Want to Telecommute? Do the Math!

by Rosalind Mays


Message I've received recently:

I'm looking for a telecommuting job, but I can't take a pay cut. Do you know of any telecommuting jobs that pay $15-20 an hour? I make $40,000 a year and I can't possibly live on anything lower than that. Help me find something around that salary!

I say poppycock to these messages! Of course, you can take a pay cut, and most likely, you will if you seriously decide telecommute, unless you have specialized skills such as programming or something along that line. That's the bad news, here's the good news. You won't even miss the regular salary.

Don't stop reading! It's absolutely true and let me explain way.

If you try to find home employment with your current "commuter" wage, you will be pushing yourself out of the running for a legitimate telecommuting job. Listen to this piece of advice, if you listen to nothing else about telecommuting, don't look for a telecommuting job that pays the same amount of money that your "commuter" job pays.

Why? Because when you work at home you don't need the same salary.

This is the greatest secret of telecommuting that I've found. By doing simple math, I will show you how you will come out ahead of "the game" by accepting a job that pays you half your "regular" salary. Ready?

Let's compare my previous "commuter" job making $15.63 an hour . . .

$2500 a month
- $500 (20% in taxes)
- $370 (Gas, car maintenance, parking fees, subway tickets, bus tickets, etc.)
- $75 (dry cleaning, stockings, purchase clothes, etc.)
- $200 (lunch, snacks, Girl Scout cookies, etc.)
- $600 (child care)
- $200 (miscellaneous)
$555 Total Take Home Pay

Examine this figure closely. When I "commuted" to work, I actually took home sub-minimum wage salary ($3.47 an hour to be exact).

Now compare these figures to my "telecommuter" job making $7.50 an hour . . .

$1200 a month
- $240 (20% in taxes)
- $100 (electric bills, phone bill, etc.)
- $0 transportation
- $0 clothes
- $0 food
- $0 child care
$860 Total Take Home Pay

Do you see this? I make half the salary that I made before and I still bring home $300 a month more than with my regular "commuter" job.

The numbers speak for themselves. In my case, my family is benefiting from more money, and full-time care of the children. If you are truly ready to become a telecommuter, do the math. Do exactly what I illustrated above. Assess your salary and subtract all your expenses to get your "take home" pay. Take home pay is the real money that makes a difference in your household. Divide your "take home pay" by the hours you worked for that paycheck. This is true hourly amount you are getting. THIS is the salary amount you can not go below when you are looking for telecommuting work. Don't turn down that telecommuting job because they are offering you a 50% pay cut! Do the math and find out if you're actually getting a raise! Good luck!


Rosalind Mays successfully found at-home employment as an Internet Researcher after 685 hours of hard job searching. She understands that most job hunters (especially stay-at-home moms) don't have 685 hours to invest, so she created "The Real Deal on Telecommuting" and sells it for $9.00 for hard copy version and $7.00 for electronic copies.

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