Are there any real baseline jobs out there that allow you to work from home on your own time?

We all know about the scams out there: YOU CAN MAKE FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS A WEEK WORKING FROM HOME, but I am wondering if there are any legitimate jobs where you can do this. I don’t have to make five thousand dollars, but I do need a second income. I’m looking to get into substitute teaching and would probably be called 3 or 4 times a week, but there’s no was to know on which days I would be called until 5:30 that morning. What sort of jobs are there where I could do the work on the days I’m not called into teach? Is this a realistic goal? How would I go about getting one of these jobs?


Note: Actually, I wouldn’t even mind going into an office, just so long as I’m not expected at any specific time. The subbing has to come first, since teaching is the career I want eventually, but I’m still happy to work hard when I’m not at a school.

Mechanical Turk through Amazon. It pays, but the rate is a joke. I did about 7 hours of work over 2 days and made $13. You can do qualifications to get better jobs at better rates, but you have to slog through the low-level hits to get to the higher-level stuff. And still, *none *of the job postings pays even minimum wage.

Are there any data entry jobs like what I’m looking for? I’m a good typer.

If you live outside the United States you can play poker on the internet for real money. You make your own hours and your pay is only limited by your skill and discipline.

You may be able to do this in the U.S. but it’s quite difficult if not wholly impossible now-a-days.

True, but it does get me the occasional book without having to dent the huby’s bank account. And I can sit there and do stuff on Turk while I play LOTRO or EVE Online, or watch tv.

Phone sex is a real answer although obviously not for everyone. There have been some females on this board over the years who have made decent money that way and it is fairly profitable. You set your own hours and do it over the phone. Only a good voice and imagination are necessary.

There are a bunch of others but most of those require specific skills. If I ever found myself in that situation, I could make some money doing small-scale programming by the job over the web for example. That isn’t that great though because college students and foreign workers are much cheaper than I am used to.

There is a market for remote medical transcription as well. From what I hear, they send you tapes and you type it highly accurately and hopefully quickly to get paid by the job. I am not sure how much longer that industry will last but it is there. It would probably require a course to learn how to do it plus the ability to spell obscure medical terms.

Yeah I really shouldn’t complain. I decided to do it to pay for my wow sub, but ran out of steam after one weekend. The work isn’t hard, it just feels boring and pointless.

Although I did get paid once to take a psychological test, that was pretty cool. And on another test, I got a bonus for estimating decimals correctly. That was really draining, though. With the bonus, it ended up working out to the highest-paid job I did. I guess they implement that so they don’t have to pay a lot of money for people who just zoom through and type some bullshit answers.

I was about to post about this very thing! I’ve been looking for legitimate online and work-from-home gigs for YEARS. Not much luck.

I guess the better question is WHY is it so hard to find such work?

Oh, there are lots of them. They just tend to require really specific skills that take years to learn. There are plenty of IT professionals that work from home for example. I work with them professionally and there are others on this board. It is a real job though sometimes with more flexibility and sometimes less (hey, you are always at home, we can call you anytime).

It is the flexible schedule combined with easily replaceable skills part that makes it hard for most people to find what they are looking for. American workers are expensive even at minimum wage by global standards. It is easy to be undercut if it is work through the internet or anything else that can be done successfully through modern technology.

Pretty much what Shagnasty said. Mr. Athena and I have both worked from home on and off through our whole careers, and exclusively for the past 5 years (for me) and 10+ years (for him). There’s plenty of work out there.

But we also both put in 10+ years in the same career in offices, and have proven skills and good resumes. And it is a real job - it’s not this great thing where you get to do nothing and the paychecks come rolling in. I’ve worked the past 2 weekends in a row and there’s a good chance I’ll be working next weekend. It’s not a cake walk.

I often wonder why people don’t learn to make things at home, and market them on Etsy (or other sites–recommendations?) – or gift shops or Art Galleries.

I have a number of college students that have Etsy sites: vintage clothing, silk-screened posters, stenciled T-shirts, bowls from old LPs, etc…

And a fellow teacher who sells her (fairly simple) paintings in a local gallery at serious prices.

I needed extra cash for my daughter’s tuition, I invented something simple, and it’s being sold in a couple of gift shops. My problem is that I’m not home enough to keep up with my “home business”.

There are a lot of jobs where you can work from home, but they’re typically not advertised as “work from home jobs”. For example, I work from home, on whatever schedule I choose. It’s a job that normally would be done in an office by default, although there’s no particular reason. I had a great boss when I started who let me work from wherever I chose, and as my bosses have changed over the years it’s just a part of my job now. I swing by the office once or twice a week to pick up / drop off paperwork. The downside is that I need to be reachable by phone or email pretty much round the clock.

I’m also building my own business that’s not location-dependent (copywriting), and that’s a long process of networking, prospecting, and building up a really strong portfolio before I can do it as my sole income.

Mostly people who work from home didn’t start out that way - they work in an office for a while and then are allowed to telecommute. My fiance designs newspapers from home - or did until last week, 'cause that company sucks balls and telecommuting has, let’s say, its downsides.

Our neighbor seems to have one, although I can’t for the life of me figure out what it is. He receives dozens of boxes a week from the USPS and other delivery services and also sends out a carful of packages from time to time. The packages come in all sizes and the only ones I’ve seen unwrapped seem to be small electronics or electronic components.

What could he be doing?

I worked for about six months from home as a transcriber.

I worked as an independent contractor for a UK company called Take Note. I appreciate you are probably based in the US, but am just providing the link so you know my post is legitimate. :slight_smile:

The bulk of my work was transcribing recordings of sessions made by market research companies when they have their market research sessions. It was actually quite interesting work!

The pay wasn’t great, although above UK minimum wage. You are generally paid by the amount of transcribing you do, rather than the amount of time it takes you to do it. Obviously the time it takes you to do it depends on your typing speed, but it also depends on the quality of the recording, which could be variable. The company had a ‘house style’ that you had to follow, and your work was constantly quality assessed to ensure you were keeping to the style.

My sister-in-law, who was a high school chemistry teacher before her kids were born, earns extra money by doing work-from-home on-line tutoring. Obviously not something everybody can do, but it works for her.
Obviously, being a writer is a job where you can work from home on your own schedule, but of course you can only make money at it if you manage to sell what you write.

Many different things:
He could be involved in a freight forwarding scam - overseas thieves send items to his house from various e-commerce sites with stolen credit cards and he ships them overseas.
He could be refurbishing/fixing small electronics.
He could be running an arbitrage scheme on ebay - buying cheap items in bulk from china/hong kong and then reselling them for a slightly higher price because he is a “US seller” and can get the item there faster.

We used to use a guy who ran a business who employed people at home. It was data entry (from paper to computer) and they were paid by the keystroke. I looked him up after seeing your OP and he is retired and his business shut down. I imagine the Internet affected his business as well as improved scanning technology (not to mention India - why pay min wage when you can pay so much less?)

Besides this, I haven’t seen very many legit work-from-home jobs that you can be hired into (as opposed to getting into by working for a company for years beforehand).

Freelance writing can be a real possibility if you put enough time and effort into it. I know of several other companies that offer decent wages provided you have the right qualifications including the two that I work for. PM me for details.

I’m betting it’s something like this one. Not all the items are electronics and they all seem to be in the original packaging when they arrive. Also, he doesn’t give off the vibe of someone who’s handling stolen goods. It’s all done very much out in the open and he seems to be on good terms with all the guys who have to shlep the stuff to his door every week.

So there you go.