Millions of Americans working side hustles

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KSFY) - A new study from Bankrate shows 44 million Americans have a "side hustle" or a second job. Of those millions, early 86 percent have a side hustle they do monthly and more than a third of them say they make at least $500 a month doing it.

But is everyone it for the money, or for passion?

It's fun, so my full time job is hard, it's rewarding but then Rodan + Fields is like a break, it's a breath of fresh air," said Jessica Van Haaften, a Rodan + Fields skincare independent consultant, who works full-time with children.

"It's been about taking those passions and just expanding them," said Michael Woolheater. "I still have a hard time today calling them a business because I don't really feel like i'm selling anything but an experience."

Woolheater works in healthcare full-time, but has a concrete landscaping business, Concrete Contours that he runs with his father, and Code:M Design, a photography business.

Casey Franken, an investment manager and certified financial planner at Pinnacle Wealth Management in Sioux Falls said he sees more and more people working multiple jobs.

"They find something that they make money and enjoy it at the same time," Franken said.

While some people are working extra jobs to make ends meet, that's not the goal for everyone.

"Right now it's a passion project," Van Haaften said.

"I wouldn't do it if it wasn't worth it, if it wasn't personally fulfilling," said Woolheater.

Neither of them are complaining about a little bit of extra cash, but for Van Haaften, she's hoping to save some money for future goals.

"Long-term that would be awesome because I do want to sponsor more kids and go back to school so there are always financial things that I need to pay for," she said.

And planning for goals is a really good idea, Franken said, but focus on student loans and any other debt you have first.

"If you have student loans that have very high interest rates that would be something to consider," Franken said. "But once you get to a certain point, using those dollars to fund retirement can be very important in building up that nest egg."

Franken said the key, however, is that many people use their side hustle money on excursions and extra expenses, but what you should do, is save it.

"Really make sure you're being prudent on how you use the extra money, otherwise you might just go out to the restaurant or take that trip," he said.

Franken said occasional date nights and trips aren't a bad thing, but that you should actually use your regular full-time income on those types of expenses. Side hustle money should be saved up, or used to pay off those debts -- and if your side hustle is a business you own -- you should take advantage of trying to put it into a retirement account and the tax breaks associated with that.

The South Dakota Department of Labor sent KSFY News the latest statistics from 2014 Census data which show South Dakota had the highest percentage of people who work more than one job.



 
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