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Side hustles on the rise as some Canadians struggle to make ends meet


As many Canadians are feeling the pinch of the rising cost of living, more and more people are taking on side hustles to supplement their incomes.

What was once a trend has become the norm for many, including Kelsey Butler, who spends hours every week making eye-catching dice out of resin to sell and help pay the bills.

"It's an art more than anything," Butler said. "I create dice to be used for tabletop role-playing games, typically. So the one that people know most would be Dungeons and Dragons. But it can be used for literally anything that uses dice."

With a full-time job already under her belt, Butler still finds herself needing a bit of extra cash.

"Every sale that I make really helps go towards bills because I don't know, rent is insane right now. I work in real estate and I can't even imagine ever buying a house right now," Butler said.

Many Canadians are finding themselves in the same boat, turning to side hustles to make up for stagnating wages and the high cost of living. 

Sari Cantor, a partner with Recruiting in Motion, has seen an uptick in side hustles recently, with ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft being some of the most popular options as they allow for flexibility in scheduling.

"The biggest challenge is that salaries and hourly rates and compensation haven't kept up with inflation," Cantor said. "So it has to be something that truly can be done outside of hours and not another full-time job that you're trying to cram in. Something that might only be 30 or 40 minutes a day that you have to dedicate to it."

For Butler, her dice-making side hustle requires much more time and effort.

"Honestly, the hands-on time per set of dice can be upwards of six to seven hours. I have a full-time job that makes a pretty good salary, and even then, over 50 per cent of that take-home just goes towards living."

A recent H&R Block survey revealed that 28 per cent of Canadians are now taking on side hustle jobs, up from 13 per cent just a year ago. The survey also showed that 85 per cent of Canadians believe inflation is not keeping pace with regular income, and 44 per cent of those taking on side hustles are not risking declaring income from those jobs. Top Stories

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