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How Canadian Seniors Can Make Extra Money

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seniors make extra money


Whether you live in Canada or not and want to make extra money after retirement there are plenty of possibilities out there.

I think the obvious for most seniors who own a home would be to downsize and either move to an apartment, condo or smaller residence to lower expenses.

If you’ve already paid your mortgage off this may or may not make a big financial difference apart from having to pay property taxes and other forms of home maintence.

By this, I mean needing a new roof, windows and so on as opposed to keeping the yard tidy and cleaning the gutters.

As Canadian seniors age downsizing for other reasons such as health and lack of need is something that could easily free up extra cash.

Recently my father-in-law passed away and my mother-in-law is finding herself in a situation where she has too much house and property and is needing help with her health.

What we’ve learned over the course of a year is that there are many people out there willing to work to make extra money.

The thing is if you’re a senior and you’re feeling healthy and up for the challenge there are many ways you can make extra money by offering your services or even opening up your home. 

Whether you choose to declare any extra income you earn is up to you but there are a couple of tax exempt ideas I will share.

Dear Mr.CBB,

Thanks for writing such a wonderful blog as it’s helped me to conquer my fears about debt and growing old with little money over the past few years.

One of the things I’m curious about is earning more money and ways I can do this aside from cutting my tight budget further.

As a Canadian senior my pension is very small as I collect just shy of $1900 a month in Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Old Age Security (OAS) and have some retirement savings put by.

I own my home which is a 2500 sq foot 4 bedroom bungalow on a half acre property which keeps me busy but not busy enough.

My spouse passed away 3 years ago from lung cancer and I’ve been alone ever since to tend to the duties of being a homeowner.

It’s tough but I get by with the help of my children but would like to find simple ways I can make extra money on the side.

Sometimes it’s not easy navigating the internet to find certain resources and not knowing who to call in the community is also a struggle.

While I’m still healthy and willing to do odd jobs I was hoping you might have ideas to help this bubbly Canadian senior make extra money.

Thanks for listening,


Chatham, Ontario

Ways Canadian Seniors Can Make Extra Money In Their Community

Canadian seniors who are worried about their finances or want to fill up their time can turn to these ten needs in their community to earn extra money.

The following are only a few ways you make extra money as they may be things you’re already doing such as going for a walk or grocery shopping.

Let’s take a look.

Room Rentals

Our neighbour who is a senior rents a room in her basement to a gentleman monthly but he lives with his family in another city.

He comes and goes throughout the month as he works locally but would prefer to stay close to work during the week.

She earns $500 a month from renting a room that has garage access into the basement.

This type of earning potential is not for every senior especially if you are worried about who you rent to.

If you are not sure about the rental process you can always ask a friend or family member to help you out.

Renting a room is a simple way to make extra money but your renter may want a rental receipt which you should claim as income.

Host an International Student

This is where seniors may benefit from a tax-free way to make extra money because there are businesses such as Red Leaf Canada.

Red Leaf is a hosting company to international students who look to place them in houses with-in the community they are visting.

Related: How we became a host family for international students

The great part is you know that the internatial homestay student coming to live with you for a month or even a year is screened by the hosting company.

All of the hard work is done by them and the easy part is showing your international students about life in Canada and participating in it with them.


Landscaping and Gardening Services

Just recently we hired a senior couple to landscape my mother-in-law’s property and to add grass seed to an old vegetable garden.

Not only did they do a fabulous job they even went as far to clean out her gutters that were full of leaves.

They were paid $1300 for 4 days work and we hired them to mow the lawn twice a month.

We pay them $50 each mow which is a great deal for the size of the property she has.

They will make extra money from simple chores that they love to do and you can do the same.

We are not their only clients and word-of-mouth is what keeps them well-known in the community.

Dog Walking/Pet Sitting/House Sitting

If you’re a senior you can make more money by taking pets for walks and even pet sitting when their owners are gone on holiday.

My parents do this in the UK along with general house mainteence and get to live in castles and mansions most of the year.

They save their money by doing laundry where they house and pet sit and are able to eat food from the property garden if available.

