Thursday, 15 May 2014

Earning Money at Home

When we get sick, or become a caregiver to someone, we often can only work from home. I have always done this. Always 3 jobs at a time until the last 5 years or so, when I got too busy with caregiving and my own health problems to even work from home. Here is the research I did to find LEGITIMATE work at home. I hope this information helps someone else.

I admit that this article is not as perfectly organized or well written as I am capable of, but so many people are asking me for the information ASAP, that I have gleaned over the years, that this is what I have right now. I will probably edit and improve it over time. I have put in red the different categories or jobs that you could consider.

The number 1 rule for at home jobs, if they ask for money, it’s a scam. Often they say it`s for processing fees or for materials or to guarantee you a spot for the job when there are many applicants. Don`t pay for that! There is only one exception to this rule. There are a few agencies for freelance jobs online. They charge a fee if you get the job. They charge it AFTER you get the project. Don’t work for them if they ask for a fee before you are hired by the client for a project. Only pay a fee for a job if the job pays enough to cover the fee and give you a lot left over. For example, if you have been hired to write an article about low budget travel in a certain city, and the pay they offer is $25, but the fee that the agency charges is $15, it may not be worth it to you. (You can decide if it’s worth it or not). But if the job/project offers more than $100, the $15 fee might be worth it. I have only done a few projects where I am required to pay a fee. I have found websites where there is no such fee.
This is important. Learn how to spot a scam home job.

It will be a part time job just to search out projects if you decide to do freelancing in your area of expertise, but that`s part of the nature of freelancing. You can also choose to look for a job with a particular company, where you won’t have to search for projects, you just do the work you are given and are paid by one company.

Getting Paid:
I have found that people usually pay promptly and honestly as you finish the project. I have only been ``Stiffed`` about 3 times in 11 years. You can discuss with the client how to get paid, whether by bank wire or PayPal or Western Union or Moneybookers or other online banking sites. The lesser known sites will be harder for you to get paid. The big and reputable companies, where more clients will have accounts are the better choices. People are leery of Western Union, and it seems unprofessional to get paid that way, so most choose an online banking service such as PayPal or Moneybookers. Western Union can be used if there is absolutely no other way to get paid and if the client agrees, but there is little to no way to follow up for demanding payment if you use Western Union. An online banking service shows more credibility, stability and professionalism than Western Union. It would be good to open an account at PayPal if you are in N. America, and Moneybookers if you are somewhere else. It is secure like a bank, and this way you don't have to give out your bank account information to strangers, and when you decide to buy things online, you don't have to give your credit card number to strangers. They are insured like a bank, but they do charge a small fee for each transaction.

There are some large companies that pay at the end of the month, so ask their payment terms when you apply for a project. Keep very good, very detailed records of the projects you did, and for whom, and the date and the price they owe you, when you got paid, or when the payment is expected (when they agreed to pay you) so you can remind people for payment if necessary. PayPal even has an invoicing service so that you can send clients an invoice from PayPal (looks very professional).

Many of these websites are for writing, but also there are some where people want a world of variety of projects, for example someone to finish a craft they started. Sometimes sewing or embroidery, sewing, sometimes woodwork or metal work, models, and so much more. Some sites are looking for photos you can take with your digital camera or just your smartphone. Babies, pets, scenery, Everyday life photos, architecture of your area, the list is endless. To find the photography jobs, Google “freelance photography projects” and “freelance photography jobs”.

Artists and those with computer skills such as code writers, computer graphics, site developers, often can get a lot of online work.

Many of these sites are project websites where you apply for one project at a time.
An article telling you how most freelance job sites work.

This article has more good suggestions. make money without spending a dime.

How does helium network work?

If it has a star * beside it, it also has many other types of freelance projects, not just writing.
www.elance.com (I have worked here) *

www.triond.com (they work with a dozen other online writing sites that are constantly looking for articles for magazines or for big corporations, or just someone asking you to research a subject for them for various reasons.)

article-how you earn money at Triond- http://www.triond.com/info/how-it-works

IF you are an expert in English, if you can spell, know how to use punctuation correctly, how to spot mistakes easily, you may qualify as a proofreader or editor. This is the work I do. These 2 sites ask for your help in polishing up documents that have been translated into imperfect English, then you make it ‘native tongue professional.” This often includes asking the client what he or she meant in different spots, and offering alternatives. I enjoy that communication. The best places to get work for that are www.translatorscafe.com and www.proz.com . Register there (don’t need to pay the registration fee, I never have), and sign up for the English to English option, and sign up for the emails so you can be notified when someone wants a proofreader. You are not charged a fee for projects from these 2 sites.

If you would rather do proofreading on manuscripts or University students’ papers, those jobs can be found on the many websites I've shared below.

If you feel  bit rusty on your grammar and spelling and punctuation, you can look up any subject online. Just Google “Proper use of quotation marks” or “when do I use a comma” or whatever you are wondering about. I often see “Grammar Girl” when searching for these things. I like her answers. Quick and to the point without the ramblings of an English professor. The saying “You don’t know what you don’t know” is so true. Often when reading about basic proper English, you learn something you've been doing wrong all your life, that no one told you the right way to do it, so the more you read ad study websites for grammar and correct English, the better your skills will get.

