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Last Updated on January 17, 2018

40 Flexible Ways for Stay At Home Moms and Dads to Earn Real Money

40 Flexible Ways for Stay At Home Moms and Dads to Earn Real Money

Being a stay-at-home mom or dad is a full-time job, but it doesn’t pay a full-time paycheck. This makes it difficult for some one-income families to earn enough money to pay for things they need, let alone grow their savings. Good news is, there are ways to earn money without leaving the house or sacrificing your time with the kids. These opportunities enable you to make some cash while your children are at school, asleep, or even while they’re home and wide awake!

Keep in mind that working from home requires self-discipline, organization, and focus (here are my favorite books on getting it all done with less stress). It’ll take a bit of trial and error to figure out what works best for you, and you must be driven to keep going even when you feel like giving up, or if others question your decisions. But the effort is worth it. I know this because I’ve been working for myself since 1996, and it’s rubbed off on my son, who recently started experimenting with ways to earn money from home; without interfering with his school or activities! If you have a teen looking to make some extra cash, check out this list!

So without further ado, I present to you the big list of flexible ways for stay at home moms and dads to earn extra cash on the side… or if you’re really motivated, earn a full time income!

Make money by flexing your creativity:

1. Make Money With Your Blog

Just about everyone’s got a blog now, right? Heck, I have more than I can count with both hands! But for good reason… it’s where I make most of my hands-free income from affiliate commissions, Google AdSense, and sponsored advertisers. You get to choose what your blog is about, when to write, what products to promote, and what types of ads to feature. Have you been curious about starting a food blog? Maybe a parenting blog? How about a marketing blog? Or a fashion blog? The possibilities are endless and getting one set up is easy as one, two, three! Check it out!

2. Affiliate Marketing

Did you know that you don’t even need to have your own products or services to earn a hefty paycheck? This is the beauty of affiliate marketing. You promote other people’s stuff and when someone buys, you collect a cut of the sale price! That’s it. No need to carry an inventory, deliver the product, or provide support to the customers! Where do you promote affiliate products? On your blog, social media, articles you write… pretty much anywhere! Here are some popular networks that offer ad links to earn some cash from:

  • Rakuten Linkshare – My favorite network. You can promote popular brands such as Starbucks, iTunes, and Walmart, as well as products offered by smaller companies
  • Amazon – They’re tied with Linkshare as my favorite network. You can promote books, audio books, video games, clothing, kitchen tools, even car parts! You can earn up to 10% commission on majority of what’s being sold on their website! They pay their associates like clockwork, which I love.
  • Clickbank – Their online marketplace contains tens of thousands of products to choose from, and you can earn commissions as high as 75%!
  • JVZoo – Huge variety of products to promote; from business, cooking, and education, to foreign language, gambling, and travel!
  • Shareasale – These guys have over 3,900 merchants to promote from including: Beachbody, Zazzle, Craftsy, Juleep, and Weebly. They always pay on time too!

3. Sell Custom T-Shirts

Teespring allows you to create & sell custom t-shirts with zero hassle, zero upfront costs, and zero risk! You design and promote it, and they produce and ship it! Great for reunions, sports teams, clubs, and parties!

4. Listen to Music for Cash

If you listen to music all day like I do, you’ll love this program. All you need to do is listen to unsigned bands and artists online and submit a review at Slicethepie. Active users with high reputations are earning an extra $50+ per month for just 5-10 min a day listening to some aspiring music talents. It may not seem much, but stick it in a savings account and that’s $50 more than what you had before!

5. Set Up an Online Store

You can now profit from your own online store from the comfort of your home, and setting it up is extremely easy! Many people make decent part-time and full-time income with online storefronts. Here are a few of my favorites:

6. Get Paid for Freelance Writing Work

Elance has thousands of job listings available for freelance writers. If you love writing and are able to provide unique articles and content, this could be a perfect fit. There’s a husband and wife team who runs their freelance writing business on the site, and they’ve made over $468,000 in the last 12 months. Check it out!

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7. Sell Articles for Cash

If you have a knack for writing articles on various topics, this is for you. All you need are writing skills, unique articles to submit, and a Paypal account to receive payments! Check out ArticleSale.com and Constant-Content.com to get started!

8. Have a Garage/Yard Sale

How about having an good ole fashioned garage sale? Advertise it on Craigslist and make some extra cash clearing out all that clutter!

9. Find and Post Odd Jobs on Craigslist

Local peeps are looking for help with things like walking their dogs, clearing out their email inbox, landscaping, and house painting all the time! Do a search at Craigslist and you’ll surely find a job you can easily earn cash from in your spare time. If you don’t see anything that’s right for you, post a service of your own.

