For the last 4 years, Kelsey has been able to work from home, meaning that she has been getting paid to do work that suits her personality and allows her to be with our son.
What if both you and your spouse could work from home in a flexible way that suits your personality? What if you didn’t have to commute to work each day and stay for 8 or 10 hours? What if you had more time with your kids?
I think it would be nice. However, I’m aware that it’s not for everyone. Some people like their jobs. Some people have found their place, building something that matters. Some people like the social interaction of a job and can’t imagine staying home every day. And that’s completely fine.
However, if you are like us, you want work/money to serve the lifestyle you dream of rather than determine the lifestyle you get to live.
Here are some of the ways we have been able to make money in remote/flexible ways over the past few years.
Kelsey has been working for her brother’s hair salon for the past few years. While this position originally required her to be present at the salon everyday, both her and her brother realized that most of the work she was doing could be done from home. Since we had a baby on the way, they both decided to try out a remote work arrangement.
It turned out to be a great opportunity that worked great. Kelsey had the salon phone and handled incoming calls about appointments, handled all the bookkeeping, and helped organize events.
While she wasn’t necessarily raking in the dough, it was enough money to supplement my income at the time, and allowed her to be a full time mom to our newborn son.
This opportunity came out of an existing job relationship. They came up with the remote arrangement together and tested it out on a trial basis. Once they saw it was working, it became a permanent arrangement.
Are there local business owners you know that you can create a unique/flexible job with? The best things can often come out of existing relationships.
Our second flexible income stream came from me. I was so ecstatic about working towards location independence that I was trying everything. I ended up taking 2 courses – one about freelance writing and one about becoming a Virtual Assistant. Within 2 weeks of completing those courses, I somehow landed the perfect freelance writing gig. I was writing blog posts about all things coffee – of which I had extensive knowledge and passion for. After a few months, I calculated that I was making an average of $20/hour. On top of that, I was working from home in the early morning and at night.
I was also lucky because the blog’s founder said I could, “…have as much work as I wanted.”
Oh, I also had no prior writing experience. Period. Nor did I even particularly like writing(until this happened, then I realized I enjoyed it).
At the time, I was managing a coffee shop, working 45 hours per week, often more. I was on my feet all the time, and I was talking to at least 100 people a day.
It. Was. Exhausting.
My hourly rate was about $16. My freelance writing was $20(after self-employment tax would be around $16-$17). If I scaled up my writing to replace the job income, I would be a much happier person, in charge of my schedule, able to work from home(or anywhere else I wanted to work from).
The point to emphasize here is that I had a dream. I spent a little bit of money investing in myself with an online course. And I put myself out there and got an amazing opportunity with room for growth. I don’t have a college degree. I don’t have prior experience – I’ve worked in coffee shops for most of my “career.” So pretty much, anyone can make something like this happen.
Our next income generating project was our real estate investment. We bought and moved into a house that had a large basement with a separate entrance. We moved into the upstairs, and for 4 months we renovated the basement into a 2 bedroom apartment complete with a full bathroom and small kitchen. As soon as it was finished, we had 2 friends of ours move in, and the rent has been covering our mortgage payment for a year now.
This has been a massive help to our financial situation, as we are passively able to pay our mortgage each month. That’s a pretty big deal.
The last work from home endeavor resulted out of another existing relationship(acquaintance). I reached out to someone who I knew ran at least one business, and he said he had some work for me. I ended up working alongside him for about 8 months, which is where I learned basic web design, graphic design, e-commerce, and basic business and entrepreneurial things. While I wasn’t exactly making a ton of money, I was getting paid to learn invaluable skills that I can now apply to our own business efforts. Plus, most of it was done from home, on my own time.
We now have goals of generating a full-time, middle class income(and eventually even higher), all from home, working on things which we are genuinely interested and passionate about. We are starting the projects that will support the lifestyle we believe we were made to live, the life in which we are able to prioritize raising our family, fostering and travel.
We are excited that you are interested in this part of our story and we hope that you not only follow along, but get started on making this happen for your own family.
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