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Many businesses can be run from your house, but they still require you to spend much of your time away from home.
For example, a home office can be sufficient for a cleaning service or for making crafts to sell at shows, but you’ll still be out of the house much of the time.
What if you prefer not to leave home at all? Maybe you’re without transportation. Perhaps you need to stay at home to care for someone. Or you just hate to go out in public.
Whatever your reasons for wanting to stay home, you probably still need to make a living. So how can you do it?
Start with the following 115 ways to make money without leaving your home. They’re divided into five categories; jobs, freelance work, businesses, investments, and money-making projects.
Be sure to read through to that last category. It includes some of the more fun and interesting income producers.
By necessity a large list like this will have few details, but you’ll find links to more information, so you can follow up on any methods that interest you. So let’s get started with…
Jobs You Can Do At Home
For steady income, a job is usually the way to go. And yes, there are plenty of employers who will let you work at home.
Unlike with our other categories, you may have to apply and/or get interviewed in person, but after that almost every working hour should be spent at home with the following jobs.
1. Start A Blog
While it’s not a get-rich quick method, starting a blog can provide some great extra cash with just a couple of hours per day for work. Get good enough at it and attract an audience and it becomes your full-time job – just like with this blog.
In order to get a blog started, you’ll need 3 things:
- A Domain
We recommend creating an account with Bluehost since they are one of the cheapest hosts out there ($3.95 per month your first year), they give you a free domain, and you can install WordPress for free in just one click.
Looking for tips on how to start? You can read our post on the 7 steps it takes to start a blog. While the post relates specifically to personal finance blogs, the methods in it can be applied to any topic.
2. Do Surveys
These are classic online limited-obligation gigs. Your time commitment can be as short as a couple minutes per survey and you can do as few or as many as you want.
In my experience it’s tough to make even minimum wage doing surveys, but laying in bed answering questions on my laptop is a very relaxing way to make money. Here are some of the survey sites you can use:
3. Your Current Job
If there is any way to do your current job duties at home, you might be able to convince your boss to give it a try.
First, get familiar with the tools you might use for telecommuting. Then prepare you “case” by printing out some information that will impress your employer.
For example, one study shows increased productivity for 71% of employers who let employees work at home.
Another study shows a 13% performance boost when employees worked at home, and found there were fewer sick days. If your boss is concerned about the environment, tell him about the positive environmental impact of working at home.
4. Customer Service Representative
There are many companies that hire home-based workers, and offer real jobs (not just freelance contract work), which means consistent income and benefits.
The most common openings are for customer service representatives.
Here are a couple places to try:
- Working Solutions
- Amazon (they hire temporary at-home agents seasonally)
- Convergys (some of their positions are at-home)
You can also find these positions by searching “work at home customer service” on Indeed.com or other job websites.
5. Join a Nielsen Panel
As a Nielsen panel member you install a tracking app on your computer or phone so Nielsen can gather statistics on what sites you visit.
You make a small amount ($50 per year last time I checked) for keeping the app installed, and you’re entered into cash sweepstakes as well.
6. Virtual Assistant
As a virtual assistant you work at home for individuals or companies, doing anything from making phone calls to conducting online research. Your primary tools are a phone, computer, and an internet connection.
Flexjobs.com has a list of companies that are hiring for virtual assistant jobs.
7. Home-Based Sales Representative
A search of “home based sales” on Indeed.com brings up over 30,000 results. There are many different types of positions available, and you don’t necessarily have to make cold calls.
For example, a current listing for a sales rep for electronic dog fencing says, “warm leads only,” and states that you just answer questions from potential customers who are already interested.
It also says you can make up to $75,000 annually working from home.
8. Data Entry Agent
Doing “data entry” might mean filling out spreadsheets with research information you collect online, entering patient information into a database for medical offices, recording payments made by customers, and many similar tasks.
Many of these jobs can be done entirely at home.
Where do you find them? Search “data entry work at home” on Indeed.com or other job websites and you’ll see plenty of possibilities.
9. Apple At Home Advisor
If you really know your Apple products, put that knowledge to good use as an Apple At Home Advisor. Apple has both full and part-time positions. You work at home using your phone and/or online via chat programs.
Glassdoor says the average base pay for this position (in the U.S.) is $29,900, with some workers making as much as $36,000 annually.
10. Social Media Manager
While it might be ironic to manage social media accounts from the lonely anonymity of your home, it can be a real job.
In fact, search “social media manager” on Monster.com and you’ll see a couple hundred positions posted right now.
11. All the Rest
If you simply search “work at home” on Indeed.com you might be surprised by the kinds of jobs you find. As this is written, the first page of results included the following positions:
- Call Center Research Associate – You call farmers and pay them to take surveys.
