The internet is full of work from home schemes, many of which are scams. Thankfully, many real opportunities for remote work are out there. The ability to work from home has been wonderful for me — I can be there for my wife’s doctor’s appointments, give my parents a break caring for my grandmother, and use my commuting time for something more valuable.

If you have a computer, high-speed internet, and a quiet place to work, there’s a remote job that’s right for you.

Your current job

Many jobs can be done remotely, at least part of the time. It’s not unusual for a boss to let you work from home part of the week or for a few months rather than lose a good employee.

Talk to your manager about working from home before you decide you need to quit. You may be able to use FMLA to keep your current job.

Web developer & designer

You can design a website or write code from anywhere and many companies are happy to hire the best talent, regardless of where you live. There are tons of online programs to learn how to code, both paid and free, as well as intensive in-person courses to get you up to speed quickly. Before you jump in, think about what language you want to learn and what you’re looking for.

Where to find jobs:

Community manager

Responsibilities for community managers can vary greatly. Some require a lot of face-to-face work, while others are 100% social media. It’s a mix of writing blogs, supporting customers, and marketing work.

Where to find jobs:

Translator

If you’re fluent in multiple languages, there are a lot of opportunities for translating texts. Many of the documents are corporate or technical in nature, so your previous job experience can be important to landing better paying projects.

Where to find jobs:

Customer support

When you call customer support numbers, many of the people you’re speaking to are at home, not a call center. Working as a virtual agent allows you flexibility, as long as you have strong customer service skills.

Where to find jobs:

Writer & editor

If you have strong writing skills, there are many opportunities out there to get paid to write articles, website copy, marketing copy, technical documents, and reports. There are also opportunities for editing and proofreading. Learn more at The Write Life.

Where to find jobs:

Online tutoring

You don’t necessarily need a professional background in teaching to be a successful online tutor, although it doesn’t hurt. Just about any skill you’ve mastered is something you can get paid to teach.

Where to find jobs:

Online selling

As an online seller, you’re not getting a job so much as you’re making a job. You can set up your own online store and sell just about anything. Etsy and Shopify both have strong support and seller communities to help you get started. Just don’t invest your life savings in Beanie Babies.

Where to set up your store:

  • Ebay (online auctions)
  • Etsy (handmade goods, vintage items, and craft supplies)
  • Shopify (make your own store)
  • WooCommerce (make your own WordPress store)

Want to learn about other ways to make money online? I’ve Tried That is a fantastic blog that — you guessed it — tries out all the different opportunities out there and lets you know which ones work. Here’s their directory of how to make money online.

Remote job sites

There are a few sites I can’t not mention. These sites have a variety of different remote jobs that are worth keeping an eye on.

  • Power to Fly was founded to help moms find remote jobs. Their listings are vetted.
  • Idealist specializes in jobs with nonprofits and mission-driven companies. Their site has the option to filter for remote jobs.
  • Remote OK has a ton of jobs, from web development to non-technical positions.
  • Angellist has a fantastic startup job board that allows you to filter for remote positions.

How can you spot a scam?

Stories of scams abound on the internet. You don’t want to get caught up in one of them. Steer clear of:

  • Anything that’s promising that you’ll make thousands of dollars with hardly any work or getting you to enlist your buddies is probably not a legitimate business.
  • Anyone who’s asking for your personal or financial information.
  • Anything that requires you to spend money upfront (aside from the requisite laptop and printer). Any money you wire is gone forever and credit card protections don’t protect you from poor business choices.
  • Job offers that appear without an interview or even an application.

None of the options above are ‘easy money.’ They all involve a lot of hard work — you can’t just set up an account on Elance or Shopify and watch the money roll in. It takes time to establish yourself and find work. And don’t forget to check into the tax implications of freelance work.

Get to work

Of course, working from home doesn’t mean you’re available all the time. It’s important to set boundaries so you can take care of your family while getting work done.

About Cori Carl

Profile photo of Cori CarlAs Director, Cori develops our comprehensive global communications and development strategy. She’s constantly tweaking our services based on data-driven marketing metrics and feedback from caregivers. She works to grow our community and build the reputation of The Caregiver Space by amplifying the message on social media, cultivating relationships with experts, creating organizational partnerships, and earning media coverage. She’s an active member of the community and regularly creates resources for Caregivers.

Cori joined The Caregiver Space after a decade of serving as a communications consultant for a number of nonprofit organizations and corporations furthering sustainable energy and urban planning solutions.

Currently, Cori is finishing up her MA in Corporate Communications from Baruch College at CUNY, and has a BA in Media Studies from Eugene Lang College at the New School University. She divides her time between Flatbush, Brooklyn, and downtown Toronto.

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