second job for money problemsBeing in debt is a simple equation – income is not enough to cover expenses including paying off the bills.

With that in mind, lots of personal finance experts recommend that you get a second job.  Dave Ramsey, for example, extolls the virtues of delivering pizza at night to help end your bill problems.

Before you start thumbing through the Help Wanted ads, best to consider whether a second job is a good idea for you.

Why A Second Job Makes Sense

If you’re in debt, the income that comes with a second job is tempting.  Every penny you come home with can go towards debt reduction, helping you climb out of the financial hole that much more quickly.

Your existing expenses continue to get paid through your primary source of income, and things are better overall.

As an added bonus, a second job is typically less stressful than the daily 9-to-5. That means you won’t bring home the stress that comes with your primary job.

But A Second Job Is Not All Wine And Roses

As Notorious B.I.G. said, “mo’ money, mo’ problems.”  He wasn’t kidding.

In fact, here are just a few reasons why getting that second job may not be the best move:

Less time to spend with your family.  If you’ve got kids, forget seeing those soccer and baseball games. Evenings by the television with your spouse? Forget those, too. Even if you’re not at work, you’re sure to be more exhausted when you’re physically present.

A smaller paycheck. No more overtime for you, my friend.  Rather than getting time-and-a-half from your first job, you’re going to need to get out on time or you’ll be late for Job Number Two.

Less time for your health.  If you’re working two jobs, chances are you’ll have less time to exercise.  16 hours a day at work doesn’t leave much time or energy to put on those running shoes and hit the pavement.  In fact, working the night shift has been proven to lead to weight gain and diabetes.

An angry boss.  The boss of your day job may not take too kindly to your evening work, thinking that it shows less of a commitment to your primary employment situation. Some workplaces require prior authorization to take on a second job or forbid it altogether.

Extra costs. When you shuttle back and forth between two jobs, you’ve got to tack on extra expenses for gas money and food.

More for your (un)favorite Uncle.  A higher income may put you into a higher tax bracket. That means more money flows out of your pocket and goes to Uncle Sam, so be careful.

Balance The Books Before Sending A Resume

Getting a second job may be a good way to end your money problems, but you can’t be sure until you’ve run all the numbers.

Making a bed decision could cause you more headache than it solves.

Looking for an epic group of personal finance articles?  Check out the Carnival of Personal Finance – Epic Edition, which includes a nod to this article.