- Workers Compensation Claims Adjuster – You investigate, negotiate and resolve claims.
- Gossip Researcher – You call people, get the latest gossip, and report it.
Freelance Work You Can Do In Your Pajamas
Freelancing is self-employment so you won’t have the benefits or employee protections that come with a regular job.
You’ll also be responsible for all accounting and tax matters. But you won’t have to leave the house to do any of the following.
12. Be a Telephone Interpreter
Language interpretation work requires a higher degree of fluency than written translation work. After all, you can’t stop the conversation to look up a word.
But if you’re up to the challenge, you can now do this work at home, on the phone.
LanguageLine hires both employees and independent contractors for various interpretation positions, and they offer work-at-home opportunities too.
13. Become A Contract Salesperson
If you’re good with people and not afraid to make “cold calls” to potential customers, there are companies who need you.
VOIQ, for example, hires sales agents for cold call gigs, and offers flexibility (you choose when and how much to work), base pay, and performance incentives.
14. Develop Android Or iPhone Apps
One of the best forms of income is residual income — money that keeps coming in after your work is done. That’s what you get when you create and sell an app.
What if you don’t know where to start? There are plenty of tutorials that teach you how to build an app when you don’t know how to code.
You’ll sell your creations through an app store. TechRepublic says setup fees range from free to $99 per year (Apple), and you pay a percentage of sales.
So you might get only 65 or 70 cents for every 99-cent app you sell. But once you’ve done the work the revenue could keep coming in for years.
15. Work For Mechanical Turk
Amazon Mechanical Turk is an online platform where you get paid for various tasks.
For any given gig you might be reviewing a websites, categorizing items for sale, editing product descriptions, taking surveys, or doing anything else that Amazon’s robots or programs can’t easily do.
The pay varies by task, and is usually very low, but you choose which tasks are worth your time, and you do get to work at home.
16. Do Transcription Gigs
QuickTate hires independent contractors to do various transcription jobs.
They say you’ll be transcribing, “voicemail messages, memos, letters, legal files, medical files, recordings of phone calls, conference calls and other audio files.”
To get these gigs, you do have to meet quite a few requirements, starting with “accurate spelling and punctuation.”
But QuickTate also says, “you can select your own hours that you want to work. You can work as few, or as many hours as you want.”
Here are couple more platforms where you can find transcription gigs:
17. Get Paid To Write Code
If you know how to write code, sell your services online! I once paid a coder on Freelancer $50 for a bit of PHP code that he admitted had taken him only a couple minutes to produce.
Upwork is another freelance platform where you can find clients.
If you want to learn the necessary skills there are plenty of free online resources that will teach you how to code.
18. Write Ads
Boost Media pays independent contractors to write ads for products. Some of these gigs are for simple ads like the descriptions used in Google Adwords display ads.
Pay varies by gig, but, according to the website, it can be a “potentially a significant revenue stream.” You work when you want and choose the gigs you want.
19. Write Articles For Websites And Blogs
To make money writing articles for blogs and websites you might sell your services on freelance platforms like Upwork and Freelancer. This is a good way to start, but in my experience the pay offered is usually pretty low.
It can be more lucrative to go directly to websites that pay $50 or more per article. The nice thing about finding clients this way is that you might get more regular work. If that fails, you have the next option…
20. Write For Content Mills
Content providers, sometimes called “content mills,” provide articles and posts to websites, blogs and other online businesses.
As a writer you’ll never be credited with a byline on your pieces, and the pay is usually very low, but these platforms do provide a way to learn skills like how to write fast and how to write on any topic.
Here are a few content providers looking for writers:
21. Test Websites
I found this work enjoyable, but the gigs were infrequent. Essentially you look over a website while recording what you think about it.
Typical pay is $10, and it usually took me less than 15 minutes to complete a review and upload it. You can sign up for this work at the following places (sign up for all of them if you want more work).
22. Be A Telephone Mystery Shopper
Call Center QA provides mystery shopping services to businesses that want to know how their customer service agents are doing. To do this they need people to make phone calls and evaluate the employees who answer.
That’s where you come in. You get paid $5 to make a 5- to 10-minute phone call and answer a few questions about your experience afterward. Payment is via PayPal.
23. Help Students With Homework
Chegg is a platform where you get paid to help students with homework. A highschool diploma is enough to get started (you don’t need teaching credentials).
Chegg says, “Top tutors can earn $1,000+/month.”
24. Do Customer Service Contract Work
Not all customer service jobs involve regular employment.
Ver-a-Fast, for example, will pay you to call newspaper subscribers, to verify that they’re getting their papers on time, in the right place, etc.
LiveOps is another company that has customer service gigs.
