This blog is meant to help you determine which work at home job or program is for you. I am not making any determinations on whether or not a particular program is a scam. I am simply giving you the information to make that call for yourself.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Internet Speedway

From what I have been able to tell, Internet Speedway is a company that will set you up with an online store for a monthly fee. 
The first thing to take into consideration is that there are a lot of companys you can find online who will allow you to do the same thing but for free. 
The second thing to consider is that these types of stores are all over the place so you will have some pretty tough competition.  With most of the online store programs I have seen you do get some pretty good wholesale prices for your products.  What I have heard with Internet Speedway though is that they charge you the same price that you could purchase from Overstock for. 
The way it is supposed to work is that you pay a fee, Internet Speedway sets up a website for you and then you promote the website and sell products.  If someone visits your site and buys a coat for $100 and your cost for the coat is $25 then you make a $75 profit. 
My concern with Internet Speedway besides what I stated above is that I can't find anyone who has been happy with their program.
Apparently they have radio ads running that claim they will send you a free informational cd.  When people call to get the free cd they are told there is a shipping and handling charge of $9.99.  Some people have been persistant and demanded the free cd and have been told it will take up to 6 weeks to recieve but if they pay the $9.99 they will have it in a couple of days!  Give me a break...
Here is the real kicker.. a few months after getting the cd most people are starting to see a monthly charge of $69.99 on their cards!  So they call and then find out that apparently the cd was a free trial and since they didn't cancel they now owe this $69.95 for the next 5 months or so.  When they try to get the company to cancel they are told that if they don't pay they will be turned over to collections!  You can read all about these experiences here:  Internet Speedway thread
I would be very cautious about joining this program.
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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Work at home signs

Today I was trying to decide what to write about so I did a search on "work at home" since that is how I got started it made sense and I was sure I would find some of those websites that drove me crazy in the beginning.  Instead I found something more interesting. 

One of the articles I ran across talked about all the signs you see when you are driving around town.  It probably doesn't matter where you live.  Take a drive and on most street corner you will see signs touting "work at home!"  "Make $1000 a day working at home"  "have a computer?  Make money!", etc etc.  You've seen them! 

I remember a few years ago my father in law asking me if it was really possible to make money from home, he had seen the signs.  He didn't want my mother in law to be out working but they needed her income.  At the time I really didn't know if it was possible but I suspected that if it were possible to make as much as these signs were claiming everyone would be doing it. 

Even though I now work at home I still don't believe it is possible to make thousands of dollars a day just by calling the number on these signs and I don't suggest you try it or not.  Whenever you sign up for any work at home opportunity you really should keep your common sense handy.  Do your research and ask lots of questions.  Take the time to find out how you are expected to make this kind of money and before you spend your hard earned money find and talk to someone who is really making money and will be honest with you within the company.  If it sounds fishy then just walk away.

Want to find out what all those signs are really selling?  Follow the link and read the article.


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Friday, March 17, 2006

Taking Surveys not a scam

I was talking to my mother in law last night about taking surveys and mystery shopping as a way to make extra money and she brought up something that I want to share with all of you.
She has known since I started my website that I have a free list of survey companies that pay.  She would like to take surveys and make some extra money since she doesn't have time to mystery shop during the normal work week. 
So as we are talking she tells me, "I have tried taking the surveys they send me in my email but they take forever and then I get to the end and they want me to complete offers, it is always a waste of my time."
Well, yes it was!   The true survey companies will never send you an email asking you to join.  At least I have never gotten one.  They don't need to spam anyone to get members. 
When you recieve these emails saying "Coke vs Pepsi" take our survey and you could win a $500 shopping spree, it is probably spam, just delete it. 
When you sign up with a legitimate survey company and they send you an email to take a survey you will recognize it as being a good survey.  If you don't recognize the name of the survey company be very cautious.  If your offer is to be entered into some outrageous contest, shopping sprees, televisions, cars, etc.  It is probably not a good survey.  Most of the good companies will enter you into a contest for taking the screener but it is typically a drawing for $500 or $100 I think one is even $1000 but not cars, washers, shopping sprees, etc.  In fact last month I won one of the drawings for $100! 
Here is a quick list of some of the best survey companies.  You can find a complete list by clicking on the link to your right.
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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Telecommuting Jobs

