Some people look at working from home to make some cash in their spare time. Others are looking for legitimate jobs that will really make a difference for themselves and their families. If you’re in the second camp and you’re looking for a legitimate work-at-home job that actually pays well, I have some ideas for you!
Note: Pay rates can change at any time. Please refer to the company's website for current rates and job details.
Skill-Based Online Work
Whether you have advanced skills training or you’ve simply developed these skills on your own, there are plenty of work-at-home jobs that are based on a specific skill. These are a few ideas to get you started:
Do you have experience teaching? Are you eager to share your knowledge with others? If so, consider becoming an online tutor.
The requirements for this position vary from company to company, so make sure you read all the details before applying. Some will require valid teaching credentials, while others will just ask for candidates with some verifiable college experience.
If you’re interested, here are four companies that frequently hire online tutors:
- Revolution Prep: As a professional tutor with Revolution Prep, you’ll help 6th-12th graders learn material in a variety of subjects, and prepare for academic tests. The website lists pay within the first year between $25 and $35 an hour.
- Chegg: As a tutor with Chegg, you can work with students ranging from middle school through adult, in many different subject areas. Pay starts at $20 an hour, and you don’t need previous experience to get started.
- Skooli: If you hold teaching credentials, or a master’s degree, you can become a Skooli tutor. They offer tutoring for grades K-12 plus college students, in all academic areas. You’ll earn $25 an hour with this company.
- Prep Now: This tutoring company focuses on preparing students for standardized tests like the SAT and ACT, and the pay is around $15 per hour.
- Rosetta Stone: If you’re fluent in another language, look at Rosetta Stone. Their roles tend to be location-based, but they’re very flexible and start around $17 per hour.
- VIPKid: Tutor children in China who are learning English, and you’ll get paid between $7 and $9 per 25-minute lesson. (That’s $14-18 per hour!)
Transcription is a skill you can practice on the job, and the more you do it, the better you’ll get at it. Most companies open to beginners do not pay well. You may not even make minimum wage. However, if you have the typing speed, consider going into business for yourself. Learn how you can start your own transcription business here.
Appen Butler Hill and Leapforce both hire at-home workers as web search evaluators. The pay is typically a little more than $13 per hour, which isn’t much compared to everything else on this list, but it’s substantially more than most other web search work will get you.
Writing, Editing, and Proofreading
Do you have a way with words? If you enjoy writing or editing, you can put your skills to work and earn $20 or more per hour. You can become a proofreader and check for errors in documents other people prepare. You’ll need phenomenal English language skills, as many companies require a test before hiring.
As a writer, you’ll be required to meet your client’s requirements and match their style guide. You should be very comfortable with writing.
Here are some places to look for these positions:
- Scribendi: According to glassdoor.com, the average hourly salary of a Scribendi editor is $24. The company often has telecommute positions available.
- Virtual Schools: If you have a background in education, virtual schools such as as Connections Academy and K12 occasionally hire remote curriculum writers and editors.
- Job Boards: Not all postings on job boards offer great pay. But, many do. For freelance gigs, check out these sites: ProBlogger, Freelance Writing Gigs, and All Freelance Writing. Remember that you’ll typically be paid per post or per word for writing, so you’ll have to estimate how long it’ll take you to write a post to calculate your hourly wage.
Put your design skills to work as a graphic designer. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average pay for this position is $25.62. You can find open design positions on FlexJobs, Remote.co, and We Work Remotely.
You can also start your own business as a graphic designer and look for clients on your own. (This makes a great side gig!)
Social media is a good way to advertise, as is creating your own website. Figure out what skills and services you want to offer. Then, figure out what to set your hourly wage at. You’ll have to pay taxes on this income, so you won’t get to keep everything you earn.
As a virtual assistant, you’ll help clients with a variety of tasks. You can niche down and offer one service (such as becoming a Pinterest Virtual Assistant) or you can offer many different services. There are companies that hire virtual assistants, but they typically pay a bit less than $20 an hour.
To earn more money, you should venture out on your own. You’ll have to work harder to find clients, but you’ll be able to charge more. Some virtual assistants are earning $60/hour or more depending on their services.
If organization is your middle name, and you’re able to keep track of dozens of moving pieces at the same time, project management can be a great way to earn good money from home. According to Glassdoor, project manager salaries range from $40 per hour to over $100K a year. And with the growth in contract, remote work going on these days, that means there’s a ton of potential in this field!
As a project manager, you’ll be responsible for seeing a project through from beginning to end. You’ll need to assemble a team, serve as supervisor, and make sure the whole thing stays on budget. You must be a strong communicator to ensure everyone works together and does their part.
You can find virtual project manager positions on job boards such as FlexJobs, Indeed, and Virtual Vocations. This is something you could also easily do as a freelancer, if that’s the route you wanted to go.
This is a fun one! Do you enjoy bringing drawings to life through animation? Are you comfortable using animation software? If you are, being an animator can be a way for you to earn more than $75,000 annually. Many companies now allow their animators to work remotely from home.
You can find animation gigs listed on freelance bidding sites like Upwork and Freelancer. Remote animation jobs are sometimes listed on job boards like CreativeHeads or Indeed. You’ll need to sift through on-site positions with those boards. You can also find them on remote job boards like Remote Work Hub or Virtual Vocations.
