40 Home-Based Gigs That Pay Surprisingly Well

By Trista
40 Home-Based Gigs That Pay Surprisingly Well

Not everyone is made to handle the 9-to-5 grind that most people are used to doing. For some moms and dads, or even single folks with no kids, they have a plethora of reasons as to why punching a clock just is not for them. Maybe they want to skip the busy commute, or they prefer a nighttime schedule. It might make more sense to stay at home with young children than paying outrageous prices for daycare.

Luckily, there are jobs you can work from home that actually pay more than you realize. That can be a relief for those who are looking to minimize their stress while still making something of a livable wage, or it can be a great way to supplement the income you already have. Here are the top 40 jobs you could be doing from home, some in your pajamas!


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1. Personal Caterer To Satisfy Appetites

There are some people who have a knack for cooking, and if it’s a passion for you, then you could quickly put those talents to good use! You can also do majority of the work from your own kitchen.

Whether it’s baking desserts or making full savory meals, there’s definitely a market for that kind of thing. You could cater small parties, provide pastries to buy from your home, or provide lunch meals to a workplace, all for a hefty chunk of change. It does mean being locked in your kitchen for a few hours each day to make sure everything is perfect, but if it’s something you enjoy, then it will feel less like actual work.

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2. Someone Give the Caregiver a Call

New parents are always looking for someone to take care of their children while they’re at work, or need a relaxing evening away from them. You can actually make a profitable living with this career choice.

Whether you decide to run a childcare business from your own home or to work at other people’s houses, be sure that you obtain all of the right permits and licenses that you need to ensure that you’re correctly registered.  You’ll need to advertise at first, but if you’re good at what you do, word-of-mouth will do the rest on getting the word out.

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3. Animation For Small Businesses

Have a knack and passion for drawing? Want to get your foot in the door by creating a portfolio? You can start by doing a small project for indie companies who are looking to get some animated work done.

It may involve than just animation work too. You’ll have an easier time of getting hired if you’re also capable of creating visual effects for television, video games, or other kinds of media. Be aware that you will have some clients try to undersell your talents, so stick to your guns on how much you think your work is worth, as long as it’s a fair price.

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4. Blogging Your Life Away

People think that it’s effortless to keep a blog; it can be a form of online diary. However, it’s actually more involved than that. The focus has to bring more interest than just your opinion. An audience want to know that your advice can be considered reliable, or tried and true.

So once you start regularly updating with content that others find appealing, that’s where the real money starts. You may be contacted by individual companies to test their products and leave reviews for them or to make recommendations on specific blogs posts. It requires you building your brand from the ground up, but with much hard work, you can get there and start making the big bucks.

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5. It’s Just a Test

Pharmaceutical companies are conducting clinical tests all the time, looking for people who are willing to be “guinea pigs” for some new drug or some research-based project. These companies are also always looking for people to help them set things up.

That’s why you may want to consider applying to be a clinical research coordinator. This person is in charge of managing the operations of clinical trials so that everything runs smoothly. For a job that doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree, you can actually make much money.

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6. Making References for Money

This work-from-home job is known as being an affiliate marketer and involves you making referrals to other customers in exchange for a commission: the more references you make that result in purchases, the more money you earn.

A gig like this does require you have a website of your own. All you do is have an affiliate link to any product, and if a sale is made, you earn a percentage of the sale. It’s a passive way for you to make money that doesn’t require a lot of effort on your part.

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7. Keeping the Books In Order

Some people just aren’t good with math or don’t have the time to keep their financial records in order. That’s where you could come in with this work-from-home job.

Being a bookkeeper is not the same as being a CPA, and you take either an online course or one at a community college in order to learn everything that you need to know. Hire yourself out to small businesses to get your feet wet and see where things go from there. Most people are quite thankful for having someone else to ensure that their companies are heading in the right direction.

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8. Easy Teaching from Home

Not everyone is capable of handling a classroom situation but some are interested in gaining more classes under their belts, maybe to get a better job or to increase their knowledge. Online teaching has become a big thing, so more and more people are turning to it to supplement their education.

If you have expertise in a particular area, you could teach people through Skype or any online communication system. You also have the flexibility of teaching different subjects, anything from cooking and baking to topics you’d find in a traditional classroom. That gives you a lot of flexibility to work with.

