Working from home finally pays off

Almost 15 years ago, I quit my job at a promotional product company to become a stay-at-home mom. While I have stayed home, I haven’t totally quit the work force. For the six months after my son was born, I did some freelance writing for the company I just left. And of course, there is my writing of novels.

But neither of those bring in a steady paycheck. Luckily, I didn’t need a paycheck as my husband’s salary was enough for me to stay at home and raise our son – and soon after our daughter. Raising two small kids takes up a lot of time so I didn’t work on anything but that and my writing.

When Jase started preschool, I helped with parties and would later become the room mom in charge of those parties when Lexie attend preschool. And this desire to help followed with me joining the PTA when Jase entered elementary school. And I love volunteering. I love seeing the difference I could make at his and Lexie’s school.

And then, my husband started his own law firm. He needed to be out there doing lawyer stuff, so I invoiced his clients. As his firm has expanded, I continued to do his bookkeeping from home and the workload increased.

Pros of working from home

  • You work when you want – I can do invoices during the day when the kids are at school or in the evening when they are in bed. If I need to go volunteer at the school, I can do that and get to my work later.
  • You can work in your PJs – Since no one sees me, I can wear what I want. No shoes – fine. Work in my PJs that is fine too.
  • No commute – Ugh. The one thing I used to hate was driving home in that rush hour traffic.

Cons of working from home

  • Staying motivated – I am working at my home computer. It is easy to be distracted. (Hello Facebook.)
  • It can be lonely – Because I am not in the office, I don’t see any of the employees. They know I work from home and do email me, but there is no camaraderie and no joining in on offices lunches.
  • It can be hard to differentiate between work and free time – As I said, I work all hours. Enough said.

And until recently, one of the cons of working on home was I was doing it without pay. Of course, I knew my work for the law firm was important and in helping the firm, I was allowing my husband to bring home money. But I was not getting my own paycheck.

That all changed last month. As we were evaluating the firm finances and making billing goals for the paralegals and attorneys, we decided we should follow the advice our accountant gave us years ago and give me a paycheck. From a financial point of view, it can help me later in life when I collect social security (assuming that is still around with funds by my retirement age).

From a personal standpoint, it is nice to know my work is valued. And it is nice to know I am bringing in some money – even if most of it will go to vacations at the rate I plan them.

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