Remote Medical Work
Many jobs that used to require going into the office now offer remote opportunities. Work-at-home healthcare jobs are a great example of this. Depending on your certifications, experience, and skill level, you can earn over $20/hour working from home. Here are three of the possibilities:
- TeleTherapist: If you are a counselor, physical, occupational, or speech therapist, you can connect with clients and offer your services via video.
- Telephone Triage Nurse: Many medical providers are having virtual nurses handle non-emergency triage. When a patient is unsure if they need to be seen, calling a nurse can help them learn the best course of action. These positions are either phone or video based and allow you to put your nursing skills to work from home.
- Insurance Claim Specialist: Insurance Claim Specialists work with insurance companies to decide if claims should be approved or denied. This position requires research skills, medical knowledge, and analytical thinking.
According to CNBC, the average salary of a remote nurse is just over $60,000 per year. That works out to $28/hour. You can find remote medical jobs listed directly on company websites, such as Optum Provider Express, or on job boards like FlexJobs.
Phone jobs aren’t everyone’s favorite. Cold calls are among the types of phone jobs that many people want to avoid. My personal theory is that cold calling is a skill that can be learned, so it’s not something that should intimidate you.
There are a few reasons to think about getting out of your comfort zone when it comes to cold calling. The first is that the pay in these jobs tends to be higher than a lot of other work-at-home jobs will offer. The second is that many of them offer advancement opportunities that you just won’t find anywhere else. A third is that lots of cold call jobs offer bonuses or a commission structure on top of the hourly rate, so you can end up making a lot more money than you would with other jobs.
Another of the perks of cold calling, at least within the B2B (business to business) space, is the fact that most or all of your work will take place during regular business hours. That means no late evenings or weekends, which is a major plus if you want your at-home job to mirror the typical 9-to-5.
If you’re willing to give cold calling a shot, these are some companies you should check out:
- Blue Zebra Appointment Setting — These are B2B appointment-setting cold calls. As a caller, you would represent a business that offers a product or service designed for other businesses to use. Your goal is to try to get appointments booked for one of your company’s representatives to visit the other company and offer a demonstration or pitch their services. Pay is typically at least $15 per hour.
- Brighten Communications — As a cold caller with Brighten, you’re making B2B calls trying to land leads for the companies you represent. The pay starts at $12 and can go up to $18 per hour.
- NexRep — These are commission-based sales calls OR hourly rate jobs. Hourly pay goes up to $25 per hour.
- Working Solutions — Cold calls are one of the opportunities offered by Working Solutions, but you may find they have other areas to plug into that are a good fit for you. Pay can go up to $30 per hour!
More Valuable Services
A lot of times, people will offer services online as freelancers. Freelancing is great, but it’s not for everyone. If you’re into the idea of working online in a less traditional role but you don’t want to start your own business, think about these options:
- Community Moderation — Many customer-based companies are focusing on developing online communities, whether on their own sites or on social media sites like Facebook. Part of making an online community work is having a good team of moderators in place, and that’s where you could come in! This company offers all kinds of social media-oriented positions, including community moderation.
- Reminder Calls — Pleio is a company that has you call people at a specified time to remind them to take their medications. The pay is between $15 and $20 per hour, and you’re doing something really valuable with your time, too!
- Styling — If you’ve heard of (or even used) Stitch Fix, you’ve been introduced to the fun of having an online stylist. If you’ve ever thought you should get in on the online stylist scene, working for Stitch Fix may be right for you! Starting pay is $15 per hour, and the work seems pretty interesting!
- Tech Support — If you have tech support experience or are simply a tech wizard and can improve it, at-home tech support jobs can be a great option. One of the “hidden gem” aspects of tech support is that it’s also shifting more and more to remote work, even in the upper echelons of major corporations, which means you have a lot of potential for growth if you want this to become a bona fide career. Intermedia is one company that’s frequently hiring at-home tech agents, and starting pay is around $18 per hour.
- Translation — If you’re fluent in English plus one more language, you can land high-paying translation work. One company that hires translators and tends to pay at least $20 per hour is American Journal Experts, an editing and translation company for research journals. Another option is Language Service Associates, which pays its interpreters $20 per hour.
- Travel Agent — In addition to private agencies that set you up with your own business, you can find decent pay with some larger travel agencies. Here are a couple that pay well:
- Virtual Assisting — You can go out on your own as a VA, or you can work for a virtual assistant agency. The pay won’t be nearly as high, but they bring the clients to you (which can be really helpful). Worldwide 101 offers their VAs between $15 and $20 per hour.
Customer Support with Big-Name Companies
Sometimes the nationally recognizable companies hire at-home workers with good starting rates. These are a few of my favorites to recommend if you’re interested in doing customer support for a reputable company:
- American Express — While the pay rates for AmEx customer service is competitive, one of the fantastic aspects of working for them is that you’re considered an employee and have access to employee benefits.
- Apple — The biggest name in personal technology hires remote workers in all kinds of customer support roles, and pay is reported to be between $14 and $16 for many of these roles.
- Blooms Today — This is a popular floral delivery business that operates on a huge scale. They often have available positions during the busy flower seasons, and the pay is typically somewhere around $15 per hour.
Looking for more?
If you’re looking for an at-home job that scraps hourly rates and paves the way for you to make six figures instead, you’ve got lots of options! I have a whole post dedicated to high-income at-home jobs that you can find right here.