25. Teach English Online
If you like to teach and have a solid background in English, being an English teacher online is a great way to work at home. Requirements and pay rates vary.
VIPKID, for example, requires at least a bachelor’s degree, and their website claims you can make between $14 and $22 per hour.
QKids will let you teach without a degree as long as you’re enrolled in a university program. They say you’ll make between $16 and $20 per hour.
26. Tutor Online
For online (and phone) tutoring on a variety of subjects, there are many platforms you can use to find clients. For example…
- TutorMe – Requires a degree or enrollment in a university degree program.
- Cambly – No experience required, pays $0.17 per minute.
- Wyzant – You just have to know your subject, and they go beyond academics.
27. Become A Speechwriter
When I helped a client write a speech I charged $25 per hour, and he hesitated to pay that much because of my admitted total lack of experience, but if you have more experience this can be lucrative work.
Salary.com says, “The median annual Speech Writer salary is $128,345.” Of course, as a freelancer your income is dependent not just on your writing ability, but also on your ability to find clients.
28. Be A Proofreader
If you find yourself constantly picking out typos, grammar mistakes and other errors when you read, it may be time to get paid for your ability. You can sell your services on freelance platforms like Upwork and Freelancer.
Not sure you have what it takes? Attend a free online proofreading workshop to brush up on your skills.
Businesses You Can Run Completely At Home
To be included here, an enterprise cannot require you to leave home to conduct business.
If you need supplies they can be ordered online and delivered to your door, or they can be picked up when you do your ordinary shopping. Here are some businesses that fit these criteria.
Note: If you’re starting on a budget, see my article on how to start a business with no money.
29. Ebook Publishing
I used to create simple PDF e-books on topics ranging from ultralight backpacking (a hobby of mine) to how to boost one’s creativity. I sold them through ClickBank and made hundreds of dollars monthly for years.
I like ClickBank because they have affiliates who sell your products for you (for a commission), but there are many other places to sell your ebooks.
A warning though: As competition has increased, this has become a business where you need more marketing skills than writing skills (books don’t sell themselves).
30. Teach Online
In addition to tutoring gigs, there is a way to make teaching online into a regular business, using platforms where you create and sell classes. Here are two of them:
You don’t need a teaching degree. Customers of these platforms simply want to learn something new.
If you know how to train a dog, cook vegan meals, or make a scrapbook, and you want to share your knowledge, you can put together a class and get paid.
And then make another class. A quick look at some of the instructors statistics shows the profit potential.
For example, Kain Ramsay (on Udemy) has courses on dating, love, parenting, and relationships, and has had over 148,000 students so far.
31. Start A Virtual Bookkeeping Business
Are you good with numbers? Take a free class on how to start a virtual bookkeeping business, and help small businesses from home.
Ben Robinson, the founder of Bookkeeper Business Launch, says the median annual salary for a bookkeeper is $41,073, but you can make up to $80 per hour.
32. Start A Fiverr Business
Fiverr lets you sell all sorts of goods and services, starting at $5. I’ve only used the site as a customer, paying $15 for book cover designs for my ebooks.
The real profits are probably made from things that can be easily and quickly repeated, like a service that inserts anyone (photo of face) into a funny video. See our review of Fiverr for more on how to get started.
33. Start A Website Or Blog
A website or blog can be a very lucrative business. My own websites used to produce over $10,000 per month from advertising.
And you can blog about anything! Even my website on how to remove carpet stains used to make over $1,000 per month.
Bluehost only charges you $3.95 a month for hosting and you even get a free domain your first year as a new user. This adds up to under $50 per year.
Here are some previous posts on blogging to get you started:
- 7 Detailed Steps to Start a Successful Blog
- 5 Reasons You Should Start A Blog
- 30 Key Tips to Make Money Blogging
- My Blog Traffic After Writing Every Day for 6 Months
Note: Building a blog or website is easy, but getting enough traffic to it (the prerequisite for profits) is difficult.
34. Design Websites
Everything you need to do to run a website design business can be done at home.
Payscale pegs the average salary of website designers at around $48,000 annually, but as a business you could make a lot more (or a lot less) depending on how well you market yourself.
35. Start A YouTube Business
I have a friend who makes more than $10,000 monthly from his YouTube videos. My more modest skills never made me more than about $100 per month (perhaps choosing backpacking as my subject was the problem).
But it is free to start a YouTube channel, and once you have enough traffic you can click the “monetize” button to start earning money from the ads shown.
36. Sell Things On Amazon
It isn’t easy to find the right product and buy it cheap enough to resell for a profit, but if you’re going to sell online, Amazon gives you exposure that could take years to develop on your own website.
