Whether you’re changing careers in later life or setting up investments for your golden years, it’s important to think about how you’ll be making money once you’ve retired.

For some, their pensions and savings will be enough. Many, however, will need to be a little savvier than this.

Even if you have left a longstanding career or traditional employment, seeking alternative forms of income seems prudent.

After all, with retirements increasingly stretching longer in later life, we require money to sustain a desirable standard of living.

So, how do you increase your earnings once you’ve retired? On this page, we’ll explore a few ideas.

What is a Good UK Retirement Income?

The answer to this question will be influenced by your desired lifestyle, location in the UK, and past experience as an employee. We outline a few ballpark figures below. We’ve considered a ‘good’ income to mean you’ll be able to live comfortably, cover your monthly bills, and have some money left over for holidays, new purchases, and unexpected expenses.

The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association recommends the following figures for yearly retirement income:

The ‘pot’ you’ll need to achieve this yearly amount will depend on how many streams of income you have access to once you retire.

So, how much can someone earn while claiming state pension in the UK? Once you’ve reached retirement age and started claiming your state pension, it’s possible to continue working and earning income.

However, any earnings above the yearly personal allowance of £12,750 will be taxed.

How Can a Retired Person Make Money?

Looking for retirement hobbies that make money? Want to know the best ways to live comfortably in later life? Read on to learn more.


While getting on the property ladder can be a huge challenge, it’s well worth pursuing if you have the means. The passive earnings that come from rent can substantially grow your existing pot of funds. Buying property in the right area and renting at appropriate rates is one of the best ways to secure your income for the future.

Switching to short-term rentals through sites like Airbnb can boost this income further. Just make sure you’ve applied for the relevant permission if you’re going to be renting out your property for more than 90 days a year.

Selling your existing property could also offer significant returns on your original investment.

Rent out a Room

Only have one property? Many retired people choose to rent out a room in their existing home to boost their monthly income. That spare room could just collect dust over time, or it could help you save for your holiday every year!

Use sites like SpareRoom or Gumtree to get started here.

Stock Dividends and Other Investments

Always talk to a financial advisor or accountant before making significant financial decisions.

The money you can make when you invest in the right stocks is not to be underestimated. Depending on the size of your portfolio and the success of your investments, your yearly dividends could substantially boost your earnings.

If you’ve got enough capital and experience, buying and then selling stocks can take these earnings even further. If you’re a complete novice, it’s best to proceed with caution here and rather than picking individual investments, low cost index funds could prove safer. However, your investments can still go down as well as up.

This beginner’s guide from Money Helper may prove useful.

Check Your Entitlement to Benefits

A staggering number of retired people in the UK fail to claim benefits that they’re entitled to. Many of the systems in place can make the process of applying feel overwhelming, but it’s relatively straightforward if you know where to look.

Depending on your circumstances you may be able to claim housing benefits, Universal Credit, and more. Use this page to help you get started.

Citizens’ Advice is another good resource.

Sell on Auction Sites

Auction sites like eBay can be a fantastic source of income if you know what you’re doing. Cornering a niche and selling products or parts to those that need them can earn more money than you might expect.

Just keep in mind that this is the first suggestion on this page that isn’t passive; you’ll have to take on what is essentially a part-time job if you want to find success on most platforms.

For a ‘jack of all trades’ option, try eBay. Gumtree can work well for this category too.

For clothing, try Depop or Poshmark.

Remember that there’s a fair bit of skill involved with successfully selling on sites like these. It may take some time before you find traction. Check out this introduction from BigCommerce to learn more.

Sell Your Crafts and Creations

Are you an artist, pottery maker, or creative? You may be able to start earning through sites like Etsy when starting your own business. Your income will almost certainly be low to begin with, but could rise exponentially if you’re successful.

You’ll want to consider the following:

This post on Alura explores the earning potential of Etsy. It focuses on US sellers, but many of the key themes are directly transferable to UK sellers.

Dog Walking

If you love dogs and just need a little extra pocket money for occasional treats and gifts, a casual job like pet walking or sitting could be for you. You could make an account on sites like Rover and start selling your services to people in your area.


In the same vein, it might be worth thinking about which subjects you’d be able to tutor in. Obviously, if you possess professional experience in high demand subjects, tutoring can be an obvious next step.

However, any abilities are suitable for consideration. Indeed, teaching foreign languages can be a very popular option for multi-lingual retirees. Furthermore, you get the satisfaction of helping students develop and achieve their learning goals.

Try superprof when selling your services.


We hope you’ve found the ideas above helpful. Remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach here; the investments, side-jobs, and other decisions you make will be determined by your current circumstances and skills. Experimentation is critical and maintaining a curious mindset will, most importantly, help you have fun while exploring your options.

Note - when making significant financial decisions, always contact a professional advisor or accountant.

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