Truth be told, probably at least 90% of the people I meet who are looking to work at home are looking for a job.  They want to work from home but for someone else versus starting their own business.
Because so many people are looking for these types of jobs it has become very fertile ground for scammers.  They set up sites to make it look like you are applying for a data entry position when in reality they are just wanting to sell you information about how to places ads online or some such nonsense. 
Try to keep in mind that these jobs are in high demand.  You can apply but you might not hear back right away or at all.  Apply with as many companies as possible to increase your chances and keep trying.  If you need to be working immediately, check your local paper or think about going a different route with your own business or some other income builder.
Here is a short list of actual companies that hire people to work from home:
You can find a more detailed list of these types of companies at:  Katies Hugs
Cheryl at does an excellent job of keeping a list of up to date work at home jobs that she finds.  I checked this morning and the list was updated just a few days ago so check it often at
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Monday, March 13, 2006


Lets talk about another great company that will allow you to run your own business and work from home.  Watkins has been around for 138 years!  How is that for well established? 
Watkins sells some terrific old fashioned products.  Personally I love these types of products, linaments, ointments, spices, etc.
Becoming a Watkins representative is a wonderful way to make money from home.  You can get started with a minimal investment, you can sell products completely online if you wish and you can also partner with retail establishements in your area and supply them with your products.  They have a great opportunity. 
If you are interested in this opportunity please take a moment to read the interviews done with Watkins reps at Work-At-Home-Mom
You will get some fantastic insider information from people who are currently working with Watkins and find out if it is for you.
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Friday, March 10, 2006

Paid to read/Paid to click programs

This is a hard one for me because personally I don't find a worthwhile way to spend my time.  On the other hand I know a few people who are perfectly happy with these programs as way to make a few extra bucks.
This is not way to make a full time income. 
Here is what you do:  You sign up with one of the programs, lets say a paid to read program.  They will send you emails everyday and you read the emails.  You get paid a certain amt for each email.  Generally you open the email click a link within it so they know you have read it and then you have to spend a certain amount of time at the website you were directed to.  It isn't a large amount of time, I think the one I tried you had to stay at least 30 seconds.
Once you have reached a certain amount of money in your account you can cash out and they send you a check. 
If this is something you would like to try I would strongly suggest you join a message board where members of the different programs communicate with each other.  This is a great way to save yourself the headaches of joining a program that doesn't deliver what they promise. 
There is a board for members of different groups at ItsFree
The moderator only allows links to programs that have been proven to cash out. 
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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Autosurfs/Investment Programs

This one will probably touch some nerves but it is todays topic.
Recently there has been a lot of news coverage on this type of program thanks to 12 Daily Pro. 
Remember I am not giving it a thumbs up or a thumbs down.  Just my opinion.  I watched this program from the start and I have seen people who believe very strongly in it.
I think it is one of those deals that with just using your common sense you can see what is happening.
In this type of program and I will use 12DP as an example here, you "upgrade" by placing money into the system.  Lets say $600.00, after your "upgrade" expires you collect 12% and then you are free to "upgrade" again. 
For a lot of people just using the basic good sense of not investing more than they could lose was good enough incentive to give it a try.  Once they got their investment back they took it out and played with the earnings.  This is all fine and good in theory. 
In this type of program you can also earn money from getting others to join and invest and then you earn part of their earnings. 
This is where I personally believe a lot of people are going to find themselves regretting joining. 
Look at it from this perspective:  I believe the only possible way they can be paying out 12% is if they are taking money from the other members to pay you.  Take money from Sal to pay Joe in otherwords.  What does this make the program?  A ponzi, which is illegal. 
The defense to this is that they were supposedly accepting advertising dollars.  Im not real sure how that comes in to play and maybe it is a loophole they found.
If I am right though and it is a Ponzi and you invested money, no biggie.. If you iinvested money AND brought in referrals then you might be looking at a whole different barrel of pickles.  That would make you an accessory to the crime. 
I believe this is all currently under investigation and I personally can't wait to see what the outcome is.  There were a whole lot of naysayers and a whole lot of supporters.  It seemed to be pretty well divided and I am just anxiously waiting to see who was right.
In the meantime I would be very careful in joining this type of program.  If you want to invest your money we have a stock market!
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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Transfer Agents