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9. Advertising Doesn’t Write Itself

Slogans and billboards aren’t dreamed up out of anywhere. The art of creating this kind of medium is known as copywriting and is pretty easy to do if you have a mastery of language.

Looking around for copywriting jobs online is pretty easy, especially on freelancing websites. Do a quick search to see what’s out there and try your hand at a few tasks to build up a portfolio and a list of clients so that you can get your foot into larger doors that pay a lot better.

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10. A Penny For Your Thoughts

Just like teaching, having knowledge in a particular area can be beneficial to others who don’t know what you know. That’s why working as a consultant may be for you. Moreover, the fact that you work from home means that you won’t have to be called into an office.

You can provide advice to small businesses of any kind, depending on your area of expertise. You may be able to train them on how to use new software programs, how to put together a network of computers, or how to troubleshoot a printer, for example. The areas you could consult in are vast and wide.

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11. Protecting Medium and Property

With the age of copyrights and patents, people are always looking for some way to protect their ideas. That’s where patent and intellectual property comes in.

The process to apply for a patent is actually very complicated, and not something a layperson could do on their own. Providing this kind of service does require you to be already an expert in these areas (i.e., you’re a patent or intellectual property lawyer). However, these are still services you could provide from the comfort of your home.

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12. Entering Data, Getting Things Done

Data entry sounds boring, but it can be quite interesting to do. You may just be plugging in data from other sources, but this kind of job is usually paid hourly, so if there’s a hefty amount of work to complete, you can earn more than a pretty penny.

Data entry doesn’t really require any degree, just an eye for detail. You’re also helping other businesses to be consistent in their affairs and to ensure that everything operates smoothly for them.

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13. Perfecting the Written Word

Writers are pretty good at what they do, but there’s always the risk of mistake. That’s why companies and websites always looking for editors and proofreaders. If you’re already an avid reader, then this work-at-home could be the perfect thing for you.

Not only are you getting the opportunity to help out a writer perfect their work, but you’re also getting a sneak peek on their stories before anyone else. Alternatively, you could be helping a blog site work out the details of their articles. Either way, your input will significantly improve the overall work at the end being an editor.

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14. Grant Writing Isn’t Complicated

Universities, hospitals, or charities, they’re always looking for grants that they can apply for in order to obtain more money. They don’t always have the time to do this on their own, and the application process can, itself, be a little complicated.

That’s why they turn to talented grant writers to do the job for them. You will have to have some experience in writing and have an eye for detail to ensure that the language is proper, but grant writing itself provides pretty decent wages.

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15. Helping People Achieve Their Dreams

This isn’t becoming a charity service; you can become a peer-to-peer lender with individuals or businesses that are looking for loans.

Becoming an investor can seem like a risky business, and if you don’t know what you’re doing, it can be. It can be quite rewarding, however, both financially and emotionally, to see borrowers achieving their dreams with the money you’ve provided. Moreover, you’ll be able to earn money on the paid interest on what they’re borrowed as well.

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16. Running Your Own E-Commerce

Maintaining your own box store can seem like a grand idea, but you have to rent space. Instead, you can run an e-commerce store from the safety of your own home, without the added cost of stocking shelves and keeping inventory, depending on how you run your business.

The majority of e-commerce stores work in one of five business models: manufacturing, white-labeling, subscriptions, wholesaling, and dropshipping. You’ll be working for other companies and meeting their demands instead of running your own store.

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17. Meeting Customer’s Needs

Whenever a customer has a complaint about something, they always turn to the customer service representative to help them solve their problems. Here is an easy job you can complete from the comfort of your own home, as long as you have a good working microphone on your computer.

Because you won’t be sitting at a desk in an office, there’s less stress added to this job, but that doesn’t mean you’re allowed to be less professional. If you have excellent communication skills and much patience, this may be a sphere of employment you may want to consider.

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18. Capturing Those Memorable Moments

Whether it’s a birthday party, a wedding, or just a special day, there’s always going to be the need for people who have a video camera or a camera to capture those moments. Everyone has a camera on the phone these days, but the photos will never look as professional as those from an actual photographer.

Having a keen eye and a steady hand can help, and it wouldn’t hurt to take a few classes on composition and specific photo applications so that you won’t have to struggle in the future.

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19. Planning for the Future

Keeping track of everything in mind can be difficult for people who are planning special events. Staying organized and maintaining one’s sanity requires a delicate balance that not many people can handle.

