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The Work From Home Handbook: Flex Your Time, Improve Your Life

Overview

The Work From Home Handbook is a life-saving resource for anyone with a horrendous commute, anyone who wishes for a flexible schedule or more time with family—anyone who dreams of going to work in pajamas.

Co-produced with USA TODAY, this book incorporates the advice of two top attorneys with articles and statistics from The Nation's No. 1 Newspaper. Readers will learn to choose the work-from-home career option that best suits their personal, ...
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Overview

The Work From Home Handbook is a life-saving resource for anyone with a horrendous commute, anyone who wishes for a flexible schedule or more time with family—anyone who dreams of going to work in pajamas.

Co-produced with USA TODAY, this book incorporates the advice of two top attorneys with articles and statistics from The Nation's No. 1 Newspaper. Readers will learn to choose the work-from-home career option that best suits their personal, financial and professional goals. The Work From Home Handbook provides systematic, step-by-step advice on how to attain an ideal work situation, whether it's:
  • Working from home full or part-time
  • Negotiating telework options
  • How to adopt, adapt telecommuting lifestyle
Working from home is an idea whose time has arrived. Seventy-nine of Fortune Magazine's "100 Best Companies to Work For" last year allowed—even encouraged—employees to work from home at least 20 percent of the time. More than two-thirds of all American companies offered some telework options in 2005. And the country's largest employer—the U.S. government—encourages employees to work from home "to the maximum extent possible."
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Editorial Reviews

MarketWatch
Diana Fitzpatrick and Stephen Fishman cover the nuts and bolts of becoming a freelance at-home worker.
Workforce Management
Flexibility is key to business success today. And so every organization-and all employees-need to understand how to create solid, well-thought-out flexible work arrangements. This book gives employees the tools they need to demonstrate that flexibility is good not only for workers, but for managers, CEOs and the business as a whole.
— Carroll Lachnit
YourOnRamp.com
A must-read for employers and employees focused on embracing flexibility in the workplace.
— Catherine Clifford
Library Journal

These are the first three titles in a new series coproduced by Nolo and USA Today. In The Busy Family's Guide, USA Today personal finance columnists Block, John Waggoner, and Kathy Chu focus on the building blocks of family security: budgets, savings, investing, insurance, and estate planning. They begin by coaching readers on how to talk about money and how to set up a plan, then tackle taxes and tax breaks, controlling and dealing with debt, home buying and mortgages, and the components of an estate plan. A chapter on investments demystifies the options by comparing and explaining cash investments, stocks, and mutual funds.

Attorneys Fishman (Lower Taxes in 7 Easy Steps) and Fitzpatrick's Work from Home Handbook is for those considering working at home either as an employee or a freelancer. Essentially, it is a narrative checklist of issues to consider and the steps to take to make home-based employment feasible. Readers will learn to assess whether a job can be done from home, how to make the case for it with an employer, and how to find existing telecommuting jobs. The section on freelancing helps those ready to create their own home-based businesses with information on setting fees, finding clients, and dealing with tax implications.

Finally, in Retire Happy, attorney Stim (Patent Pending in 24 Hours) and Nolo cofounder Warner (How To Run a Thriving Business) advocate thinking through retirement well before turning out the office lights. They present strategies for constructing the elements of a successful retirement (e.g., health, money, rewarding activities, a circle of friends) and devote significant space toretirement money issues. Particularly useful is the section on calculating the amount needed for a long and secure retirement. Each of these books is clear, practical, and nicely enhanced by charts and checklists. Recommended for public libraries.
—Joan Pedzich

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Stephen Fishman is an attorney specializing in tax law and author of more than a dozen bestselling books, including Deduct It! Lower Your Small Business Taxes and, most recently, Lower Taxes in 7 Easy Steps.

Attorney Diana Fitzpatrick edits Nolo's small business books. Prior to joining Nolo, she worked for the city attorney's office in San Francisco

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Table of Contents

Work From Home Handbook

Chapter One: The Ten-Second Commute
Join a Growing Trend
Do More (and Better) Work in Less Time
No More Commuting Your Life Away
Save money
Reduce stress
Reclaim lost time
Work at Odd Hours, Day and Night
Find Work-Life Balance

Chapter Two: Picturing Life Without the Water Cooler
Will You Like Flying Solo?
Being Your Own Boss
Stepping Off the Fast Track
Where Will the Desk Go?
Who's Minding the Kids?
The Best of Both Worlds- Part-Time May be Best Just Do It!

Chapter Three: Is Your Job Teleworkable?
Desk Jobs Work Best
Can You Be a Team Player From Home?
Can You Create a Schedule That Works?
Does Your Job Require Face-to-Face Meetings?
What Equipment Will You Need?
If Your Current Job Isn't Teleworkable
Your dream work-at-home job
Taking stock of your skills
Understanding your telework options

Chapter Four: Preparing a Telework Proposal Any Boss Would Love
Is Your Office Telework Friendly?
Create Your Telework Plan
Create your schedule
Decide on your hours
Figure out your telework tasks
Decide what equipment and materials you need
Make a plan for staying in touch
Have strategies for team projects
Plan to account for your time and your work
Make Your Personal Reasons Employer-Friendly
More Time With Family = Fewer Family Calls at Work
Shorter Commute = More Time and Energy for Work
More Flexibility = Greater Productivity
Escaping Office Politics = More Uninterrupted Work Time
Saving Money = Lower Need for Higher Paying Job
Line Up the Facts that Support You
Arm yourself with statistics
Check out thecompetition
Find support in your company's own documents
Get help from the government
Prepare Your Written Proposal

Chapter Five: Presenting Your Proposal to Your Boss
Plan Your Strategy
Ask the Right Person
Time Your Request Wisely
Take It Seriously!
Be Ready For Any Objections
"You won't be able to get your job done from home."
"You won't be here when we need you."
"How will we know you're working?"
"We've never done this before."
"Everyone else will want to work at home, too."
"Your absence will impact team-building and morale."
"Telework is going to cost the company money."

Chapter Six: Finding a New, Teleworkable Job
Find a Telework-Friendly Employer
Find a Work-at-Home Job
Call center agent
Telemarketer
Online tutor
Virtual assistant
Medical transcriptionist
Translator
Virtual concierge
Online expert
Home-based juror
Avoid Schemes and Scams
Medical claims processing
Product assembly
Envelope stuffing
Pyramid schemes
Protecting yourself from work-at-home scams

Chapter Seven: Fire the Boss-Go Freelance!
Decide Whether Freelancing Is for You
Life Without Regular Paychecks
Paying for Medical Care
Paying Self-Employment Taxes
Becoming Your Own Bookkeeper
Choose a Freelance Field
Pound the Pavement
Set Your Rates
Setting an hourly rate
Setting fixed project fees
Enter Into Client Agreements
Basic Letter Agreements
Reviewing a Client's Agreement
Stay the Course

Chapter Eight: Taxing Issues
Taxes for the Work-at-Home Employee
Tax Deductions for the At-Home Employee
Special Tax Issues for Telecommuters
Filing Your Taxes
Taxes for Freelancers
How Freelancers Pay Taxes
Tax Deductions for Freelancers
Filing Your Taxes

Chapter Nine: Strategies for Work-at-Home Success
Demonstrate Your Ongoing Productivity
Resolve Telework Issues as They Arise
Make Use of Computer-Friendly Coffeeshops
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