If you need extra money but don't want a staff job, freelance work may be the answer. These days, companies hire freelancers for everything from writing and design to delivery and sales.
Pros and cons: You usually don't get benefits, but can often set your own schedule and may even be able to work from home. The pay is self-employment income, and is viewed differently than normal wages by the IRS. You'll need to file specific tax forms with your annual return — and, depending on what you earn, you might need to submit quarterly tax payments. On the plus side, you can deduct many of your expenses, and may qualify for the home office deduction.
Here are three companies hiring independent contractors right now.
What they do: Provider of transcription services.
Freelance opportunities available: Transcriptionists.
Requirements: Must have at least two years of transcribing/word processing experience and a typing speed of 65 words per minute.
Hours/Pay: Transcriptionists schedule their time in one-hour blocks, a week at a time. Work is available 24/7, so all hours/shifts are available. The company pays a half cent per word, which they say works out to about $10 to $12 an hour, up to $15 an hour for fast typists. They point out that your speed (and therefore your earnings) can be negatively affected if you don't have high-speed Internet or an up-to-date computer and software set-up.
Other info: If you don't already have a foot pedal, you must order one for a cost of $75.
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