Whether you’re looking to make some extra income on the side to supplement your full or part time income, whether you’re just looking to work freelance and hours that suit you and your home life – or whether you are looking to start a business online and work full time from home – this feature will hopefully give you a good steer and some practical advice on getting started.
The allure of working from home and for yourself is nothing new. Avoiding the rush hour commute, no boss breathing down your neck pushing for the next deadline and the ability to spend more time with family is something almost all of us have dreamt about.
Working from home requires dedication and discipline. It’s very easy to become distracted by homelife, so for practicality it’s helpful to set up a ‘work room’ or workspace. Somewhere where you have less chance of being disturbed. Separating your home in to work areas and home areas will benefit you immensely. Routines and structure are very important too.
All the practicalities out of the way, it can be very rewarding.
It’s also worth noting that just because you’re working from home, and for yourself, you are still required to declare and pay relevant taxes on any (or additional) income, by way of the Government’s Self-Assessment.
Now, with the introduction out of the way I’m going to explain to you some of the ways and methods of earning some extra money at home. Some concepts are new, some have been around for longer than your grandparents, but all have a place to play.
What could I do to earn money from home?
It’s really (really) important to think about the type of work you want to do carefully. It’s so easy to chase money around the internet and start putting time and effort in to the ‘next big thing’. It may seem exciting and adrenalin fuelled at first, but very soon that adrenalin disappears, and you are left with the reality of the work at hand.
Can you keep going and persevere with it. It’s challenging enough to do with the regimented structure of a workplace, managers and contracts but when you’re working for yourself, from home, the temptation to give up and go look for the ‘next big thing’ is too easy to do. It should though be avoided.
Some people go look for a second income related to a hobby. This can be a great idea in practice but sometimes, depending on what type of person you are, this can, actually, work against you. A hobby for most is a way to escape the routine of work. It’s a way of relaxing and something to look forward to after a day or week at work.
Many people have found that after combining a hobby and work they’ve noticed they start to hate their hobby – I guess the hobby becomes too much a reminder of work.
You only have to pick up a local newspaper or cast your mind back to the large brick that hit your doorstep twice a year, a.k.a the Yellow Pages, to get some your head around the sheer number of business opportunities there. The Yellow Pages category listings though is merely the tip of the iceberg.
Although very individual jobs are difficult to put in to one post, what I am looking to do is give you some concepts, some examples and how you can get yourself out there too.
Where to start when looking for work from home jobs?
Well if you have tumbled across the Money Boost website for the first time, the first place I’d recommend is taking a look through our site.
It’s filled with lots of helpful information and advice to get you started. Whether you want to find side hustle examples, freelance opportunities, passive income methods of investment help, you’ll find helpful advice.
Aside from the Money Boost site there are lots of marketplaces that have sprung up to help you find work and find clients. Whether long term opportunities for regular work or one off small contracts and work pieces so you can pick and choose which work you do, and which hours.
Some work from home websites include:
For a more in-depth review of these websites visit our – Top 4 Freelance Websites to find clients and customers page
What are the fastest ways to earn money from home?
I want to be clear this isn’t about to describe some ‘get-cash-quick-scam’. We avoid these like the plague. They only ever make money for the person promoting the scheme, not the person trying to use it.
With the multitude of ways to earn money from home – some of these we will cover below so keep reading – there are those methods which will take time and patience before you start to see an income, where other methods can see payment within a day or two.
One of the fastest ways to try and achieve some additional income is to post a gig on Fiverr.com, bid for work on Upwork.com or look for work on Freelancer (although the latter will require a small monthly fee of around £1-£5 to get started).
If you have skills and knowledge in something that people or businesses will pay for, and you could complete the work from home, you could look to reach out to local businesses. Other options include Facebook marketplace or local town pages. There are lots of local pages with posts looking for work to be done, or services provided.
You could be:
An accountant or bookkeeper
Graphic designer for marketing flyers or posters (or can just use online software better than others)
Social media manager
Voice over artist
Ghost writer for small written online editorial pieces
…. the list goes on.
Obviously, we have to stay within the confides of being able to work from home, but technology is a wonderful thing. You could be working for a small company in Australia writing engaging blog posts for their Facebook account whilst they sleep or provide bookkeeping services for a small company based 800 miles away. An American media company may be looking for a British voiceover person. The world is smaller than ever.
Each of these options and possibilities can be found on Fiverr or Upwork. You have to be creative in what you can provide, and equally creative in finding clients.
The four main methods of working from home
Although options are plentiful almost all options can be categorised in to one of four items:
A side hustle is best described as a way of earning some additional income alongside a main income. Perhaps in the evening or at the weekend. A side hustle is a really broad category but example of which can include:
Dog Walking Services
Dog sitting for those working evenings, night-time and or weekend
Website design and coding
Not all those ways of earning some income can be done from home of course, these are just examples, but of most of these are local and can be done in your own spare time.
