Whether you've chosen the SAHM life or the SAHM life chose you, you likely feel that inner-urge to help provide income for your family in any way you can. Maybe you're not a SAHM or a mom at all! There are millions of reasons why you may be eager to earn some extra bucks. If your saving for a vacation, trying to pay off debt, or just want to have some pocket cash to spend on indulgences like eyelash extensions, there are lots of ways to add in some extra earning potential to your busy day. For me personally, the decision to stay home was one made jointly with my husband and only under the contingency that I would find a way, any way, to make some money. While this can seem daunting and stressful, it also was kind of an exciting challenge.
For teachers looking to transition to staying home (or just looking for a side hustle,) you have the added benefit of being paid throughout the summer even though you are no longer working full-time. I took advantage of this time to try a little bit of everything in hopes to find some real-deal side hustles that would provide me with steady streams of income over a long period of time.
I don't know about you but for a while my ENTIRE Pinterest feed was full of listicles of how to make money from home, how to work remotely, and honestly, I bit every single time. After reading about 20 identical articles that lured me in with, "Make $5,000 a month from home with these 100 companies," I realized that I wasn't getting very far. I decided to do my own research, my own digging and experimenting and while I have not completely replaced my income, I am making some pretty sweet cash regularly while actually getting to spend the day with my daughter. Full disclosure: I work before Natalie wakes up, during her nap, and after she goes to bed. This isn't true every day, but most days I am excited to sit down at my desk and be mentally engaged for a while.
One non-negotiable I had in looking for sources of income is that I didn't want to spend a dime. With the dark unknown of unemployment, a pandemic, and an unstable economy looming, we went into intense saving mode and I was not about to spend money to make money. For me, this meant absolutely no MLMs or direct sales. I was hit up by so many women on instagram to join them in selling beach body, or young living, or monat but for me and my family, that just wasn't an option. I know (or I've heard about) people who make good money from companies like these but I personally don't want to promote and sell a product that I don't love and since I don't already use products from any of those companies, this didn't really align with my goals and values right now.
So here it is. These are things that I ACTUALLY DO RIGHT NOW to make money as a SAHM, some things I tried and didn't like, and what my plans for the future are.
I actually became a VIPKid teacher back in the spring before I even considered leaving my job as a teacher. It was something I had heard about for years and even knew a couple of acquaintances that were involved but never had the time or desire to really investigate what it was all about. Once we transitioned to online learning in Texas, I decided to start using the extra time at home to make some money and that is how I found my place at VIPKid.
While the application process was very involved, it went very quickly and smoothly. There is tons of support offered to those who want to apply and get certified to teach ESL online. I am actually certified to teach K-12 so I'm sure my background helped, but you do not have to be a certified teacher to join. If you are a teacher or have any classroom experience, it is a breeze!
The actually work is so low maintenance and low stress. You'll need a computer and headphones and a dedicated space. Other than that, you can pretty much improvise the rest! I give myself about 10-15 minutes to review material before my classes start for the day and then once I'm done, I walk away from my computer and that's it!
I will do an entire blog post on EVERYTHING you need to know about VIPKid very soon, but if you have any specific questions, feel free to reach out! By clicking this link, I do become eligible for a referral bonus if you get hired as a VIPKid teacher. I would be happy to help you out through the application process and once you start teaching!
This is another thing that I started doing before I left my job. I had wanted to try it for a while but after one of my good friends went and told me about it, I decided to go for it. BioLife has locations all over the United States but if there is not one near you, there are several other plasma donation centers that may have locations in your area.
If you are in good health, it is perfectly safe to donate plasma as it can be easily and quickly replaced by the body. After your plasma is collected, your red blood cells are returned to you so you don't feel the same side effects as when you give blood.
The plasma collected is used in the "treatment of serious disorders such as hemophilia and immune system deficiencies, and to treat victims of shock and burns" and is collected because it cannot be manufactured in a laboratory.
I've donated over a dozen times and BioLife makes it so easy to get paid. They give you a debit card on your first visit and there is money on it as soon as you walk out the door. You could make anywhere for $35 to $200 each visit depending on what specials they are running. My husband has even jumped on the band wagon because he wants to save up some money for a new playstation.
If you're interested in donating plasma, or if you have any questions, reach out to me so I can tell you what to expect as well as help you find the most current promos they are running.
Find Friends Who Need a Favor
Staying home, or even working from home, may give you the time or ability to help others out with the things they can never seem to get around to. Post on facebook or let your church group know that you are available to help for cash. Painting a room may be a job that is too difficult for your neighbor, yet too expensive to hire professionals. Offer to do it for half of what a professional would charge and it is a win for both of you.
Obviously this is very unique to your abilities, availability, and the needs of those around you, but just being aware of paid favors as an option will open your eyes to some great opportunities. My parents got two puppies in the spring and once they noticed that they were dealing with some separation anxiety, they planned to take each of them to a doggy daycare facility near their house once a week. Sadly, this location closed due to COVID and my parents were out of luck with helping their dogs through this stage of development. As I listened to their problem, I was thinking about how I'm home all day, with my dog, we hardly leave the house, and it would be really no big deal to have another dog there with us twice a week. I offered to be their "doggy daycare" for less than what they would have had to pay at a professional facility and they agreed!
Do Not Recommend: Upwork
Now, I did not save this for last because it is my favorite. Quite the opposite really. I was able to find 2 paid writing gigs on Upwork so it is a way that I currently make money. However, I probably applied to over 100 with no response at all. What's worse is once I finally landed 2 jobs and was feeling confident about myself, I ran out of "connects" which is the currency you use to apply to each job. I'm sure you can guess how you are suppose to get more connects, and like I said, I am not willing to spend money on a side hustle at this point so I have quit looking for more work. The worst, WORST part is that Upwork takes 20% of what the client pays you. So while you're bidding low to make sure you get the job over the 55 other people bidding, the client agrees to pay a price that doesn't even all go to you.
Plans for the Future
In case you haven't noticed... I've started a blog. I do not currently make any income from my blog although I do hope to one day. This has been my one exception to the spending money rule. I did choose to invest in a website and my own URL so that I can work on building my blog, my brand, and hopefully my business into something that will one day replace my income. For now I am just writing and sharing and narrowing in on my niche so that I can be sure to craft a business that serves others and shows my heart at the same time. I have LOADS of ideas and lots of plans and I am so glad you're along for the ride!
If you haven't already, make sure you subscribe to my site so that you can have access to all of my freebies as well as be notified each time I post something new! Happy hustling!