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As a mom who has been working full-time from home for almost a decade, the question I get the most is “how to make money while pregnant and unemployed”. Trust me, I know from experience, when you find out you’re expecting you wonder how you’re going to handle, well, basically everything from that day forward. In this day and age, many moms turn to working from home. But if you’ve never made money from home before, where do you start?
Let’s First Talk About Unemployment & Pregnancy
In the United States, parents and families are federally protected under the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to go on maternity leave for up to 12 weeks. That’s great but, for too many women, that is unpaid leave. And what if you end up with any pregnancy-related conditions and have to take off more time from work, or your medical condition costs you more than you were expecting?
Whether or not expectant mothers get paid maternity leave depends on the company they work for or the state they live in. California, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, Washington, Connecticut, and Oregon all have publicly-funded paid maternity leave. Score for you ladies living in those states. But what about female employees who aren’t offered that option? Few women can afford to go 12 weeks or more without income. It’s challenging being a pregnant woman in America.
If you’re looking for a good option to make some extra income while you’re on maternity leave with your new baby, you’re in the right place. Maybe you have decided you don’t want to go back to work after maternity leave and you want to know how to make a lot of money from the comfort of your own home long-term. Most of these work-from-home jobs or side-gigs can be built from just making some extra cash to making you a full-blown business owner. But before you choose one, you’ll want to consider a few things.
Choosing the Right Job for You While You’re Pregnant & Unemployed
There are lots of options to make money from home, but that doesn’t mean they will all fit your life and/or your personality. If you are thinking about how to make money while pregnant and unemployed, it’s important not to let desperation guide you, and rather have a reasonable approach. A good way for you to get clear about which jobs will work and which won’t is to make a list of your requirements.
- Are you looking for full-time or part-time work?
- What are you good at?
- Do you have experience and skills in certain areas already?
- What do you enjoy doing?
- How quickly do you need to start bringing money in?
- How much money do you need to bring in?
- Do you need flexibility in when you can work? How much flexibility?
Asking yourself these questions and coming up with some non-negotiable requirements for your work-from-home job will save you a lot of extra work. Make that list and then see which of these ways to make money from home fit your needs. As I share the best ways I’ve found to make money from home, I’ll start with the more side-gig type or temporary ways to bring in money and move toward the jobs or options to turn yourselves into business owners.
Ideas for How to Make Money from Home While Pregnant & Unemployed
Sell your unneeded items:
This one is actually beneficial in more ways than just easy money. You’re growing your family size. If you’re like me, you probably need to make space to put this child. This is a great way for you to get rid of stuff you don’t need and make some extra money in the meantime. Leave no room untouched. Trust me, especially if you’re a first-time mom, you need the extra space!
- Probably everything in your garage
- Kitchen items
Eventually, you will run out of things to sell, but you’ll be left with a less cluttered space to start your next money-making venture. If you found success with this approach and you enjoyed it, you could be one of those people who go on to buy and sell things just like the ones you just got rid of. It’s a thing and if you do it right you can be quite successful. Just Google Gary V. and listen to him talk about selling this kind of stuff! Fair warning, he can be…colorful…in his language.
Sell your art or printable resources:
Are you artistic in any way? Have you visited Etsy.com lately? It blows my mind how many women (or people in general) are successfully selling their art online. If you make pretty things and learn how to use a platform like Etsy strategically, you can do well too! Not artistic? How about organized? Are you a list or chart lover? Use free programs like Canva to create printables to sell. My favorite thing about Etsy, in particular, is that when you’re doing your market research to find out if what you want to make and sell will be successful, you can click on any shop that is similar to your art and see how many sales that shop has had. That gives you a clearer idea of the market for the items. Another trick is to check out their reviews and see what people like and don’t like about the items or the service and act accordingly.
Some things you could sell on a platform like Etsy are:
- Knitted items
- Handmade pottery
- Graphic Designs (i.e. prints to be framed)
- Planning calendar Printables
- Printable charts for organizing (think cleaning or chore charts for kids)
- Budget planner printables
- Printable habit trackers
- Meal planner printables
There are a ton of other options, get creative! Maybe you already have an artistic hobby you can just turn into a profitable side-gig or business. Keep in mind that some of these items would require somewhat of an investment for materials. So that’s something to consider when running this money-making venture through your list of requirements.
