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Earning an Income from Home

Posted by joycevallee (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 6, 09 at 4:13

I would like to try some kind of home based business that would supplement my the meager one I have. I have had a cleaning and senior care business for about 5 years but the physical labour is starting to get to me. Almost all my clients are through the govt and it takes for bloody ever to get paid.

I am very crafty but so are many others. I love rock-hounding and making jewelry and other artistic creations. Since my house is fairly large I have quite a bit of room.

I was thinking of offering classes or forming some kind of club that up to 6 people could come to. I also have supplies to sell. The only thing is that I haven't got the foggiest clue of how to do it.

I can prepare the topics and projects, web site and all that stuff but how to set it up so people come on a somewhat regular basis.

Would I charge a fee each time or a set amount for each project? I imagine most projects to take at least 2 classes and some 3. Should the cost of the supplies would be added on or included in the price.? Any ideas of what kind of fee to charge for projects? I am in a small city so I can't demand big prices.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thank you to anyone who replies.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Earning an Income from Home

If you offered a jewelry making class could you come up with several projects that could be made, and figure out just how much time it would take to make each thing. You would have to expand the time a bit for those who were slower. Then you could offer a 9 or 10 week course.

Definately don't offer classes on a come and pay basis. It just doesn't work. People sign up and decide for some trivial reason they don't want to come and you end up with one or two people that it just doesn't pay you to be there for. If they are signed up for a 10 week course they will come unless there is a good reason because they have already paid. This is not to say that if you have an unfinished project at the end of the course you couldn't add an extra week, but have the paid course first.

Do you want to supply all the supplies? That would be an extra chore for you ordering them all. You could sell some as a kit for some projects or things that are not readily available or things that you can get cheaper somewhere, but I wouldn't have it as part of the cost.

I would think if it was jewelry that people would like to pick out their own colors and things.

As for price--there must be others in your area offering classes. Check out what they charge, and what they offer.

Have you thought of just selling your jewelry. I have a cousin who makes and sells jewelry. She does it at craft shows and whereever she can set up a table. She also has a small room in her home where she sells and crafts 3 nights a week.(check out the municipality for business code--you don't want to run into law issues) She has some kind of stiff plastic that she has holes in for earrings. She lined the front with a velvet like material in dark blue, burgandy and green, and tied 2 together with ribbon so they stand. She has some of the same without holes for broaches and a stand or 2 for necklaces. These are easily portable when she goes to a show.

When you've decided what you are going to do advertize well. Print up fliers with all the details and make it interesting. Then look around and see how else you can advertise.

RE: Earning an Income from Home

I used to be a Stampin Up consultant and do classes and I second getting the class fee up front. You spend a good bit of time preparing for classes and you should be compensated for that work even if people don't show up.

Another option would be to see if the local park district will let you put on a few classes. Or a local craft store or even maybe a YMCA? That way you use their space, they collect the money for you and you just show up, teach the class and get a check. Who knows what could stem from that - supply orders, custom jewelry orders, girls' night out parties...

Other options include making some pieces in advance and showcase it at a bridal boutique and offer to make custom pieces in the colors of the wedding. You could also see if you can sell pre-made jewelry or do consignment at a local gift shop or even at a hospital gift shop - I know someone who does this. You could start an Ebay or Etsy store as well.

There are a lot of options out there for jewelry making! Good luck with it!

RE: Earning an Income from Home

Since you have a large home maybe you could offer the space for yoga classes. Even if you don't do yoga you might find someone else who teaches and you could negotiate a cheaper rent than what the teacher is currently paying. You would have to clear out the room and have enough parking for 6 or 7 people.

another idea

We have a few mentally disabled people at my work and some of them live in adult foster home situations. I am very close with one gal in particular and when she was in transition I would have gladly taken her in if I had the extra room. I don't know if its true of all situations but the people at my work have full time jobs and clean up after themselves. I don't believe any of them cook for themselves but they do share household chores such as lawnwork, laundry, cleaning the bathroom, etc. It could be a very harmonius situation, given you are paired with the right person.

