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Bankrate's 2008 Retirement Guide
Finding the funds
Sometimes, finding that extra bit of income can turn a retirement nightmare towards a happy ending.
Finding the funds
7 great paychecks for golden oldies
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Health care
Nearly every sector of the economy is being squeezed, but companies focused on health care have proven to be surprisingly resilient -- and many are open to seasoned workers. Nathan notes that the AARP's annual list of best employers for workers older than 50 includes more than a dozen with a health care focus. Four -- Scripps Health, Lee Memorial Health System, Bon Secours Richmond Health System, and Blue Cross Blue Shield Association -- cracked the top 10.

Child care
Teenagers aren't the only ones taking care of children while parents are away. If Junior has a schedule filled with soccer practices and music lessons, many parents are more interested in hiring someone who has a bit more experience. "Families with two working adults might need someone to pick the kids up from practice," Matuson says. "They don't want the 17-year-old to drive their children, they're looking for someone who's mature." Parents often are willing to pay $10 to $20 an hour for a responsible older sitter.

As the holidays approach, many retailers will be bulking up on staff, which is a great way for workers to see if such a job might be a good long-term fit. "A lot of retirees feel isolated, so places like Macy's and Target give them a place to meet people," Ryan says. With average retail wages hovering around $13 an hour, it doesn't take long to reel in an extra $100 a week. A few companies, such as Home Depot and Starbucks, also offer health benefits for part-time workers.

Even if you're ready to be done with the 9-to-5 grind, your company may still be interested in retaining your expertise for some projects. Consulting arrangements, which frequently will pay $100 an hour and up, often can be arranged with former employers on an hourly or project basis. "Just remember why you wanted to leave in the first place," Matuson warns. "If you left because you were miserable or didn't like the way the company did business, chances are things won't change much. If you enjoyed it, though, it could work out for everyone."

Matuson also suggests one additional resource that may help you find your perfect retirement job: your friends. "Ask them where they've found opportunities and where they've felt comfortable," she says. "You don't want to end up taking a job where you're twice as old as the next oldest employees. Your friends are always a great place to start."

-- Posted: Nov. 10, 2008
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