Last Updated February 12th, 2019

What Kind of Schedule Should You Expect When You Work at Home?

What Kind of Schedule Should You Expect When You Work at Home?

One of the major reasons people want to work at home is to have a flexible schedule. The problem is that not all home based jobs are as flexible as you might hope. Some are downright strict about their scheduling in fact. When you work from home for someone else, your schedule is often subject to their needs. Some have more flexible needs, while others need more of a routine from you.

Full Time, Regular Business Hours Work

Some employers will expect you not only work full time, but to stick to regular business hours, starting about 8 or so in the morning, finishing around 5. Things such as picking the kids up from school that many people want to do when they work at home, may not be possible at these jobs. Childcare of some sort is probably a necessity, so that you won’t have too many distractions. Then again, that’s a good idea for most work at home positions.

The good: You know when you’ll work. You might sometimes have overtime, but that’s true at many jobs. You’re working full time, but you don’t have to worry about horrible traffic during your commute.

The bad: It’s not flexible. You can’t decide to start work when it pleases you.

work at home scheduling

Full Time, Off Hours Work

Some jobs are full time, but the hours are nontraditional, maybe late night or early morning, but still a fairly regular schedule. These jobs can be great if they match with your preferred work hours or make it possible for you to work when the kids are asleep rather than pay for childcare.

The good: If you need to work slightly nontraditional hours but also want a predictable schedule, you may enjoy working an off hours schedule.

This may be a help if you need to drop children off at school or pick them up, or if you just like working different hours from the traditional schedule.

The bad: It may involve working overnight, which may not suit you. The schedule may be set up more to accommodate people working at the main office rather than remote workers wherever they may be.

Full Time, Flexible Hours

Other employers want a full time schedule out of you, but when you work may be more up to you. If you need to change things up, they don’t mind so long as your work gets done. There may still be scheduled meetings that you have to attend online. Communication and collaboration are important, after all.

The good: If you have obligations during the day, you can still meet them, so long as you work enough hours. That’s great for parents of school-age children, so long as the kids don’t interrupt you while you’re working.

The bad: Flexible hours doesn’t always mean flexible in your favor. Sometimes it means you work the hours your employer needs you, not the hours you want to work.

Part Time, Regular Hours

Many part time work at home jobs still require that you work a regular schedule. You have your days and times to work, and that’s when you work. If you need to change your schedule, you have to plan in advance with your boss, just like with an outside the home job.

The good: You know when you have to be at work.

The bad: The hours your employer wants you to work may not be the hours you would choose if you had the option.

wahm schedule

Part Time, Changing Schedule

Some part time work at home jobs expect you to follow a schedule, but you choose the schedule on a weekly or other basis. Once you’ve signed up for hours, you’re expected to work them, and if you need to make a change, make sure you clear it with management.

The good: If you get to pick your hours, you can select ones that work with your needs. Want to chaperone a field trip? Sign up for a schedule that allows it, and hope you get it.

The bad: You may not always get the schedule you want. Some employers may not be all that understanding if you have to make a change in the schedule you selected.

Part Time, Flexible Hours

Other part time home based jobs are more flexible. You may not have to report your schedule, just so long as you get the work done. Sometimes all you have to do is sign on when you’re ready to work, making for a super flexible job. If you can’t commit to a regular schedule, that’s a great thing.

The good: You need to run an errand? Do it! Work when you want.

The bad: Some jobs that let you pick your own schedule only have limited work available. If there’s nothing available when you sign on, you’re out of luck. It may be difficult to earn enough money in these cases.

100% Flexible Hours

Full time, part time, what’s that? Who cares about schedules?

Some jobs aren’t much concerned with when or how much you work, just that the work gets done. The challenge may be getting work when you’re ready, as some jobs like this have a bunch of employees, and if there’s no work available when you want to work, that’s just your tough luck.

The good: You can set up the schedule you want. That’s great if you prefer to break your day up more than usual.

The bad: They expect you to get how much done? By when? Sometimes the demands are high when you’re given a lot of control over your schedule. It’s also easy to work too many or too few hours for the needs of your job. Then again, you may be competing with others for available work,

Also, remember that some flexible jobs are flexible in favor of your employer’s needs, not yours. They may change your schedule to suit their needs, not yours.

schedule planning

On Call

Not all jobs really have a schedule as such. Sometimes you’re on call. There should be some sort of schedule for the days and times that you’re on call, but they may be pretty broad, depending on how much work comes of being called on. You have to be ready to work when your employer needs you.

The good: You know when you’re going to be on call in most cases, so you can plan around it to a degree.

The bad: You never know when you’re going to work or how much you’ll need to do. If a call comes in the middle of the night, you still have to handle it.

Know What’s Right For You

When you accept a work at home job, be sure that you can handle the schedule expected. Few things lose you a job like being unable to handle the expected workload.

Think carefully about what kind of schedule you can handle. Be realistic about the demands you expect on your time, especially if you have children or aging parents to care for. There are situations where working outside the home makes more sense, even if you want to work at home with all your heart.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated January 15th, 2019

11 Super Flexible Sites Where You Can Earn Money Online

11 Super Flexible Sites Where You Can Earn Money Online

How badly do you want to earn money from home? Maybe you need the money desperately. Maybe you just need a side hustle. But when you need to earn money online around your schedule, it helps to know which sites offer the flexible opportunities you need.

But wanting to earn money online with a flexible schedule doesn’t mean you need to accept low pay. You should know what your time is worth so that you aren’t accepting absurdly low pay for your efforts. There are lots of ways to make the most of the skills you have to offer.

These sites vary in what you’ll be doing, how much you’ll make for it and how fast they’ll pay. None of these pay in points toward a drawing or other rewards – you deserve real money when you do the work.

I also considered whether it’s likely to pay enough to be worth your time. I really don’t like to see people earning under minimum wage just because they’re working online. That’s not a good way to build an income, whether you want to live on it or just supplement what you already earn.

