The Importance of Income Diversification Thumbnail

We always hear financial experts advising us to diversify our investments to minimize risk, but how come no one ever talks about diversifying income?

Developing multiple streams of income can help protect you from the threat of job loss.  Think about it.  If one-hundred percent of your income comes from one source, what happens if that source suddenly dries up?

You might think your job is secure but unemployment rates say otherwise.  Being a top-performer won’t protect you from layoffs if your company decides they can save money by outsourcing your job to India.  Or what if your company goes out of business?  Or a competitor buys them out and takes a hatchet to your department?  There are any number of reasons you could find yourself out of work and many of them are completely out of your control.

If that happens, you’ll be glad you were wise enough to diversify your income.  Even if it only partially replaces your lost salary, it may be enough to keep food on the table until you’re able to get back on your feet.

Ways to Diversify Income

Get married! Assuming your spouse works you just created a second stream of income.  If one of you loses their job at least you’ll have another to fall back on.

Get a part-time job. If your full-time gig goes belly up your part-time earnings can help support you.  Plus, if it’s a job you enjoy maybe you can even start working there full-time.

Invest in income generating investments like bonds or dividend-paying stocks.

Freelance. If you have strong writing skills you can offer your services on the internet as a ghostwriter.  If you’re a graphic artist, why not try creating website headers or ebook covers?  If you have a teaching background, you can offer tutoring services.

Start your own business on the side. Use your skills and knowledge to branch out on your own.  You don’t have to quit your day job right away if you don’t want to.  Just build your business on the side until it grows to the point where you can do it full-time if that’s what you want.

Start a blog. I’m not going to lie to you.  Running a blog takes hard work, but if you enjoy it then it won’t really feel like work.  And don’t worry if you’re not a techie.  Pretty much anyone can learn how to make a website to help supplement their income.

Last year my earnings from Saving Money Today (and a handful of smaller websites) were equal to about 16 percent of my salary from my day job.  This year I hope to double that so my online earnings equal a third of my salary.  That kind of income growth is very possible on the internet, which is why I see it as one of the best ways to diversify income.

What about you?  Do you have side gigs that help diversify your income?  If not, why not?