Make money by selling what you have:

10. Sell Your Old Books

Do you have books laying around, collecting dust? BooksCouter.com helps you sell your books for the highest price by comparing prices from 58 book-buying sites so you can quickly find who will pay the most for your books. Once you’ve found the right buyer, you choose how you’d like to get paid, download a free shipping label, and send your books out!

11. Sell Crafts, Trinkets, Graphics, and More

Become an Etsy seller to earn money for your crafts. It takes less than 30 minutes to get setup and going and costs just 20 cents to list each item for 4 months. But open a shop now and your first 40 listings are free!

12. Sell Your Closet

Have like-new clothes you no longer wear? Turn them into cash with thredUP. For items listed under $60, you get paid as soon as they’re processed, and items over $60 are put on consignment and paid once they’re sold. All you need to do is pack up your clothes and ship (they even cover the cost of shipping!).

13. Sell Your Photos

You no longer need to open a studio to make some extra cash as a photographer. There are plenty of sites looking to buy digital photos. Of course, the better you are at it, the more money you will make, but it can be nice passive income. I have friends who have earned a few hundred dollars for a single photograph! Here are some of the more popular photo buying sites to check out:

14. Sell Your Old CDs, Movies, and Games

Declutter will pay you from a few cents to over ten dollars for your old CDs, movies, and games. If you need to clear out your space of old items you no longer use, you might as well get paid doing it!

Make money by doing simple things:

15. Get Paid to Shop Online

You earn cash back just for shopping like you normally would with Ebates.com. Can’t get easier than that! Join free now and receive $5 cash.

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16. View Text Ads on Your Phone for Cash

FreeEats.com pays you $1.00 to register and 25 cents (or more) for most messages. Payments are deposited straight to your Paypal account. Registration is a cinch and you can stop at any time.

17. Offer Any Kind of Service for $5 on Fiverr

You can sell all sorts of things from logo designs and resume writing services to writing breakup letters and pranks calling a friend. You have to check out their marketplace yourself to believe what people buy on there! Create your $5 gig (tack on a few “add ons” and earn even more!) on Fivver, promote it, and start earning some real cash!

18. Get Paid to Try New Products

Companies pay top-dollar to have users try their products and services for free! Simply complete free offers and Cashcrate pays you!

19. Get Cash Back by Scanning Your Receipts

We all buy groceries on a regular basis, so why not get back some extra cash from it? Ibotta makes it simple. Shop for products at your favorite store (Over 146 supported stores including: Walmart, Target, Best Buy, and Walgreens!), scan your product barcodes, submit a photo of your receipt, and get cash back within 48 hours! Online rebates are also available from stores including: Macy’s, Sephora, Nordstrom, and The Body Shop.

20. Become a Field Agent

Get paid to do various tasks around town for clients. Assignments at Field Agent usually involve checking prices, scanning barcodes with your mobile phone, and conducting surveys. Your earnings vary and depend on the assignment and locction. For example, one listing offers $9 for 4 pictures of any products in the toothbrush section at your local Target, while another pays $5 for one picture of a $19.99 & under game display from any Toys “R” Us.

21. Get Paid to be a “Looker”

Perform tasks both online and off for WeGoLook clients who need an item verified by taking photos, videos, or other custom tasks. Tasks can pay from $25 to $200, depending on the project. You must have a smartphone to complete each job and pass a criminal background check.

22. Become a Mystery Shopper

As a Market Force mystery shopper, you’ll get paid to eat and shop for free at your favorite brands. Mystery shoppers are independent contractors posing as “shoppers” paid to visit local brands as a regular customer and report back on various aspects of their experience for market research. You set your own schedule and it’s free to sign up!

23. Get Paid For Taking Selfies

It’s true! Stylinity is a new site that pays you to take selfies of your outfits! It’s simple. You sign up, take selfies of your outfits and tag the photo with the product info. When other users click to buy any of the items you’re wearing, you get paid! Signup for free right now and get a $10 bonus!

24. Get Paid to Complete Simple Tasks With Your iPhone or Android

Download the Gigwalk app and start making money right away in your own neighborhood. I registered for an account and the first gig I received paid $8 to take 20 photos of several different bags of Cheetos sold in a local store. That would’ve probably taken me about 10 minutes to do. I’ve read that some others have gotten gigs taking photos of restaurant menus and street signs. The more gigs you complete, the more “Gigwalk Streetcred” you earn. This helps unlock higher paying jobs, which can pay up to $90!