Event planners can make or break a special event, depending on their skill level. You can build an incredible network of connections to make your repertoire even bigger until you become the “go-to” person whenever a special occasion arises.

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20. Manufacturers Need Checkers Too

You can earn a decent wage being a product reviewer. If you’ve ever wanted to try out new things that are starting in the market, then you may want to give this a try.

Obviously, the more products you review regularly, the more you’ll earn, but it’s a good idea to keep your reviews to one market area at a time. It’s a chance for you to give people your honest opinion about the products you’re using so that they can know what to buy or not.

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21. Writing that Code, Making that Cash

Have an avid interest in IT? Having a little programming knowledge can go a long way. Several different programming languages are used to create different kinds of software, so the areas that you could work in are endless.

Programming involves everything from word processors to building websites, so throw on your thinking cap and take a few online programming courses to get your foot in the door. You could be starting a whole career towards something you never considered before.

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22. A Purr-Fect Plan

Are you an animal lover? Want to spend your hours making them look and smell their best? The pet grooming business is actually quite lucrative, so if you’re good with a pair of scissors and a bottle of dog shampoo, it’s worth a try.

This job is the type of business you can operate from the comfort of your own home depending on the clientele you’re interested in serving. You can stick to small dogs if your home doesn’t have much space, for example. Be ready to buy many towels, scissors, and brushes to keep your customers happy.

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23. Teaching In a Less Formal Setting

If you’ve wanted to teach but you’re not good at person-to-person interaction, you could always create your own instructional videos. If you have an area of expertise that you want to share, you can still create a YouTube account and start uploading videos that teach people what you know.

You’ll have to enroll in YouTube’s partner program first before you can start earning money, and even then you’ll need to have regular visitors to your videos. Check to see if your niche area hasn’t already been filled so that you can boost your visitor stats even more.

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24. Logos, Banners, and Mascots — Oh My!

Businesses everywhere are always looking for someone to design their logos or websites for them. Having a good eye for color and design is critical, so having a degree in this area helps but isn’t required.

Start working for smaller companies to build your portfolio so that you can aim for higher-paying jobs. This work-at-home job will also help you to develop your talents and determine what customers are actually looking for. It’s a competitive market that’s always changing, so you’ll be adapting your abilities over the years.

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25. Keeping Networks Safe

There are always going to be people trying to hack into security systems to try and get people’s information. Firewalls and other security measures can get the job done, but they don’t install themselves.

Working as an Internet security specialist provides you with tasks such as monitoring the network for threats and putting solutions to the test. You’ll also be installing and upgrading protection systems regularly to ensure that there are no holes in the system. With how widely used the Internet is by businesses, this line of work is only going to grow bigger.

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26. Doing Your Duty From Home

Being called to jury duty is something that everyone dreads because it means missing work and sitting in a courtroom for hours on end. But there’s a different way of doing things that don’t involve you even getting dressed for the day.

Attorneys are always seeking opinions about trials and cases before they’re taken to court. They can prepare mock juries to see what the outcome of a claim may be by putting them online. Providing your opinion can earn you a few bucks in a day, but since it doesn’t really eat up any of your time, you could probably complete several within a day.

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27. Sharing Your Space as a Landlord

Do you have extra space within your home that you’re not using? Have you ever considered turning it into a spare bedroom? You could rent the area to a local college student or someone who needs a room for a few months at a time.

You could also rent out your personal items such as a vacuum cleaner you’re not using anymore for other people to use. If you’re diligent enough and create sound agreements that cover the costs of things, you can make a lot of money each month.

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28. Getting People Their New Homes

Being a realtor first requires you to have a real estate license, but otherwise, you can conduct this kind of business from home. You will have to prepare the house for showing beforehand, but you can run virtual tours from the comfort of your own home.

This work-from-home job allows you to show properties without having actually to be there. It can save you a lot of time and hassle in getting to the place and having to show potential buyers around the entire neighborhood.

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29. Mr. Fix-It

If you have a knack for repairing things, there are always going to be people with broken stuff. It could be anything from bicycles to computers to appliances around the home. Maybe you have a degree, or you just know how things work; either way, providing your talents will help people out tremendously.

The most money that you’ll spend will be for advertising of your services to get the word out, and it will still be some time before you get a few clients. Exercise patience and ensure that you provide top-notch service to those who ask for your help.

