Part Time Work at Home Ideas – Are They For You?

Making a little extra cash rarely hurts, especially if you can do it from home in your spare time. But sometimes people don’t know what they could do to that would actually bring in money, or they end up “investing” money to get started with a business that they never really get off the ground.

There are a bunch of things you can do to work from home, and I’ll list some in a bit, but first here are a few things to look at when considering whether a work at home idea is for you.

Does it require an investment, a starter kit, and sales training?

If so, you’re probably not going to be doing the actual work from home. Instead, you’ll be contacting everyone you know and then demonstrating products, and those may be the same products that everyone else is already out demonstrating. While you can make money selling things, you have to be good at selling. I suspect that many people end up buying the kits and then not really making much money as a result. If you like (and are good at!) selling, that’s one thing. But if not, remember that you’re never going to hear the business opportunity described by someone who isn’t extremely successful at it.

Does it sound too good to be true?

If it’s a really tempting offer — which usually means there are people who purport to make a ton of money for very little work — chances are it’s a scam, especially if you have to pay a fee to do the work. People pay YOU in the case of legitimate work, not the reverse. Don’t fall for an envelope stuffing scheme or something similar.

Does it require peace and quiet?

It’s possible to work for an employer from your home, especially now that telecommuting is more common. But keep in mind that those types of jobs typically require peace and quiet, and that you won’t be able to do them if you’re constantly interrupted by kids and pets that need attention. Nor are you likely to make a good impression if you’re on the phone with a client while a child cries in the background. If you’re trying to find a work at home job to do while you stay at home with your kids, remember that some jobs would require childcare.

Do you have the time and energy?

While there are certainly a lot of things you can do to make extra money, if you don’t have the time to do them, they’re not going to work. (There are lots of side hustles you can do if you’re just looking to keep the wolf from the door, and there are plenty of passive income ideas out there too.)

Do you have the experience and equipment?

If you want to do, say data entry, but don’t already have a computer and aren’t a fast typist, that’s probably not the place to start. Of course, if that’s really something you’d love to do, you can take a keyboarding course at your local community college or rec center to see what it’s really like, and then go from there. (I’ve done data entry myself — but as a part-time employee where I got hired by filing out an application and having an in-person interview at a brick-and-mortar business, not by responding to an awesome-sounding ad on the internet. I already had everything I needed to complete the work, and it was a LOT of work.)

Evaluate the ideas

Once you’ve thought about your situation and what you hope to accomplish by working at home, you can evaluate the ideas and opportunities that are out there to see if they would work for you.

A few ideas that you really could do from home include: babysitting, doggy daycare, ghost writing (where you write articles for other people, but your name doesn’t go on the articles), social media assistant or marketer, design work (flyers, logos, e-books, web sites) if you already have the software, blogging, internet research, editor, translation work, programming, testing apps if you already have an iPhone, virtual assistant, taxes if you have experience with that, doing sewing and alterations, taking portraits if you have a home studio, etc. Just be check for any licensing requirements first, and make sure you meet them.

How do most people fine jobs like that? The same way most people find office jobs. They know someone who’s already doing it, they pound the pavement until someone gives them a chance, or they start their own business and get selling to acquire clients. If you want to work at home — especially part time — it can be done. Just approach it as a serious endeavor that’s going to take time and effort.