THE BLOG

Three Ways You Can Actually Make Money From Home, Written by an Agoraphobic

11/02/2014 11:45 GMT | Updated 12/04/2014 10:59 BST

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As someone who fears leaving my house, I know all too well the difficulties of being told that you're fit for work by ATOS or the DWP, when you're not. After all, who is going to employ someone who can't actually go to the workplace? I'm not the only person I know that has a debilitating condition which makes it difficult to go outside, socialise at work or even stay focused for long periods of time. Yet with many of us being told it's basically tough luck, how do we survive?

Below are three of the best ways, that I know of, to make money without having to leave the house. I understand that not all of these are going to be suitable for everyone, in fact some people may find that all of them are useless. However, even if just one person starts making money from home, because of this blog, then that is one more person able to stay afloat.

1. Writing for a living

Let's start with this one, as it is the topic I have the most experience in. Writing has become one of the best ways to make money from the comfort of your own home; simply because nearly anybody can pick it up. You don't need to be an English Language student to string a sentence together - that's what spelling and grammar checkers are for. Of course, some writing jobs are ridiculously tough to get into and I know I'll never make a penny as a journalist or an author, as the market is far too saturated. Instead I turned to marketing and copywriting, nearly three years ago now. It can be tough to get into, and the rewards aren't always imminent, but it pays off in the end. The first writing jobs I applied for paid a measly £1 per 100 words, which is nothing when you think about it. However, as you build up experience and a portfolio of work, you're soon able to ask for a lot more. There are no 'get rich quick' schemes when it comes to writing for a living, and I would suggest you stay away from any websites which claim to make you hundreds of pounds in a few days. Instead, use reputable freelancing websites to find clients and win business.

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2. Buying and selling

One of the oldest methods of making money is now easier than ever, thanks to the influx of online auction websites, Things for Sale groups on Facebook and free sites such as Gumtree. I have a bit of experience in this field, with both of my parents being a dab hand at this trade (they were like the 'slightly more modern' Del Boy and Rodney duo). You don't need to go out raiding charity shops and boot sales in order to find some bargains to sell, simply use the sites you have available. As an example, someone may be trying to get rid of their old iPhone on Facebook, which you could then buy from them before selling on eBay. The key to this is always to check the prices, before you throw money away. Don't buy an antique for £50 if you find out that is all it is going for on eBay, because you will lose money on fees and postage. Once you get into the swing of things, and some money under your belt, look into wholesalers where you can buy a box of goodies on the cheap and sell them off individually. This all sounds well and good, but how do you send things off if you can't leave the house? Simple, register with a courier collection company who will come and get all your parcels for you. Alternatively, offer your friend/partner/family some petrol money for a quick trip to the Post Office.

3. Getting crafty

This is something I have absolutely nil experience in, because I am as creative as a potato; in fact, even potato shape art is far beyond my capabilities. However, I do know a few people who have started up their own businesses selling incredible things that they make. If you do have creative bones then this is a great way to make some money, especially as websites such as Etsy are so popular nowadays. Depending on what you want to make, you can order your bits from places such as HobbyCraft or wholesalers, spend your days making beautiful pieces, before selling them on handmade websites. I know people that make and sell jewellery, collages, framed pictures, paintings and even embroidery creations. If you have an artistic skill then you can definitely make money selling on Etsy, even if you can only find the motivation, time or energy to make one a month.

As I said, I know these won't be right for everybody but I hope that it gives some of you ideas for what you can do from home. It's not just those who find it difficult to leave the house that could make use of some of these tips; full time parents, those struggling to find a job and students can all make money using the power of the internet.