Get to Work without Leaving the House

Skip the daily grind in favor of working at home.

Wake up early, turn on the coffee, skip the commute, and get straight to work—in your pajamas. Take a mid-morning break for yoga and grocery shopping and then pick the kids up from school. Squeeze in a little more work while your kids do their homework. If you think it sounds too good to be true, think again. This work-from-home schedule is actually becoming a reality for more and more women who decide to ditch the 9-to-5 grind.

Choosing Home over an Office

Working outside the home carries a unique set of challenges, especially for moms. Scheduling carpools, groceries, errands, chores, meals, and more becomes doubly complicated when you’re juggling a fixed office schedule. And if you have a challenging commute, it’s hard to arrive home energized and ready for your role as mom. Who wouldn’t rather be at home?

Ideally, we’d like to ditch the daily grind, but keep the income. With these new work-from-home possibilities, you can do just that. It’s as easy as taking a strength or hobby and turning it into a job. Below are just a few ideas:

Translator: If you’re fluent in a foreign language, consider becoming a translator. Some people earn over $50,000 a year translating documents from (or into) Japanese, Chinese, Russian, French, German, and Spanish. You’ll need to be fluent in the language and have access to the Internet. You may also need to have an area of expertise, such as law, medicine, or finance. The American Translators Association offers resources and certification programs for translators. Visit atanet.org

Customer Service Agent: If you have the gift of gab and a thick skin, you might have a knack for working in customer service. Many major retailers, including Eddie Bauer and Jet Blue Airways, are now outsourcing their customer service calls to virtual agents. You’ll need Internet access and previous customer service experience and most companies will provide a brief training. Expect to earn $8-$15 an hour—about what you’d expect in any customer service job, except you won’t have to leave the house. Learn more at VIPDesk (vipdesk.com)

Medical Coder: Medical coders are in great demand. New government regulations have increased the amount of paperwork associated with insurance claims. Many companies need medical coders to translate information into numerical codes. You will need a basic understanding of medical terminology, which you can learn online or through a local class. Medical coders earn between $39,000 and $46,000 annually. The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) offers training, certification, continuing education, and networking opportunities for coders. (Visit aapc.com)

Transcriber: Transcribing is a growing industry. Anyone with good typing skills can find work as a transcriber. There are many different transcribing opportunities—some companies specialize in one area, whereas others will match you to work in your own area of expertise. Transcribers are paid by the page or by the hour and typically earn $10-$15 per hour. The American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers (AAERT) provides education and certification for transcribers. (aaert.org)

Mock Trials: Many attorneys use mock trials to solicit feedback prior to going to trial. While mock trials used to take place in conference rooms and offices, they’re now staged online. By signing up to be a “juror,” you will review legal cases from the comfort of your home and then provide feedback through an online questionnaire. Depending on the complexity of the case, you can expect to earn between $50-$100 per case. The best part about the intellectually stimulating work is that there is no long-term commitment—you can choose to accept work on a case-by-case basis. For more information, visit onlineverdict.com

The New Office

Opportunities for working at home abound on the Internet, some more legitimate than others. If you’re ready to quit the commute and spend more time at home earning an income, think outside the box. There are countless ways to earn an income without leaving the house. Good luck!