How to Earn Money and Work From Home: Part 4 (Plus My Personal Work from Home Story)

Now days, it seems to be the American dream to be able to have an income source that allows you to stay at home and work in your home office. This week we’ve been covering many ways to help you find different ways to ease the budget burden, or even help you find something fun to do that actually generates some cash!

Part one: Easy ways to earn gift cards and cash to ease the budget
Part two: Starting a home based business with a small investment.
Part three: Earning money with things you already have!

Today’s theme is:

7 Ways to Make Money as an English Speaker


VIPKID is a company that uses an online education platform to guide a one on one online full immersion language and content classes for children in Beijing, China. If you’ve got high energy, love to work with children and would love to teach English to children in China, you can do this FROM YOUR HOME! You do need a bachelor’s degree (or at least an associate’s degree in Early Childhood education) and some classroom experience. You’ll also need a working laptop or desktop with high speed internet. You’ll need to work about 7-8 hours per week and are paid anywhere from $14-$22/hour. They’ve got great reviews on Glassdoor as well. If you are or know of a teacher that wants to supplement their income, this might be worth looking into!

2 – US Talk

Similar to VIPKID, US Talk helps bridge the gap between young Chinese learners by providing one on one online learning.  You’ll spend about 5 hours per week teaching. You do have to teach during their daylight hours (which might make for some odd hours). Requirements are at least an associate’s degree and must be American or Canadian. All the materials are designed, so it’s it’s just a matter of reviewing them before the class. Teacher’s are paid anywhere from $8-$12 per lesson. A lesson lasts for 25 minutes (and then about 5 more minutes writing notes after the class).

3 – TextBroker

If you love to write, have you ever thought about getting paid for it? You can register for free and submit a writing sample. They will determine your content quality and give you an author rating. You will earn cash for each word you write! You can choose from a selection of open orders, or clients can send you “direct” offers.  It’s not a HUGE moneymaker, but it can help bring in extra income… and if you love to write, then it would be something you enjoy doing!

4 – TranscribeMe!

A lot of the FF readers that responded to the survey mentioned that they were transcriptionists. All you need to work at TranscribeMe is a computer, a good internet connection, and the ability to transcribe audio and video. Pay starts at $20 per audio hour. What exactly is an “audio hour”? Well basically the faster (while being efficient) you are, the more you will make per hour. This is a good entry level transcriptionist job… it will give you experience to find something that pays even better (I bet some of our readers will leave comments about what company they work for). This is “general transcription”. If you want to get into medical or legal transcription (which pays better), you’ll need more experience and some education. But basically you are listening to audio files and typing out what you hear. You can write on your own hours too, so that’s a bonus! The cool thing is that there are no upfront costs and you don’t need experience to get started in general audio transcribing.


5– Babbletalk

Just like above, this is another transcriptionist service. You just need a computer, headphones, a good internet connection, and a few hours of peace and quiet each day. You can work on your own schedule. Each day you can sign up for assignments and then you have about 24 hours to complete the assignment. They pay you weekly via PayPal too. The good thing is that you are only allowed to be work on files that are in your native language. You do need to know basic grammar, know who to spell, and know how to search the internet to research terms. You should be good at checking your work… don’t rely on others to do it for you. You need to care enough to produce some good quality work.

6- has opportunities to be a transcriptionist, captioner, or a translator. You are able to choose your own schedule, which projects you want and you get paid weekly. The interview consists of a grammar and spelling test. Then if you pass that, you do a transcription file that you are expected to transcribe within a margin of error. Then you are asked to provide a writing sample on whatever subject they give you. Looks like people earn anywhere between $240-$1500/mo. I suspect it’s one of those things that you get better at the more you do it.

7 – Skyword

Skyword is a company where you can do freelance work as a writer or videographer. Just go to their site and you can upload samples of your work. They have a nice portfolio of brands. They are looking for content creators… anything from writing a blog post, social media post, articles, animations, corporate videos, infographics, and images. If you’ve got talent in any of these areas, this is definitely one to look in to!


Divvee Social

If you’ve been reading the other posts in this series, you’ve seen me talk about Divvee Social. If you’ve ever kicked yourself for not being a part of a start up in the early stages, then don’t miss this opportunity! There is a short 4 minute video on this website: Watch it and if you are intrigued, complete the form! I will email you some more information over the next week or so AND the moment that enrollments open up again, I will let you know so you can join and start earning some money! Just go to to check it out!

Advice to those that Earn an Income While Working from Home:

These are some great tips that our readers have submitted in the last week. There are too many to share, here are just a few of my favorites.

