Granted, a bachelor’s degree will land you a good job with respectable pay. It gets even better if you have post-graduate education like a master’s degree. It can add at least $10,000 more and probably give you a chance to land a promotion.
But other equally nice jobs can pay well even if you have just completed a high school diploma. With some training and experience, you can transform these into a full-time career or even a business.
1. Tax Preparer
Contrary to what most people think, a tax preparer doesn’t have to be an accountant or attorney unless they want unlimited representation rights. This means that they can represent their clients beyond tax preparation and filing. They can deal with the IRS for activities like appeals, audits, and payments and collections.
The most basic requirement for a tax preparer is a high school diploma and equivalent. A good math aptitude is great since you will be dealing with numbers. More than anything, though, you should know the taxation law at the state and federal levels.
You can check out a guide to becoming a tax preparer to prepare for the job and receive other credentials depending on the state where you practice.
Nevertheless, being a tax preparer comes with good benefits. First, you can be an independent practitioner and be busy only on certain months (tax season). This way, you can pursue other things for the rest of the year. Second, entry-level tax preparers could earn around $45,000 a year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
2. Pet Sitter
Do you love pets and have enough space at home? Then you can be a pet sitter. This is currently one of the most in-demand businesses because many Americans are adopting furry companions.
According to a survey by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), about 67 percent of US households or over 80 million families owned a pet between 2019 and 2020. And they’re spending money on these animals. On average, they spend at least $110 a month.
As much as they love to bring these animals with them everywhere, sometimes they have to be left alone for days. Boarding centers can be expensive, charging as much as $50 a night depending on the pet. For this reason, many pet owners are always looking for alternatives.
As a pet sitter, your role is to keep the pets company until their owners come back. You’re in charge of feeding, cleaning their poop, and even walking them for some exercise. Some pet parents may also request daily updates or even videos of their dogs and cats.
In return, you may charge $30 per night or $250 a week, depending on the number of pets you have to look after or if you are also taking care of other animals. You may charge more if you have to stay in their house instead.
3. Airbnb Manager
To be a landlord doesn’t require any college degree, but the opportunity is lucrative. It can help you generate passive income, which means you can earn money with the least effort. If you want flexibility, however, you can become an Airbnb manager instead.
In this position, you may manage your own property, renting it for a couple of nights or longer stays (a month or more, for a more stable income). The average income varies by state.
In Arizona, for instance, the average annual earning was $25,000 in 2020, about $4,000 higher than in the previous year. Meanwhile, in California, it can be as much as $32,000.
The secret to a higher income is to acquire more properties under your name. You can also manage the booking and checking-out processes of other Airbnb owners in the area in exchange for a fixed fee or a commission.
4. Social Media Specialist
A huge part of any digital marketing strategy is social media. Because of its popularity, influence, and accessibility, it can have one of the highest rates in terms of brand awareness and engagement.
The good news is becoming a social media marketer doesn’t require any specialized degree in marketing. You need not even have a high school diploma. Still, you need to be adept in using the tools, communicating with your clients, designing visuals, managing accounts, doing analytics, and providing social media content, among others.
In turn, social media experts could earn about $54,000 a year. They also can be independent contractors, work with agencies, or build their own team.
These jobs don’t mean that education doesn’t mean anything. By all means, learn as much as you can. However, they should remind you that not having a college degree doesn’t make you a lost cause. There are good jobs you can do today.