In yesterdays post I briefly mentioned work at home jobs that have a variety of job titles the most common being "Transfer Agent".
What they want you to in a nutshell is put money that they send you into your bank account.  You then keep a portion of the money and send the rest to them through Western Union.
Seems simple enough right?  One website I visited recently even admitted that they were doing it this way to avoid taxation fees overseas! 
Heres what can happen:  First you give them full access to your bank account because they ask for not only your account number but your routing number as well.  Now a lot of "smart" people decide they will just set up a bank account just for these transactions and then they won't be risking their own money.  Wrong!  Remember the nigerian scams?  So you get a money order or cashiers check from the company, deposit it into your "safe" account, usually by the next day or maybe second day the money is available to you so you take out all but what your fee and Western Union the rest to the company.  A week or so later you get a notice from your bank that the check or money order was fake and now you are responsible for all that money you sent.  Money sent through Western Union can't be traced. 
There is another version of this where the company tells you they need a go between for them and ebay buyers.  This might be the same thing happening in the above scheme or the above scheme might really be part of the scheme outlined next.
One lady I know who signed up for this one got the money into her account through paypal.  She was then supposed to Western Union it.  She got a little nervous and tried contacting the "buyer" who it turns out was part of the scam.  What these guys were actually doing was taking the money they got from "phishing" and trying to get it into their accounts without being traceable.  So they stole money from peoples bank accounts, transferred it to her bank account and then she was supposed to keep a portion and Western Union the rest. 
The one thing all of these types of scams have in common is that they are making sure the money can't be traced back to them in the end. 
If you run across this type of job and find yourself tempted please trust your instincts and don't get involved.  It would be wise to report the company.  How great would it be if we all got together and put a stop to these schemes?
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Saturday, March 04, 2006

Take Surveys Make Money!

Okay, I just realized I can't really have this blog and not address this issue.   Im not sure you can do a search on anything anymore without getting bombarded with ads saying that you can make hundreds of dollars an hour taking surveys.
Here is the claim:  You pay $39.95 or something close and they will send you surveys. In the case of one you will immediately get a survey worth $25!  So wow.. that means you get almost all your money back right?  Wrong...
Here is the way it works:  You pay the money and then you get an email that gives you a password to get into their database.  You sign up with each survey company individually and then occasionally you will get survey offers.  
Here is the catch.  These lists usually also include a bunch of other sites that will sell you lists, they include survey sites that just want to harvest your email and send you spam and they include sites that will let you complete surveys as long as you sign up for their offers.
Here is the truth:  There are a lot of survey stes that will pay you money for taking surveys.  You will not make hundreds of dollars an hour everyday.  If you sign up with the majority of survey companies you can probably expect anywhere from 5-20 survey offers a day.  Most of these will offer to enter you into a drawing.  These original surveys are actually screeners and you will want to take them.  Once you get through the screener and qualify for the study THAT is when they will make you an offer to continue on for a certain amount of money or a new product test. 
Now there are some studies that automatically tell you that you will make a certain amount of money if you qualify for the study.  I qualified for a $200 study last week.  By the way, I also won one of the drawings.. $100 last week.  So it was a good week! 
This isn't a typical week though.  I generally make about $50-$75 a week taking surveys but there have also been weeks when I didn't make anything. 
The longer you take the surveys, the more you get offered. 
Now these lists also promise you something like over 500 survey sites.  Well that might be true but by the time you weed through the junk sites you are down to a number closer to 200 or so and of those only about 20 send out surveys regularly.  I am going to give you the ones I get the most surveys from right now and if you want to sign up for the others just click on the link to your right.  That list is also free. 
Bottom Line:  Don't waste your money!
Make your opinion count!   
Win $1,000 for joining the i-Say Panel.  Plus, each time you complete a survey, you have a chance to win cash. Share your views, influence decision-makers and win CASH – it’s that easy! (US and Canada)
Join the NPD Online Research Team for your chance to win cash - starting with the chance to win $1,000 just for registering to join!  (US only)   Click Here

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Friday, March 03, 2006

What are MLM companies?

Before we get too far into this I want to say something about MLM companies in general.  MLM stands for multi-level marketing. 
MLM's are NOT scams.  They do have a bad name but not because they rip anyone off. 
There are a lot of MLM companies with great names.  Avon, Mary Kay, Discovery Toys, etc.
I think what happens is a lot of people join these companies and they see that they can make a percentage of all of their downlines sales.  Lets say 10% just for fun.  So they start recruiting like crazy.  Now since they are focused on recruiting and getting a downline to earn money from they probably also tell their recruits that they can make money when they build a downline.  So now the whole team is focused on building a downline and no one is selling.  If no one is selling, no one is making money.
If you want to get involved with a company that allows a downline, you must believe in your products and you must sell.   If you believe in the product and you are selling and making money other people WILL want to join your team and then they will also be selling and making money and recruiting..   This is how the programs were meant to work but we have gotten away from the concept.  Now everyone is building downlines, few are making money and then you get the naysayers who claim they gave it a try and it didn't work.  When what probably happened is that THEY didn't work.

