Would you like to earn some extra cash but aren't willing or able to commit to a traditional j-o-b? Well, stop worrying! The truth is there are several great side jobs from home you can use to monetize your free time. All you need is an in-demand skill – which you probably already have – and a go-getter attitude and you can be up and running in no time. I’ve done it myself, and I’m just one of many – read on to discover the methods I used and several at-home side jobs that can be great money-makers.
1. Freelance Writing
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the Internet is a voracious consumer of content and it always needs more – more copy, more blogs, more articles. If you can write a decent sentence, you can make money from that writing on the Internet. Even better, if you can write well and fast, you can maximize your profits for each writing project you take on until you’re clearing several thousand dollars a month.
Because of its flexibility and income potential, freelance writing is one of the best jobs for stay-at-home moms in my opinion. You can work around your children’s sleep or school schedules. You can do your work from anywhere and at any time, in most cases.
Of course, you need to know where to look for the best-paying writing gigs and how to deliver pitches that score you those projects. Try Gina Horkey's 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success, and think about pursuing ghostwriting, which can net you big checks per project. (P.S. Gina shares over 200 writing niches free here.)
2. Virtual Assistant
You probably already know that I got my start as a virtual assistant, and I readily recommend it to my readers (yes, you!) as your bread and butter. A good VA is worth their weight in gold for busy (read: overwhelmed) professionals in many industries. And it's a side job that can be done online and part-time.
You can get your start while working virtual assistant job with a recruiting company like Worldwide 101 or BELAY. However, you’ll often discover the best money-to-time ratio and the fastest way to get hired is achieved by working independently and securing your own clients. You won’t have to pay a percentage of your income to a third party and you can charge more than the $11-$18 per hour most VA companies will pay you. Once you’re ready, check out this post on how to become a virtual assistant. And make sure you pick up the free email series from Miranda Nahmias on 5-days to finding clients.
I know you’ve heard this before, because it’s true: you can make a full-time income while blogging if you’re willing to work at it. Blogging isn’t just something you write for once a week and then rake in the ad dollars – you have to have passion, be consistent, and work all the money-making angles. Give people a blog full of energy with engaging content and you’ll build a community of readers; optimize it for SEO, and you’ll climb in search engine results and attract more readers. Meanwhile, get started building your mailing list and working with affiliate marketing right away. Find some ways to add passive income – say through an ebook or web course, whatever feeds into your blog’s theme – and you’re on your way. Ready to begin? Try Blog by Number.
4. Private Labeling
Have you heard of private labeling? It’s pretty cool! Essentially, you get to make up your own brand and sell your products online, all without having to do any manufacturing or shipping yourself. Instead, you have manufacturer put your labels on the product, then ship it directly to a fulfillment center – such as Amazon – who handle the rest for you.
This type of venture requires some investment up front, but once you’re all set up, you have the opportunity to make a pretty income with no further effort on your part (although it might be smart to do some outreach marketing yourself). To get started, check out my post on the subject then start researching what products you might like to sell and dreaming up your own brand.
Good help is hard to find when it comes to babysitting. This is especially the case for those parents in need of off-hours care like evenings or weekends. If you have the time, why not earn an income by caring for an extra child or two while a single parent holds down a second job?
I recommend ensuring you’re up to the challenge first, then getting child care insurance and taking a first aid class that includes CPR for Children certification. You should also find out if you need a license for a home child care business. Once those items are taken care of, however, parents are definitely willing to pay a premium for a trustworthy and kind child care provider – and who’s more dependable than a stay-at-home mom?
If you don’t deal well with kids, consider taking care of furkids instead! Home petcare for busy professionals who travel can also make you a pretty penny. As with childcare, I recommend getting pet care insurance before you open your home to someone else’s beloved dog or cat. Also, if you enjoy playing with and walking dogs, consider expanding your services to include dog-walking. You can even moonlight on a service like Rover. You’d be surprised by how much people are willing to spend on their pets – unless you have a furkid or two yourself, and then you know just what I’m talking about!
7. Retail Arbitrage
Retail arbitrage is a fancy way of saying you find things to buy low and sell high. Whether you’re a weekend warrior hunting through yard sales, a savvy shopper scouting through the stores of major retailers, or a master of antiquing and thrift shopping, your primary goal is to find diamonds in the rough and purchase them for the right price. Then you hop on eBay or Amazon or Etsy and resale your finds for more than you spent. This is another occupation that takes some investment money, but if you’ve got the gift, you can make bank. To get started, check out my post “45 Ways to Buy Low and Sell High with Retail Arbitrage.”
8. Small Side Jobs From Home
One of the most important things to understand – whether you work from home or at the office – is that time is money. Make sure you’re earning whenever you can and make those daily necessities work in your favor. Here’s what that means: got some downtime while you’re waiting for dinner in the oven or your kids to finish up at an after-school activity? Fill out surveys, do some usertesting, or pick up a few microtasks and make anywhere from a few cents to ten bucks for your time. When you’re shopping for groceries – or anything else! – make sure you’re also using Ebates or Ibotta or a Swagbucks. And don’t ever forget the opportunity to earn cashback with your credit cards (responsibly, of course)!
One of the first important lessons to learn in working from home is to diversify your income streams – if you don’t have a remote employee job, and maybe even if you do, it’s important not to rely on one client or one contract job to feed your family and keep the lights on. Instead, think creatively and set up multiple income streams.
It’s time to level up your earnings with these work-at-home jobs you can start today. Use every tool at your disposal to earn a full-time income from home. The time is now!