What are legitimate work-from-home jobs?

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Work-at-Home Schemes
Be part of one of America's Fastest Growing Industries!
Earn thousand of dollars a month - from your home - Processing Medical Billing Claims.

You can find ads like this everywhere - from the street light and telephone pole on your corner to your newspaper and PC. While you may find these ads appealing, especially if you can't work outside your home, proceed with caution. Not all work-at-home opportunities deliver on their promises.

Many ads omit the fact that you may have to work many hours without pay. Or they don't disclose all the costs you will have to pay. Countless work-at-home schemes require you to spend your own money to place newspaper ads; make photocopies; or buy the envelopes, paper, stamps, and other supplies or equipment you need to do the job. The companies sponsoring the ads also may demand that you pay for instructions or "tutorial" software. Consumers deceived by these ads have lost thousands of dollars, in addition to their time and energy. Classic Work-at-Home Schemes

Several types of offers are classic work-at-home schemes.
Medical billing. Ads for pre-packaged businesses - known as billing centers - are in newspapers, on television and on the Internet. If you respond, you'll get a sales pitch that may sound something like this: There's "a crisis" in the health care system, due partly to the overwhelming task of processing paper claims. The solution is electronic claim processing. Because only a small percentage of claims are transmitted electronically, the market for billing centers is wide open.
The promoter also may tell you that many doctors who process claims electronically want to "outsource" or contract out their billing services to save money. Promoters will promise that you can earn a substantial income working full or part time, providing services like billing, accounts receivable, electronic insurance claim processing and practice management to doctors and dentists. They also may assure you that no experience is required, that they will provide clients eager to buy your services or that their qualified salespeople will find clients for you.
The reality: you will have to sell. These promoters rarely provide experienced sales staff or contacts within the medical community.

The promoter will follow up by sending you materials that typically include a brochure, application, sample diskettes, a contract (licensing agreement), disclosure document, and in some cases, testimonial letters, videocassettes and reference lists. For your investment of $2,000 to $8,000, a promoter will promise software, training and technical support. And the company will encourage you to call its references. Make sure you get many names from which to chose. If only one or two names are given, they may be "shills" - people hired to give favorable testimonials. It's best to interview people in person, preferably where the business operates, to reduce your risk of being mislead by shills and also to get a better sense of how the business works.
Few consumers who purchase a medical billing business opportunity are able to find clients, start a business and generate revenues - let alone recover their investment and earn a substantial income. Competition in the medical billing market is fierce and revolves around a number of large and well-established firms.
Envelope stuffing. Promoters usually advertise that, for a "small" fee, they will tell you how to earn money stuffing envelopes at home. Later - when it's too late - you find out that the promoter never had any employment to offer. Instead, for your fee, you're likely to get a letter telling you to place the same "envelope-stuffing" ad in newspapers or magazines, or to send the ad to friends and relatives. The only way you'll earn money is if people respond to your work-at-home ad.
Assembly or craft work. These programs often require you to invest hundreds of dollars in equipment or supplies. Or they require you to spend many hours producing goods for a company that has promised to buy them. For example, you might have to buy a sewing or sign-making machine from the company, or materials to make items like aprons, baby shoes or plastic signs. However, after you've purchased the supplies or equipment and performed the work, fraudulent operators don't pay you. In fact, many consumers have had companies refuse to pay for their work because it didn't meet "quality standards."
Unfortunately, no work is ever "up to standard," leaving workers with relatively expensive equipment and supplies - and no income. To sell their goods, these workers must find their own customers.
Questions to Ask
Legitimate work-at-home program sponsors should tell you - in writing - what's involved in the program they are selling. Here are some questions you might ask a promoter:
* What tasks will I have to perform? (Ask the program sponsor to list every step of the job.) * Will I be paid a salary or will my pay be based on commission? * Who will pay me? * When will I get my first paycheck? * What is the total cost of the work-at-home program, including supplies, equipment and membership fees? What will I get for my money?
The answers to these questions may help you determine whether a work-at-home program is appropriate for your circumstances, and whether it is legitimate.
You also might want to check out the company with your local consumer protection agency, state Attorney General and the Better Business Bureau, not only where the company is located, but also where you live. These organizations can tell you whether they have received complaints about the work-at-home program that interests you. But be wary: the absence of complaints doesn't necessarily mean the company is legitimate. Unscrupulous companies may settle complaints, change their names or move to avoid detection.

Source: Federal Trade Commission
Online Job suggestions:

1. At home customer care representative
2. Transcription
3. Writer, Proofreader & editor
4. Blogger
5. Online Tutor
6. Mystery Shopping
7. Virtual Assistant
8. Online Mock Jurors
9. Get paid to post
10. Voice over Talents
11. Freelance Projects
12. Telemarketing from home
From other contributors:
  • It took a lot of looking and a lot of trial and error, but I have found several really great sites. And all these sites are free to join. One thing I have learned: Never join a work at home program or opportunity that wants you to pay up front. If they were making that much money, they wouldn't need to charge you.
  • Data entry jobs only 5% of available jobs on net are genuine and legitimate. i found out to differentiate these scammers from the genuine ones is that NEVER PAY ANYONE ANYTHING AT ALL FOR A JOB YOU DO FOR THEM AND NO MATTER HOW TEMPTING THEY MAY SOUND. THEN THEY HAVE A CHANCE TO BE A SCAM. This method has very much worked for me now i work for a very famous company. this, I believe, is the sign of a genuine job, also reputed companies won't try playing fraud as their reputation can be at risk. I have received my checks accurately. This is a genuine job.
  • I work at home & have several "data entry" projects that I work on. I work as an IC (Independent Contractor) and I did not pay to get these jobs. Once you know where to look, its then a game of using your skills & experience to your advantage and putting together an eye catching resume that will attract attention.
  • I have looked high and low for one, the only ones that I have heard of, you actually have to go to school or training for- like medical transcription. I almost got scammed by a company that promised work from home, taking surveys, they even had a posting on monster, when they asked for money, I asked questions, turned out they were not valid with monster. Its a too good to be true thing to be able to work from home without investing unfortunately.
  • Any legitimate job offer would not ask for money.
  • Among the companies to explore, most of these are call centers, customer service representative, home based agent jobs that require experience, good skill and working knowledge:

mintel.com/careers (freelance researchers)

