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Dreaming about starting a home business? Getting a little tired of the rush hour commute to and from work?
Maybe you simply want the “freedom” of working at home where you can have more flexibility and, most days, don’t have to go through the morning routine of a nice outfit, makeup, etc.
Nearly any job can become a work from home position or a home business thanks to technology. If you have marketable skills and a computer at home, there are many home businesses you can start with little or no money. Here are 10:
1. Virtual Assistant ($15 to $100+ per hour)
Virtual Assistants may answer e-mails on behalf of their client, handle reports, or other office duties. Higher paid VAs may take on tasks like social media campaign management, accounting, human resources, or nearly anything else. You could work as a VA or start a business placing VAs with the right clients.
2. Translator ($43,000 per year)
Are you bilingual or know more than a couple of languages? Even better, are you a strong English speaker but live in a non-English speaking country? Translators are in high demand but if you live in a country and understand how local cultures and customs affect the language, you’re likely to find a lot of work.
Free Business Startup Checklist
Starting a business can be overwhelming! Use this free Business Startup Checklist to make sure you don’t miss any important steps. This downloadable Word document lists the steps you need to take to get your business up and running, and includes space for you to note your own comments and deadlines. You can get the checklist free when you subscribe to the free Business Know-How Newsletter.
3. Website Designer ($58,000 per year)
Everybody wants a website but many don’t know how to make it happen. If you have skills in graphic design and basic programming, starting a web design company could be well advised. Start with small businesses that you can service on your own. As you get larger and hire people to work for you, go after the larger clients. (Learn more: How to Start a Web Design Business)
4. Virtual Tutor ($43,000 per year)
Education is no longer all about sitting in a classroom listening to a teacher in the front of the room deliver a lecture. Now, students can learn online.
Online tutors function just like a face-to-face tutor except that students watch and interact with the tutor from a computer or mobile device. Because they don’t have to travel, online tutors have the potential for higher revenue than traditional tutors who may travel to a student’s home or to a learning center.
5. Freelance Writer ($40,000 per year)
The Internet is in constant need of content and that’s why freelance writers are in such high demand. Salary varies from less than $30,000 to well over six figures for those who are established. (Learn more: How to Make Money as a Writer)
6. Consultant (Salary Varies)
If you’re an established expert in a certain field, consider becoming an independent consultant. Maybe you’re an expert in digital marketing after spending years running ad campaigns for major clients. Or you know the science behind designing a retail floor plan for maximum profitability. Salary is dependent on the nature of the consulting but as your client base grows, expect to earn more than when you were working for an employer. (Learn more: Start a Consulting Business)
7. Pet Sitting ($30,000 per year)
If you love animals, this home-based business is perfect. Pet sitting doesn’t necessarily mean you’re with the animal 24/7. Pet sitters may have 5-10 homes each day to check (or more depending on the market.). The job includes being on 24-hour call and a lot of driving but if you’re ok with that, it’s the perfect job for an animal lover.
8. Repair Service (Salary Varies)
Everybody has a lot of “stuff” and that stuff often needs fixing. Cell phones, cars, computers, you name it. If it costs more to replace than to repair once or twice—and you can fix it—you have a winning business. Run your business from your home or make yourself more valuable by going to the customer. Salary varies widely based on the type of item being repaired.
9. Bookkeeper ($45,000 per year)
A well-trained VA can take on entry-level bookkeeping tasks but small business owners may not want to worry about the accounting side of their business. Home-based bookkeepers service smaller clients that don’t require a large accounting staff.
10. Daycare ($55,000 per year)
Homes with both parents working are a fact of life for about 47% of two-parent families. Statistics like these are why daycare businesses are in high demand. You will need insurance and a state license but caring for 5 kids will likely place you over $50,000 per year.
Successful home-based workers work just as hard and sometimes harder than people who drive to work each day. There is no more freedom than in a traditional job. Scammers often prey on people by offering big salaries and the “freedom” to work their own hours. Don’t fall for such scams.
Also beware of opportunities with unknown companies. The most legitimate home-based business is one you start on your own. Becoming an independent contractor for another company is a high-risk move unless that company is well-known.
Finally, like any business, a home-based business will take a lot of time and effort before becoming something that offers enough income to support yourself and family. Start building it before you quit or save enough at least 9 months of living expenses.
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