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25. Get Paid to Type

As a SpeakWrite typist, you take one hour shifts where you simply type out spoken audio. You set your own hours and from the comfort of your own home. Fast typists can earn upwards of $15/hour!

Make money by using your knowledge and skills:

26. Get Paid to Host a Dinner

Do you have impressive cooking skills? EatWith gives you a platform to showcase your creativity by connecting you with locals and travelers from around the world! You set your rate per guest, choose the time and dates, and indicate the number of people you are ready to invite. You are the boss!

27. Get Paid to Help People Learn a Language

Teachers on Italki set their own prices, teach only when they’re available, and work from home! And you’re not limited to only English. They’re also looking for people to teach Japanese, French, Italian, Spanish and more. You’re free to focus on teaching because the service handles scheduling, marketing, payments and so on.

28. Teach an Online Course

Transform your knowledge and expertise into an online course and get paid well for it! You can teach anything you like… from computer programming and Photoshop tricks, to creating mobile apps and expert photography! You set the price! Here are my favorite sites that offer online courses:

29. Get Paid to Test Websites

Companies as well as individuals (myself included) routinely look for feedback on the usability of their websites. And now you can make money doing just that! My favorite service, UserTesting pays their testers $10 for every 20 minute session they complete! Click here for a list of sites where you can create an account and start earning cash right away.

30. Write Product Reviews for Cash

Do you always have an opinion about everything? Well, now you can make some extra cash sharing it! Epinions.com and ReviewStream.com are two sites that will pay you to write product reviews.

31. Tutor or Give Lessons

Are you fluent in another language, a math genius, talented chef, a gifted harpist, or a professional skateboarder? Whatever you’re a pro at, there’s always someone out there who could use your help! Advertise your skills on Craigslist and make some extra cash doing what you’re already great at!

32. Get Paid to Share Your Opinion

Earn cash and rewards for taking surveys! It may not make you a millionaire, but that’s extra cash you can earn for just a few minutes of your time! Here are three sites I’ve successfully registered to report back on this article, and have earned a few bucks already:

  • Swagbucks – There is no limit to the amount of Swagbucks you can earn, and they can be redeemed for gift cards to just about anywhere.
  • Opinion Outpost – They offer rewards via Amazon or iTunes Gift Cards or cash deposited into your Paypal account. Plus every entry enters you into a $10,000 quarterly prize draw!
  • Vindale Research – Review products and take simple online surveys. They pay up to $75 per survey/review!

Make money by helping the world:

33. Rent Out Your Car

Make extra cash renting out your car with Turo! Perfect if you have a second car that’s usually sitting in the garage. Even better… get paid for renting out your car while you’re away on vacation! You control the price and availability and you decide who rents your car. Your car is covered by their $1,000,000 liability policy during every rental, covering any damage to or theft from your car, with no out-of-pocket expenses. Each renter is thoroughly screened for your safety.

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34. Rent Out Your Driveway or Garage

I had no idea my driveway could be a source of income! If you have space in your garage or driveway, JustPark might be for you. Listing your parking space is totally free, and you choose the dates your space is available, as well as the amount you would like to receive per day, week, and month.

35. Rent Out a Room in Your Home or Apartment for Cash

Listing your space on Airbnb is free. You set the price, your availability, and reservation requirements for your guests. You can also set custom prices to earn more during popular travel seasons! You can review each potential guest’s profiles and the reviews they’ve received to help you accept a booking only if you’re 100% comfortable. Their support team is available 24 hours a day, and every eligible booking is covered by their Host Guarantee at no additional cost to you.

36. Get Paid for Being a Friend

Whoever said money can’t buy friendship has never heard of Rent a Friend! I’m not even kidding. You go to their website and offer your friendship for $10 to $50 per hour. You set your own price and what types of activities you’re available for! The website clearly states that it is NOT a dating site, but a service offering companionship; someone to show you around an unfamiliar town, for example.

It’s not something you can really do from home, unless what you’re offering is home-based, such as teaching your “new friend” to bake or scrapbook from your home (not something I’d personally recommend). However, earning money to show someone the best local restaurants for a few hours or helping them shop for gifts isn’t such a bad way to make extra cash while the kids are at school! Some users claim to earn over $2000 a week full time, and others who just work on the weekends and make $500.

37. Drive People Around for $35/hour

That’s how much you can make with Lyft, a service that eliminates the need to use taxis. You drive your own car, set your own working hours, and earn $35 per hour.