37. Sell Handcrafted Things Online
I used to make walking sticks and sell them at craft shows and flea markets. I didn’t consider selling them online, but that’s the way to go with any craft sales if you want to stay home.
Whether you make earrings from seashells or hats for cats, you can set up a store on Etsy.com to sell them.
It’s well worth the fees they charge to have them handle the technical details, versus setting up your own website and getting a credit card merchant account.
Amazon Handmade is Amazon’s version of Etsy, providing another place to sell the things you make.
38. Rent Out A Room In Your Home
I explained the ins and outs of renting rooms in your home in a recent post here, and yes, doing so really did help me pay off my first mortgage in a few years’ time.
I liked living with other people, but if that’s a problem you can always do what I did after I got married; build an addition so you have your own private space.
39. Rent A Room To Travelers
If you’re not sure you’re ready for full-time roommates, consider renting out your bedrooms by the night or week on Airbnb.com.
Their website just informed me that I could make up to $1,300 per month doing that here in Tucson, and this is not an expensive area.
40. Rent Your Yard To Campers
Don’t want to rent out rooms? If you have a nice patch of grass out back, you can make money renting sites to campers.
Hipcamp is a platform that lets you do exactly that. They take 10% of what you make, which seems fair given that they handle the bookings and even provide liability insurance.
Babysitting can be an at-home business. Just make it a condition of your service. Parents drop off and pick up the kids at your house. You will have to be able to leave home in case of an emergency, but hopefully that will be rare.
To maximize your profits see my post on how to make $17 per-hour babysitting.
42. Start A Bed And Breakfast
If you like being around people, and want an at-home business, a bed and breakfast operation might be the way to go. BedandBreakfast.com has a nice tutorial to get you started.
43. Cuddle With Strangers
By now you’ve heard of professional cuddling, but you may not have know about Cuddlist, a platform that connects you with clients. They’ll train you, certify you, and help you get started.
Yeah, it sounds uncomfortable to have strangers come into your home and cuddle with you, but nothing else is allowed, and you can make $60 per hour!
44. Rent Out Your Yard
If you have a large yard you can rent it out for storing RVs and boats. Sparefoot.com can help you find customers.
45. Rent Out Your Shed
I used to get $50 per week renting out a shed as a bedroom, but most of the time you’ll be better off renting out sheds for storage space. Sparefoot.com can help you find customers.
46. Rent Out A Parking Spot
If parking is in high demand where you live, you can rent out space in your driveway. SpotHero will help you find customers.
47. Grow Catnip
There are a number of things you can profitably grow in your backyard, but catnip is one that can be sold online and easily shipped from home, since it’s usually bought in dried form.
An online catnip growing guide will get you started.
48. Write Resumes
A resume writing business can bring in a good income, especially if you offer several related services, like interview coaching, cover letter writing, and application/resume distribution.
For an idea of the profit potential just look at the rates charged by AmaziingResumesMD.com.
Investments You Can Make Without Leaving The House
When you think of investing from home, the stock market and online bank accounts probably come to mind, and those options are included on our list.
But you might be surprised by some of the other investments you can make without leaving the house. Here are some examples.
49. Invest In Stocks
One of the easiest investments to make from home is in stocks. There are many brokers to choose from, and they are more affordable than ever. For example, Ally has no account minimum and charges just $4.95 per trade.
50. Invest in Mutual Funds
It’s tough to beat the market picking individual stocks, and you may not have the time to do the necessary research, so you may be better off investing in mutual funds.
Some of the best mutual funds are no-load (no upfront fees), and have account minimums as low as $500 or even $100. Consider a fund “family” so you can easily move your money to other funds if market conditions change.
51. Invest In Real Estate Online
You used to have to get out of the house to invest in real estate. That’s no longer true, thanks to real estate crowdfunding websites.
For example, I’ve been making about 6.5% on a Fundrise REIT (and Fundrise lets you start with as little as $500).
A list of the best real estate crowdfunding sites will help you choose the ones that are right for you (investing in several is not a bad idea), but check to see which are open to investors who are not accredited (otherwise you need to make $200,000 annually, or have $1 million in liquid funds to participate).
52. Make Hard Money Loans Online
My wife and I used to make “hard money” loans to real estate investors who flipped homes.
These short-term loans (typically a year or less) paid high interest (10% or more is common), but it’s tough to find the right deals, and you need a lot of cash to do this.
Groundfloor has changed all that. They allow you to loan on flips starting with an investment of just $10. This is one of my favorite real estate investing platforms at the moment.
I’ve used it to invest in loans on projects that pay 8% up to 14% annual interest.
53. Invest In Green Technology
The Swell Investing App lets you invest in green tech and other environmentally-friendly companies, starting with as little as $50. They charge a flat 0.75% annual fee for managing your money.
