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As the cost of living increases in the U.S., it can be tough to stay on top of your living expenses. According to a report by Bankrate, over 44 million Americans have side-hustle jobs - paid gigs to supplement income from their day jobs. And of those who side-hustle, 54 percent report that they use the additional money to pay for living expenses.

While side hustles are a great way to boost your cash flow, they can also be used to explore your passions outside of the 9-to-5 or give you an opportunity to try out new endeavors.

Here are some side-hustle jobs that are flexible enough that you can take them on while working full time.

Be a Ride-Share Driver

If you love driving and have a car in decent condition, you can be a driver for a ride-share app like Uber or Lyft. To qualify, all you need is to own a registered vehicle, have car insurance and pass a background check. Ride-share drivers earn an average of $15.68 an hour, though there’s a lot of variance driver to driver. If you drive 10 hours a week and earn the average, that’s an extra $150 in your pocket - or $600 a month, minus fuel charges.

Open an Online Store

Creative and crafty? Consider opening your own store on an online marketplace like Etsy, Society6 or Shopify. While it does take effort, you can put on your entrepreneur hat to net extra money while exploring your creative aspirations.

To make sure running your online store doesn’t interfere with your day job, give yourself plenty of lead time to correspond with your customers, stock your inventory and ship orders. Otherwise, you may find yourself stretched too thin.

Sell Baked Goods

If you love to bake, consider selling baked goods at farmers markets or local food establishments. Create baked concoctions for holidays throughout the year and for special celebrations.

You’ll want to look into whether your state has so-called cottage food laws, which assert that foods that aren’t potentially hazardous - think baked goods, jams and jellies - don’t present the same health risks as processed foods and therefore don’t require a permit to sell directly to consumers.

Write for Pay

Do you blog for fun on the side? Have you amassed a following on Medium? With the surge of online content needs, you can take up writing on the side to earn extra money. If you’re starting out, you can look for opportunities on sites like Upwork, Freelancer and the ProBlogger Job Board, or search on LinkedIn. Another way you can find freelance writing opportunities is reach out to local small businesses and see if they have any content needs.

Give Music Lessons

If you have a musical background, you can offer lessons on your instrument of choice. Schedule lessons around your work hours and charge anywhere from $30 to $60 an hour. This is a great opportunity for you to share your love of music with eager students - and to keep up your chops.

Beware of Downsides

While side hustles are a great way to earn additional income, do be aware of overextending yourself and getting burned out. Don’t underestimate your existing commitments outside of work - or your need for downtime.

You’ll also want to make sure there’s no conflict of interest with your employer, for example moonlighting with a competitor. And keep in mind that most side hustles mean you’re an independent contractor and responsible for paying any quarterly or self-employment taxes.

Besides raking in extra cash, side hustles can be a good way to expand your horizons, pursue your passions and try something different from your day job. So give it a whirl - your finances will thank you.

This information and recommendations contained herein is compiled from sources deemed reliable, but is not represented to be accurate or complete. In providing this information, neither KeyBank nor its affiliates are acting as your agent or is offering any tax, accounting, or legal advice.

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