Always be aware of the signs of a work at home scam when you’re looking at ways to earn money online. You want to make money, not lose it.

computer and coffee

1. Upwork

Elance and Odesk have merged, and now their main platform is called Upwork. The old Odesk site redirects to Upwork, while Elance is still available. However, they intend to go to a single platform eventually, so if this is the route you want to take to freelancing, I would suggest simply signing up with Upwork.

Upwork is a general freelance site. You can offer many kinds of work as a freelancer there, such as web or mobile developers, designers, writers, customer service and more.

Upwork does not accept all applicants. If they feel there is not sufficient work in their marketplace, they will decline your application.

For this reason, I suggest that you list a range of skills. There are tons of writers on Upwork, for example, so you need to stand out as more than just a basic writer to get your application approved if that’s the kind of work you’re looking for. There’s a post with some great advice on how to get your Upwork application accepted here.

2. People Per Hour

People Per Hour is a freelance site with a focus on web design, development, content and promotion. You can search for jobs and send proposals as you do on other sites, but you can also offer Hourlies, which are fixed priced jobs you offer that can be started quickly and completed in as little as an hour.

3. Etsy

If crafting is more your thing, you can open a shop on Etsy and sell them. You can sell handmade or vintage items there. Just take a look at the many things people sell there and think about what you can do. You have to be careful about making up not only the cost of the items you sell, but your time spent making or finding them when you sell on Etsy, but if you’re good at it, you can make a good profit there.

There are plenty of books and ebooks available that can help you get a good start at Etsy, such as Your Etsy Profit Machine or Etsy Empire. As with any business, there are ways to make your early days easier as you learn all the ins and outs of it.

computer and flowers


Did you know that there are flexible teaching jobs out there? VIPKID doesn’t require a ton of experience, although they do expect you to have a Bachelor’s degree as well as at least one year of experience in teaching, mentoring or tutoring.

Perhaps the most challenging part of teaching for VIPKID is that the peak hours are often in the middle of the night. There’s a little more range on the weekends. Your students will be in China, so your availability has to be when they’re ready to learn.

Pay ranges from $14-22 an hour, and it’s a six month contract. You choose your own schedule. They recommend being available for at least 7.5 hours a week. Students book with you, so the more available you are, the more classes you will teach.

5. Appen

Appen hires people as social media evaluators. You have to commit to 4 hours a day, 5 days a week, with at least one weekend day, according to a current opening listing. The work is improving newsfeed relevancy on social media websites.

6. Lyft And Other Driving Jobs

Lyft and other driving jobs are extremely popular. It’s easier to earn money from them in some areas than in others, as there are simply more people needing you to drive them or run errands.

The great part about these opportunities is that you decide when you’re open to accepting opportunities. You don’t need a schedule as such, although there are better and worse times to be driving. Certain times may even be worth a premium.

The biggest challenge for some may be the age requirements for the vehicle you drive. If your car is too old, you simply may not qualify, regardless of how well you’ve maintained it.

Make sure you consider the cost of gas and maintenance when considering whether a drive is worth it. Sometimes it comes out on the low side.

laptop on desk

7. Boost Media

Boost Media is a good choice if you’re expert with improving ad performance with either copywriting or optimized images. Advertisers hold contests for ads they want improved, and you get paid if they pick yours. Yes, this means sometimes you’ll write or create something that won’t earn anything, but over time you’ll get a better feel for what works. Apply using their “Write For Us” link to get started.

8. Fiverr

What do you have to offer that someone would pay $5 for? Fiverr allows you to offer a wide variety of products or services that you charge $5 for. They keep a share, so that is not exactly your pay, however. Anything you offer at that price needs to be something you can fulfill with minimal time and effort; however, you can charge more for addon services.

Some people offer some pretty unusual things on Fiverr, so much so that there’s an entire category called “Fun & Bizarre.” Prank calls, wild rants, psychic services and much more are listed there. You don’t have to stick to serious business offerings. You can have some fun.

9. Gigwalk

Gigwalk is a different kind of job. You download an app to your Android or iOS device, register an account and do gigs in your area. You might be sent to verify that a product is on the shelf in a particular store, check on a marketing event, and so forth, things that need to be done locally but that might be otherwise inconvenient for a company to check on themselves. Reports often need to include geotagged photos. Gigs can take from minutes to hours, and the pay range reflects that.

typing chart

10. TranscribeMe

If you want to try transcription, TranscribeMe is a highly flexible way to get a bit of work when you want it. The audio you will be transcribing is less than a minute long. Pay is per audio hour, and you must keep that in mind when considering what you’re earning. It may be a bit challenging to get a good work flow going with such short files. You must have the Chrome browser to access the work hub.

The pay is not good enough for a professional transcriber, but if you’re just starting out, this is a place to try out for a time.

11. Quicktate

Quicktate is another transcription site, with audio ranging from a couple minutes to a few hours. There is a $15 fee for a background check, which is a negative, but Quicktate has a long record as a paying employer. Transcription work may involve voicemail, memos, legal or medical files, conference calls and so forth. They’re associated with iDictate, which you may also apply for if you test well enough at Quicktate. Your hours are completely up to you.

As with TranscribeMe, pay is not very good, but when you’re a beginning transcriptionist looking for work, it’s an okay start.

There Are Other Flexible Ways To Earn Money Online

While working at home is not always flexible, there are many other ways to earn money online on your own schedule.

Blogging is popular, but you never know if your blog will earn money or not. It’s super easy to start your own blog, however, and I strongly recommend you do so if it interests you at all. So long as you understand the risks it’s worth a try. It might just work out.

Freelance writing is another option. There are lots of companies that use freelance writers, beyond what I could ever keep up with on this site. And of course there are all kinds of freelance opportunities out there.

If you’re looking for still more work at home jobs, take a look at the Home With The Kids job board. There are hundreds of possibilities there, with new ones added on weekdays.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated January 2nd, 2019

Your Work at Home Job Hunt – Are You Prepared?

Your Work at Home Job Hunt - Are You Prepared?

If you want to work at home, you need to be ready for your work at home job hunt, just as you would for any other kind of job. Your search will generally go better when you plan things out in advance and are generally prepared to apply for the jobs you find. There are several strategies which can help you get ready.

