    Again, I have no experience with these platforms, but would be interesting to learn more about the tutoring space, if you’re up for trying them!

    1. FP, That’s a great point! I have read a little about both of those platforms but haven’t actually attempted to work for either one yet. With a full time job and graduate school I’m trying to spend my time in the most cost effective ways, but once I graduate these are two platforms I would definitely consider taking a closer look at. Thanks for the recommendation 🙂

  2. Haha, didn’t know you’re into teaching as a side hustle 🙂 I’m a full time tutor, and in the part of the world where I come from, it can be quite a good career option as a freelance tutor. So yup, while I do not have all the benefits of an employee, but I have all the freedom and autonomy as a freelance full time tutor. I can really understand what you mean by seeing how your charges grew up as a person. Some of the payment of a teacher is not financial, and I would gladly do the job that I do for free. Just not at this point in time.
    Hoping to reach financial freedom in the near future (actually in x years lol)!

    1. I love the idea of being a full time tutor, it’s actually a career option I have thought about pursuing once I graduate. The thought of having the freedom and autonomy is definitely appealing to me. I also couldn’t agree more that “Some of the payment of a teacher is not financial”, it’s always a great feeling knowing that you’re positively impacting someone’s life!

  3. Nice little amount here Zach, out of interest have you calculated how much you earn per hour on the side hustles? That’d be great to know

    It’s cool that you’re getting paid to do what you enjoy as well 🙂 Good on ya and keep it up!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *