Let me just start this post by saying that I completely agree with you if you’re thinking that the title of this post is a mouthful. I’ll be honest – I didn’t really know how else to title it. I was going to use “How I Became a Full-Time Working SAHM” but then I realized that’s not really true, because I definitely don’t work full-time hours. But I do earn a full-time income. And I’m also a stay-at-home mom.
So, that’s why this post title is so fandangled.
Anyway, onto the actual meat and potatoes. If you’ve read here before, you might be familiar with the fact that before I got pregnant, I worked for a national non-profit. I loooooved my job. It was seriously the best job I’ve ever had, I loved everyone I worked with, and I adored the company.
But then three things happened.
1) I found out I was pregnant with my first child.
2) The organization I worked for announced they were closing the branch I worked at.
3) My husband was about to come down on orders (if you’re not familiar with military lingo, that basically means we’d be moving to a new duty station, definitely interstate, possibly overseas.)
All of those three things combined were the catalyst for me to get serious in my efforts to make an income online.
Fast forward to the present day, and I now make a full-time income completely online, working part-time hours from anywhere in the world (provided I have an internet connection, of course.) Currently, the little man and I are in sunny Australia!
Sounds like a dream, right?
Trust me, in some ways I think so, too. I mean, I honestly pinch myself sometimes that am able to stay at home with my baby boy, travel the world if I want, work when I want to, and get paid.
If you’re interested in doing the same, then I want you to know that it can be done. But like pretty much everything good in life, it’s not always gonna be easy.
The truth is, while I work part-time hours now and earn a full-time income, for months and months (and months and months) I worked wayyyyyy more than full-time hours and earned wayyyyyy less than a part-time income.
If I break it down to the actual numbers, we’re looking at something like this:
60/hrs a week for 4-5 months, for 7 cents.
And that’s not even 7 cents an hour. That’s 7 cents total.
And that 7 cents was the most exciting 7 cents I’ve ever made in my life, because it confirmed to me that I could do this.
So how you can make a full time income at home. Some of these are what I personally do or have done to make a full time income while working part-time, and others are recommendations based on people I know who do the same!
Additionally, you might find it easier to piece together a full time income by doing a few of these (which is probably the easier way to do it, at least when you’re first getting started.) After you’ve gotten established and found what works best for you, you may decide you want to focus on just one or two.
How to Make a Full-Time Income From Home
This one is kinda obvious, right? I mean, you’re reading my blog, so I’m obviously a blogger. But I also make some money from this ‘ere little blog. If you’re wondering how, then it’s mainly through affiliate marketing, ads and course sales.
Affiliate marketing is one of the most lucrative ways to make money blogging, and it makes up a very large percentage of my online income.
I am regularly asked how to get started in affiliate marketing – I recommend Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. This was the first affiliate marketing course I took and it’s a great place for beginners to start.
2. Online Surveys
Online surveys get a bad rap, and a lot of the times that’s for good reason. There are tons of sketchy sites out there (trust me, I’ve been burned by them before. One time I did about 30 surveys, thinking I was earning $7/survey. Turns out I was earning 7 of their “survey dollars” which worked about to about half a cent. Awesome.)
The following survey sites are ones that I recommend based on having actually used them and legitimately made money, prepaid gift cards and in some cases, merchandise.
Full disclosure: you’re not going to get rich doing online surveys. But every bit of extra cash adds up, and you can easily make a few hundred dollars or more, depending on how much time you can dedicate.
Vindale Research have been around forever. One of the best features of the site is their daily studies. Each daily study pays around $0.75 – $1.25, and you can take them a maximum of 10 times per day. Doing the daily studies alone could make you a pretty easy $25/day.
Swagbucks is one of the most popular online survey sites, with millions of users. You can earn points (that you exchange for cash) for everything from answering surveys and polls, to watching videos, using the Swagbucks search engine, and more.
i-Say isn’t as well known as Swagbucks, but they still have over 3 million members so I guess they’re doing something right. You’ll earn points for every survey you can complete, which you can then exchange for Paypal cash, Amazon gift cards and other items.
Join i-Say here.
If online surveys is something you’re interested in, here is my full list of recommendations.
3. Freelance Writing
Freelance writing was one of my first forays into making money online, and I still regard it as one of my favorites. There’s such a thrill when you see your article printed, and it feels great when you get that check in the mail.