Know What Kinds Of Work at Home Jobs You Want

I often have people email me asking how to find a work at home job. Asked like that, the question lumps all work at home jobs together and is not a good start. “Work at home job” indicates where you would be working, not what you will be doing. It’s rarely the most important consideration when preparing for your search, even when home is where you really want to work and you have good reasons for that preference.

What matters more is the kind of work you are interested in and qualified for. Employers won’t be all that interested in why you want to work at home, although they might ask in an interview. Far more important to them will be the skills and qualifications you bring to the job. Figuring out what you want to do prepares you to figure out your qualifications in the next step.


You want to work at home, but all of your experience is in retail and you don’t have a college degree. What kind of work at home jobs do you qualify for?

Customer service jobs may be a good fit if you can set up a comfortable and quiet home office. The time you’ve spent dealing with customers in a retail setting may prepare you for an entry level customer service job at home.

If you type well, you may also decide to consider a general transcription job. You can get training online or try one of the lower paying entry level companies that care relatively little about experience.

Figure Out Your Qualifications

job hunt planning

In some ways, your qualifications matter more when you want to work at home than when you want to work outside the home. Training home based workers has different challenges, as does supervising them. This means that employers want people who are ready to work at home without a ton of direct supervision.

Add in how many people really want to work at home for various reasons, and things get pretty competitive.

Review your experience from other jobs. What makes you qualified for the jobs you want? What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Some work at home jobs require special training before you apply. Medical transcription and medical coding are two popular options that require you to get training on your own first. Some jobs also require certifications and a couple of years experience. Other jobs, such as software development, may require a college degree or significant experience. Be realistic about what you’re qualified for and what you can get qualified for.


Put the word out that you’re looking for work. Friends, family, former and current coworkers, your alumni association, members of your church, parents of your children’s friends, neighbors, members of any organization you belong to – all can be helpful in your work at home job hunt. You never know who will have information about job openings.

Be clear about your employment goals and be ready to tell people about them. You may have only a few seconds in person, so have your pitch ready.

Include LinkedIn in your networking efforts. You might be surprised by some of the connections you can find once you’ve started. Make sure you understand how to use LinkedIn. Be professional – LinkedIn isn’t about your personal life. Participate in groups, be valuable.

Write a Better Resume

job searching

How does your resume look? Is it ready to send off to employers? When was the last time you updated it?

Here’s the thing about resumes. You should have a resume that you can readily adapt to each job you apply for. Pay special attention to the exact skills and qualifications the employer is looking for. Many companies have a computer sort resumes before a human ever sees them, and having the right keywords for the job improves the chances that a human will consider yours.

Read up on what makes a good resume. There are plenty of books on resume writing, and many are available in Kindle editions so you can access it right away.

The resume you create for your work at home job hunt should show that you’re ready to work at home. Make sure your resume emphasizes relevant work at home skills as well as the skills the job requires.

Plan Your Cover Letter

Like your resume, your cover letter should be customized for each application. Plan out a basic one, and take the time to edit it for each job.

Your cover letter should be an introduction to you and your skills. Exactly how you should write your cover letter will depend in part on the industry you want to work in. As with resumes, it can pay to read up on what makes a good cover letter.

Some online job applications will not have space for a cover letter, and if that’s the case, don’t try to figure out how to send one. Go with the information requested by the employer.

Know The Work At Home Scams

work at home scams

Work at home scams are a constant problem for job seekers. Many prey on people who need work badly enough that they don’t catch the warning signs. Others are so sneaky that even an alert job seeker may have difficulty spotting the.

Start out by knowing the common warning signs:

  • You have to pay to apply: While some legit companies charge for a background check, scams may ask for money for a variety of reasons. Make sure you don’t pay when you shouldn’t.
  • Interview is on Google Hangouts: Very few legitimate job interviews happen on Google Hangouts.
  • Contact email is a free email address: Most legitimate jobs will have you contact them through an email address with the company’s domain name.
  • Job cannot be found through their site: Most work at home jobs can be found through the employer’s website. If it’s listed on another site and the contact information cannot be verified as belonging to that company, find another way to confirm that you have found a legitimate position with them.
  • Pay is too good: Scams may appeal to your greed by offering oddly high pay for the work required.
  • They will send you a check for “expenses:” Some scams will claim that they will send you a check to cover equipment expenses. While some companies will help you get equipment, this can also be a check cashing scam.

These are just some of the ways to detect work at home scams.

If none of these warning signs apply, but your gut feeling is that it’s a scam, pay attention. You may have noticed something you don’t fully understand. Do extra research to ensure that you’ve found a legitimate opportunity.

Some scams are so sneaky that you may not spot them until the interview. Be alert even when you reach that stage with potential employers.

Find Your Preferred Employers

There may be some employers you would really like to work for. Find their website and where they post job openings, both on and off their website. If you have any connections with people who work there already, on LinkedIn or other websites, let them know what you’re looking for. You might hear about openings before they’re posted if you’re lucky and have done a good job networking.

But don’t forget to look at other employers too. Just because you like what some companies have to offer doesn’t mean you can afford to ignore less ideal companies. Having a job is usually better than having no job. It may even make you look more appealing to other employers.

Discover the Best Keywords For Your Work at Home Job Hunt

application form

Don’t rely only on the employers you’ve already heard of. Figure out the best keywords to help you find other opportunities you’re qualified for. “Work at home” is not the best keyword for home based work much of the time, although it has its uses. Too many scams use it for it to be your best primary keyword. “Telecommute,” “virtual” and “remote” are often better. Combine them with the kind of work you want; don’t use them alone.

Your job skills, for example, can make great keywords for your work at home job hunt. This is especially true on job boards.

A PHP web developer, for example, may want to use “PHP” as a keyword in their search, rather than web developer. This way, they’ll find positions where the employer is looking for the exact skill they offer.

The most common job title for your skills may work as well. If you’re looking for a customer service work at home job, odds are that you’ll find most listed as “customer service,” if not in the job title, then somewhere in the description.

Don’t be scared off by the fancy titles some companies give common jobs. It doesn’t matter if the job title calls you some kind of guru – the real question you must answer is “can you do this job?”

Choose Good Job Boards

There are plenty of job boards out there to help you with your job search. The work at home job board here at Home With the Kids is free. Other job boards such as Dice and Simply Hired can also provide good leads, although you will need to sort out the jobs that actually offer you the opportunity to work at home.

You can also consider paid job boards such as FlexJobs. The advantage to such sites is that they may do more screening of employers, to make sure they’re legitimate. A good paid job board will be focused on what you need from it – work at home jobs, for example – and have a clear refund policy in case you find the service unsatisfactory.

Be Sensible About Your Goals

apply now

Do not set a daily goal of so many applications or anything like that. It’s a waste of time to apply to jobs just to meet some arbitrary goal you’ve set yourself.

Your goals should have more to do with accomplishing a successful job hunt. Some days you might spend several hours reviewing job listings and applying to interesting positions. Other days you may not find much you haven’t looked at already. An arbitrary goal may push you to put too little effort into some applications or apply to jobs that aren’t really relevant to your skills.

Taking these steps to prepare yourself for your work at home job hunt can improve your chances of success. It may take some time – most job hunts do – but with persistence and a good match of your skills to the jobs you apply, you might land the job you want.

Be Ready For Interviews

Preparing for interviews is a vital part of any job hunt. When you’re doing a remote job interview from home, you need to prepare in ways you may not have considered.

Remote interviews may be conducted by phone or on a service such as Skype. In either case, make sure you’re ready for interviews when they happen.

For phone interviews, this means having a quiet place to talk where no one will interrupt you. You will need to talk to everyone else in the house about what that means. It looks unprofessional if you allow interruptions during an interview.

On the plus side, you don’t have to worry about what an interviewer thinks of your physical appearance during a phone interview. You may still find it useful to dress professionally for psychological reasons, but it’s up to you.

If your interview is on Skype or any other video service, you should definitely dress professionally. You should also test your equipment so that you know you’re completely ready. You won’t look good if you agree to a video interview and then have trouble getting your camera or microphone to work for the interview.

Be prepared to discuss your work at home setup. Potential employers may need to know the details of your home office space, the kind of equipment you have, and how you plan to deal with distractions.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated December 28th, 2018

34 Legitimate Ways To Make Money From Home

34 Legitimate Ways To Make Money Fr

Once upon a time, it wasn’t that easy to make money at home. Sure, you could babysit, join a network marketing opportunity, make crafts for sale at fairs, or find one of the very few other work at home opportunities, but there wasn’t a whole lot out there. But now there are so many more ways to make money from home.

You’ve got options.

But that doesn’t mean finding the right way to make money from home will be a fairy tale. You have to put in the work if you want to earn significant money.

There are things you can do now that will allow you to earn anywhere from a few bucks a month to a full time income. Some come with significant risks while others are close to a sure thing.

Take a look at these options I’ve compiled for you. They range from things that may earn you just a little money each month to significant money earners. It’s up to you to choose what’s right for you and to make it work.

Quick & Easy Ways To Make Money From Home

apple computer desk

These are the things you can do that probably won’t earn a lot of money for you, but are simple enough that you may find them worth your time.

On the other hand, you can waste too much time on the quick and easy ways to make money from home. If doing these things keeps you from focusing on something that earns better money from you, it’s time to reconsider what you’re doing.

With most of these options, I’d be surprised if any of them earned you over $50 a month. They aren’t intended to be full time jobs or even serious side gigs. But you can have a little fun with them and the money doesn’t hurt. You may even get lucky and get more than expected from these on occasion.

1. Money Back Apps

There are a number of apps you can download that will help you get money back on things you’ve bought. I consider this more of a way to save money than to earn it, but it’s kind of a toss up for what it should be called.

Your typical money back app requires that you photograph the entire receipt for their review. Depending on the offer, they may require that certain items be on that receipt. Once they’ve confirmed that you meet the qualifications, you get money from them.

Usually, you have to reach a minimum, $10 or so, before you can request payout. If it’s a good app, this is not difficult for most people. If the app requires you to buy certain things and they aren’t the kinds of things you tend to buy, however, it can be difficult.

Ibotta – I like Ibotta fairly well. One of the great features they offer is the ability to link certain store loyalty cards to their service. If you select an offer, you may have to complete a short task for it, such as watching a video. Once you’ve done that, you qualify for the offer. Buy the item. If your store loyalty card is linked, that’s all you have to do. If it’s not, simply photograph the receipt using the app and send it in for approval.

Ibotta offers an immediate $10 bonus if you sign up through a referral link. My referral code is gflmbgj, and yes, I get a chance at a bonus. You can also use this link.

Ibotta covers more than just groceries, although that is a large part of it. There are some deals available, however, in travel, clothing, restaurants and more. If you’re going to spend the money anyway, you may as well see what you can get back from apps like this.

Shopkick – Shopkick started out as an app that rewarded you just for visiting stores. They now also allow you to earn points (called kicks) by purchasing certain items and scanning your receipt.

Makeena – If you want a greater focus on healthy foods, Makeena may be right for you. Their focus is on organic and eco friendly products. They’re relatively new, but the reviews look good.

Checkout51 – This app is much like Ibotta, but they may give you more opportunities to earn by buying fresh fruits and vegetables. It doesn’t have as many offers, however.

Swagbucks – Offers points for shopping through their links. You can also earn points by completing surveys, watching videos and more.

There are plenty more cash back apps you can consider – this is a mere sample. Be sure to check reviews before using one so that you know it’s worth the time and effort.

flower computer

2. Surveys

Most people make very little money from surveys. The hardest part is finding surveys that pay cash rather than points toward a drawing or other such things.

There are also a fair number of survey scams out there. If they want you to pay to participate in a survey, it’s probably a scam.

If you want to give surveys a try, don’t expect big things. When I’ve done them, I’ve found that it is challenging to get onto the surveys that pay well enough for the time involved. They fill up fast, so you must keep a sharp eye out for them.

If you want to give it a try, check out these companies:

3. Fitness Apps That Pay

Some apps will pay you to lose weight or otherwise work on living a healthier lifestyle. They may track your weight, have you take surveys, or have you record your eating habits.

