Few women look forward to returning to work after having a baby. Some don’t have a choice. But others have enough wiggle room in their income to start earning money from home. Here are some proven ways for stay-at-home moms to help contribute to the household budget.
1. Selling things on eBay.
Much has been written on this site – and all over the Internet – about selling on eBay; so I won’t cover all the details again. I will tell you, though, that many women make this work. Here are a few secrets they have shared with me:
- Invest in a good postal scale and keep all packaging material on hand.
- Charge a flat rate for postage.
- If you are buying things to resell, look for things that you like.
- Quality pictures and a thorough description sell your item.
- Don’t give up too soon. Give it time to learn the ropes.
2. Working as a personal assistant.
One mom, Rebecca from Virginia, has worked as the personal assistant for a professional couple for the past eight years—from home, while homeschooling her children. For her, this job was a spill-over from her full-time position prior to the birth of her first child. For others, though, choosing to work from home, keeping executives looking good and organized, might be something to look into. If you have strong clerical, organizational, and interpersonal skills, Rebecca says you can make it in this field. “You have to be really good at the Internet,” she said, “and be accessible.”
A personal assistant might perform a wide range of duties—managing calendars, organizing records, and handling correspondence. Or, the tasks might be more glamorous. Rebecca, for instance, plans the family’s parties, makes travel arrangements, and is on call 24/7 for emergency situations. The pay for this job will vary depending on the area of the country you live in and the position of the person for whom you work; but on average a personal assistant can expect to make about $25 per hour.
Jamerrill Stewart shares daily free items and great deals for homeschool families at FreeHomeschoolDeals.com. She began blogging in 2008 as a hobby, but shortly felt the Lord “put on my heart that blogging is a ministry.” This ministry has evolved from helping others to helping her family with income. Working about 30 hours per week while her children sleep, she says she makes a “steady income” on her blogs. “I go to bed early most nights, and get up several hours before my household,” she said in a recent interview. “It’s a trade-off. I don’t watch TV or hold any responsibilities outside of my home and business for this season.”
Blogging is not a get-rich-quick way to make a living, either. It took Jamerrill four years to see a good return for her efforts. If you think blogging might be your niche, there are many sites that will point you in the right direction: BloggingYourPassion.com and ProBlogger.net are two good ones to start with.
4. Selling your handiworks.
Betty, also from Virginia, worked for about 40 years as a professional seamstress. She fashioned wedding ensembles, costumes, and just everyday clothes for a wide range of clientele. Even now, at 76 years of age, she continues to hem pants, replace zippers, and alter prom dresses. Sewing clothes, however, is not her only passion. Betty has also been known to work for months preparing for the craft show season. Her crafts have changed over the years; but she’s never failed to provide at least grocery money for her household.
If you have a passion for creating, give selling your wares a try. From homemade soap to candles to photographs, all can be sold at local arts and crafts shows, gift shops, or online. For more information about selling online, check out Etsy.com.
5. Selling for multi-level organizations.
When my children were small, I paid for the groceries by selling Avon. I made phone calls while the little ones slept, let them help me package orders, and took them with me to make deliveries. It was perfect for our family at that time.
After they got older, I switched from Avon to Shaklee products. Shaklee involved more time away from the home with the children but I was still able to build my business from home and, again, make enough to provide the groceries and extra things that my husband’s salary didn’t cover. If you might be interested in a multi-level product, make sure it’s something that you are sold on yourself. Use the products, see the difference they make in your life, and then you have a story to share. It is your story that will sell the products for you. Also, check out the company’s marketing plan and business philosophy to make sure that it meets with your standards.
There is not enough room here to discuss all the ways for a stay-at-home mom to earn a living; but I don’t want to overlook something that works for you. So please, share your experiences in the comments.