Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, industrial engineer, mother of two, and published sci-fi and horror author.
When someone asks about stay-at-home work or a job for stay-at-home mothers, one of the first suggestions is blogging and hoping to make money from the ad revenue or reviews. The second suggestion is always freelance writing.
But what stay-at-home jobs are there for those who don't want to write?
The limits on how many children and conditions will vary. However, most jurisdictions will let you watch a relative’s children, up to two unrelated children, and a few kids for two hours after school without having to get a daycare license. If you don’t go out much, you can make a small fortune watching several children in addition to your own kids on New Year’s Eve or while their parents are at Christmas parties.
Tutoring and Helping With Homework
This is one area where stay-at-home moms can excel if you’re already helping your own kids with their homework. Maybe you are the parent of an A+ high school student, thus ready to help a middle schooler with pre-algebra. Or you are a stay-at-home mother who can make extra money simply supervising other people’s kids after school, helping them with grade-school homework, and making sure they aren’t watching TV or playing video games. Many parents will pay more than minimum wage to know that when they pick up the kids to have dinner, there’s not going to be a night of fighting over homework because you already helped them do it.
If you are capable of helping with high school and college-level work, you could get paid to tutor others at any level. Remember that homeschooling has resulted in far more people who will hire tutors during standard school hours, allowing you to find students to tutor during your toddler's 12 to 2 nap.
If you have a car that is kid friendly, with car seats (and space) for more children, you could make extra money with sites like Shuddle or simply getting paid by other parents to carpool their kids from school to soccer practice.
One caveat, though, is that you will need the necessary paperwork to pick up their kids from school.
Another option is listing your kid-friendly car on car-sharing websites, making more money than the average vehicle because it is more suitable to the mom whose van broke down than the 2 door car a neighbor has for rent by the hour.
This can be more complicated than childcare for many moms. While you can let two neighbor’s kids come to your house after school and play with your kids or do homework at the dining table, taking care of an older person isn’t compatible with stay-at-home parenting.
You may be able to find work in eldercare as an errand runner, taking the person’s shopping list and returning with groceries once a week or taking them to and from the dialysis clinic three times a week. You may be able to get paid to provide respite care for an elder when their partner is at the store when your own spouse is watching the children in the evening.
One aspect of eldercare many stay-at-home parents should research is whether or not they can be paid for providing eldercare to relatives. Consult with a tax attorney to see if you can be paid for helping take care of Mom, whether visiting her house every day or if she lives with you.
You can work as a pet sitter or dog walker while being a stay-at-home parent. This may consist of visiting the home during the day, giving the pets water and food if they need it, and giving the dogs a walk.
Pet care is particularly lucrative during the holidays if you can take care of pets over Thanksgiving or Christmas while others are away if you don't want to run a pet care business year-round. Consider involving teens and pre-teens in the task to help keep them busy over the holidays and give them an opportunity to earn extra spending money.
Any organization which relies on peer-to-peer marketing, such as Avon and Pampered Chef, will take on a working stay-at-home mother. Be careful, though, of the cost to buy in and the effort required to sell.
This is best typified by the woman who peruses garage sales and Goodwill looking for undervalued items for resale online. There are now apps for sites like Amazon where you can scan the bar code and determine its value. While this clearly won’t work for homemade and hand-made items, it lets you search the books at the garage sale or items still in the box at Good Will and determine what is worth a small fortune online.
Research telemarketing from home positions if you are good at selling but don’t want to try to sell products to friends and neighbors.
The internet has allowed the phone rep to move out of the cubicle and into the home office. Companies like Alpine Access, Arise, and LiveOps let you work as a customer service rep or back office support staffer from home.
You can work as a transcriptionist from home. You can build up relationships with doctors and law offices to do their transcription. Or sign up with Amazon Mturk and other crowdsourcing webistes. You need to complete the tests required to do transcription tasks, after which you'll get paid anywhere from five to 15 dollars an hour for transcription work. Retaining access to these tasks requires passing repeated accuracy tests. More money is paid for transcription tasks with heavy static, rapid-fire conversation and non-English speakers.
If you are bilingual, you can work as a translator from home. Translate someone’s ad copy into another language, or convert someone’s Chinese language interview into English for a newspaper.
In an era of social media, public relations work is easily done from home. For those who don’t write press releases or ad copy, you may get paid to maintain a Twitter feed, review customer forums for negative reviews and/or tech support requests, paste links to the company in social media threads discussing the company or manage their social media accounts.
Graphic Design and Photography
Graphic design work can be done from home if you have the software and skill sets. What if you don’t have the Adobe creative suite or familiarity with Maya? Research whether or not you’d like to upload a lot of images from your life or your community to stock photography websites for possible money.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Tamara Wilhite (author) from Fort Worth, Texas on December 23, 2017:
Dale Anderson Thank you.
Dale Anderson from The High Seas on December 10, 2017:
Some interesting ideas here.
Tamara Wilhite (author) from Fort Worth, Texas on October 19, 2017:
blessedp I'm glad you enjoyed it. I hope others benefit from the advice.
blessedp on February 11, 2016:
Great hub. Thank you for sharing those ideas of working from home. I look forward to reading more of your hubs.
Rachel Horon on April 06, 2015:
You have listed a number of jobs that I have not considered before. The pros and cons are clear as well as the importance in looking into legal concerns and licensing. I will be looking into some of these options further. Thanks!
Edwin Brown from Oregon, USA on April 04, 2015:
Thank you for this hub. These are some great ideas. Some people will be making hay with this. Not everyone is comfortable with writing for money.