Work at home scams are easier to avoid when you educate yourself and thoroughly check out any business opportunity before you invest.
After a while you will get really good at spotting AND avoiding questionable business opportunities.
Here are some tips to help you steer clear of scams.
Stay away from exaggerated claims
Work at home scams usually make outrageous claims. If a work at home opportunity tells you that you'll earn $10,000 in your first month, or that you don't have to sell anything, that you don't have to do any work, these are danger signs of hype and unrealistic, exaggerated claims.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
Work at home scams prey upon the hopes and dreams of others. Remember that there is no such thing as easy money or the hidden business opportunity that will make you rich in a few weeks.
A real business requires real work, real money to start it up, and real persistence and knowledge. 95% of all businesses fail. So be VERY careful of any work at home opportunities you might get involved with.
Avoid high pressure sales tactics
Work from home scams try to get your money fast! If someone tries to pressure you into investing in a business opportunity without giving you the time to check it out, this is a danger sign that you could be involving yourself in a work at home scam.
Do your due diligence. Check out every claim you hear with real facts. Work at home and home business scams succeed because people don't take the time to do the research required before getting involved.
Don't pay to work
Work at home scams will try to get you to pay for something, but true home based employment with a legitimate company does not cost anything.
There are some legitimate work at home job listings brokers like Home Job Stop which require a small yearly fee to access their database of jobs and other benefits like medical and dental insurance. Any legitimate work at homes job broker will provide a full money back guarantee, otherwise don't waste your money!
A business opportunity is different than home employment because any legitimate business requires an investment... so you need to be even more careful!
Many work from home scams masquerade as home based business opportunities.
Thoroughly check the credentials of a company
Whether it's a work at home job or a home business opportunity, make sure you are dealing with a solid, reputable company. This is one of the best strategies for avoiding work at home scams. Check their company's standing at Dunn and Bradstreet. This will cost a fee but is worthwhile if you are going to make a large investment or are uncertain about the legitimacy of the company.
Find other representatives or work at home employees of the company and ask how their work is going and whether they are happy with the company's support.
Look at the products you'd be marketing or services you'd be providing. Are they good quality, legitimate, and reasonably priced? Do they come with a money back guarantee? Are the product claims exaggerated, or are they backed by science? Work at home scams will not have these things in place.
Call the company yourself. Are they prompt and do they respond to your inquiries? Are they professional and courteous?
Does the company provide you with clients or will you need to do the marketing yourself?
Is their pay fair so that you can earn a good income?
If you are doing commission sales, how many customers will you need to earn what you need?
Are there a lot of complaints about them filed at the Better Business Bureau? Work at home scams will eventually have complaints filed against them.
Can customers get a refund if they're not satisfied with the company's product or service?
Are you paid to sell products?
Some work at home scams are pyramid scams where you make money only by bringing in other members.
Do you earn money from selling products, or only from recruiting other business people to sell?
If your only pay is from recruitment of other representatives, rather than the sale of legitimate products, then stay away! This kind of thing is considered a pyramid scheme and is illegal.
A legitimate MLM or Network Marketing Business will provide you with a way to both sell products AND build a team of business partners.
You will be paid ONLY on the product volume your new partners use or sell, not on recruiting fees paid for bringing new representatives into the business.
Pyramid schemes are different from legitimate MLM or network marketing companies that pay you on the product sales of you and the business partners that you recruit.
For more information on how to choose a legitimate network marketing company, visit our How to Choose a Network Marketing Company page.
Avoid envelope stuffing and home assembly jobs!
There is abundant evidence that both of these are nothing more than work at home scams which take your money.
The envelope stuffing job is nothing more than some materials advertising the same job that you signed up for. You put your contact information on the flyers and the poor folks who reply send their money to you...
Oy vey! :(
Home assembly jobs require you to pay for a kit of materials. You are provided some materials and then either required to sell the finished product yourself, or you are told that your work is unsatisfactory.
Look before you leap! Work at home scams take advantage of ignorance and emotion. Don't get involved in any work at home job or business opportunity before checking out the company thoroughly.
I personally make it a rule to never purchase anything that does not have a money back guarantee.
Trust your 'gut' instincts! If something seems fishy or questionable, investigate the opportunity thoroughly to determine if it is a work at home scam.
Don't pay high prices for home business opportunity seminars, or training seminars. Some work at home scams involve attendance at progressively higher priced training seminars.
Don't allow yourself to be pressured into making any hasty decisions.
Educate yourself about work at home and home business scams by reading these articles written by the Federal Trade Commission.
Here is another helpful site about work at home scams. ScamBusters.org
There are a few reputable home based work brokers that make a point to keep
work at home scams out of their directory, unlike most other work at home directories.