Although they make more money it’s not much but the savings from other aspects of what they do is keeps them going.

Each day they earn about 30 pounds or $51 Canadian Dollars between both of them although it may be more in Canada.

Plus, they love it and it funds their holidays around Europe when they aren’t house or pet sitting.

Babysitting/Before and After School Care

Before and after school care in Canada is a need for parents since daycare costs are pricey and not easy to find a spot. 

If you’re willing to take on the challenges of getting kids to and from school 5 days a week there’s cash to be made.

My neighbour does this and she earns $20 in the morning before school and $20 after school at 3-4 hours a day per child.

Most days in the spring and fall she stays at the school after it is done and the kids play at the park or she brings sports equipment.

This keeps the kids outdoors getting fresh air and her house stays tidy.

She also provides healthy snacks and beverages for the children which is pretty easy to do.

If you’d rather babysit for the entire day for parents who are heading back to work full or part-time there’s also a need.

You can easily earn up to $40 per child, per day or $200 a week or extra money for 1 child if you’re ready for the challenge

Professional Organizer/House Cleaner

If your passion is geared towards cleaning and home organization there are a tonne of homeowners who need help in this department.

Related: How to tidy up and organize your home using the KonMari Method

You may even find that you have neighbours struggling to keep the house tidy and would like some help weekly or even once a month.

Chores might be as simple as dusting, washing floors, sparkling up the windows and spring and fall cleaning the inside of the house.


If you drive you could easily find another senior or adult in your community who is in need of companionship and get paid for it.

Some ideas of what a companion can do with others in need;

  • Visiting for an hour each day
  • Taking them grocery shopping
  • Bingo
  • Cooking and Cleaning
  • Sight-seeing
  • Sports events
  • Visiting relatives
  • Community events
  • Senior centres day program
  • Walking buddies
  • Medical and other appointments

One of the hardest parts about being a senior who is house bound without a vehicle, bus services or declining health is not getting outside enough.

Exercise for seniors is critical to physical and mental health just as it is at any age which makes becoming a paid companion an even greater need in most communities.

Senior fitness may mean a casual walk in the neighbourhood or accompanying them to a local gym or seniors community centre.

You may want to network with friends about becoming a companion or have a look on advertising boards such as Kijiji, Facebook or even call your local Canadian seniors association.

Sell Stuff

As you get older you may notice you’ll need less of everything from living space to stuff that you have collecting around the house.

Selling your stuff won’t necessarily earn you tonnes of money but it will put money back in your pocket.

It’s a great way to downsize before you sell or perhaps if you just want to clear clutter.

Related: How To Host A Community Garage Sale This Summer

A garage sale is always fun or participating in church community garage sales or neighbourhood garage sales can become a fun weekend event.

Oh, and if you love to bake you can sell your baked goods at garage sales to make more money too!

Related: 20 Garage Sale Tools You’ll Need To Attract Buyers

Focus Groups

There are plenty of focus group companies or businesses across Canada looking for your opinion on products that you purchase.

It can be anything from insurance to food to the types of vehicles you drive or even your opinion on certain community events.

These types of focus groups pay well for your opinion as we’ve been to quite a few over the past 10 years.

Most focus groups we’ve been to have been held at local hotels where you sit in a room filled with other participants.

There will almost always be free beverages and snacks for all participants and in some cases dinner or lunch if the focus group falls in that time-frame.

Most focus groups we’ve been to take about one hour and always pay a minimum $100 cash in an envelope at the end of the session.

It has always been one of our favourite ways to make more money.

Just recently Mrs. CBB participated in an online focus group from home and earned $275 for her time over a three-day period of 45-minute sessions.

Definitely look on Kijiji for focus group participants needed and source whether your community has businesses such as the following below who recruit participants for focus groups.


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Seniors helping Seniors

Whether you’re a senior living in Canada or somewhere else around the world if you want to make more money it’s pretty easy but you have to go looking for the opportunities.

The good part is once you establish networks you may find that indeed they will come knocking on your door.

This is how we found the landscaping seniors that help my mother-in-law out and boy are we happy we found them.

Discussion: What other ways can Canadian seniors make extra money in their community?

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