Some apps will have you essentially bet a certain amount of money that you will meet your goal within a specified time frame. Do that, and you get a payout. Otherwise, you lose that money.

Here are some apps to consider. Be sure you understand what is required to earn money before you spend anything.

4. Use Bing

If you use Bing as your search engine, you can earn a small amount of money each month. It’s pretty minor, maybe $5-10 a month.

5. Be An Online Juror pays people to review cases for attorneys. The pay isn’t great, $5-10 per case, and you may only get a case a month in many areas.

6. Microtasks

Microtask sites such as Amazon’s Mechanical Turk site allow you to earn money by doing simple tasks. You may give your opinion of a website, compare items, categorize something, or do something else that takes a short time.

The disadvantage to microtask sites is that you will rarely earn even minimum wage doing them. They’re not my top choice by a long shot. But they are super flexible.

Fiverr is also a sort of microtask site, but you set the tasks you’re willing to do yourself. You can also set larger tasks on there once you’ve proven yourself, so this may go from a tiny bit of money to a significant source of work if you find the right niche for your skills.

Side Gigs & Serious Money You Can Make From Home

rainbow computer

It’s amazing how much money you can make from home if you really try. I’m keeping the side gigs and the serious money makers together for one simple reason – they can be one and the same, depending on how much time and effort you put into them.

7. Transcription Jobs

Doing transcription at home can be anything from a “work when you can” job to a serious, full time position. My first work at home job was as a medical transcriptionist. I did it for years, until my blogging income was enough to allow me to quit.

General transcription is easier to get started than medical transcription, as it doesn’t take so much training. Some companies will hire you with no experience or training at all. That’s pretty nice when you aren’t sure you’ll like the job.

That said, try the Transcribe Anywhere course if you want to become a transcriptionist. It will help you do better as a transcriptionist and become more prepared for what the work really involves. It starts as a free mini course so you know what you’re getting into before you pay.

Transcription is a much more reliable way to type from home than doing data entry. Very, very few companies need remote data entry workers.

If you would rather do medical coding than general coding, you’ll need training that gives you the medical background you need. I recommend the course offered by Career Step. They do a great job of preparing you for a career in medical transcription.

8. Medical Coding

Medical coding can be a challenging job to get into. You will need to get training through a company such as Career Step before you qualify for any jobs, and you may need to work in an office for a few years before you qualify to work from home.

That said, there’s solid demand for medical coders and the pay is good. There are quite a few companies that regularly seek out medical coders who are ready to work from home.

9. Blogging

Blogging is a popular way to earn money from home for very simple reasons. It’s cheap, and not all that difficult. Plus, you can see all these other people who are earning amazing money from running their own blog.

Most of you aren’t going to succeed so well as all that. But it’s so easy to try, that many people give it a shot. You never know, right?

I have a series of blog posts on starting a blog. If you want the short version, get an idea, get hosting and a domain name, install WordPress and get started. I like A2 Hosting, but I’ve also used HostGator and been happy with them. Both are affordable and provide excellent service.

What can you blog about? Just about anything. Here are some ideas:

  • Parenting
  • Travel
  • Food
  • Hobbies
  • Personal finance
  • Technology
  • Career advice

These are just a start. If you have an idea for a blog, you can probably run with it. Trying is easy. Success is the challenge.

The one caution I would give is to be sure you know about any laws relating to your topic. If you give health advice, for example, it is possible to get into legal trouble if you can’t back up any claims you make.

But how do you make money blogging?

There are a variety of ways. Here are a few:

  • Affiliate marketing
  • Ad networks such as AdSense
  • Selling ad placements
  • Be a product ambassador
  • Selling your own products

10. YouTube

Have you heard about how much money some people make from creating videos and posting them on YouTube? It’s pretty amazing. Just check out this list of top earners.

Odds are that you’ll never be on that list or earn even close to what these people do, but it’s fun to dream. Most will make only a small amount, if anything at all, but if you find that you enjoy making videos and can build an audience, you have a fun way to earn some side money.

People post product reviews, unboxing videos, play with toys, record themselves playing video games, share cat videos, make how-to videos, and much more. It’s a great opportunity to make a hobby into something more.

You may need a thick skin, however. If you have the comments turned on for your videos, you will learn how awful some people are.

bright office

11. Sell Products On Etsy, eBay, Amazon, etc.

Do you make beautiful crafts? Maybe you’re great at finding things you can sell at a profit. Whatever you do, selling online can be a great way to earn money online.

Etsy’s focus is on handmade and vintage items, while you can sell anything on eBay or Amazon. Amazon also has a special section for handmade items.

On Etsy, you can also sell downloadable items. Some people make and sell printable coloring pages, for example. This can be much easier than selling physical products that you have to ship.

On Amazon and eBay, you can also sell some of the extra stuff you have around the house, so long as you mark it used. Some items will be worth a surprising amount. Plus you don’t have to get up early to sell them at a garage sale.

Dropshipping is an option as well. Find a manufacturer who offers dropshipping, and list the products for sale. Shopify is a great tool for people looking to start a dropshipping business.

12. Freelance Writing

If you like to write but blogging isn’t your thing (or even if it is but you need more income), consider freelance writing.

There are a lot of places that accept work from freelance writers. It may be somewhat difficult to get onto freelance boards such as Upwork as a freelance writer because there are so many writers already there, but they aren’t your only option. I have a list of more than 100 places to find freelance writing gigs, and that’s just a start for places to go.

If you really want to join a freelance board as a writer, make sure that you have something that makes you stand out. Don’t be the same as every other freelance writer out there. Have a skill that makes you stand out from the hordes. It will help. Try some of these boards to get started.

You can also write resumes. You will need to know how to craft a resume that gets attention from employers. It can take time to build this skill, but once you know what you’re doing, you can use it for your clients and for any jobs you want in the future.

13. Other Freelance Work

While freelance writing is hugely popular, there are many other opportunities to freelance out there. Just about any home based job out there can be done as a freelancer. Bookkeepers, accountants, graphic designers, website designers, software developers and more can all do freelance work.