Robo-investing apps let you to start small (as little as $5) and have your money automatically invested in various companies according to criteria you set.
Fees are generally low (0.25% annually for some services). Here are some of the options available:
55. Loan Money To Strangers
Social lending sites have been around for a while now. They pool small investments to make unsecured personal loans with interest rates as high as 24%.
Lending Club, for example, lets you invest as little as $25 in each loan. I’ve used this platform since 2008, but my return (after loan defaults) has dropped from about 9% to 3% in recent years.
56. Invest In Music Royalties
Royalty Exchange is where artists and others who own the rights to their songs go to sell partial or full rights.
As an investor you buy the rights to the royalty stream of a song or package of songs, either for life or for a set period of time.
I’ve seen music from some well-known artists on this site with investments as low as a few thousand dollars. Returns can be very high if the songs you own get picked up by a movie and become more popular.
On the other hand, if that doesn’t happen the music tends to be played less as the years go by, so your investment revenue drops.
57. Invest In Precious Metals
I consider precious metals to be more of an insurance policy than an investment. If currencies fail, silver and gold will still have some value, for example, but they do not produce any income while you hold them.
On the other hand, if you time your buying and selling right, metals make for a good speculative investment, and you can buy them without leaving the house.
Kitco is one of my favorite places to buy precious metals, although there are many other reputable dealers.
58. Buy And Sell Virtual Items
Trading items in video games is a $50 billion industry. So if you like playing video games online, and you want to make some money, start with a list of games where players invest heavily in-game items.
Speculative investing can be as simple as buying popular items and waiting for an increase in value.
A safer strategy is to buy in-game properties that can be rented, or which produce income in some other way, like a virtual store where you earn virtual gold or in-game currency that can then be sold for real dollars.
59. Invest In Domain Names
Plenty of online tutorials will show you how to make money with domain names. I once bought a domain for $100, collected about $8 monthly from ads I showed on it, and then sold it for $700 a year or two later.
Even if I had never sold that domain, the $8 in monthly income was a pretty good return on a $100 investment, which brings us to another way to invest: Buy domains with enough traffic to make money when they’re “parked.”
Domain parking services monetize them with ads and share the revenue with you.
Risky? Perhaps, but you can start small and only scale up after you see positive returns.
60. Become A Penny Hoarder
Pre-1982 copper pennies on eBay sell for about 50% more than face value right now. In other words, $100 worth sells for about $150.
Why? Because the copper in each penny is worth almost 2 cents. People are hoarding them in order to sell them for melt value once that’s legal (when they’re removed from circulation).
You can do the same, or you can buy pennies in bulk from the bank and search through for pre-1982 pennies to sell on eBay now.
In my own two experiments I found 16% and 20% copper pennies in the batches I checked, but I also discovered that you really need a copper penny sorting machine to make this worthwhile.
61. Do Some Credit Card Arbitrage
As I explained in my guide to credit card arbitrage, the process is simple (at least in theory). Just take advantage of those 0% interest offers to borrow money, and then invest that money.
62. Finance Business Inventory
In yet another form of crowdfunding, you can invest online in business inventory.
Businesses use the money raised in this way for expansion or to prepare for seasonal demand, and then they repay you, with a profit, as the inventory is sold.
Kickfurther is the only major platform for this kind on investing at the moment. The minimums vary by deal, but you can usually get started with a few hundred dollars.
63. Buy Mortgage Notes
After I sold my first home on payments investors offered to buy the loan from me. Of course they were offering less than face value. That’s how you make money doing this.
In fact, if you find a motivated seller you might, for example, buy a loan with a balance of $60,000 for $45,000 — a 25% discount. That makes your real rate of return much higher than the interest rate on the loan.
This can be done from home using the internet (go to county recorder websites to see who is owed money, for example) and a phone. A good note buying tutorial will help you get started.
64. Invest In Distressed Mortgages
The American Homeowners Preservation Fund lets you invest in distressed mortgages with as little as $100.
They pool investors money and invest in distressed mortgages from lenders, usually finding a way to keep people in their homes in the process.
65. Invest In Lawsuits
LexShares lets you invest in lawsuits to earn a percentage of the money they bring in from a win in court or a settlement. They post the cases online and you choose which ones to invest in.
66. Invest In Cryptocurrencies
I’m skeptical of the long-term value of cryptocurrencies, but who can argue that you shouldn’t have bought a few hundred dollars worth of Bitcoin early on, since it would be worth millions now?
You can invest directly using platforms (digital wallets) like Coinbase and Binance. I recently used those sites to invest a couple hundred dollars into four different currencies, just to see where they go.