Find out more ways in our Side Hustle section
Passive income in direct comparison to a side hustle is the nature of creating ‘something’ and being able to earn an income without any further – or very minimal – input.
The is of course what everyone aspires too. Have, build or create something that can earn a recurring income.
A buy to let investment property is one example of passive income. You own the home which will generally, if the property market continues to increase year on year like it is, increase in value but by having tenants you’ll be paid every month without having to do much in return, aside from the odd maintenance item.
Another example is receiving dividends on stocks and shares. You own the share which could increase or decrease but also be paid dividends for no extra effort.
If I take these scenarios to the internet, you could build a blog. Have a website focusing on a subject, write great engaging content and if you can build credibility, and gain an audience, you could be earning an income through advertising and affiliate commission for months if not years to come.
Perhaps writing isn’t your forte but you’re happy being in front of the camera. There are many people making a recurring passive income on YouTube. Create a channel and build an audience through exciting videos – and those videos could earn you money every month for years to come.
I’m not going to lie, a passive income is one of the hardest incomes to nurture. If you have money to invest in property, fine wines or antiques for investment or stocks and shares then passive income becomes easier – as you are buying your asset, but if you don’t have the money to invest in items like these you’ll need to create something instead that can build you a repeat recurring income. It takes time, patience and persistence.
Examples of passive income options include with skill levels needed:
Selling your photographs – easy
Write eBooks and sell via Amazon Kindle – easy
Small manageable investments for your future – easy
Become an influencer on Instagram – easy to start, difficult to stand out and takes time;
Become a YouTuber – easy to start, difficult to stand out and takes time;
Write and build a blog – medium
Create or outsource software development to sell – challenging;
Build an affiliate based white label website – challenging;
Find out more ways in our Passive Income section
You perhaps are looking for a full-time way of finding a regular and repeating income from several clients. This would be considered as freelancing.
Through previous employment you might have amassed a whole host of skills that are transferable to the freelance world. So many small businesses and start-ups are looking for small jobs to be done, repeated work and a way to outsource some of their tasks.
This is where you can come in. There are marketplaces websites that help put together those looking for work and tasks to be complete, and those ready to complete them. The marketplace takes a small commission (on average around 20% of the value of the work carried out) but generally you only pay when you earn rather than paying for advertising material that may not yield any results.
The great thing about freelancing is that almost always it’s work you can do from home, you can choose your own hours and work flexibly to give yourself a better work-life balance and often these one off jobs can become regular work from repeat clients.
Some freelance jobs can command up to £50 an hour, or more for specialist work. It’s certainly not uncommon to earn around £20 for administrative work which could and should be considered a minimum.
Get good reviews and recommendations on your freelance profile page and the amount you can earn increases.
Here are some popular freelancing skills currently in demand:
Blog and website writing
Logo and graphic design
Voice over work
Social media posting
Social media management
Search engine optimisation
Search engine marketing
Singer and Vocalist
This is a small list of all the options but hopefully you’ve found something you are experienced in and could help a small business with work needing to be done.
If you can’t find anything you have experience with, there’s no better time to learn. If you have time on your hands you can learn a new skill and using this new skill you could become part of the freelance world.
There are thousands of online courses available through platforms such as Udemy. Udemy regularly have sales meaning almost all full-time courses can be bought for around £10. I recently purchased a 35 lesson photography course on Udemy with great instructions, great tutorials and over 12 hours of video lessons – all for £9.99!
If I learn just two or three new and helpful techniques to help my growing amateur photography skills and this £10 investment is well worth it!
If you are struggling to find a low-cost course on websites such as Udemy, Coursera, Lynda or Open Learn then try looking on YouTube. All videos on YouTube can be watched for free, but you may have to sort the good from the bad – the number of video watches and ratings will help decide the watch to watch against what to avoid.
Find out more ways in our Freelance section
Start a Business
Starting a business isn’t the quickest to earn money but if you have a great idea, a passion and some time on your hands, this could be the perfect time to start that business you always dreamed off.
There isn’t always a blueprint to help create every business idea, but there are guides and courses to help deliver the fundamentals behind every great start-up venture.
If your plan is to create an online business and work mostly from home, here are a few things you need to consider:
A Business Plan
A Business Plan is exactly what the name suggests. It’s a detailed explanatory plan of how you will turn your idea in to a flourishing business. From costing to funding to revenue and profit. It should not only explain how you intend to start your business but also keep it running and how to grow. A Business Plan is a great tool to follow a blueprint (although it’s probably going to change as you go) but it can be invaluable to keep you on track and in direction.
If you have big plans, and not starting on a tiny under £500 shoestring, you may need to think about funding. Funding is simply a way of generating the money (capital) needed to start your venture. This could be from friends and family, by an investor, a startup grant or loan – or you could even try your luck in Dragon’s Den!