If you want to do other kinds of freelance work, you can seek it out on your own (small, local business often need freelancers), or sign up with sites such as these.

14. Proofreading

Do you catch every mistake made in every book or article you read? Do these mistakes drive you up the wall? You might enjoy working from home as a proofreader.

Proofreading jobs can require extensive education in some cases. You will find that some opportunities require a graduate degree plus experience in the field. Others require less education and experience.

If you want to consider proofreading from home, check out the training offered at Proofread Anywhere. You will learn how to find proofreading jobs that you can do from home.

computer dream

15. Virtual Assistant

Becoming a virtual assistant is a hugely popular option right now as there’s so much demand. Small companies often need just a little help with aspects of their business, but not enough to hire a regular employee for it. A virtual assistant can help fill in that gap.

Check sites such as Zirtual and Upwork for opportunities, but also seek out people who need a virtual assistant on your own.

If you aren’t sure what to do as a virtual assistant, check out the Horkey Handbook. It will help you get the start you need for success.

16. Website Testing

It was kind of a toss up for me whether to put this down as a side gig or in the quick & easy section. While there are a number of website testing sites out there, most people don’t earn a lot from them. It can be hard to snag test spots when they’re available on many sites.

On the other hand, you may find that you enjoy testing enough to look into career options. It may require more education, but you could enjoy testing enough that you move on to build a career in QA. There are a number of companies that have QA positions from home available.

There are several sites you can sign up with to do website testing. Try these for starters:

17. Software Engineering

There are a number of companies that hire remote software engineers, either on a freelance or full time basis. It’s a great choice for remote work, because there are so many online collaboration tools available. You can keep up with the rest of your team without being in the same building.

18. Online Tutor Or Teacher

There are all kinds of sites out there looking for online tutors or teachers. They can range from tutoring companies you’ve heard of for years to online charter schools to teaching English to students in other countries.

Many will require that you have experience as a teacher or even a teaching credential in your state. Others don’t. Make sure you meet the qualifications for the positions you apply for. No place will hire someone who lacks a credential if one is required.

VIPKID is a popular choice for teaching English to students in China. They require a year of teaching experience, but that experience can include homeschooling. You must, however, have at least a Bachelor’s degree. The pay ranges from $14-22 an hour, with each class running for about a half hour. It’s not a bad place to start.

Here are some other sites to consider:

Alternatively, you can sell lesson plans on Teachers Pay Teachers.

19. Evaluate Search Engines

Companies such as Appen and Lionbridge hire people to evaluate search engine results. It’s extremely flexible work, and you can help search engines ensure the quality of their results.

hustle mug

20. Make Deliveries

Grocery and meal delivery services have become quite common. And while you aren’t doing these deliveries at home, you do get a very flexible schedule, making it great for those who only want to work a few hours.

The catch with these is making sure the pay rate is worth your time. Will your per delivery rate be enough, or will you rely on tips? Consider the pay rate as you look at these companies.

Many of these opportunities are available only in certain regions. If they don’t have opportunities in your area, move onto the next.

21. Drive

Another alternative is to drive to earn money. You can work for companies such as Uber or Lyft. Some people do this full time, while others just log on when it’s convenient.

If you can pass a background check, you can also consider HopSkipDrive, which focuses on driving kids places.

Sometimes you can combine driving jobs, such as working for Lyft and a grocery delivery service at the same time. You can then pick whichever one has a job available at the time you’re ready to work.

22. Start A Daycare

Are up for watching other people’s kids? Starting your own daycare can be a great way to earn money at home while caring for your own family. The hours can be long, and the pay may not be great, but it can be quite worthwhile.

Check for licensing requirements in your area. Home daycares are subject to many regulations and inspections. Know what you’re getting into before you get started.

If you want something more casual, offer your babysitting services. The hours will vary quite a bit more, and probably include a lot more nights, but it’s a good option if such hours suit you. You can list your services on sites such as

23. Petsitting

If you love animals, petsitting is a great option. You can use an app such as Rover to offer your service as a petsitter or dog walker in your area.

If you want to go independent, of course, you can also put up signs in your area or advertise your services in local Facebook groups to find customers. Lots of people need occasional help caring for their pets.

Alternatively, work as a dog walker. Many owners need help getting their dogs out for a walk while they’re at work.

computer analytics

24. Customer Service

Customer service jobs are one of the classics for working at home right now. They have some requirements you will need to be aware of, but they’re also usually pretty flexible.

The big requirement you need to be aware of is that most companies require that you have absolutely no background noise when you’re on the phone. In other words, if you have small, noisy children in the house, it’s probably the wrong job for you.

A noise-canceling headset can help quite a bit, however. This can keep some of the incidental sounds in your area from getting you into trouble.

Customer service jobs can be seasonal. Companies such as Amazon need a lot more representatives during the holiday season. Other companies hire for regular positions.

25. Graphic Design

There are a lot of options for people to work in graphic design from home. You can start out creating graphics for clients on Fiverr, earning a few bucks per design, or you can find a freelance or full time job working for a company.

26. Design Websites

If you know HTML, CSS, PHP and so forth, you may be able to work designing websites for clients. This can be a freelance gig as well as a full time job.

Some designers specialize in making WordPress themes. Once you know how WordPress themes are made, you can customize them for your clients with relative ease.

notebook stats

27. Translate Or Interpret

If you read, write and speak more than one language, you can work at home as a translator or interpreter.

Some companies look for interpreters who can work over the phone. You may interpret for a patient speaking to their doctor, for example.

28. Social Media Manager

Social media is huge. That’s why lots of small businesses need help with it.

While there are courses you can take to learn how to manage social media marketing for clients, you’ll want to prove that you’re good. It’s hard to get hired as a social media manager if your best social media account has only a few hundred followers.

You have to prove that you can grow a social media following, and the best way to do that is to grow one yourself. You might even make some money with it using affiliate marketing.

Try this course on Udemy to get started: Social Media Management – The Complete 2018 Manager Bootcamp

29. Create An Online Course

Do you have a skill you can teach others? Platforms such as Udemy can help you sell a course teaching students how to do what you want to teach.

