You might love your job, but admit it – the commute is terrible. Dealing with unreliable buses, crowded trains and unending traffic is enough to turn the most passionate workers a little bit sour. Luckily, modern technology has made working from home easier than ever, and a number of trendy offices even institute a work-from-home policy for their star employees. Like all careers, some work-from-home jobs pay more than others, but be forewarned: A work-from-home lifestyle often blurs the lines of work and play. They’re not get-rich-quick schemes. They’re real jobs that require real work. These are 10 of the most lucrative jobs that typically allow you to work from home.
1. Data Entry Clerk
Data entry can be a tedious job, but it doesn’t require much skill or experience. All you need is a computer and internet connection in your home office. Your job will be entering data into a computer system from other documents. According to Indeed, data entry clerks make an average of $18.96 an hour in 2018.
2. Social Media Specialist
Social media specialists tend to work from home or in offices. It's a toss up. Social media specialists are in charge of growing a brand’s social media accounts and creating the content they post. This requires some current knowledge of algorithms and the ability to understand analytics. You’ll typically need a degree in public relations, communications, business or writing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary is $56,770 a year.
Becoming a transcriptionist doesn’t require much education. All you need is the ability to type quickly and accurately. Transcriptionists listen to audio and type what they hear. Some also choose to install a special foot pedal in their home office to help. Though the work can be tedious, it’s often very flexible. Transcriptionists can sometimes make between $15 and $25 per hour but are often paid per word or project. The faster you type, the more you make. According to the BLS, those working as medical transcriptionists make a median of $35,250 a year.
4. Virtual Assistant
If you’ve got some serious organization skills and a penchant for Microsoft Office, you might want to consider becoming a virtual assistant. Virtual assistants handle the duties of an average secretary but work from a home office. Their tasks include scheduling appointments, basic record keeping, social media management, website maintenance and customer service. The duties depend on the specific job, but the BLS reports that administrative assistants make a median of $37,870 a year.
5. Freelance Writer or Editor
Many people with a flair for creativity find freelance writing and editing a very fulfilling career. These workers write and edit anything from blog posts and entertainment features to marketing copy, brochures and white papers. They may work for a business, a publication or their very own blog. Sometimes they’re book authors and screenwriters. Other times, they’re in the advertising industry. According to the BLS, editors make a mean of $58,770 per year. Writers and authors make around $61,820.
6. Online Teacher or Tutor
Calling all academics! Online teaching and tutoring can be one of the most fulfilling, stable work-from-home jobs. Whether you’re peer tutoring college kids, working with K-12 students or teaching online continuing education courses, there’s always a demand for tutors and teachers. According to Glassdoor, online teachers make an average of $35,444 per year, and tutors make an average of $25,500.
Genealogists are historians. They study family history and help people put together their family tree. This field is becoming increasingly popular with DNA-testing services. Though a degree would certainly help, anyone who’s taken genealogy classes and has a passion for history could work freelance. Salary varies with your qualifications. According to the National Human Genome Research Institute, genealogists make anywhere between $25,670 and an impressive $96,530 a year.
8. Content Strategist
Content strategists are key players in a website, blog or brand’s success online. This is one of the work-from-home jobs that requires a bit more knowledge than, say, being a virtual assistant or data entry clerk, but the rewards are worth it. PayScale reports that content strategists get an average of $60,296 per year with nearly $5,000 in bonuses, commissions and profit shares.
In this position, you have to be a very versatile writer and know SEO best practices. You’ll also have to get along with a variety of different clients and cater to their specific needs. It’s your job to plan a company’s online content and make sure it performs well. Be prepared to spend hours monitoring engagement, analyzing data and researching keywords. The payoff is quite rewarding.
9. Freelance Programmer
Freelance computer programming is one of the most lucrative and in-demand work-from-home careers. These tech-savvy workers have typically graduated with a degree in computer science. However, it’s also not impossible to teach yourself how to code. You’ll need to know how to program in various computer languages, including Java and C++, in order to write software programs and find and fix bugs. According to the BLS, computer programmers earn a median of $82,240 per year.
10. Social Media Influencer
Becoming a social media influencer isn’t easy. These content creators find a niche and simply post gorgeous photos and inspiring text in order to build an audience. Sometimes influencers choose to review beauty products, and other times they travel the world and share their experiences. To make money, they partner with brands to create campaigns. Most social media influencers don’t make any money until they grow their following into the hundreds of thousands. The top YouTube influencers can earn millions. According to Forbes, an Instagram user with 100,000 followers can make $5,000 per branded post.
- PayScale: Average Content Strategist Salary
- Mediabistro: What Does A Content Strategist Do?
- The Penny Hoarder: 13 Online Jobs for College Students That Pay More Than $15/Hour
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Medical Transcriptionists
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Secretaries and Administrative Assistants
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Writers and Authors
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Editors
- Glassdoor: Online Teacher Salaries
- Glassdoor: Tutor Salaries
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Computer Programmers
- Forbes: Earning Power: Here's How Much Top Influencers Can Make On Instagram And YouTube
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Social Media Specialist
Mariel Loveland is a small business owner, content strategist and writer from New Jersey. Throughout her career, she's worked with numerous startups creating content to help small business owners bridge the gap between technology and sales. Her work has been featured in publications like Business Insider and Vice.