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Thanks to the internet, working from home is easier than ever. One of the biggest benefits is flexibility — you can work as much or as little as you need or want. Working a part-time job from home is a great option whether you want to take off the rest of the day to enjoy yourself or if you need a little extra cash on top of your 9-5 salary.
There are even plenty of fun opportunities to make extra cash when you’ve retired.
While there are plenty of scam sites promising part-time jobs as mystery shoppers or getting paid to play video games, we put together some reliable ideas to help you find work from trusted sources.
Be a Freelancer
Every year, more people are taking a chance on freelance gigs. A study by Upwork and Freelancers Union reported that 56.7 million Americans freelanced in 2018, a 3.7 million increase from 2014.
That high growth is unsurprising. Freelance work provides the flexibility to work as much or as little as you want, and wherever you want. There are two primary ways to start work as a freelancer:
- Find clients on your own
- Use a freelance platform or job board
Finding clients on your own takes a little extra work and confidence (or willingness) to send emails or call companies you think would make good clients. Before sending out emails to a bunch of businesses, sit down and figure out which type of clients would be a good fit for you.
Are you interested in writing or designing for health care companies? Perhaps you have a passion for birth photography and are looking for gigs in that niche.
Knowing the type of client you want to work with narrows your search pool and saves time when you’re sending out pitches.
However, there are a few freelance platforms out there that can make things a lot easier for you.
Upwork is a tried-and-true freelance marketplace. It used to be called Elance-oDesk.
All you have to do is browse job opportunities and apply to the ones that appeal to you. Clients will hire you via Upwork contracts and pay you through the platform, as well.
The site is particularly popular among freelance writers, marketers, and designers.
Upwork has a tiered pricing structure. It charges 20% for the first $500 billed to a client, then 10% until you reach $10,000. Any earnings from a client that exceed $10,000 are charged 5%.
Fiverr lets you offer a service in more than 200 categories. You can offer pretty much any service as long as it’s legal.
You can do anything from a tiny one-off odd job to a big project. A friend recently hired a Fiverr designer to create a JPEG image of only one calligraphy letter. It cost $5 (plus she tipped an extra $5) and took the designer only about five minutes to create.
Clients will contact you and hire your services. All transactions — including payment — will take place through the Fiverr app.
For fees, Fiverr charges a flat 20% of all transactions.
Teach English Virtually
If you enjoy working with kids and have a firm grasp on the English language, you can find a part-time job from home as a virtual English teacher.
There are a couple of things to consider when thinking about working part-time from home as an online English teacher:
- Many sites require you to be fluent in English
- Some sites require a bachelor’s degree
- You may have to work really early in the morning or very late at night to account for time differences
VIPKID is perhaps the most popular online English teaching site.
It requires that applicants have at least a bachelor’s degree. In addition to an application, you’ll participate in a recorded or live interview, undergo training, and teach a mock class. All applicants are required to go through a background check.
Obviously, you’ll also need access to a computer, a microphone or headset, and the internet.
Teachers earn up to $22 per hour. Each class lasts 25 minutes, not including preparation time. Peak times for classes are Monday through Friday between 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Beijing time (6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Eastern).
Become a Virtual Assistant
If you’re comfortable at the computer, you may be able to find part-time work from home as a virtual assistant. A virtual assistant acts like a regular assistant, except they perform their duties from a home office.
Primary responsibilities are administrative, technical, or creative. For example, a virtual assistant may manage social media accounts, answer emails, conduct research, or set appointments.
It’s a particularly good choice for a current college student.
And we know a great way to get started.
OK, the name definitely sounds a little weird. But Horkey HandBook offers all you need to launch a successful virtual assistant side hustle.
The site offers courses in everything from email management to real estate. You’ll learn through lessons with highly qualified instructors and receive cheatsheets and handbooks to use for reference throughout your new career.
There’s also the 30 Days or Less to Virtual Assistant Success course, which can help you lay the foundation for a successful part-time career as a virtual assistant.
Find a Gig on Flexjobs
If you don’t want to waste time scouring websites or having to decipher a scam listing yourself, FlexJobs is a great resource. The company hand-screens all jobs posted on the site.
There are more than 50 job categories, including insurance, sales, data entry, math, web design, and real estate. The site takes job postings directly from clients, but it also has a team that searches the internet to find even more reliable listings.
FlexJobs specializes in work-from-home gigs, but it also has listings that offer part-time work, remote jobs, and flexible-schedule work. FlexJobs users pay $14.95 per month; $29.95 for three months, or $49.95 per year.
OK — so this isn’t technically a work-from-home part-time job. It’s more of a work-from-the-comfort-of-your-car job.
If you have a few extra hours each week and don’t mind trekking all over town, you can make some extra cash as a rideshare driver through Uber or Lyft.
Drivers for Uber use an app to connect with customers nearby who need a ride.
Uber has some requirements you must meet before working for the company, including:
- You must legally be able to drive
- You must have at least one year of licensed driving experience in the U.S. (if you’re under 23 years old, you’ll need three years of experience)
- You must have access to an eligible four-door vehicle
- You must submit a photo and pass a screening and criminal background check
If you don’t have your own car, you can rent a vehicle through Uber’s Vehicle Solutions Marketplace
Earnings vary based on city, route length, and time of day. Taking gigs during busy times (also called “surge” hours) can result in higher earnings.
Uber isn’t particularly forthcoming about the fees it takes out of its drivers’ pay. However, we understand this amount to be about 25 percent.
Right now, Uber is offering a special guarantee that you’ll earn at least $1,050 for the first 150 trips you make within 90 days of signing up.
Lyft offers the same service as Uber and is a direct competitor.
The application process to become a driver takes about 30 minutes. Once you’ve completed your application (including documentation and a copy of your driver’s license), your car will need to pass a Lyft inspection, and you’ll need to pass a background check.
Lyft offers drivers some perks, including:
- A driver loyalty program that features discounted maintenance
- Drivers get to keep 100% of their tips
- Emergency assistance
- Insurance for drivers on the clock
- Driver bonuses and contests
Earnings vary based on city, route length, and time of day. Further, drivers with higher-end cars can earn more money per ride. Lyft also offers a car rental option through its Lyft Express Drive program.
We’ve also written an in-depth comparison of Lyft and Uber.
Become a Virtual Travel Agent
Do you love to travel? Are luxurious cruises your thing?
Earn the money to pay for your next vacation by working part-time from home as a cruise travel agent.
Yes, that’s right — despite Expedia, Kayak, and all the other travel booking sites, travel agents who focus on cruises are still in hot demand. In fact, 70 percent of cruises are still booked through an agent.
You can start your own travel agency, or you can work with a company that’s already established.
The Bottom Line
Working from home part-time is easier than you think. With a little creativity and a good plan, you can earn some extra cash without having to take on work that requires a long commute or dealing with water cooler gossip.
Let us know what you think about these ideas.
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