38. Drop Shipping = No Inventory and No Overhead

This is such a simple and cost effective solution for bringing in some extra cash. I’ve personally tried this in the past, and will probably have my teenage son experiment with this too! Here’s how it works:

  1. Choose a product to sell online, like Ebay (let’s say it’s a computer mouse that costs you $2)
  2. Mark up the price and list it for $15
  3. When it’s sold, you send the drop shipper your buyer’s information, including the $2. You keep the remaining $13!
  4. Drop shipper ships it directly to your customer!
  5. Rinse and repeat!
  6. Here’s a big list of drop shippers for a huge variety of products that you can search through!

39. Babysit

Yes, I know you have kids of your own, but look at it as getting paid to host a playdate! You’re a terrific parent and a wonderful caregiver, so if this is something you think you might enjoy trying, why not get paid for it? Advertise your babysitting services for free on SitterCity and Care.

40. Recycle Your Old Mobile Devices

Did you know that you can actually get cash for your old cell phones? You know you’ve got a couple hidden somewhere. I dug up an old iPhone, a couple of Motorolas, a Nokia, and a Blackberry… let’s see what you can find! Check out how much your ancient phone is worth on Gazelle!

There you have it! This list should be more than enough to keep you busy making money! Happy earning!

More by this author

Carmen Sakurai

Mental Declutter, Stress Management & Burnout Prevention Coach. Feeling Stuck? Overwhelmed & No Energy? Let's Talk!

35 Books on Productivity and Organizational Skills for an Effective Life 40 Flexible Ways for Stay At Home Moms and Dads to Earn Real Money 20 Common Habits Successful People Consciously Reject 24 Signs You’re An Introvert- Not Shy 10 Compassionate Ways to Support Loved Ones Suffering from Depression

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Published on October 8, 2018

13 Incredibly Useful Tactics to Help You to Stick to Your Family Budget

13 Incredibly Useful Tactics to Help You to Stick to Your Family Budget

Are you having trouble sticking to a family budget? You aren’t alone.

Budgeting is difficult. Creating one is hard enough, but actually sticking to it is a whole other issue. Things come up. Desires and cravings happen. And the next thing you know, budgets break.

So how can you stick to a family budget? Here are 13 tips to make it easier.

1. Choose a major category each month to attack

As the saying goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” With that in mind, one approach to help you get into the habit of sticking to a budget is simply starting slow.

Spend too much on Starbucks runs, eat out too often, and have an out-of-this-world grocery bill? Choose one bad habit and attack.

By choosing one behavior to focus on, you’ll prevent yourself from being overwhelmed. You’ll also experience small victories, which help you gain positive momentum. This momentum can then carry over into your overall budget.

2. Only make major purchases in the morning

If you’re making large purchases in the evening, there’s a good chance you’re doing so after a long day and you’re probably tired.

Why does this matter? Because our judgement tends to be off when tired – our willpower is compromised.

Instead, only make major purchasing decisions in the morning when you’re energized and refreshed. Your brain will be firing on all cylinders and your resolve will be high. You’re less likely to give in and settle at this point.

3. Don’t go to the grocery store hungry

Have trouble with impulse buys at the grocery store? If so, there’s a good chance you’re going grocery shopping while hungry.

The problem here is that when you’re hungry, everything looks good. So you’re more likely to make split decisions on things that aren’t on your grocery list.

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Instead, make sure you eat prior to your grocery store trip. Then take your list, along with your full stomach, and go shopping. Notice how food doesn’t look quite so good when you’re not fighting cravings.

4. Read one-star reviews for products

Is there a product you just have to have (but maybe not really)? Check out the one-star reviews.

By reading all the horrible reviews, you may be able to basically trick yourself into deciding that the product isn’t worth your time and money.

Next thing you know, you didn’t make the purchase, you saved the money, and you feel good about the decision.

5. Never buy anything you put in an online shopping cart until the next day

If you are making a purchase online, it’s typically a two-step process. First, you click “Add to Cart” and then you go in to review your cart and pay.

The problem is that there not typically much reviewing during step two. It’s generally click pay and there you go. However, this is the perfect point to stop for reflection.

Once you add to your cart, your best bet is to step away until the next day. Let the item sit there and grow cold, so to speak.

This gives you a night to “sleep on it” and decide if you really want and need to spend that money. If you wake up the next day and still find the purchase viable, then perhaps it’s time to go for it.

6. Don’t save your credit card info on any site you shop on

One of the other pitfalls of shopping online is that fact that most sites ask you to save your credit card information.

