Want to escape the rat race – or, at least, deal with it from the comfort of your own home? A telecommuting job might be for you. However, not just everyone can score a work-from-home job. In addition to requiring a given skillset, equipment, and type of experience, many telecommuting jobs need to be based in a specific location, due to legal, tax, or training reasons. For that reason, certain locations are better than others, when it comes to scoring a work-at-home job.
(Photo Credit: DDFic/Flickr)
Recently, FlexJobs ranked the top 10 states with telecommuting jobs, according to how many work-from-home listings they had for each. These are the top five:
1. California: 5.2 percent work at home, full-time
2. Texas: 4.1 percent work at home, full-time
3. New York: 4 percent work at home, full-time
4. Florida: 5.1 percent work at home, full-time
5. Illinois: 4.2 percent work at home, full-time
Although FlexJobs found that a whopping 96.5 percent of telecommuting gigs required their workers to be located in a specific place, don’t despair if your state isn’t on this list. Telecommuting in general is on the rise, and as companies continue to look for ways to cut costs, it’s likely to continue.
Between 2005 and 2012, telecommuting increased by 79 percent. Data from the American Community Survey show that 2.6 percent of the American workforce now telecommutes – and that number only includes full-time employees who work remotely for companies, and telecommute at least half the time. If you include self-employed workers and people whose jobs can’t be done in an office – e.g. taxi drivers and plumbers – 30 percent of workers in the US can be said to work remotely.
If you do decide to give working remotely, use caution. Work-at-home scams abound. Any “opportunity” that requires you to buy a kit, send money, or hand over banking or credit card information is almost certainly not legit. Companies like FlexJobs offer vetted job listings for a small fee, but you can go it alone by targeting employers who are known to offer telecommuting jobs.
Bottom line, work-from-home jobs are like any other employment – i.e., they’re work. If the pitch sounds too good to be true, or too easy to be believed, trust your instincts. You might not ever make thousands of dollars a day, just by working on your laptop, as the comment-spam promises, but you can make a good living while working in your PJs, if you’re smart about your search.
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