More and more people are looking for opportunities to work from home. Currently, there are between 20 and 30 million people who work from home. These job opportunities are great for stay-at-home mothers, people with disabilities who are unable to get around well, and for anyone who would rather not leave their home to go to work. While there are plenty of great work-from-home job opportunities, there are also several jobs that are considered to be scams and a waste of time and money. If you plan to find a way to make money from home, you should know which jobs are not legitimate.
1. Stuffing Envelopes
Stuffing envelopes are one of the oldest work-from-home scams. People have been signing up for these opportunities since the 1920’s. Most of these opportunities are considered to be pyramid schemes, and it can cost you more money than you could possibly make. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the only way that you can actually earn income from this type of job is if you can get people that you know to sign up for the scam the same way that you did.
The people offering these opportunities want you to invest in a starter kit, and in many cases, the starter kit will never arrive. While it is rare, you could end up getting the materials that you need. If you do get them, you can end up making pennies. Also, in many cases, you can only make money if the recipient of your mailings responds to the offer. This type of job is a scam and you won’t make any money.
2. Craft Making
When many people who are looking for a work-from-home opportunity and they see craft making, they get excited. Craft making sounds like a fun and exciting way to make money. Most of the people who are offering these jobs expect you to pay for the materials up front. What they are actually doing is trying to make money off the starter kits, and they have no desire to sell the crafts that you assemble. After you have assembled the product, they will often tell you that your work didn’t meet their specifications and they won’t be paying you for the work that you did. Not only will you not get paid for your time, but you will be stuck with the assembled crafts that you have no use for.
3. Medical Billing
If you see an ad for medical billing specialist jobs from home, you should be weary. There are very strict privacy rules in the health care field that need to be followed. This is not possible if you are doing the billing from your home. Also, many of the people offering these opportunities expect you to purchase expensive computer software or other equipment up front. This is a sure sign that the opportunity is a scam. Most healthcare offices either do their medical billing in-house or they outsource to a professional billing agency.
4. Check Cashing
Check cashing is a scam. There is no legitimate check cashing job offers. These jobs would require that you cash a check using your personal checking account and then keep a portion of the money. The rest would be sent to the hiring company, often via Western Union. In most cases, the check that you cashed is fake, leaving you financially responsible. When the check bounces, you would have to repay the debt. These opportunities are scams and they are completely illegal.
5. Money Laundering
This is a scam that works a lot like check cashing. You would be asked to transfer money in and out of your bank account. Oftentimes, this money was acquired illegally. This means that if the hiring company was caught for their illegal activity, you could be arrested and charged for the crime. When that happens, you might need to pay Criminal Bail Money which you can avail from a bail bonds service to secure your release from custody.
6. Filling Out Surveys
Completing surveys online may sound fun and easy, however, you won’t make any money. It can take you and an entire day to make $1. Most of these survey companies don’t pay until you have made $20, therefore, it can take weeks, possibly months to get paid. These jobs are not worth your time.
7. Reshipping Services
This job may sound simple, however, you could end up being arrested for the transportation of stolen goods. The people who offer these job opportunities will send you items and then ask you to repackage them and ship them to new locations. They do this because they ordered the merchandise using a stolen credit card. Steer clear of these opportunities.
8. Postal Jobs
Typically, postal jobs are real and they are not scams. If you come across an ad for a “hidden” postal job or a “previously undisclosed” postal job, you should be careful. According to the Federal Trade Commission, you should not be asked to pay to submit an application for a legitimate postal job. If the job is legit, it would be listed on USAjobs.gov or through the USPS website.
9. Data Entry Scams
There are companies out there who will offer you money to type text into an electronic form. Many of these companies require that you pay a fee to get access to the job board. After you have paid the fee, there is often no work on the job board. This is because this is not a legitimate job. The people offering these positions keep your money and then claim that they don’t have any clients looking for work at the time.
10. Medical Transcription
This scam is similar to the data entry scam. Because all medical information is confidential and there are privacy laws, this is not a legal work-from-home job. Like the data entry scam, you would be required to pay a fee to get access to the job board. Many of the scam companies will also ask you to send money for the transcription machine with a pedal. After you have given them your money, you won’t receive any merchandise and you will log into an empty job board day after day.
While there are plenty of work-from-home opportunities that are legitimate, there are just as many that are not. Before you send your money to anyone for a work-from-home opportunity, you should thoroughly research the company and the offer.