If you want to leave the decisions about which ones to buy and when to sell to someone else, you can invest by way of the new cryptocurrency funds.
67. Invest In Veteran Business Bonds
Veteran Business Bonds pay 5% annual interest. The interest comes from loans to small business owners (primarily veterans).
These are semi-liquid investments, with a 1% penalty to redeem them before a year passes, and otherwise an annual opportunity to redeem them at no cost.
You can start with as little as $25. I recently invested here, but I will be watching the financial statistics of Street Shares, the company that offers them.
If they don’t make money within a year or two (they have decent capital for now) it might be risky investing with them.
68. Invest In Art
Crowdfunding has come to the art world! Masterworks will be open for business soon, and will let you invest small amounts of money in famous works of art chosen by their “experienced art buying team.”
69. Make Bitcoin Loans
Bitbond lets you make bitcoin loans around the world and make 13% annual returns. You invest in USD and EUR denominated loans, but the international aspect is facilitated by using bitcoin.
Although Bibond says they check the credit of every borrower, this is a new platform, and probably very risky.
70. Put Your Money In The Bank
Savings accounts are finally starting to pay enough interest to be interesting again.
A list of the best savings accounts, shows several no-strings-attached accounts that pay over 2% annually.
Other accounts, which have special requirements like direct deposit and/or using your debit card a minimum number of times monthly, pay up to 5% annual interest.
71. Invest In A Movie
Movie Fund lets you invest online in (you hope) the next blockbuster film.
Some projects have high minimums, but I have seen others offered with minimum investments as low as $500.
High returns are possible, but these are certainly some of the riskier investments mentioned here, so be prepared to lose it all.
72. Buy Foreign Currency CDs
TIAA Bank (formerly Everbank) has foreign currency CDs that are FDIC insured. The minimum investment is $10,000.
Depending on the currency, these CDs can pay a decent rate or no interest at all (in which case you’re betting on a relative rise in the value of the currency).
FDIC insurance covers bank failure, but not currency fluctuations, so you can lose money with these investments.
73. Invest In Startups
NextSeed is a startup crowdfunding platform where you can bet your money on the next hot restaurant, pub or other small business.
Investment minimums vary by project, but are as low as $100. Expect annual returns of at least 12% or more.
MicroVentures is a similar platform, also with investment opportunities starting at about $100.
Money-Making Projects You Can Do At Home
This category is my personal favorite. Unlike jobs and businesses, “projects” have a natural beginning and end, so there is less commitment.
This also means less consistency in income, but you still might do well if you string together enough of the following.
74. Become A Search Engine Evaluator
When I worked as a search engine evaluator I made $700 the first month, working less than 15 hours per week.
I made less each month after that until my contract was dropped because I didn’t put in the required 20 hours per month. It had become so tedious. But many people like the work, and it is interesting at times.
Amy Baum recently did a review of Leapforce if you want an idea of what kind of work you’ll be doing, and the pay.
75. Get Paid For Your Poems
Okay, it isn’t easy to make money as a poet, but there are still a number of publications that pay for poetry. And you can certainly create poetry at home.
76. Win Money From Writing Contests
Writing contests have prizes ranging from free books to thousands of dollars. If, however, you want to be sure this doesn’t become a way to lose money, avoid entering contests with entry fees. Stick to the free writing contests.
77. Get Paid For Your Problem Solving Skills
InnoCentive helps organizations find creative solutions to problems, and pays “solvers” like you a reward if your solution is chosen.
Registration is free, and Innocentive says, “The average award amount for a Challenge is $20,000 but some offer awards of over $100,000.”
78. Get Paid To Lose Weight
HealthyWage.com lets you bet on your own weight loss. You (and others) place bets, and then a prize amount is calculated (it can be as high as $10,000).
Then, says HealthyWage, “We pay your prize if you have achieved and maintained your goal at the end of the challenge.”
79. Get Paid To Surf The Web
Qmee can be downloaded as a browser extension or a phone app. Once installed you just use it to search the web, and relevant ads are presented. You get paid for clicking on the results. You don’t have to buy anything.
80. Scan Your Receipts
Ibotta is an app that pays you cashback on your purchases of groceries, electronics, clothing, and some prescriptions. Just scan your receipts and let the credits add up ($0.25 to $5.00 each).
You can cash out ($10 minimum) in the form of various gift cards, or wait until you reach $20 to have your earnings deposited into your PayPal account.
Here are a couple more receipt-scanning apps you can use to earn cashback:
81. Have Your Amazon Shopping Tracked
ShopTracker is an app that tracks what you buy on Amazon. According to their website, “ShopTracker automatically removes your name, shipping address, and any payment information before your purchase history is shared with us.”
