When you're unemployed, it just doesn’t make sense to pay someone to watch your kids while you go on endless job interviews. The good news is there are plenty of ways for single mothers to make money. Many methods involve working from home, which is ideal for any single mom.
Home Based Business
If you don’t already have a profession, focus on what you can do. You can sew or do alterations or make crafts or jewelry at home. If you're good in a certain subject, you could be a tutor. You need to have knowledge in English, science, math or social studies consistent with the grade you intend to tutor. If you play an instrument, you can give music lessons. Nancy Shankman, former Director of Music for the New York City Public Schools, said to be a successful music teacher, you need to love music, love children and “be passionate about what you’re doing.”
There's no shortage of work-at-home scams, but there are also plenty of legitimate opportunities. Christine Durst is responsible for RatRaceRebellion.com, an online aggregator of work-at-home jobs based on category. At any given time, you can go to that site and find open call center, writing, editing, virtual assistant and mystery shopping jobs you could do as a freelancer. Other sites to help with your work-at-home job search include WAHM.com and WorkAtHomeCareers.com.
Because you are already caring for your own child, why not care for a few more as a childcare worker? Check with your state to find out what the regulations are. You might need a certification in early childhood education and a license, but it could be worth the effort. Your duties would range from the basic care and feeding of infants and toddlers to helping slighter older kids prepare for kindergarten. You might also watch elementary school children after school until their parents come home from work.
Your house may be full of things you don't want or need, but those same things may be absolute treasures to someone else. Unloading that stuff could bring in some bucks. Typical avenues are garage sales, online auction sites, classified ads and consignment shops. The easiest items to move at a garage sale are things people can easily carry. If you're going the online route, be prepared to write descriptions and take photographs of every item you post. Also, be prepared to ship anything that attracts a buyer. Bigger, bulkier items usually sell better through classified ads. The downside to this is you won't get rich doing it; most items sell for 10 to 20 percent of the store cost. Consignment shops are best for big items like furniture. After you move your own stuff, hit some garage and estate sales and invest in other items you can resell at a higher price. Study the market so you'll know a bargain when you see one.
- Rat Race Rebellion: Christine Durst
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: How to Become a Childcare Worker
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: What Childcare Workers Do
- ConsumerReports.org: Best Ways to Sell Your Stuff
- Tutor.com: Applicant Frequently Asked Questions
- Artists House Music: Essential Characteristics For a Music Teacher
Laura Agadoni has been writing professionally since 1983. Her feature stories on area businesses, human interest and health and fitness appear in her local newspaper. She has also written and edited for a grassroots outreach effort and has been published in "Clean Eating" magazine and in "Dimensions" magazine, a CUNA Mutual publication. Agadoni has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University-Fullerton.