RE: Earning an Income from Home

Though I am not doing what you are proposing, I have taught a few classes and I have done the home-based business thing in the past and probably will again in the future. Making room in your home does not sound like a problem. Having room to warehouse supplies and products also does not sound like a problem. Getting people to show up on time and pay you on time is a standard problem that everybody has no matter how big they are - but it can be time consuming and annoying, so be prepared. The hardest part will be getting a steady stream of students to sign up. What you want is a steady flow, getting a lot of students one month and then no one the next does not help you out much. The best way to do this is advertising (and the best advertising is word of mouth, which is something you cannot control or purchase, it just happens). One part about advertising is that you have to work at it all the time, it is not a put-up-a-flyer and move on to something else activity. You have to put up fresh flyers and change things up all the time and constantly find new ways to get your name out there - it can be a full time job just marketing your business. Which is why there are people out there that do nothing but handle the marketing for other businesses.

If you enjoy it, people will get involved and you will succeed. Will it make enough money to worth all the work? that question will be harder to answer until after you do it for a few years. Most people doing this sort of thing eventually have to take on at least a part time job because they can't make enough money operating their own business.

If you want to teach classes at your home you will need special insurance, special licensing from your city or state, and most likely a handicap accessible bathroom and front door.

I would figure out a way to offer your classes through the local tech school or craft store first and then as it builds consider whether to move the business into your home.

RE: Earning an Income from Home

I have finally got back to see the responses. For the life of me I couldn't remember where I posted this too. Duh

Well, thank you to all who gave some advice there are certainly some good ones and I like it when people have had some experience doing it as well.

I am not really into supplying all the materials because there are so many tastes I couldn't afford it. I just want to supply the parts like hoops, chains, fasteners, some tools, and other necessary things that aren't available here.

I agree that the class fee should come first. It does make sense. I guess it is how it is done everywhere else.

The yoga idea is interesting as we already teach first aid and cpr like that.

Nessie: do you mean that I should take a person in? I could look at that as well. I do have some experience in that area as I had a sister who was mentally handicapped.

Thank you all for your opinion.


RE: Earning an Income from Home

It may vary from state to state (but wait - you are Canadian or British, based on the "labour" and "bloody" - so this may be different if you do not live in the US), but in Michigan what Nessie was talking about is called an Adult Foster Care home. They are licensed facilities and you have to pass initial inspections and ongoing ones. You are responsible for making sure the boarder has meals, medication administration, transportation to appointments, and access to laundry facilities and phone service (I think). There are less formal, non-licensed ways of taking in boarders, too. Of course, you probably have to check zoning laws. Zoning may be more lenient for the licensed type of home, though.

If you had classes, what would they be about? What kind of supplies would you be supplying? More information about the details would help us comment on that idea.

I make jewelry. I do not rock hound and find my own supplies, but I buy supplies and enjoy making choices on colors and textures to create jewelry. I have tried selling things a few different methods and can tell you more if you are interested. None of my methods have resulted in a steady income, though.

RE: Earning an Income from Home

Just a couple of extra thoughts:

If you have people coming to your home for the sake of business, you might need to check into what that means for your insurance situation. You might also want to look into whether you need to incorporate-- so that if someone sues your business, they can't go after your personal assets.

Definitely find out if there are zoning laws or city/state licencing requirements that you have to fulfill. If you're selling things, you may also have to charge sales tax and deal with any related documentation.

Also, I don't know how much profit you could make off of it (maybe not very much), but have you heard of It's a website where people sell things they've made. Your jewelry sounds like it might fit in over there if you were interested in selling some of what you make.

RE: Earning an Income from Home

This is far off your original idea, but I saw a spot on a TV show (Oprah, I think?) about shared housing. A couple with large house had the idea to rent out a room for extra money and ended up sharing their house with a flight attendant and her 17-yr-old daughter. They found each other through an online database with a name something like shared housing.


RE: Earning an Income from Home

My son renovated his basement into a small efficiency apartment. He rents it to two young women (sisters); one is in school and the other works. The rent brings in almost 70% of his mortgage payment....
It's working out very well for him.
He found them by running an ad on Craigslist.

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