You’re paid with a $3 Visa gift card each month as long as you answer a few questions (5 or less) about your experiences buying from Amazon.
82. Be A Human Guinea Pig
I’ve covered how to get paid to be a human guinea pig before, and the opportunities are still out there.
The gigs that pay more (up to thousands of dollars per week) require that you leave the house, but I once made a little bit (okay, just $30) for taking a new type of aspirin for ten days (no problems), and they sent the pills to me at home.
83. Get Paid To Watch Videos
EarningStation rewards you for taking surveys, shopping online, and referring your friends, but it also pays you to watch videos.
Swagbucks will also pay you to watch videos.
84. Read Emails
InboxDollars has a program where they send you emails and pay you to read them. Of course, “reading” them can be as simple as scrolling through to the end.
85. Share Your Political Views
YouGov pays you to participate in online polls and surveys about political topics. You’re paid (once you reach the $25 threshold) in the form of gift cards.
86. Answer Questions For Cash
If you expertise in some area you can make money answering peoples questions on a platform like JustAnswer.com.
Currently their experts include mechanics, computer geeks, doctors, and plumbers. You provide answers online or by phone.
87. Get Paid To Listen To Music
MusicXRay.com’s “Fan Match” program pays you to listen to music. Create a profile, download music, listen, and get paid. They say, “Think of this a little bit like music advertising.”
88. Collect Bank Bonuses
I’ve previously written about how I make thousands of dollars from bank account opening bonuses, and it’s still one of my favorite side hustles (I’ll top $2,000 in bonuses this year).
Most bank accounts can be opened online, so there is no need to leave home.
89. Collect Credit Card Bonuses
Take a look at a list of the best current credit card sign-up offers and you’ll see a lot of money to be made. This side hustle has also made me thousands of dollars in some years.
90. Collect Credit Card Rewards
I like signup bonuses, but hey, I’ve got 30 credit cards now. So now I focus more on using the rewards cards that I already have.
All of my grocery purchases earned me 5% cashback in April, May, and June, for example (“grocery” was the Discover card 5% category this spring).
To make big money you need to use manufactured spending strategies, which usually means leaving the house. But even when shopping online you can always make sure you use the right card to earn the maximum cash-back.
91. Give Away An Ebook
There are many ways to make money giving away ebooks. For example, I once put an ebook I wrote (on real estate) on 25 web pages — one for each chapter. I offered it for free by email, and used an Aweber auto-responder.
When people subscribed they automatically got a weekly email directing them to the next chapter — a hidden page on one of my websites. I made about $100 per month from clicks on ads on those pages (using Google AdSense).
92. Sell Your Friendship
RentAFriend.com says most friendship gigs on their site start at $10 per hour. Common “friend” dates involve going to games or concerts, or on hikes together.
Of course, to make this an at-home source of income you’ll need clients to come to your house, or you can make it clear that you’re only offering “phone friendship.”
93. Sell Your Hair
You don’t have to leave home to grow your hair. Once it’s long enough, use the hair price calculator on HairSellon.com to see what it’s worth (mine was apparently worth about $150 when I had a long ponytail).
Chop it off, sell it, and start growing the next crop!
94. “Sensitive Content” Evaluator
As explained in a post on BuzzFeed.com, Google hires “sensitive content” viewers whose job it is to screen questionable YouTube videos, like suicides, pornography, and more.
Interesting work, perhaps, and you do it at home, but the man profiled in the Buzzfeed post needed therapy as a result of his experience.
95. Sing Online For Cash
Macrodazzle has online singing competitions that offer cash prizes. In other words, you can get paid to belt out those tunes in the privacy of your own home.
Spotlite is an app for your phone that lets you make money singing.
96. Sell Your Jokes
Think you’re funny? Here’s an article that tells you how to sell your jokes to Saturday Night Live and late night talk shows.
You can also sell jokes on Fiverr.com, like this guy does.
97. Bet On Horses
According to Gambool.com, “online horse race betting is legal in 38 of the 50 states.” Of course, whether you make money doing this or go broke depends on whether you’re skilled at picking the winners.
98. Bet on Politics
Are you politically astute? Can you predict who will win various political races?
The Iowa Electronic Markets, at the University of Iowa, lets you legally put your money where your mouth is.
You’re limited to an investment of $500, but you can win a lot more than that if you choose the right long-odds bets.
99. Get Paid to Save Money
I’m making a $10 reward per month for saving $20 per month. I’ll get the money once I reach $60 in rewards.
You can do the same if you open a SaverLife account. SaverLife is an organization created to encourage people to learn how to save money.
