Working at home is convenient but also provides distractions.
Work-at-home opportunities offer the allure of being able to work anytime from the comfort of one's home, leading many people to fall victim to fraud. While there are legitimate work from home jobs and opportunities, there are also many scams, and the wise consumer learns how to tell them apart.
Scams will usually offer get-rich-quick schemes involving almost no effort on the part of the individual. This kind of opportunity is cloaked in glamour and intrigues the consumer with the promise of easy riches. Investigation of said opportunities before getting started will yield the truth before money or effort is wasted in this endeavor.
Many employers use telework, or telecommuting, employees. These individuals do most of the work for the company from the comfort of their home, according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. These jobs may be open jobs with the company, but most come from internal positions. The existing employee may have needed to work from home due to health reasons or other issues, and the arrangement stuck.
Other companies only employ or contract with remote operators. Lists of these companies exist on job boards such as WAHM: the Online Magazine for Work-at-Home Moms. Individuals can apply to these companies by filling out an online application, taking tests for the open positions and fulfilling whatever other requirements the position requests.
Other work-at-home opportunities include sales positions, such as Avon and Amway. Although these positions do require a minimal amount of leaving the home to call on customers, most work can be done from home on the phone or over the Internet.
Websites can also be set up to sell all kinds of products including reports, clothing, gifts and household goods. Often a person can interact with a parent website to resell the products, which avoids the need for inventory. Companies such as Specialty Merchandise Corp. (SMC) sell products to resellers who sell over the Internet, through home parties or at flea markets.
Signs of scams for work-at-home jobs or opportunities often include words like earn thousands per week, get paid $500 per week working two to three hours per day and other outrageous claims. Legitimate work from home jobs and opportunities exist, but one will not become rich overnight performing them.
According to AARP, some of the known scams to avoid are: