30020 5 Ways to Make Money from Home LegitimatelyThe American dream used to be to own your own home, or to work for yourself. These days it goes a step further. Many Americans dream of being able to make money from home. Earning a living from the security and comfort of your own home enables a quite different lifestyle than most of us are accustomed to. Instead of punching a clock, you get the luxury of a more flexible work schedule. Instead of having to commute in traffic every day to sit in a sterile, uncomfortable office, you can work from your own desk, in your own home, surrounded by your own things.

Unfortunately, when many of us think about making money from home, we think about scam artists. We think of ads that proclaim you can make a million dollars every week just by doing nothing all day, and equally fantastical claims. Almost every one of us has fallen for that kind of thing at least once, clicking on the link before realizing it’s just another con.

Experiences like that breed skepticism, and rightly so. You wouldn’t want to fall for every single ad you come across. But don’t let the skepticism keep you from seeing the real opportunities that the Internet has made possible. There are some real, honest-to-goodness ways to make money from home. All of them involve real work, but you get to do it from your own home, and that’s worth putting a little effort into it, right? Here are a few suggestions.

1.Freelance writing

If you are a good writer, you can make a living with your pen, I mean, keyboard. There are lots of words on the Internet, in your mail, in the books and newspapers and newsletters you read, and someone has to write that stuff. Freelance writing isn’t all fame and glory, however. Most likely you aren’t going to make a living writing novels. Instead, many work-from-home freelance writers make money writing marketing materials for businesses. Web copy, advertising copy, direct mail, press releases, articles — these are a few of the things you might find yourself writing as a freelance writer.

2.Virtual assistant

A virtual assistant does many of the things a traditional secretary or executive assistant would do, but of course (as you may have guessed), he or she does it all virtually. As a virtual assistant, you might find yourself answering and screening phone calls, setting up appointments, managing client email, or performing research. A virtual assistant, or a VA as they are often called, may specialize in working with clients in just one industry, which is an advantage if there are industry-specific technical skills you can therefore offer your clients. Just as with freelance writing, a virtual assistant is a contractor and not an employee, which means that you will probably work with multiple clients on a regular basis. Since there are no advanced skills you have to know in order to be a VA, this can be an excellent way to earn money from home.

3.eBay seller

Many people have discovered that an eBay store is an excellent way to earn money from home. eBay sellers typically search for items that they can resell on eBay, whether they get them from overstock, garage sales and thrift sales, or make the items themselves. If you are an antiques or collectibles dealer on eBay, in truth only about half of your job will be done from home, as you will have to scour local sales for resellable items, as well ship them to their new owners. Other sellers make their products by hand, or buy overstock and other lots online and resell the goods when they receive them, which means only the shipping must be done away from home.

4.Handmade crafts

There is a growing interest in supporting local artisans who produce handmade goods, often more creative or better quality than the commercial products available in stores. There are often many local resources, such as craft sales, flea markets, and booths in larger stores, to support artisans by helping them to sell their crafts. In addition, you can sell the things you make on websites.

5.Websites and blogs

I am putting this in a different category than freelance writing, because while most freelance writers write for someone, many bloggers write for themselves or with the intention of selling advertising space and affiliate marketing space on their websites. In addition, this category includes small online retailers that make an entire business out of selling products to niche markets through affiliate marketing. For instance, an entrepreneur might build a website specifically for horse owners, and list a variety of horse books, tack, and other products from Amazon and other affiliates. With a website or blog like this, every time a product sells, you earn a commission. Ads, on the other hand, may pay you every time someone clicks on them, or simply pay you a flat fee every month to host the ad.

As you can see, there are quite a few ways to make money from home if you are so inclined — and these are only five of the most common types of jobs that work-at-homers take. Do you make money from home, and if so, how?

About the Author

Vern Marker is a freelance writer on a variety of topics including entrepreneurship using the Internet. She’s helped design Ebay store pages and is well-versed in online marketplaces.