Business and website name
So much can ride on the branding of a business. The name can resonate with an audience or not. You need to be creative and clever or simply direct, but choose a bad or negative name and rebranding can be a costly exercise. You also need to make sure your new business name is
Not registered or form part of a copyrighted name
Make sure the website name (your www.yourbusiness.co.uk) name is still available. For a UK business it is always recommended to for a .co.uk domain name. A .com is also an option but only if the .co.uk is not available. Don’t though be tempted for any other extension. They are not recognised and can lead to potential customers being directed to competitor websites.
You can check to see whether the website name is still available through domain name registrars like Fasthosts
If you are going to start an online business you’ll need a website. You can either build your own website using web builders such as WordPress or Wix, which can be great for building basic websites but if you need more customisation like a shopping cart or something a little more bespoke you’ll need a website designer
Once you have your business up and running, you’ll need to find some customers. There are so many ways to spend – and waste – advertising pounds. Choosing who to advertise with may seem daunting and hit and miss, but there are ways to see whether your advertising spend could be fruitful or fruitless.
If you are considering advertising in local or regional newspapers and magazines, it’s worth looking at back editions. See who are advertising, and still are. If you find your competitors or complimenting businesses are advertising week on week, it’s a good sign the money being spent on the adverts are less than the income from the leads. If though similar businesses come and go often, it’s usually a sign to look elsewhere.
Online advertising can equally lead to a waste of advertising spend. There a million and one places to waste money. In the early days of the internet many ‘online directories’ were set up in the hope of enticing local businesses to spend to be listed. Unfortunately, some still exist. You could find advertising on Google Ads a good start. You pay for just those searching and click on your website. Google Ads is used by millions and a really good way to dip your toe in to the online advertising waters, but it is still easy to spend more than you need. Look for online tutorials and courses on how to use Google Ads and a couple of hours research could pay off dividends
As effective as marketing can be, it should be coincided with marketing at the very least. Marketing is the indirect way of selling. You could be providing advice, giving help or just being part of community – and just by ‘being out there’ can help bring customers to your door.
Imagine you were running an Estate Agents and you wrote an article in a local newspaper on the Top 5 Ways to Sell Your Home Quickly. If these were generally some new and helpful ways for someone to read and act, who then needed an Estate Agent – who would they turn to?
Placing an advert in a magazine is exactly what it is, advertising. If though you provide help and information, which at the same time a small mention of your business, it’s marketing.
Accounting and Tax
It’s easy to get so caught up starting and running your business you lose track of the legal necessities like submitting your tax return and paying tax. It’s helpful to bring an accountant on board who can help prepare your set of accounts and submit tax returns on your behalf. A local accountant for a small business shouldn’t cost more than between £350 and £500 but can be invaluable to ensure you are declaring the right income, offsetting all permitted expenditure and importantly (and legally) paying the right tax.
As you get deep into the running of your business it’s all too common to lose sight of the bigger picture. It’s essential you spend time regularly looking at potential growth. It may be a 3-year plan, it might be a 5-year plan, but you should have a plan. You should keep your Business Plan updated, to keep your growth plan on track.
These are just a few things.
If you are though looking at starting your own online business you could check out a course on Udemy such as the The Startup Course: How to start a business online in 2020 whose creator helped put together the above snippets – time the course right and you could buy this full practical course on Udemy for just £10!
Find out more ways in our Start a Business section
If you’ve made it this far, well done. You really are committed to boosting your money and income. As we’ve walked through each option and scenario, I’m sure some of this will have resonated with you. A new idea or kickstart motivation.
Everything is possible. Wanting it badly enough if the first and most important stepping stone there is but hard work and persistence are the ingredients to create results for success.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, as they say. This is roughly translated into there are no get rich quick schemes. Unless you win the lottery building an empire takes considerable time. If though empire building isn’t quite on your schedule, then there are ways that can be put in to practice almost immediately to at least help in the short term.
Freelancing is usually the quickest way to an extra income, closely followed – or equally matched – by side hustles. If though you want to build a regular income without trading hours for pounds then a passive income or investing method may work. Spend a little time looking at all of the options around, and decide on which one – or combination of options – is best and right for you,
Finally, as we have seen, starting and running your own business can be a really good way to earn extra money from home. It will take time, so be prepared. If you can continue to charge through the most challenging and stressful day and wake up early the following morning and continue, you just might have that determination needed.
As we conclude we’d love to hear from you. If you have managed to boost your income and have some inspirational stories to help others, please get in contact with us. We’d love to share your story and help others achieve their goals.
If you want to take this journey, then we’ll help you through. We’ll help you find ways to bring in an extra income. You’ll find tons of information, support, motivation and advice which is updated regularly.