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30. Short Tasks for Quick Cash

You’ve probably heard about these make-money-quick tasks that you can complete online. These only eat up a few minutes out of your day, so you can get as many done as you want.

These kinds of tasks include taking surveys, writing a review for a product, or watching a short video. If you’re online anyway, then it doesn’t hurt to do a couple in the middle of your usual online routine.

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31. Expert Knowledge for Big Bucks

People are always looking for expert advice on anything they do. Specific tasks that they may be struggling with require the keen eye of an expert who knows how to solve the problem. That’s where you come in.

The current trend is that businesses will hire experts instead of entire companies to provide the advice that they need. This concept saves them more money in the long run and allows you to work independently instead of having to join a company just to find work.

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32. Controlling Social Media Pages

Companies are often looking for ways that they can reach a broader target audience, and that has become possible with the advent of social media. They can speak directly to customers and interact with them in a way they’ve never been able to before.

Also, companies need someone to manage those accounts for them. You could be that person, or they may require you to develop an entire social media strategy for them to get started. It will mean being on the Internet more every day, but what’s the downside of getting paid for it?

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33. Becoming an Online Stylist

If you have an eye for fashion, you could become an online stylist to help people look their best every day. Give your opinion to a local businesswoman who’s trying to get dressed for the day or a father wanting advice on what suit to wear to his daughter’s wedding.

This work-from-home bid gives you great connections to other people, and your business may even grow through word of mouth. Most stylists charge by the hour, so set your terms to what you think is fair.

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34. Voice a Character or Other Sounds

With more and more indie companies turning to new talent sources, it’s become easier for independent contractors to get into the business. Animation studios are always looking for fresh talent, especially in the realm of voice work.

If you’re good at making up different voices, you may want to give voice acting a try. Develop a portfolio of varying sounds you can do, as well as various types of dialogue so that studios can get a feel for your range.

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35. Surveys Keep Businesses Thriving

Sharing your opinion online can be one of the better ways for businesses to determine what customers want. That’s where surveys come in.

You’re not going to earn a lot per survey, but if they only take a few minutes to complete, you can get a decent number of them finished in an hour. Look for websites that have lists of surveys you can take to minimize your searching time. You’ll usually be paid cash through PayPal, gift cards, or points on websites that can be redeemed later for other products.

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36. Meeting the Demands of the IRS

No one enjoys doing their taxes every single year, so they’re relieved to discover that there are other people they can play to do their taxes for them.

Having a knack for numbers is vital, as well as knowing all the intricacies of the tax system. This work-from-home job is seasonal work so it’s not a source of income you can rely on throughout the year, but it can bring in big money. You will have to register your business with the IRS first, however, so that they know you’re an official tax preparer.

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37. Websites Have to Stay Functional Somehow

Poking and prodding at websites may seem tedious, but there’s no other way to figure out what’s broken from what’s not. Without that input, then there would be some pretty ugly websites out there.

Provide your opinion on everything from the colors to the font size to the entire functionality of the site. Do links flow from one to the next, or is it hard to find everything? Are there some links that lead nowhere? Testing a website usually takes about 15 minutes so that you can get a decent number of tests completed in an hour.

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38. Make Every Word Count

One of the most common ways of making money from the comfort of your home is writing. Companies and contractors are always looking for content to add to their company webpages, articles for blog posts, or ads for popular sites.

With just a little research, you can easily create articles for cash and get several projects completed within a day. If you’re sitting at the computer anyway, you might as well get paid for browsing and writing content. This work-from-home gig can really pay off if you have knowledge in a specific niche like health and wellness or science and space.

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39. From One Language Into Another

Being fluent in another language really sets you above the rest. Companies, especially international ones, are always looking for people who speak multiple languages to do translations for them.

This talent opens up their business to have a wider target audience, and you could help them to achieve that. You could translate documents and articles or just serve as an interpreter to facilitate online interactions with this work-from-home job.

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40. Transcribing Onto the Page

Audio recordings are easy to listen to, but some people are better with the written word or need dialogue converted into a more permanent form.

College lectures or doctors’ dictations always need transcription, and many transcribers ear as much as $25 per hour for this kind of work. Being a fast typist and having a good ear will definitely get your foot in the door and will gain you some professional clientele for steady work in the future.