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It is always difficult to find legitimate work from home jobs, but I have found that Craigslist can be a good source. However, it does take a bit of work to find the good telecommute jobs amongst the “regular’ jobs and the scammers. To make the job easier, I have come up with these tips to finding a good work from home job on Craigslist.
1. Don’t limit your searches to cities near you. When you work from home your boss could be half away across the world from you, location really doesn’t matter. Start with the larger cities and work your way through the whole list of Craigslist. One thing I would like to see with Craigslist is a search feature that includes all cities. As far as I know you can’t do that right now. So for now you need to do your searches city by city.
2. Start your search with cities where employers have to pay to place an ad. Not all Craigslist ads are free. In some of the larger cities, employers are required to pay to place an ad. Scammers don’t like to pay for ads, so this weeds out a lot of scam artists. San Francisco and New York are two cities that you need to pay to place a help wanted job on Craigslist.
3. When you work from home, it really doesn’t matter what location your employer is at. So don’t limit yourself to only searching cities near you.
4. Look at all job categories, not just the field you want to work in. Not everyone classifies things the same way. For example, I have found bookkeeping jobs in almost every category, including general labor and manufacturing. Some employers will classify by the type of business they have, as opposed to the type of job. So, if a manufacturer needs a bookkeeper, they put the ad under manufacturing.
5. Use the search box! Don’t spend your time scrolling down lists. Most jobs posted will not be telecommute or work at home jobs. Use search terms such as “work from home”, “telecommute”, “work remote”, etc. Make sure to use the quotation marks to precisely define your search and weed out the results you don’t want.
6. Watch out for the scammers. No matter where you look, there will always be scammers. Be sure to read up on how to spot a work from home scam, and know that with few exceptions, you should never have to pay to get a job.
With these tips and a little work you should be able to find a number of opportunities for legitimate work from home jobs. Good Luck!
When you work from home it makes sense to have a space in your home dedicated to work. It makes even more sense when you realize how much you can save on your taxes by having a qualified home office.
I have heard many people, even other professional tax preparers say that the IRS requirements for a home office are too strict, that calculating the taxes is too complicated, (especially when you sell your home), and that claiming a home office is like waving a red flag in front of an auditor.
The truth is, the requirements are strict, but not difficult to follow. All tax forms are too complicated, and, if you claim your home office properly you don’t need to worry about being audited.
The tax savings can be substantial. Not only do you get to deduct a portion of your rent or mortgage interest, you also get a deduction for repairs and maintenance, utilities, and office furniture. A sole proprietor using just 10% of the home as a qualified home office can potentially have thousands of dollars worth of deductions saving hundreds in taxes each year. A home office also qualifies as a place of business and will make more of your auto miles business miles. As an example, $5,000 in home office expenses will save a sole proprietor at least $1,250 in taxes.
To be a qualified home office your office must be used regularly for your business. It must also be used exclusively for business. This is where most people trip up. You have to think of your home office the same as any business office. This means that any use that is not business use disqualifies the home office. So you can’t have guests sleep in your office, and the kids can’t use the computer to do homework. There are two exceptions to the exclusive rule. Space used as a daycare does not need to be exclusive, and the same is for true for the storage of inventory or product samples.
Home office deductions are not limited to the self-employed. If you work for someone else you may also be able to claim a home office deduction. The home office must be for the convenience of the employer, and your employer must not pay you rent for your home office.
And just as a side note, if your tax preparer ever tells you that a tax deduction is “too complicated” you need to find another tax preparer!
I found this older post from ZenHabits today. I find that while I love working from home, I do sometimes find it hard to stay productive. There are so many distractions, and no one looking over my shoulder making sure I am working!
While I was reading the post I was struck by how much of the advice related to working at home the way you would work in an office. Things such as setting a schedule, limiting the number of hours you work, and taking breaks are all things that happen naturally with most “away from home” jobs. I tend to either have trouble getting started and spend all day procrastinating, or I get so involved in my work I work 12 or 14 hours straight and forget to eat. Honestly, I’m not sure how productive I really am after 10 hours of working without eating!
While all 30 work from home tips were great the last tip was my favorite.
30. Be grateful you’re working from home and not in some cubicle! That gratitude will motivate you to work harder, so you can continue to work from home.
So click on over to ZenHabits to read the rest of the 30 work from home tips, and find even more great tips in the comments.
Would you like to share your best tips for staying productive while working from home? Comment with them here and I’ll put them all together in a WFH Pro post and give you credit!
Those of you who know the joys of working from home, whether you’re self-employed or freelancing or telecommuting, know also the joys of procrastination and the lures of laying on the couch. Now, I’m as much in favor of a good nap as the next guy, but a nap should be a break, not your default work mode….