Alex Barker, PharmD
Alex Barker, PharmD
Alex Barker is the founder of The Happy PharmD, which helps pharmacists create an inspiring career, break free from the mundane “pill-flipping” life. He is a Full-time Pharmacist, Media Company founder, franchise owner, Business Coach, Speaker, and Author. He's also the Founder of Pharmacy School HQ, which helps students get into pharmacy school and become residents.

26 Ways Pharmacists Can Make Extra Cash

OCTOBER 29, 2015
No matter where you are on your pharmacy career path, having extra cash on hand is a nice safety net, and a great way to pay off your pharmacy school loans more quickly.
 
The challenge is holding a side job while balancing your current job and personal responsibilities. Although a second pharmacy job is achievable (especially weekend shifts), these 26 ways to make extra cash won’t take up as much of your valuable time—and the payoff may still be high.
 
1. Start a blog.
The famous Field of Dreams quote “If you build it, he will come” applies to both baseball fields and websites.
 
A website has infinite moneymaking potential. You can sell advertisement space, receive referral commissions for promoting Amazon products, sell informational products, create a membership site that provides exclusive content, or sell your own product or services.
 
2. Sell, rent, or flip real estate.
Selling properties for commission is one of the most common ways “side-hustler” entrepreneurs seek extra cash. If you are especially handy, flipping houses is another way to earn some money during off-hours, while renting is a truly “passive income” model that involves finding the right tenants and maintaining the building.
 
A friend of mine named Dan Lane runs a podcast called “The Rental Income Podcast” in which he interviews everyday people with full-time jobs who own rental properties. I love to listen to these stories because it shows that it’s possible for anyone to achieve.
 
3. Consult.
Do you have expertise in a specific niche? You could become an expert witness for legal trials, or you could provide consulting services to tech companies looking to expand in the health care market.
 
If you know your stuff, then the possibilities are endless.
 
4. Mystery shop.
Everyone has to shop for food and house supplies, so why not get paid to shop at new stores and rate your experiences?
 
5. Hold a garage sale.
There are 300,000 items in the average American home, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Wall Street Journal states that Americans spend $1.2 trillion annually on non-essential goods, while the University of California, Los Angeles reported that only 3.1% of the world’s children live in America, and yet they own 40% of the world’s toys.
 
If you need some extra cash, take the things that you don’t use anymore and hold a garage sale.
 
6. Become a personal trainer.
Gyms are always on the lookout for fit people who can help others get into shape. If you go to the gym often, then why not help someone else lose a few pounds and put some dollars in your back pocket?
 
7. Lend money to peers.
It’s now possible to become a bank! You can lend your money to others via peer-to-peer lending at a fixed rate.
 
Obviously, this carries some financial risk, so be sure to read up on best practices and carefully screen loan candidates.
 
8. Become an online retailer.
This sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is.
 
Amazon provides a service called Fulfillment by Amazon that allows anyone to sell products online, as long as they obey the rules. You can easily sell things from your home or perform “retail arbitrage,” the practice of selling products online that you purchased for a lesser amount from a retail store.
 
9. Use your voice talent.
For those with a smooth voice, there is a booming industry for “virtual” audio performers. All you need is a simple home studio (closet space will do) and a microphone.
 
Websites like Upwork post hundreds of voice gigs.
 
10. Model.
My jaw refuses to cooperate for the camera, but for everyone else, there are plenty of opportunities in major cities looking for models of all ages. A simple start would be to get a few glamor shots and start a profile on a model search website.
 
11. Become a medical writer.
A talent for writing can go a long way. Health care organizations are always looking for freelance writers to fill their databases of health education materials. Writing content for their education programs is a great way to make an extra buck.
 
12. Build a service-based business.
A friend of mine operates a cleaning service for a 3-county area. He only spends about 3 to 5 hours a week organizing client information, taking requests, and communicating with his employees. He doesn’t spend an hour cleaning because he has a team to do it.
 
Perhaps you could become a manager of a computer support service or a property management business without ever actually “working.”
 
13. Crowd fund your next idea.
If you have a great idea that no one else has thought of, why not crowd fund it to get it off the ground?
 
14. Referee.
This obviously requires in-depth knowledge of the rules and may even require some specialized skills or training. You also need to be in reasonably good physical condition.
 
15. Create artwork.
If you have an artsy side, then consider selling your designs or delving into the world of graphic design. There are a few websites to sell your work, like Esty.com.
 
16. Rent out rooms through Airbnb.
Airbnb is like temporarily renting your space as though you are operating a hotel. You can rent out your whole house or even just one room.
 
17. Plan events.
Most “events” happen on weekends, so you can spend them planning weddings, graduations, conventions, and conferences—and charge a hefty price.
 
18. Turn your hobby into a business.
Whatever your hobby may be, you have the potential to either teach others how to do it or serve others with your talent.
 
19. Chauffeur.
If you have a free night, you can become a personal chauffeur. Services such as Lyft and Uber allow you to pick up anyone and drive them anywhere for a price.
 
20. Offer home inspection services.
Providing home inspections usually involves flexible evening and weekend hours and is in high demand. Certification is required to get started, but appointments are scheduled at your convenience.
 
21. Try out multi-level marketing (MLM).
I hesitate to include this side job because of its poor reputation, but if you can get behind a product or service and promote it to others, then this is a great idea.
 
I have several friends who have had success with MLM, so it’s foolish to deny it as a viable option. One acquaintance recently told me that he and his wife make an extra $1000 a month through MLM.
 
While that peaked my interest, I didn’t sign up for his company. I learned from a failed attempt at MLM that you must love the product in order to sell it well.
 
22. Proofread.
 
Pharmacy school taught us that the devil is in the details, so why not put your detail-oriented mind to proofreading anything from books to articles on websites like Upwork?
 
23. Use RentAFriend.com.
This website allows people to “rent” a friend to hang out with. Yes, you can get paid to hang out with strangers. I found this somewhat sad, but why not try it if you’re free this weekend?
 
24. Rent your car.
Websites like GetAround.com and Turo.com (formerly RelayRides) allow you to make extra cash by renting your car to others when you are not using it.
 
25. Provide translation services.
Knowing another language can be very profitable, especially if you work in specialized industries such as health care.
 
26. Start a medication therapy management (MTM) service
This is easier to maintain than starting a new job, and training and certification are easy to obtain. Doing a few MTM “Tips” in the early morning could provide a few hundred dollars every month.
 
Hopefully, this list has given you some good ideas to boost your bottom line. By pursuing some of these suggestions, you won’t have to resort to fluid donation—an ongoing revenue-generating model that I would not recommend.
 
What side jobs have you tried to make extra money? Message me on Twitter @pharmschoolhq.

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