Thanks to the fast-growing internet economy, jobs you can do from the comfort of your home — and sometimes on your own timetable — are becoming more plentiful. Check out these promising new options.
If you are a whiz with a keyboard, consider a transcription service, such as Rev.com. To apply, you need to take a test by transcribing an audio file. If you're accepted (only about half of applicants are), you can decide what and how much work to take on. You get paid based on the length of the audio files (in minutes), so the faster you type, the more money you can make. A good typist can earn as much as $100 a day.
Experts in a particular field — computer technicians or lawyers, for example — may want to try JustAnswer.com, where you can answer questions from consumers or businesses. Customers pay an average of $30 to have their question answered. About half the fee goes to the expert and half to the site. Applicants must take a subject-matter test and submit to a background check. Only 5 percent of those who apply are accepted.
The growth of online classes means more opportunity for teachers. In addition to traditional universities, you can also find online teaching jobs at education and technology companies. If you have a teaching background, then you might be able to land one of these positions. You can apply directly to an online school by going to its website.
If you like to talk, look into call-center positions. Such work is often needed round the clock — good news for early risers and insomniacs. Don't limit your search to your own state; a lot of call centers are located in Utah and Georgia. The travel and hospitality fields tend to have more open positions. When searching, use terms like "call center," "customer service" and "customer support." You'll need a dedicated phone line and internet access.
Jean Chatzky, best-selling author, journalist and money editor at NBC's Today, is AARP's financial ambassador. With additional reporting by Arielle O'Shea.
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