Wondering how to earn money as a stay at home mum? I was too.
Before my kids came along I worked full time. As did my husband (he still does).
That means we went from two incomes down to one almost instantly. We planned for this change in our finances and were prepared for what lay ahead.
Our plan was always for me to stay home with the kids until they go to school unless I really wanted to go back to work (which was quite likely to happen as I loved working).
Basically, so long as our finances allowed, I was going to remain a stay at home mum.
In Australia and then New Zealand (when we moved back here)- two of the highest cost of living countries in the world.
So far things are going well, and that’s due (in no small part) to my awesome side hustles.
The 5 Side Hustles That Let Me Be A Stay at Home Mum
I don’t need, or even want to go back to work, as I’ve discovered some easy ways to make money from home that work for my family.
Side hustle #1: Online Surveys
I’ve been taking paid surveys since way before I had kids, but now I have a more tactical approach to online survey sites.
Both of these are legit New Zealand survey sites. Toluna pays cash (via Paypal) and Valued Opinions offer gift cards.
I prefer to take surveys that pay cash as then I have the option of using my rewards anywhere but I find the gift cards very easy to accumulate with Valued Opinions so I rate them highly too.
Each morning I log in to my survey dashboard for both of these sites and see what surveys are available.
I try to complete them immediately as they are not always available when I log in later in the day.
Side hustle #2: Remote admin work
I worked in an office before leaving to have my kids.
The skills I learnt in my office job can be applied from anywhere and I was able to convince my boss to give me casual admin work from home.
The jobs aren’t especially frequent, but I get a higher hourly rate and can claim part of my home office as an expense (check with the IRD to make sure you are claiming the right stuff).
I am set up as a sole trader and send invoices when the work is done.
I really loved doing this kind of work and think it’s the perfect side gig for mums.
When looking at ways for stay at home mums to make money you should consider the work you’ve done previously and if it can be done remotely.
Most bosses are much happier to hire an employee they know and trust for remote work so it can be a win-win.
This was my highest paying side hustle for years and I earnt between $500-$1000/month.
Side hustle #3 Focus groups
Focus groups are another easy way for mums to make extra cash.
The best thing is they are often run in the early evening so I feel like I get a bit of a night out (is that sad?!?! – haha) while getting paid and eating their food (a lot of the focus groups are catered) and don’t have to worry about babysitting because their dad is home from work.
I earn anything from $80 to $150 a month from focus groups. I’m registered with almost every panel in my city.
Side hustle #4 Mystery Shopping
Mystery shopping is a great way for mums to make some money and shop at the same time.
A mystery shopper (sometimes called a secret shopper), is paid to use shops and services as a customer and report on their experiences. This might mean you need to go to a specific shop and ask for an item. You’ll then complete the transaction as normal, and write up a simple report after you’ve left the store.
On some occasions, you can even bring your kids, although I try not to. The assignments are usually pretty short so I can get someone to look after the kids or just take assignments on preschool days.
Pay ranges from $20-$50 and compensation for products purchased.
Side hustle #5 Blogging
Blogging is how I make the bulk of my income these days. I started a blog back when I was doing remote admin work and making most of my income from that.
As my blog income grew, I scaled back on the admin work and focussed on growing my online businesses. I now run three blogs (this one included) and make between $5 and $7k a month from all my sites.
Blogging is something I’m really passionate about as it’s given me the option of not needing to go back to work, and if my income keeps growing, my husband will be able to give up his job and help me in the business.
I’ll be writing more about how I blog for income soon, as I really think it’s a great way for Kiwis to earn more money – and that money is usually US dollar, so it’s extra sweet!
More Ideas for Making Money as a Stay at Home Mum
Below are some more ways to stay at home mums to make money.
6. Become a virtual assistant
Working from home as a virtual assistant is a great side hustle for administrators, personal assistants and executive assistants. All you need is your existing skill base, a computer and an internet connection.
I actually worked in this manner after my son was born, and the gig continued after we left New Zealand to go travelling.
I was earning Australian dollars (the job was with my former Australian employer) and spending Mexican pesos which gave me a taste of geographic arbitrage – which basically meant that my family and I could live like kings on the 20 hours a week of remote work I was putting in.
If you’re interested in becoming a VA, check out this list of 150+ VA Services You Can Offer
7. Offer services to your neighbours
Think ironing, cleaning, lawn mowing, dog walking, pet care etc. If your kids are at kindy or school and you have a few hours free each day, but not enough time to commit to a part-time job, this could be a good way to boost your income.
Print up some flyers and do a letterbox drop in your neighbourhood. You never know what people might need help with!
8. Data entry
Data entry work consists of repetitive typing and requires extreme accuracy. It’s also frequently available at nights and weekends and can be a great work from home gig for stay at home mums.
Data entry jobs can be found in loads of industries. You’ll find hundreds of opportunities on Seek.
9.. Find a part-time job out of the home
Retail jobs are a great way to make extra money for stay at home mums. Retail work is usually flexible so it can suit evenings and weekends if you have a partner who is home then.
10. Teach online
Teaching English online is a great way to make money as a stay at home mum. Until now it’s been hard to find companies that’d hire Kiwis (because a lot of countries prefer American English speakers), but a new company called SayABC are open to hiring Kiwis with the right experience and qualifications.
You can earn up to $21USD per 40-minute lesson and work as much as suits you.
During the week, lessons are mainly at night so you’ll need to be a night owl for this job but it might suit you if your kids sleep through the night. On the weekend lessons run all day long so you could make more money then.
You’ll need to be a native English speaker with a bachelor’s degree in any field and some teaching experience.
Check out SayABC for more info
11. Become a Trademe seller
Selling things on Trademe or Facebook Marketplace can be a legit source of extra income and a great way to earn money from home. Start with the things you have around the house.
Check what similar items sell for, take decent photographs (this is very important), write an accurate description and get selling. As time goes by and your experience grows, you’ll get to know what sells best and which items you like working with.
The Trademe blog is a great place to learn more.
12. Rent out your car
If you’re anything like me, your car sits unused in your driveway for long periods of time (now more so as I bike to school with the kids and work from home).
If you can part with your car for some time, you can earn extra money by renting it out.
With Yourdrive, you are paid 60% of the total rental fee when you rent out your car. According to their calculator, a car with a value of $5,000, rented for 20 days a month can make around $225 a month.
That’s not huge money, but it’s certainly better than a car sitting in a driveway all day. Check them out here.
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