Everyone wants to make more money, but some people need to make more money. Here’s how to tell if you, unfortunately, fall into the latter camp. (Whether you choose to make more money by getting a side gig or simply asking for a raise is up to you.)
1. Your bills are daunting. If you cringe every time you open a bill, it’s not a good sign. If you can’t cover your bills each month, even after cutting your spending, you need to make more money.
2. You have no savings. If you don’t have an emergency fund to tide you over should you get unexpectedly fired, have a medical emergency, or just need a car repair, that’s bad news. If your honest, strict efforts at budgeting haven’t helped, you need more income, period.
3. You use credit cards for everything. There’s a caveat here: If you’re like me and never carry cash but pay your cards’ balances off in full every month, that isn’t a problem. But if you use credit cards for everything and are only paying the minimum due on your balances, that’s not just a sign that you need to make more money, it’s also a sign that you need to learn how credit cards work, period, before you fall into a deadly debt spiral that will make it even harder for you to escape.
4. You’re underpaid. If you don’t feel valued at work, it’s going to make you miserable and resentful—and that will probably begin to hurt your productivity, so it’s going to hurt your company, too. Check out sites like Payscale and Glassdoor to find out what the median salary is for your current gig and ask for more at your next review—and maybe look at getting a new (or second) job, too.