While the sites will frame it as a method of convenience, the truth is they know you’ll spend more money in the long run if your credit card information is saved.

The “convenience” takes away one last decision-making point in the purchasing process. True, it’s a pain to get out your credit card and enter the information every time. But guess what? That’s the point. If that inconvenience helps you stay on budget, then it’s worth it. Which leads into the next tip.

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7. Tape an “impulse buy” reminder to your credit card

Credit cards make spending much easier than cash. When you spend cash, you can literally see your wallet emptying. A credit card comes out, then goes back in. No harm, no foul.

That’s why it’s a good idea to tape a reminder to your credit card. Customize a message that is something along the lines of “do you really need this?” or “does it fit the budget?”

That way when you pull out the card, you get one last reminder to help you question your decision and stick to your budget.

8. Only use gift cards to shop on Amazon

Amazon is probably the easiest place online to blow money. It’s just so easy to click and buy. However, one way you can slow the process down is buy only using gift cards. Here’s how it works.

If you plan on making a purchase on Amazon, go to the grocery store and purchase a pre-loaded Amazon gift card of the proper amount. There’s no convenience fee, so you literally pay for the money you’ll spend.

Now take that gift card home and load it to your Amazon account. There’s your money to spend.

Why does this help? It makes you have to purposely go to the score and purchase the card in order to purchase the item. That’s a pretty deliberate thing that takes some time, commitment, and thought.

This process will effectively kill the impulse buy.

9. Budget using cash and envelopes

As mentioned earlier, it’s a lot harder to spend cash than swipe a credit card. You can take this even farther by using only cash, and separating that cash by budget category.

Create an envelope for each category and stick the cash in there at the beginning of each month. When the envelope is empty, no more spending on that category, unless you borrow from another (be careful of that approach).

This can be pretty helpful for people that have a hard time following transactions in their checking account, or keeping a budgeting spreadsheet.

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The envelopes simplify the tracking process, leaving no room for error. Nothing hides from you because it’s tangible in the envelopes in front of you.

10. Join a like-minded group

Making the decision to stick to something like budgeting is difficult. It takes long-term commitment.

You’re going to feel weak sometimes. And sometimes you may fail. That said, support from others can help strengthen resolve.

Support can come from a spouse or a friend, but they won’t always have the exact same goal in mind. That’s why it’s a good idea to join a support group that’s likeminded.

No need to pay here, as there are tons of free communities that fit the bill online.

For example, reddit has multiple subreddits that deal with budgeting and frugal living. You can follow, subscribe, and get active in those communities.

This will open your eyes to new tips and strategies, keep your goal fresh on your mind, and help you realize there are others dealing with the same struggles and being successful.

11. Reward Yourself

When you set a budget, it’s usually with a large goal in mind. Maybe you want to be debt free, or perhaps you want to see $10,000 in your savings account.

Whatever the case, the end goal is great, but the end is often far away, making it hard to see the end of the tunnel.

With that in mind, it’s a good idea to set mini-goals along the way. This helps you still look at the big picture but have something that’s attainable in the short-term to help with momentum.

But don’t stop there – set rewards for yourself when you reach that small goal. Maybe it’s an extra meal out. Or a new pair of shoes.

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Whatever the case, this gives you something in the near future to look forward to, which can help with the fatigue that can result in pursuing long-term goals.

12. Take the Buddhist approach

You don’t have to be a Buddhist to recognize some of the wisdom in the teachings. One of the tenets of the philosophy involves accepting that we can’t have everything we want. And that’s okay.

Sometimes you won’t feel good. Sometimes you’ll have cravings. You can’t deny them. But you can recognize them, accept them, and let them pass by. Then you move on.

Apply this to the times you want to do things that will break your budget. You’re going to have the desire to eat out when you shouldn’t. You might want to stay out and spend too much at happy hour with your work friends.

The feelings will come. Recognize them, accept them, but let them go.

13. Set up automatic drafts to savings

If you wait until you’ve spent all your budgeted money to deposit money into savings, guess what? You probably aren’t going to put any money into savings.

It’s too easy to see that as extra money and end up using it to treat yourself.

Instead, set up automatic savings withdrawals. That way, the money is marked and gone before you can even think about it. It becomes a non-issue. It’s no longer “extra.” It’s just savings.

Conclusion

Sticking to a budget can be difficult. No one is denying that.

However, if you can do a few things to set yourself up for success, and put some practices in place to curb impulse buys, then you can (and will!) be successful sticking to your family budget.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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