Being a mom is a full time job. You're on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and the work — though fulfilling — never ends. But what happens when you don't have (or want) the luxury of not working outside the home? Luckily, there are some career paths besides the traditional 9 to 5 that enable you to earn some cash.
Being a working mom isn't easy, but with the right job and an accommodating schedule, it can be rewarding. That's not to say that most of these jobs don't require a ton of time and effort, they just have the benefit of setting a schedule in which you can be available for work and your kids.
Here are 15 incredibly flexible jobs for moms who want/need to work.
Real estate agents set their own schedule but typically must be available on nights and weekends. This is ideal for women who have husbands who work 9 to 5 and do not want their children in day care. An appraiser determines the value of a property based on comparisons of similar homes and an evaluation of the property itself. Though both jobs require certifications, both are extremely flexible and offer competitive pay and benefits.
Accounting is all about the numbers; financial planning is more about the people. Help prepare people for their future by becoming a financial planner. You’ll be the one providing options for your clients — including saving for college, planning for retirement, preparing for unexpected expenses and more. Financial planners need to be detail oriented and passionate about both people and money. Like accounting, you can work for yourself, work part time, freelance or work at a bank or other financial institution.
Have a passion for all things design and decor? If so, interior design may be for you. While education and training are preferred, they're not necessarily requirements. Build your base clientele through family, friends and cheap advertising (think Craigslist or posting flyers). Start with low rates, and once you start gaining clients, you can decide whether or not to charge more.
Ideally, you’ll need to have at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting but can always start out as an assistant to someone first. A career in accounting is one of the most-stable careers you can have — which is a top consideration for working moms. With accounting, you can work for yourself (for example, preparing clients' taxes), work for a company, freelance or work part time.
Since beauty likely won’t ever disappear, there’s always going to be a need for beauticians (hair dressers, makeup artists, aestheticians and more). Beauticians can work from home, work out of a salon, take time off when needed, set their own hours and work as much or as little as they’d like. They can also specialize in weddings or other formal events, which typically pay higher rates than strictly working out of a salon.
Maybe you’re looking to get out of the house for a bit and earn some extra cash. If so, consider being a waitress or bartender. Both make money instantly in tips, and the pay is significantly higher than minimum wage. Also, most restaurants are always in need of weekend servers, so you can plan on being home with your family during the week and picking up shifts on the weekends.
There are all different types of nurses — from Certified Nursing Assistants (which require one semester-long course) to Registered Nurses (minimum two-year program) to Nurse Practitioners (the most-highly educated of those in nursing). Whichever type you choose, you can work in a hospital or in a doctor’s office, in a nursing home or providing in-house care, day shifts or night shifts, and so on and so forth. The options and the flexibility are endless.
Up next: Retail associate
Originally published January 2014. Updated November 2016.
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