100. Write Product Slogans
Slogan writing contests pay you up to $1,000 if your slogan is chosen by a company. There are at least two platforms where you can do this:
101. Get Paid For Invention Ideas
Quirky takes your invention ideas (if they’re chosen), makes them marketable, sells the product and pays you royalties.
That means you don’t have to build prototypes, spend big money on patents, or try to get into the offices of key executives to sell your invention.
102. Rent Out Your House
You don’t necessarily have to leave home to rent it out. For example, I once moved into my shed (it had power and was only twenty feet away) in order to rent out my house.
If you do something similar as a short-term income source, it can be tax free.
The IRS says, “There’s a special rule if you use a dwelling unit as a residence and rent it for fewer than 15 days. In this case, don’t report any of the rental income and don’t deduct any expenses as rental expenses.”
103. Rent Out Your RV
RVshare screens your RV rental customers, handles the payment processing, and provides insurance. They estimate rental rates at $120 to $365 per day, so don’t let that RV sit there unused.
104. Design Logos for Cash Prizes
Crowdspring is yet another crowdsourcing contest platform. On this one you design logos to win cash prizes.
105. Do Small Gigs for Businesses
Gigwalk is an app that lets you do small tasks for businesses, including retailers and even search engines. As gigs are posted you choose the ones near you that you want to do.
For example, you might be asked to verify the operating hours of restaurants, or take a photo of a product display at a store.
Or you might have to write a short review of a business, or count th customers in a shop at a certain time of day.
Gigs start at a few bucks and go up according to the work involved. Payment is made via PayPal.
106. Join Class Action Lawsuits
Check out any class action lawsuit database and you might find you fit the criteria for inclusion is one or more class actions.
I did this and within a few minutes I clicked a link, filled out a form, got a small check in the mail a few weeks later (apparently the cans of almonds I bought had been short-weighted for years).
107. Find Virtual Work on TaskRabbit
TaskRabbit is known as a platform for doing gigs around town, but sometimes people need help making phone calls or doing online research.
To make it all at-home work just stick to gigs that can be done via internet and phone.
108. Sell Your Stuff On Craigslist
Craigslist is great for selling stuff locally, and you can always make it a condition of the sale that the buyer come to you to get the item.
I’ve even sold stuff on Craigslist that I junk picked from near the dumpsters at the other side of the parking lot from our condo.
109. Sell You Stuff Online
Decluttr will pay you cash for CDs, DVDs, games and other stuff you no longer need. Enter the barcode number and get a quote, then arrange for a UPS pickup. You never have to leave home to raise some cash.
110. Have a Rummage Sale
Okay, you might have to leave the house for this one, but a rummage sale in the yard or garage is still at home. And better yet, rummage sale proceeds are tax-free.
111. Find Unclaimed Money
When the owner of an account or other asset can’t be located, the money is turned over to the state. It may have happened to you without you knowing it.
Or perhaps your uncle died and nobody knew about a $100,000 life insurance policy he had bought.
Do a quick search for this potential unclaimed money. I found a $900 refund owed to my mom and another claim owed to my father, so I know this happens. You can start your search on this government website.
112. Online Mock Juror
I was once paid $150 to be a mock juror for a day (lawyers do this to test a case). But that required driving across town.
Online “surrogate juror” gigs don’t pay as well, but they’re also much simpler (they often take only 20 minutes or so). Here are a couple places to find this work:
113. Rent Out Your Clothes
I’m pretty sure nobody would ever rent my clothes, but if you happen to have better taste in clothing, you might get some takers on Style Lend. Generally they do have to be designer clothes.
114. Write a Book
Wiley and Sons Publishing paid me a $10,000 advance for my book “101 Weird Ways to Make Money,” and, seven years later, I still get a trickle of royalties every six months. It took me just two months to write the book.
But fair warning: Publishers want a guaranteed market, so first build a blog or mailing list, and connect with thousands of people on Facebook and Twitter.
115. Write Kindle Books
I used to make hundreds of dollars monthly from my Kindle books, some of which took only three days to write (I have none for sale at the moment).
Competition is tougher now, but fortunately the Kindle publishing platform is still free to use, so you risk nothing but your time.
You’ll get 70% of each sale if you price your books between $2.99 and $9.99. No traditional publisher pays royalties that high.
116. Do Translation Work
If you’re fairly fluent in more than one language, at least on paper, you can do translation work online. For example, Babbletype is looking for translators. You can also find these gigs on platforms like:
You’ll have to sign up and give a share of your revenue to these platforms, and you’ll also have to compete against a lot of other freelance translators. But if you find a few good clients with regular work you can do pretty well.
I ran out of energy before running out of ways to make money at home, so stay tuned to Frugal For Less for more ideas in future posts!
If you make money without leaving the house, please share your experiences below… and keep on frugaling!