Many mums face a great dilemma after having children: to go back into full-time work or be a full-time stay-at-home parent. It is never an easy decision to make, especially when money is tight. However, there is an alternative to full-time employment: working from home.
A generation ago there were very few options for women who wanted to remain at home and still earn a little extra money. Some women would take up evening work, such as cleaning or bar work, while others would try their hand at door-to-door sales with companies such as Avon. However, a vast majority would be forced back into full-time work while their children would be cared for by a nursery or child-minder.
The internet has totally changed this, and there are now so many opportunities for mums who want to stay home but still work. Many female entrepreneurs have developed very successful businesses from home; a few earn more working for themselves than they did before having children.
Here we shall take a look at some inspirational stories of entrepreneurs who have made a living from home.
This seems an almost obvious choice for mums. If they are going to be home all day looking after their own child, why not look after a few more? Parents can drop off their children in the morning on the way to work and pick them up on their way home. They charge a day rate per child that covers their costs and gives them a salary.
Child-minders charge between £40 and £80 a day per child, depending on location. London mums can earn £160 a day by looking after two children, which is easily manageable for first-time mums.
For inspiration, look at Lynn Perkins’ UrbanSitter.com business. She is an American entrepreneur who left her previous career after having children to create her own business.
The internet provides people with an easy way to promote their work and also provides work itself. There are many roles that can be done at home with a computer.
A huge growth area is copywriting. Many women are naturally good writers and have a great insight into topics such as parenting, health, fashion and celebrity gossip, all of which are always in high demand by digital magazines. As well as website copy, people require writers to create reports, eBooks and white papers.
A great example is Fiona Lewis from Sydney, Australia, the author of Mumpreneurs Online. She can be followed on Twitter @fionalewistweet.
Many men are also doing very well online and often share their own tips and advice. One such man is Robert Bonnier – check out Robert Bonnier on LinkedIn; he is a successful entrepreneur who set up the popular Scoot website a few years ago.
Baking has become a boom cottage industry in recent years, and many mums are making everything from cupcakes to tiered wedding cakes at home. A great example is Clare Humphries’ Cakes by Clare on Facebook. She makes cakes for birthdays, weddings and other celebrations while looking after her kids at home.
Building a home business is extremely rewarding, and the additional income helps to ensure that family life continues happily after stopping full-time work.