Babysit in your home:
Offering your services as a babysitter is something you could begin immediately with no investment. Unless, of course, you would like to get CPR certified, which might get your more paid babysitting gigs faster. You could babysit while you’re pregnant if you feel up to it and even after your baby is born. Again, if you feel up to it. This one definitely won’t be for everyone, but if you’re a first-time mom it could be some good practice while getting paid. Or, if you already have kids, babysitting in your home could be even easier because your kids could provide the entertainment, which would make your job much easier.
Online teacher or tutor:
Offering your services for online tutoring doesn’t require any specific education, just proficiency in whatever subject you want to tutor in. This would be free of startup fees and I bet all you would need is to help one student and you would probably get all kinds of word-of-mouth referrals. Us moms stick together!
Another option is teaching English online. This does require a Bachelor’s degree, but it’s a great option if you love teaching. I have several friends who do this who used to be teachers. You can read more about this option in my blog post, 7 Real Online Jobs from Home.
Teach an online course:
You probably already have at least one skill from your previous work experience that you could translate into a course for others who need to learn that skill. There are online platforms like Udemy.com for adults and Outschool.com for children that allow you to either create a video library for people to go through at their own pace or provide live classes that can serve groups or individuals.
Udemy does offer a free version where you can offer a limited number of courses to an unlimited number of students. Outschool doesn’t charge monthly, but they take a 30% fee from your paid enrollments. Those are things to consider but not big obstacles to overcome to get started! You won’t have to bring any money upfront. You can use the money you make from your courses to pay for the platform use.
Some ideas for courses:
- Web or graphic design basics
- How to use Excel (power point, photoshop, etc.)
- Cooking classes
- Exercise classes (for kids or adults)
- Nutrition classes (for kids or adults)
- How to get and stay organized in your home
These are just some ideas off the top of my head. There are endless possibilities!
Working as a freelancer can be a pretty broad and possibly overwhelming category, but don’t count it out. Websites like upwork.com and fiverr.com offer listings from people who are looking for freelancers (you can find a complete list of places to find freelance work here). You’ll find jobs for just about any skill you can think of that involves an internet connection.
Freelance or virtual assistant jobs can include many different kinds of work:
- Administrative work
- Graphic design
- Web design
- Social media manager
- Pinterest VA
- Web search evaluator
- Social media ad manager
- Transcription of audio recordings (places to find transcription work specifically)
What work did you do at your job? You can probably turn it into a freelance job online or use some part of the skill you mastered to create something new. Turning something you’re already good at into a job is an easy way to get started as a freelancer. Do you love writing? You could be a freelance writer for a blogger. Do you think you would enjoy helping to promote a blogger’s work? Pinterest virtual assistants are more in demand than you would think! There are a lot of good jobs to be found in the freelance world, you just have to identify your skillset.
Work remotely for a company
There are tons of remote work positions with large and small companies out there. I compiled a huge list of companies that hire remote workers, you can find that here. This option may have a few more work rules than you were hoping for, depending on the company. But if you’re looking for a more structured job and reliable pay source, this could be the best option for you. Some companies will require that you work a normal 8 or 9 to 5 schedule, some will offer different shifts, some will give you more flexibility. If you work full-time, you may be able to receive health insurance from some of these companies.
This is an exciting time in your life but I know it can also be stressful, especially when you need financial help! I hope you find these various options helpful as you navigate the changes your new baby will bring! If you still have questions about how to make money while pregnant and unemployed, I would be happy to answer anything that I can! Feel free to leave a comment below, or email me at email@example.com.
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Hi, I’m Jessica! I am wife to Chris, and mom to Kaiper, Alana and Koa. I am a graphic designer, website developer and aspiring author. In this space, I share about everything from parenting, working from home, food we cook, and lots of things for kids! Learn more about me here.