According to the Associated Press, one in five Americans aged 65 and older is deciding to wait to retire. Sometimes, this is out of necessity, sometimes people want to increase their social security and sometimes people just don’t want to give up a job they love. Luckily for all these people, there are some major benefits to having a job as a senior.
Benefits of having a job as an older person.
1. Disposable income.
Even if you are lucky enough to have a good pension or another retirement plan, having an additional revenue stream can allow for some guilt-free spending or the ability to save for additional care down the road. Having disposable income is especially important if you have a family to support or who you want to leave money for, any expensive hobbies or work that needs to be done on your home.
2. Cognitive exercise.
If commercials for Lumocity haven’t already informed you, mental faculties such as memory last longer in people who exercise their brain regularly. But instead of paying for a “brain training” program, you can get cognitive exercise through employment and get paid.
3. A sense of purpose, satisfaction or appreciation.
After decades of school and then work, with consistent evaluations and production of work, retiring leaves some people lacking purpose, satisfaction or appreciation. Employment is far from the only way to regain these things, but they are benefits if you decide to take on or keep your job as a senior.
4. New experiences.
There are many jobs that can sound amazing or rewarding but don’t pay enough for someone trying to raise a family. Similarly, there are many jobs open today that did not exist 40 years ago. This could be an opportunity to pursue a new passion.
Some jobs offer great insurance that may not be available with simple Medicare, such as robust health insurance, dental insurance or life insurance.
• Use age as an asset, not a liability.
Working as a consultant, a teacher or a caregiver your age can give you a major advantage. Think about your skills and the industries that will most value age and see if anything lines up.
• Drown the competition in your accomplishments.
You may only want to list the last 12 years or so on your resume, but you can actually list accomplishments from your entire career. Instead of struggling to find the name of some obscure award you won in high school, you can market yourself by providing relevant accomplishments from decades of experience.
• Keep current.
This doesn’t mean you need to get an Instagram and follow a new celebrity every week. Just keep up to date on the literature relevant to the industry you want to be in (or stay in) and don’t be afraid of the changes that are likely to come along the way.
So, what are the best jobs for senior citizens? It depends on what your priorities and abilities are, but the following are some promising options no matter why you want to continue your career.
Depending on what you have experience in, you may be well situated to offer freelance consultative services. Often, companies are happy to pay a consultant with decades of experience a high hourly rate, rather than have a less-experienced full-time employee waste too much time. The salary of a consultant varies widely by industry, but the median salary for a consultant, according to Glassdoor, is around $75,000.
From bus driving to Uber or Lyft driving, there are many flexible opportunities available to drive for money. If you decide to drive full time you can expect to bring in around $30,000 a year.
3. Park ranger.
If you enjoy the outdoors, getting a job as a park ranger can be a great way to stay engaged in a community, keep parks healthy and make money doing it. There are full-time positions that offer as much as $80,000 a year and seasonal part-time positions that offer less, depending on what level of commitment you are looking for.
4. Childcare provider.
Babysitting is often thought of as a teenager’s job, but senior citizens can often make a much more lucrative career out of childcare by taking on more children, offering more hours (especially in the middle of the day) and providing a more professional experience. Pay will depend on what type of role you take on, such as a live-in nanny, part-time babysitter or daycare provider, but should range between $20,000 and $50,000 a year.
5. Substitute teacher.
In most states, you can be a substitute teacher without having a teaching certificate or having a master’s degree in education. Being a substitute also allows you flexibility while still providing the benefits of being engaged in a school-system community. The salaries vary greatly by state and school district but are often in the $30,000 a year ballpark.
As remote, flexible, and freelance work grows in popularity, it is becoming easier for people to build work schedules that work for them. This may be a contributing factor to why one in five senior citizens are deciding to hold off on retiring, and it certainly allows people aged 65 and older more flexibility to work part-time and enjoy the benefits that come with it.