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Ways to Earn Extra Money for the Stay at Home Mom

written by: CinWrites•edited by: DaniellaNicole•updated: 1/31/2010

Supplemental income for the stay at home mom can make the difference in whether or not Mom can continue to stay home with her family. Do you know how to weed the practical work from home jobs from the elaborate web of work from home claims so you can make that extra money you need to stay at home?

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    All Work at Home Opportunities are Not Equal

    Google anything having to do with working from home. I dare ya - the results will make you dizzy. First you have to separate the scams from the real opportunities. The line between the two can get blurry so you will likely lose a few dollars paying into opportunities or for information. You will also find lots of direct sales and multi level marketing opportunities. These can be lucrative but they often come with large start up costs and require going out and selling, having parties, or calling on clients.

    The point of being at "stay at home mom" is STAYING HOME so why invest time and money into something that is going to distract you from what you want? You wouldn't. So let's talk about the practical work you can do from home and get paid for quickly.

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    The Do Needs and Don't Do's

    The work from home ideas outlined here are simple to follow but there are some basic things you will need to have and one rule you must follow.

    First - the Do Needs

    *Computer

    *Internet access

    *Organization

    *Discipline

    *Patience

    If you don't have any of those things, there is no reason to read any further. You cannot work from home online or off without all 5 of these things. Even if you don't use the computer or internet to do the actual work, you will need them for communicating, researching, invoicing, and getting paid, just to name a few things. Without organization and discipline, it won't matter how good your work is or how high your pay is because you will not get any work done, resulting in no pay . . . just wasted time. Speaking of time - it takes time to find work and build a quality stream of income. You must have patience while you find work, get good at it, and bring it all to fruition. It will happen. But if you give up too soon, again, you've wasted your time and resources.

    One last thing that isn't mandatory but recommended is to set up a PayPal account to process your payments. Your payments will not only get to you faster but it will provide you with a history of your earnings for your records. Some employers only pay by PayPal so having an account also allows you access to the most opportunities available.

    And the Don't Do's

    There is really only one, but it's a big one. Do not pay to do work. I mean it. Not $30, not $1. You simply don't need to. There is enough real work out there to get you started. Turn and run from anyone that asks you to pay up front to do their work.

    That said... as you become familiar with making money online and you start making contacts and acquaintances, you will learn about job boards and the like that provide you with job leads. Some of them are actually very good, such as WAHM.com, which is free and VirtualVocations.com, which charges a small monthly fee but is well worth it, in my opinion, for the quality leads it has delivered.

    So you've got your materials and your mindset. Let's find some work!

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    How Much Do You Want to Earn?

    Just a little chump change now and then

    Pay to Click, or PTC, is as simple as it gets. You click ads and earn money. It's that simple. Each click takes almost zero time and effort but only also only pays a cent or two per click. It's easy to do though. I do it while folding laundry. Click it and forget it is my motto here, and let the change pile up while you're not looking. My favorite PTC sites are Hits4Pay and DealsNCash.

    There are social sites such as Gather.com, which pay you in points to participate in their online community. The points can later be redeemed for cash. I never made a lot of money at Gather.com because I didn't have a lot of time to spend there, but I did practice my writing skills there, networked, and made some valuable contacts.

    Points: Online companies want you to shop with them and will pay you to do so. One example is MyPoints.com where you earn points by shopping, taking surveys, referring friends. Those points are later converted to cash. Organization comes in really handy here because you can earn money back on things you already ordinarily buy IF you take the time to plan. Old Navy, for instance awards 4 points per dollar. Barnes & Noble pays out 10 points per dollar. Sephora, AT&T, Crocs, The Gap, and hundreds of other shops are participating and rewarding you for shopping with them.

    I want to buy stuff and pay some bills

    BLOGGING/WEBSITE

    CONTENT WRITING

    For me, this is the bread and butter. People love information and they are increasingly turning to the internet for all their needs. For everything from parenting advice, fitness tips, product reviews, and political fixes to comedy and gossip - the web has the answers and people are going there to find it. That information has to come from somewhere right? Guess what! It can come from you!

    In my experience, content writing offers the highest and most consistent pay. Job boards like WAHM.com can help you get matched up with private clients. Bright Hub and Demand Studios have no shortage of interesting topics that need to be written and the pay is good, averaging about $15 per piece. The more you know, the better researcher you are, and the better your spelling and grammar, the less time it will take completing each assignment. That leaves more time for completing more tasks and adding to your income.

    Pay to Post type sites tend to be the easiest assignments to compete, but also pay out at a lower rate. In this scenario, someone pays you to post their information on YOUR blog. I spend most of my time between PAYU2BLOG and BLOGSVERTIZE. Generally they just ask you to use their keyword phrase in your own blog and attach a link to it. Simple! This ordinarily pays $5 to $7 but I have been paid as much as $25 for a simple 60-word blog post.

    You can also earn money directly through your blog by placing ads in it. This requires patience since you need to give your blog time to grow and build a readership before any of those ads pay off. ProBlogger, the book or website, by Darren Rowse is an excellent resource for learning the ins and outs of making money with a blog or website.

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    Busy Mom- No Time for Nonsense

    Are there more ways to make money at home? Absolutely! I have, at different times in my life, earned excellent income mystery shopping, insurance billing, and in direct sales. I also used my insurance billing references and office management experience to start my own temping and consulting business. I was my own boss, making money, and it was great. But I wasn't a mom yet. I had money to spend on up starts and experimentation. I was able to travel and run back and forth. I had control over my schedule. Becoming a mom brought an end to all that! There was no extra money, no luxury time to call on accounts, and my schedule was no longer my own. So to me, those types of jobs are not practical means of supplemental income for the stay at home mom.

    What we have outlined today is not far fetched or wishy washy. These are tried and true ways that moms are getting paid to work in their own homes, at their own pace, on their own time. Whether you want mad money, bill money, or to build your savings, you can too.