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10 Ways to Earn Money Working From Home

Updated on September 10, 2011

“I need a stay at home job. I have no start-up money. Now what?”

Does this scenario sound familiar? Many people, especially mothers with young children, find themselves looking for low cost ways to earn money working from home. Although it’s true that a lot of traditional business opportunities require thousands of dollars in start-up funds, there are plenty of ways to earn money working from home with little or no start-up money. This list of 10 ways to earn money working from home is merely a starting point for you to use as you begin your search for the perfect stay at home job.

  1. Blogging. Many people already blog as a hobby, so why not get paid for it? If you have a unique voice and an interesting story to share, you can earn money working from home through ad revenue and affiliate links.
  2. Child care. Taking care of children isn't for everyone, but if you already have small children of your own and you're a very patient person, this can be a great way to earn extra cash.
  3. Direct sales. A lot of direct sales companies require you to purchase huge consultant kits, but there are a few that are quite reasonable as a work at home franchise. For example, you can start selling Avon for just $10 or $20. There are companies selling everything from kitchen accessories to sex toys, so you can certainly find something to fit almost any interest.
  4. Cleaning houses. It's not fun, but sometimes you've just got to suck up your pride and do what has to be done to take care of your family.
  5. Cooking and baking. There are laws associated with selling food that you need to be careful with, but plenty of moms earn money working from home by selling cookies, homemade bread, muffins, and other items at farmer’s markets or taking orders for beautifully decorated birthday cakes for graduations and children's birthday parties.
  6. Freelance writing. Working as a freelance writer may be an option to consider if you have excellent communications skills and a great deal of knowledge about a specific topic such as computers or health care. Be prepared to spend a fair amount of time on invoicing and tracking down late payments, however.
  7. Running errands. If you live in a larger community with a significant population of elderly people or busy professionals, consider offering to assist with grocery shopping, picking up the dry cleaning, returning overdue library books, and other miscellaneous chores. In many cases, you can combine these tasks with your own personal errands to help you earn money without adding extra stress to your day.
  8. Selling crafts. Assuming you already have the supplies available from your personal projects, selling handmade items can be a great way to earn money working from home. You can sell at local craft shows or through your own Etsy shop. Items that are quick to produce, relatively inexpensive, and make good gifts are typically the best choice.
  9. Telemarketing. Companies like Alpine Access hire home-based agents to either take or receive calls from customers. These are legitimate work from home jobs. However, you often need previous telemarketing experience and you will need to make work arrangements that don't include having screaming kids in the background. Being able to present a professional image is key to success in the work from home telemarketing field.
  10. Virtual tutoring. You have to have at least a bachelor’s degree to get hired, but this can be an interesting option for making some extra cash. Brainfuse is one example of this type of work at home Internet business.

Which of these ideas to make money is the best choice for you? The answer depends upon the amount of money you need to earn, how much time you have to devote to your business, and your personal skills. However, this list of ways to earn money working from home should give you a starting point for your career search.


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    • profile image

      Joey 6 years ago

      I would like more information about running errands

    • sabrani44 profile image

      sabrani44 6 years ago

      Great ideas! Thanks

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 6 years ago from Thailand

      Voted up and useful,

      I've used many of the techniques you mentioned, but like the idea of virtual tutoring. I will be starting an online teaching job next year, so online tutoring would fit in very nicely.

      Thanks for sharing your ideas.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 6 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Yep, you have some great ideas here and they all make decent money too. Great. RJ

    • nilsarnejohnsen profile image

      nilsarnejohnsen 6 years ago from Sandnes, Noway

      In Norway I sell Herbalife, In USA Herbalife is big. The products is fantastic for me, and if you do the work you can earn "good" money from your living room. The best way to start is to use the products yourself. And write down your result using the products. If you get results in sports, weightloss, more energy and so on the people around you also will try this products who give good results. Herbalife for me is my job "on the side", but I know people who have this as THE job with good wages.

    • 110211 profile image

      110211 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      A good list,lots of variety

    • Radioguy profile image

      Radioguy 6 years ago from Maine

      Helpful and much needed! Thanks!