You can also Google “practice proofreading tests” to sharpen your skills. There is a proofreading program built into WORD and other word processors that you can learn in just a minute or 2 by clicking the question mark in WORD (the help button), or I can also tell you how it works.

If you speak another language perfectly, you can also sign up as a translator at those sites. The tradition is that whatever language you want to translate TO, you must be a native speaker of that language. If you want to translate from English into Italian, you must have Italian as your first language. If you want to translate from Italian into English, English must be your mother tongue. If you have used both languages equally, you are even luckier. You can post that you translate English>Italian AND Italian>English.  You can also Google “translation websites” and offer your services as an English proofreader, or translator to various translation companies. Proz.com and translatorscafe.com and translatorspub.com are great sites to get emailed when there are projects in your preferred language pair. This is how my business partner and I got so many customers that we are too busy to take on new clients. When a client likes your work, he will be loyal to you and bring you repeat work again and again. I have one client who was our very first project in 2003, and we still work for them regularly today. 

My ex MIL did data entry for UPS from home. Here's the job search page from UPS. https://ups.managehr.com/careers.htm Possibly other couriers use home employed data entry also.

An article about Legitimate data entry jobs
Also Google “data entry at home jobs”

I had friends who took a 2 week course at a trade school to learn how to do medical transcription. They worked for local doctors, which is more trustworthy than an online stranger. The Dr. reads his notes into a digital recorder, the recording is sent to you by email, you type up what is being said and return it by email. you must have a good working knowledge of medical terms and a good medical spelling book, and pharmaceutical spelling book. 

If you love reading, you can write a letter about how you love reading and would love to review manuscripts (books before they are published), then you can research publishers online and go to their “contact us” section, and ask if they hire reviewers or proofreaders who work from home, and include your letter in the inquiry. I did this for 7 years.

Internet Research for pay
Often people who are writing novels need someone to do some research, or lawyers or corporations need a speedy researcher who can help them find information on a subject, and you summarize it for them, saving them energy, time and frustration. I have done research for people for years. I am considering doing it professionally. You can even take an online course and get a certificate for it, making yourself more credible and worthy of higher pay. Many of the links above also have research projects. You can Google “Internet research jobs” and a good variety of sites comes up, including this helpful article on how to become an internet researcher.

Teaching English As Second Language:
I did this for at least 4 years. My clients were one on one, through a messenger such as Skype or Yahoo. You can just casually chat with them using the many translation tools online at the same time, for example, you can look up how to say many phrases and words in any language, then type it into messenger and tell them the English word/term. Some prefer to teach about 4 people all at once on conference chat on Skype, and to have a pre-set curriculum and homework and homework for the students. All of these curriculum ideas are available online as well. You and the client agree on a price per hour, and the method of payment. Keep in mind that most of the world’s economy is much less than North America’s economy, so if your client is from South America or a third world country, their fee will be much less than if you are teaching someone in  a developed European country or living in N. America but doesn't know the language yet. I have developed lifelong friendships with these clients, but you can also make it more professional if you wish. What’s great is that you pick up a lot of THEIR language at the same time! Many do this for free. There is even a website that is just a worldwide chat room where people go to try to talk to people of another language to learn more.
Here are pages of help for English teaching if you want to try this job. http://bit.ly/1g9Umq9 . If you speak another language, you can also teach that language online. You CAN get certified as an ESL teacher if you want to do that, but it`s not necessary. I just seemed to grow a friendship as I helped the client learn English. I didn't get into the intense scholastic type training. The former link has sites where you can get certified if you wish to do so.  

Selling Items on EBay or Etsy:
You can sell items from around your house, items you have made, or you can buy items at wholesale prices and sell them for retail prices and make a profit. I have done a bit of this many years ago, but it was not for me since I can`t get to the post office due to illness.

Many people are making a good living doing Life Coaching, Counseling, spiritual guidance, astrology guidance and other spiritual and mental help to clients online.

You can even do physical exercise training online. You and the client exercise in front of your webcam, eliminating the fear of strangers coming to your home, the embarrassment of going to a public gym, and this area is growing at a huge rate. This could be helpful for people with limited health who can`t do the regular exercises. They could be taught modified exercises for their specific limitation. There is some liability here though, you need to be bonded and have some training in what you are coaching, or have them sign a release that would keep you from being blamed for injury.

If you are not interested in earning money online, you can do things such as babysitting or elderly care, (taking an elderly person into your home during the day), or house sitting, (taking care of a vacationer`s newspapers and pets and yard work while they are away). You can take in ironing, bake pies or cupcakes for local restaurants, the ideas are as varied as people are. Find your interest and research how to make money with what talent you love doing.

I will add more as I learn more, and any LEGITIMATE work at home ideas you have (except multi-level marketing) are welcome in the comments. There are just too many MLMs to start listing them in the comments. 

Don't give up too soon. For a while, it may be a part time job to seek out projects, but after you are established in a few places, the work may come in by itself. As long as there is life, there is hope.
Best wishes in your endeavors.

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