Arise Virtual Solutions (arise.com) Arise is a crowdsourcing company that offers work from home opportunities in sales, customer service, and technical support. Agents are able to maintain work life balance and be their own boss, where they can make their own schedule and work on their own terms. In fact, Arise has 7,500 work opportunities currently available to service many of their Fortune 150 and Fortune 500 clients.

LiveOps (liveops.com) Work from home as a customer service agent using your own computer and telephone * New employees earn $6-$8.50 per hour * Work as many or as few hours as you choose * This company charges applicants a $30 background check fee once you've been accepted as an independent contractor for LiveOpps

Working Solutions (workingsol.com) Agents are not assessed any fees to work for the company * The type of work varies, from data entry to customer service work * Earn $7.20-$30 per hour

JetBlue Reservations Crew * Jet Blue reservation specialists actually work out of their homes * Apply online * Candidates must have at least two years of customer service experience

Key For Cash * This company is owned by Virtual Solutions * Earn money typing and doing data entry on your home computer * The rate you earn is determined by your typing speed and accuracy * Choose your own hours * This company maintains a waiting list of individuals who wish to work for them * Might be an option for occasional or supplemental income
  • Legitimate work-from-home jobs usually come from a talent that you already have (piano lessons, writing, catering, child care, etc.) and it's usually up to the "employee" to find assignments, clients or work. Consider selling items on Ebay or Amazon, also. Trust me -- the chances of someone willing to hire you to work from home are slim to none.
  • I've worked at some of the places listed above and they were legit. The ones that aren't scams actually require work on your part - and if you're in need of money soon then you're likely to be sorely disappointed in any of those as well. Most of the legit opportunities out there take time to build - so if someone makes an outrageous claim of income it probably isn't true ( and those that are true sure didn't make that kind of money when they first began ).
  • Time & effort required - but do your own research on what is best for you, don't take the advice of myself and others as gospel from this type of forum.
  • I have other ideas that may help - one of them is an online opportunity but another is one that will require a little effort to market yourself - try some data entry for local businesses, many of them don't have the time to do it in-house and will gladly pay someone else to do it. Professionals are a good place to start, lawyers, doctors, chiropractors, etc - they need their "in-house" folks doing other things rather than busy work.
  • The short answer to your question is met with another question; How long is a piece of string? My second answer is that blogging is, indeed, legit! There are so many ways to make extra money online that there are a few other questions you've got to look at first, like; 1) How much time have you got to spend? 2) Are you looking for a hobby that brings in a few extra dollars, or to make your online efforts your full time income? 3) If you made a few dollars, would you be prepared to reinvest that into your online business, or is the money for spending? 4) Do you have any experience with making money online or is this all new to you? 5) What are your strengths? I mean, do you like writing? Reading? What are your hobbies? 6) Are you computer literate or can't tell your mouse from your motherboard? There are a ton of other questions, but that should get the ball rolling. If you can answer all of those questions, then it becomes easier to point you in the right direction.
  • First, never, ever pay a fee to get a job. Many scams will want you to pay a registration fee, materials fee or information fee. Stay away from these! You will most likely not find a true online data entry job. What you will find are jobs that utilize your data entry skills along with other skills. Jobs at home - customer care representative, transcription, writer, proofreader, editor, blogger, telemarketing from home, mystery shopping, virtual assistant, and freelance projects.
  • There are plenty of work at home jobs that are real. You can provide a service - either from your home or outside of your home, such as cleaning, landscape, gardening, child care, pet care, mechanic or small engine repair, crafts, hairdresser, interior design, personal assistant, parties for children, the ideas are unlimited. There are so many jobs that can be done from home. For a real work at home job, you have to look at yourself and what your skills are.

Work from home resources - there are all sorts of websites that can help you along
  • wahm.com (message board, telecommuting folder)
  • womenforhire.com

To get started consider for now, your job search as your job. Contact everyone you know and tell them you want to work from home. A legitimate work at home job is harder than finding a traditional job. First of all, despite all the online advertising you see, there aren't that many of them. Most may be part-time or freelance, so you will need to be continually seeking potential positions. You need both the experience and the skills necessary to do the job. Optimal results to work at home ? A home office with phone, fax, computer, printer, software, and other basic office equipment. Depending on the type of employment you're looking for you may also need work samples to send to prospective employers. It is recommended as many hours per week to your search for employment as you would spend working. If you're looking for full-time work, you should be spending full-time hours seeking employment. When searching for "work at home" most often brings up scams or web sites that want to charge you for providing "real" work at home jobs or for "proven successful" home business information. Just stick with the sites that focus on employment. Avoid scams.

Finding work at home jobs can be a huge task. There are so many scams out there one must be very careful not to get caught up in the wrong type of business. There are work at home jobs, there are at home business', there are many different ways to make money at home. Take your time, do your research. Word of mouth is always priceless. Don't let others experiences with a company scare you away. The fact that they are legit is all you're looking for. And of course that they pay. Persistence is key.

There are plenty of legit work from home jobs like freelancing sites on the Web that let you sign up for free, create a portfolio, and bid for thousands of jobs across the globe.
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