The advantage to this kind of site is that you can teach just about anything. Here are just some of the subjects I found glancing around on Udemy:

And the list goes on.

If you need inspiration, just visit the site and take a look. If all these people can come up with something to teach, surely you can as well!

Udemy courses are also great if there’s something you need to learn. You can improve your skills for any of your side gigs or update your skills for your job at your own pace.

30. Rent Out Extra Space On Airbnb

Do you have a vacation property or even an extra room in your home? You may be able to rent it out on Airbnb.

Just how worthwhile this is depends on where you live. Areas popular with vacationers will have higher demand than areas that don’t have much to bring people in.

marketing analytics

31. Sell Stock Photos

The demand for stock photos is huge these days. Bloggers and other marketers are always looking for great images.

While you can sell images from your own site, it may be easier to sell through sites such as Shutterstock, Adobe Stock, Alamy, Getty Images, and more. The site takes a cut of the sale, of course.

You must have exclusive rights to your photos, and you will need a model release if people can be recognized in your photo. Private property may also require a release.

32. Design T-Shirts And More

How are your artistic skills? If you love creating interesting designs, you may be able to sell them on t-shirts and other products. Here are a few sites that will print and sell your designs for you:

33. Write A Book

Time was that it was very difficult to get a book published. Sure, self publishing has always been an option, but now there are even easier options.

Amazon, for example, allows authors to create ebooks for the Kindle or for print on demand. You don’t have to find a publisher to accept your work. Some people make sales of their books regularly this way.

Books can be fiction or nonfiction, and of whatever length suits your needs.

34. Create An App

If you can do programming, you may be able to make some money by creating your own apps. Whether you design a game or make a more practical app, you can make money from it either by selling it directly or having a variety of in-app purchases available.

If your app makes it big, this can be quite profitable.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated December 10th, 2018

How To Work At Home With Kids: An Age By Age Guide

How to work at home with kids

Having kids is a major reason for people to decide to work at home. The idea of always being there for your kids and seeing them learn new things is so appealing. But the reality isn’t so pretty for most families. It’s hard to work at home with kids.

How you handle the issues that come from working at home with kids changes as the kids grow. Babies and toddlers will do very different things to your work schedules than teens will.

Work At Home With Kids: All Ages

Some things are true about being a work at home mom or dad no matter the age of your kids. The precise details may change, but the overall needs are about the same.

family hands

Get Help As Needed

I’ll give my number one piece of advice that works for all ages first: Get help when you need it!!

This may mean putting your kids in daycare or getting a mother’s helper or having your spouse help more than they have been. You may also be able to arrange a swap with other parents of young children.

If taking care of your kids is taking too much of your time that you could use to earn money from home, you need help.

Get it.

You may even need some help when your kids are in school or hit the teen years. Getting kids to and from school can eat up a lot of your time. You may also find that you need help if any of your kids struggle academically. It’s not easy to tutor your kids in a subject you don’t remember well yourself.

Flexible Schedules Are Best

The other thing you want to make working at home with kids much easier is a flexible schedule. There are few stages as kids grow up that a 9-5 schedule will work well for you. Most of the time, you want a flexible schedule if you’re going to work at home.

With babies and younger children, their needs are too unpredictable. There’s no way to set up a schedule that will work with their needs. They change too often.

But even when kids go off to school, a flexible schedule is best. How often do you think you will need to pick a sick kid up from school? What about minimum days? And they are going to want to have friends over to play sometimes!

All these things will mess with normal schedules. But if your job or home business allow you to be more flexible, these things won’t be as big a deal. You should be able to switch your schedule to handle such issues.

It also helps to have a list of quick things you can do when you know you’re going to be interrupted. There will be times when you know you have just a few minutes to yourself, and you can make those precious few minutes productive if you plan for it.

Eat Meals Together

As much as possible, eat meals with your kids. You need the break from work and they need your attention.

You don’t have to be the perfect family who eats every meal at the table, but do make sure you take the time to talk with each other during meals. This will be a great way to keep up with what your kids are doing as they get older. Start young and it will be a lifelong habit.

Be Fully Present

Whether you’re working in your home office or playing with your kids, put all your focus on that thing as much as possible. Be fully present for your kids and for your work.

What this means is that when it’s time to play with the kids, you aren’t thinking about work. You’re playing with the kids. Ignore the phone and don’t even think about peeking at your email or social media.

Depending on the age of your kids, it can be more difficult to focus fully on your work, but do the best you can. The more focused you are on your work, the more productive you will be.

Take Time Off Work For Special Things

Kids have a lot of special events in their lives. Some may not seem like that big a deal to you, but they mean plenty to your kids.

Go on field trips with their class when the teacher needs more chaperones. Go to their games if they play sports. Pay attention when they announce that they want to put on a performance for you in the living room.

You can also make special moments. They don’t have to cost a lot, either. Sure, a vacation to Disneyland will excite just about any child, but so will a quick trip to the park, a trip to the beach, or a family hike, depending on the age of the kids.

work at home with baby

Work At Home With Babies

Babies can be both the easiest and the hardest to deal with when you work at home.

They’re easy when they sleep a lot. They’re the hardest to deal with when they don’t.

You never know in advance what your baby will be like. Some work at home parents will have babies with special needs who take up more time than other babies. Other babies sleep less than average and make it challenging to have a productive work at home day.

There are some basics for working at home with babies:

Pick The Right Work Schedule

Most sites I see tell work at home moms and dads that they should get up early to get some work done before the kids are up. That never worked for me – I’m a night owl. So I’ll tell you to pick the right work at home schedule for your needs.

If you’re good at waking up early, great. Do that.

If you’re a night owl, stay up late to work.

I promise you that either way there will be times that it takes a ton of self control to get any work done because you’re exhausted. Maybe you were up half the night because baby was teething. Maybe you’re tired at the end of a long day with a demanding infant.

Either way, if you want this work at home with kids things to work for you, you have to push through and get your work done. Sometimes you will have to tough it out and make things happen because that’s the only way it’s going to happen.

Rest When You Can

The advice to sleep when the baby sleeps is great when you don’t have anything else to do. When you work at home, it may not be such great advice. That time when the baby is sleeping may be your best shot at getting something done without interruptions.