It is wonderful as far as the flexibility goes but it takes extreme discipline!! What many may not realize is how easy it is to get distracted at home. For this reason, I keep a timer by my computer while I work and stop it when I go to do laundry, take the dog out, check personal email, etc. It’s amazing that I sometimes actually only get 2 hours of work done in a 4 hour time span! But it’s such a blessing to be able to pick my kids up from school if they’re sick, attend school events, go to matinee movies over holiday breaks, take vacations when we want, and so much more!! – Debbie W. Cape Coral, FL


When you work at home, while it is flexible, you should try and keep work hours separate from personal stuff. Keeping them separate helps keep things organized and well…separate.  – Tami Y. Bend, OR

Working from home can get lonely. Make sure you get dressed, go outside and socialize as much as possible. It’s also a good idea to treat your home job as a real job so you prevent mixing business life with home life, which can lead to burn out. Designate a work space, create and stick to a work schedule, take breaks, and leave work behind when you are finished (close the office door, pack up work stuff, etc) so you aren’t tempted to work when you should be “home”. – Rose E Seattle

As I am sure many Moms out there feel, working from home is a balancing act between making enough to pay the bills and still being a Mom to the family. Working from home is tricky too because it can be isolating. I have found that once I became okay with it being different (that is–not interacting with people face-to-face) I enjoy working from home so much more! Bottom line, if you want to work from home, keep looking for the right fit for you! – Colleen M. (Ramsey, MN)

Get up, get dressed, put your makeup on and get into the work mindset every day. If you have kids, help them understand that while they are your priority, you need focused time to get you work done. My kids are older now (10 and 14), but I often have my daughter in my office coloring, or my son doing his homework. When I have projects they can help with, I get them involved and pay them for it so they understand the process and benefit of working hard. Another tip? Underscore to your friends and family that you really are WORKING. It can be easy to for others to think that you’re available for babysitting, kid drop-offs, errands or a host of other things because “you’re at home.” It’s important to help them understand that you have a work schedule that may be somewhat flexible, but that your work time is important and key to supporting your family.  – Julie G, Billings

Working at home is not for everyone. You really have to treat it like you’re in the office and not zone out or get distracted. – Vi K, Springboro

My Work From Home Story

This is what my family looked like just 9 days after I wrote my very first blog post on this blog (yes, I used to be blonde!).

I started this blog “for fun” on October 10, 2008. But before that, I had a lot of experience working from home. I’ve always loved to “figure things out” and make things work for me. I suppose it all started in the year 2000 when my husband and I started a carpet cleaning business. Through those 5 years I learned a lot about:

  • marketing and having an online presence
  • accounting/Quickbooks/business & taxes
  • scheduling on outlook (I use google calendar now)
  • advertising and contracts

What I learned during those 5 years prepared me for what was next in my life. In 2006 I started a preschool from home as well as doing some bookkeeping for a local youth sports organization. Everything I had learned from our carpet cleaning business helped me with the preschool and booking job that I was doing. I sure was grateful for what I learned and the doors that opened for me… even though we sold that business, much good came from it.

Then in 2008 had the idea to start this blog “for fun”, a year after that I had my surprise baby #7 and turned my preschool over to a friend because the blog was keeping me busy enough… and having a newborn and teaching preschool wasn’t a good mix! Anyway, even though this started out as a hobby and there were no intentions to make money on it, it HAS been a blessing and I DO make money from it. In fact, back in 2010 I finally made enough money to keep us from losing our home (husband was laid off in 2009… remember all the fun of 2009?).

Since 2010, my income from the blog increased enough that I am the main breadwinner in my family. My husband is now working for a company that he loves and we are VERY grateful for the benefits. But I really do love the fact that I can travel and keep up with work if needed. BUT since I do have a wonderful blog manager Becky, I am able to completely check out too!

The hardest thing about having a income earning job while staying at home is the work/life balance. Like right now it’s after midnight and I’m working while everyone is sleeping. 🙂  There are weeks that I’m working 90 hours (ahem, Black Friday week) and it sucks to be locked in my office. BUT I DO have the option to walk out of my office, shut the door and go love on my kids. But work is always there. It’s always a few feet away from me and it’s easy to get sucked in. There is ALWAYS something that needs to be handled!

The other biggie that took me a while to work through is “mom guilt”. For many years I tried to do it all, and then a few years ago I realized that I couldn’t do it all. And that my kids would survive if I wasn’t volunteering in their classroom every week, or on the PTA, or watching all of their practices (I do get in most of their games though). It took me awhile to come to terms with it. I just always planned on being a stay at home mom who could give her kids lots of attention, have a beautifully decorated home that was always clean, and make great dinners every night. Ha! That’s not realistic. And I finally figured that out and let go of it a few years ago. It’s been GOOD! And when I let go of that I was able to focus on the good things that have come from me working at home. My kids take a lot of responsibility around the house. They make their own lunches (and sometimes breakfast), do their own laundry (ages 10 and up in my house). The big ones help care for the little ones, and they know there are times that they have to pretend I’m not home.  And of course they are in charge of different sections of the house. So they’ve been able to increase their self sufficiency skills.

Here’s my family… just over 8 years after starting this blog. They’ve survived me being a work from home mom! I’ve had two babies since starting this blog and am now preparing to send my oldest two kids off to college!!

Coming Up Next

Tomorrow I will:

  • Give you more of an inside peek at what Fabulessly Frugal readers are doing with their work from home jobs and how much they are making!
  • Share more from our readers and feedback they have about working from home.
  • I might just share a peek inside Fabulessly Frugal earning reports

Want to contribute? You Still Have Time!

I’d love to hear about YOUR work from home experience, OR maybe you have a friend that works from home. You can share that too! Just answer a few questions on this form, I’d love to hear about it AND the company that you are working for (if you are able to).

If I quote you in our series, you can be entered to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

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