What is the difference between a pyramid scheme and an MLM?  How can you tell if you are making a wise investment or if you are just throwing your hard earned money away? 


When you are looking to start your own business it can be very hard to tell the difference.  Once you start searching for a business, your email will be inundated with all kinds of great offers.  "Make $5000.00 a month.  GUARANTEED!"  "Your down line is growing; join now to reap the benefits."   You might find it hard to resist when they are showing you "proof" and "guaranteeing" you will not lose any money. 


The bottom line is, if they want you to put up money, recruit others and promise you riches with no product to sell and no hard work involved, it is probably not a good idea to join.


Pyramid schemes are set up as just that, a pyramid.  Someone at the top gets 10 people to put up money, he gets all that money.  His ten recruits each get 10 people to put up money, they get part of that money and the guy at the top gets part of that money and those 10 get 10 more people to put up money and so on and so forth.  You would have to have BILLIONS of people involved for everyone to make money and what about the last people who join?  Where do they make money?  Who did the guy at the top give his money to?  Often these schemes are set up as "clubs" or organizations and they make their programs look really inviting with nothing to lose. 


The key to keeping yourself and your money safe is to look at the program and analyze it.  Let’s say you find a company that looks good, and the investment is only $100.00.  What do you get in return for your money?  Does the company offer a product or a service?  Are you encouraged to sell the product or service or is their main focus on recruiting other prospects?

This is the big difference between a pyramid scheme and an MLM (multi-level marketing).  An MLM has a solid product and your focus is on selling it.  A pyramid scheme has no tangible product or service and your focus is on recruiting others to join.


 In a good MLM company you will be encouraged to focus mainly on selling their product to make money.  Most MLM's do require money for start up costs.  Start up costs can range from nothing to hundreds of dollars.  You typically do get something in return, a start up kit which generally includes manuals, brochures, order forms and possibly samples.  

When you join an MLM you are running your own business.  You have the name and reputation of the company behind you and you have an up line for support.  You will probably be encouraged to recruit others into your team but that should be secondary and with most good MLM's it is not a requirement.  How you build your business should be up to you.


To find out more about pyramid schemes visit  


This site also features some very well known companies who have had lawsuits filed against them.  In all fairness to these companies please read the entire article.  Some companies have had lawsuits filed against them but changed their marketing strategies in order to comply with laws currently in effect.  This makes the company legitimate and you should not be afraid to join if it is a product or service you feel passionately about. 


Do lots of research.  Check with the Better Business Bureau to find out if they have had complaints.


Another place I check frequently is the  This is a great site where people from all over can report their bad experiences with any company.


As always, the number one way to protect yourself from any scheme or scam:  If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is and don’t believe everything you read on the internet. 



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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Leaving Prints

I want to give equal coverage to all kinds of businesses and this is one that I know to be good and a lot of fun. I really like this company and the way they do business!
Leaving Prints is a scrabooking company and you can work from home as an instructor.
Being an instructor is a lot of fun and helps motivate you to get your scrapbook pages done believe it or not! 
You can get started for about $35 and then you can purchase scrapbooking products at a discounted rate and then resell them to your customers at retail.  You can either let your customers purchase directly from the catalog or you can keep product on hand to sell during your classes.
You can also set up booths at craft fairs, expos, etc.  This is a great way to showcase your talents and get new groups together for your classes. 
There are endless ideas of how this can work for you.  Leaving Prints also lets you build a team of other scrapbooking instructors.  This means it falls into the MLM catagory which tends to have a bad name with some.  The important thing to remember with any MLM company is that you will not be successful with a downline alone.  You must be actively selling and working if you want it to succeed.
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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Typing at home

This is one of the oldest scams around.  Now Im not saying all typing jobs are scams because there are some companies that will hire you to work at home and do data entry, etc.
However in this particular scam you will usually see an advertisement claiming you can make hundreds of dollars a week typing at home.  As you look into a little further they just need you to send them $65 dollars and their application and they will send you everything all the training materials you will need to get started. 
After a few weeks (they are busy you know!) you will recieve an very impressive manilla envelope.  What you will probably find inside is a list of companies from all around your state or general area.  You will also find some great instruction on how you should contact each one of these companies and inquire whether or not they are in need of typing services. 
Now the original company that you paid cannot guarantee that any of these companies will actually need your service but you just never know! 
My take:  Save your money and go through the phone book.  Pick random companies to call and see if they need typing services if this is something you are interested in.
You could also visit or and look in the telecommuting sections for free to find companies that do hire for this type of work. 
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