Make time to get what rest you can, however, especially in the early days when baby needs more frequent feedings. If you’re the mom and you’re recovering from childbirth, you need that time to let your body recover, no matter what.

This isn’t always easy, and it’s one of the big times that you should ask for help if you need it. Too little rest only makes things harder over time. Do your best to find a way to get some rest.

This can mean letting some of the housework go. I don’t mean let your home deteriorate into an unlivable, unsanitary disaster area. But many household chores can be delayed for a time or assigned to your spouse or an older child. You don’t have to do it all yourself.

Take Care Of Yourself

Ah, those lovely days with your newborn baby that so many people have an image of. Too bad the fantasy isn’t much like reality.

It can be difficult as a new work at home mom or dad to take proper care of yourself. There are days that even finding time for a shower may be difficult, never mind eating a decent meal.

The great thing about babies is that you don’t have to be focused on them every minute that they’re awake. You can do other things while they’re awake.

Make sure baby is safe, of course.

Set up a safe place for your baby for those times you need to take care of yourself. Some parents will set up a baby swing in the bathroom when they need to shower, so that the baby is safe but they can get cleaned up for the day.

If you’re making food for yourself, find a place where you can see the baby, but they won’t be in your way as you prepare a meal. A playpen can be great for those times that you need to be out of the room to get things done.

Work While Baby Eats (If Possible)

I was fortunate enough to be able to breastfeed all my kids, and I can tell you that it was wonderful when it came time to work. All I had to do was sit at my computer and type while the baby nursed. Sure, my typing was a little slower, but it wasn’t that bad.

It probably also won’t be that great an idea if your baby tends to spit up a lot. Can’t have that get into the computer!

This is more difficult if baby is bottle fed, of course. Bottle feeding isn’t exactly a handsfree process. And it gets worse as solid foods are introduced, which is waaaay too messy to do near a computer.

But if things go well with breastfeeding, it’s a huge help.

Try Babywearing

Babywearing is absolutely amazing for being productive with a young baby. They get to be right with you, which is what they want, and you get to work. Baby can nap or listen to your voice as the day goes on.

Babies love to be held. There’s a reason why so many scream when you put them down – they want you! There’s even a study that shows that babywearing decreases crying. That alone should be plenty of reason to try babywearing – hearing a baby cry is stressful.

Don’t forget that babywearing is for both parents.

reading with baby

Work At Home With Toddlers And Preschoolers

Toddlers can be far more demanding of your time than infants in some ways. They want you to play with them all the time! On the other hand, they should sleep better at night and still take pretty good naps during the day, which gives you some clear work time.

On the plus side, they’re learning how to entertain themselves, and this is something you can encourage. Toddlers and preschoolers are also more fun for older siblings, although you’ll still worry when the kids get suspiciously quiet.

Encourage Independent Play

While you can’t leave your toddler or preschooler completely unsupervised, they can learn how to play independently; that is, without your direct participation.

Start figuring out the things they like to do on their own. Which toys are best for this will depend on the child, of course.

Set Up A Play Area By Your Desk

Toddlers and preschoolers love to imitate their parents. If you want work time, you’ll encourage this by setting up a play area right by your desk. Include a small table so your child has their own desk. This is great for those times when they need to be near you but you need to work.

Include things that are similar to things you use. My kids had the use of an old keyboard when they were little. They could pound on it all they wanted.

Crayons and other art supplies that don’t make too much of a mess are also good choices. Keep things organized so they don’t mess up your home office.

For those times that you’re willing to allow screens, you can also include a toy computer or kid safe tablet. Your work time can be educational for your kids.

Obviously, you don’t want your kids just staring at a screen while you work, which is why you should include other toys as well.

Change the toys available to your kids regularly. Toddlers and preschoolers love “new” toys, but a toy can become new again to them if they haven’t played with it for a while.

Make The Most Of Naptime

Toddlers and preschoolers don’t take as many naps as infants, but they can still take some nice, long naps when they’re tired. They also usually sleep better at night.

Make the most of it.

As often as possible, work when your toddler or preschooler naps. Don’t do housework or other things that you can do when your child is awake. Toddlers and preschoolers often like helping with chores, so save those for when they’re awake. Chores take longer with little kids “helping,” but the lessons learned are worth it eventually.

mom at computer

Work At Home With Kids In School

Working at home gets so much easier as the kids head off to school. Suddenly you have fewer interruptions during the day. Things may be a little worse during the time that the youngest sibling has to stare at the older ones heading off to school, as the youngest will be lonely for them during school hours. But once they’re all in school, you’ll have a much easier time working at home.

Do less focused work when the kids are doing homework. This makes it easier for you to stop and help them when needed.

Have a plan for sick days. Kids bring home all kinds of germs, especially when they first head off to school.

I go pretty easy on my kids when they’re home sick. Aside from making sure they take a good nap or two, they have a lot of flexibility in what they can do. If a sick kid feels best watching TV all day or playing on a tablet, well, it keeps them quiet. That extra screen time won’t hurt them, and they may fall asleep because it’s so relaxing.

Work At Home And Homeschool

When you really want to increase your challenges, try working at home while homeschooling. There will be a lot of truly challenging days.

Your lesson plans will need to be arranged so that you know when you can work on your job or home business. Anytime your kids can handle things independently, it’s time for you to earn money.

If your child is working on something where they’ll need your help part of the time but work independently the rest of the time, make sure you’re ready to be interrupted. Don’t work on things that require your full attention or will leave you frustrated when an interruption happens.

You may also find a homeschooling co-op or other group that will make your experience a little smoother. Talk to other parents about trading off responsibilities as necessary. Get help from other parents if you’re weak on a particular subject.

Homeschooling parents need a lot of flexibility from their work at home jobs or home businesses. Homeschooling adds a lot of demands to your day. You will need to be more organized than most with all the demands on your time.

Enjoy The Advantages

No matter the ages of your kids when you work at home, enjoy the advantages you get from being a work at home mom or dad. It’s a privilege not many parents can enjoy.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

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