I honestly couldn’t believe that someone was paying me to write. Not because I didn’t think I was worthy, but because writing is something I’ve always loved doing, and something I’ve done for as long as I can remember. So the fact that someone was paying me to do something I loved and would’ve been doing anyway was awesome.
If you’re interested in freelance writing, here are some of the steps that I took:
- Write constantly. The more you write, the better you’ll get.
- Enroll in a freelance writing course – this is the one I took.
- If you’re planning to submit articles to online publications (which is the easiest/best way to make money fast) then buy a copy of the Yahoo! Style Guide.
- If you need money fast (and you don’t really care how much) then consider joining Blogmutt. I will warn you, they are a content mill and they pay peanuts (around $7/article last time I checked.) But I used to be a member and I found it was a good way to build up my experience and confidence. Just don’t get stuck in the trap of writing for peanuts – you deserve WAY more than $7/article.
4. Start an Online Business
There are literally hundreds of online business you can start – everything and almost everyone is digital these days, so it’s an excellent time to get your piece of the pie.
It might sound expensive, daunting or complicated to start your own business, but that’s the beauty of online business (compared to a bricks and mortar business) – it doesn’t have to be any of those things.
Here are some ideas:
You probably already spend a lot of time on Facebook, so why not get paid to do so, by becoming a Facebook Ads Manager.
As a Facebook Ads Manager, you work with small businesses to run profitable Facebook ads, helping them generate leads for their business. This work from home job can be very lucrative – even as a side hustle (without working full-time) you can make $1000-$2000/month.
The Facebook Side Hustle Course will teach you how to launch your own Facebook Ad Management business in 28 days.
All businesses are required to keep accurate financial records, but most business owners don’t have the skills, time, or inclination to do it themselves. That’s where virtual bookkeepers come in.
If you enjoy working with numbers, check out this free class that’ll teach you more about becoming a virtual bookkeeper.
As a virtual assistant, you might be doing anything from creating graphics for Pinterest and social media, managing an email inbox, sending out affiliate payments and more. If this sounds interesting to you, check out 30 Days or Less to Virtual Assistant Success.
5. Teach English Online
I know so many people who make good money teaching English online, and if my schedule allowed it, I would absolutely do the same.
There are a number of companies that hire native English speakers to teach English online, primarily to Chinese children. These companies pay well, include all lesson plans, and offer regular hours. Here are some recommendations:
Q-Kids pays their online teachers $16-20/hr, provides all materials and offers a flexible schedule, including weekends if you desire.
Here are the requirements to be a Q-Kids teacher:
- Native English speaker and based in the US or Canada
- Hold a university degree or currently enrolled in university
- Available a minimum of 6 hours per week
- Outgoing, friendly personality
- Prefer some experience working with children
If you fit the criteria, you can start your application with Q-kids here.
SayABC pays their teachers up to $21/hr, and provides all curriculum. 90% of their teachers earn $84/day, which isn’t bad – it equates teaching four 40-minute classes per day.
Here are the Say ABC requirements:
- Native English speaker
- Fast internet speed
- Bachelors degree or final year student
- Some teaching experience
- TEFL or TESOL preferred but not required
Start your Say ABC application here.
If you don’t have a Bachelor’s degree, then you can still teach English online, through MagicEars. MagicEars pays up to $26/hr and includes all curriculum.
6. Petsitting with Rover
If I didn’t have a moody old 5lb chihuahua who hated other dogs, this is something I’d love to do. Rover is the largest petsitting network in the United States, with over 140,000 pet sitters and dog walkers. They match sitters up with clients, and pay you, the sitter, 80% of the cost (the other 20% goes towards advertising, admin, etc.)
If you’re a dog lover, I recommend submitting your application here.
7. Other Random Ways to Make Money Online
I’ve made this a category on it’s own because it really is just other random stuff I do to make money from home, but it doesn’t really warrant an individual breakdown because it’s not a full time income (or even close.) But it does help to pay the bills and/or give me some extra spending money!
I always use Ibotta to get cashback on my groceries. I’ve got over $150 in there which I’m saving for Christmas presents.
I also sell my gently used clothes on ThredUp, which makes me some extra cash. (I also buy clothes from there all the time and save tons of money.
Do you ever shop online? If so, you’re leaving money on the table if you’re not using Ebates. Ebates gives you a percentage of your purchase cost back in cash. They’ve partnered with thousands of retailers so you’re almost certain to find retailers that you already shop at.