Working From Home

Do you know anything about those work-from-home jobs on the Internet? My friend signed up with this Internet company processing people’s HUD claims. She says that she makes approximately $550 per week, but she had to pay the company $87 to get started. I want to make some extra money. What is your opinion about work-from-home opportunities? –L. Willingham, Nash, TX

The reality is that earned money typically doesn’t come that easily. Therefore, if you decide to pursue the opportunity, it’s vital to investigate it thoroughly before you give any hard-earned money to anyone to get into this business.

First, don’t buy into the proposition that you will make a lot of money with little or no investment of time or labor. Second, before you pay any company for equipment, supplies, or training to get started, ask whether you can get a refund if you are dissatisfied. Get the answer in writing.

For a checklist of Internet fraud tips from the National Consumers League, log on to net/workathome.htm. Some tips to follow include making sure you know who to deal with, getting all of the details in writing, and being cautious about unsolicited offers, which can often be illegal. For more information, read The 200 Best Home Businesses: Easy to Start, Fun to Run, Highly Profitable (Adams Media Corp.; $12.95).