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How to make money on maternity leave

Are you looking for ways to make extra cash on maternity leave from home?

However much time you take off for maternity leave there’s likely to come a time when your salary drops to below the levels you would usually earn in a month. 

Woman making extra cash while on maternity leave with baby at home

Even the most generous employer maternity pay deals decrease at some point! I was lucky to receive six months full pay on my maternity leave, but I had to plan ahead for the second half of my maternity leave when I ceased to receive anything. 

Because of this earning a little extra cash while you’re on maternity leave can be really handy. 

So if you’re looking for ways to earn extra money while enjoying your maternity leave then I’ve got 12 genuine ways to bring money in!

Some of them may start as a side hustle and turn into a full-time income!

Can you earn extra cash while on maternity leave?

Before we get to some tips on earning extra cash during maternity leave, it’s important to note that you need to be aware of the rules around working during your leave. 

Your contract with your employer may state you cannot do any work for other companies while in their employment, including when on maternity leave. This includes freelance work. 

So double check your contract to see if it allows you to do self-employed work as part of your contract.

You also will need to declare your earnings to the taxman if you do earn extra cash separate to your regular employment. 

You will need to complete self-assessment at the end of the financial year to see if there is any additional tax you need to pay. 

Related posts: Genuine work from home jobs

By the way, if you want help with your monthly budget then grab my FREE monthly budget printable planner. This will be emailed to you in PDF format!

How to afford maternity leave 

While making extra cash is a great way to help make maternity leave affordable, it’s also a good idea to find ways to balance your budget too. 

You will probably find yourself spending a lot less than usual anyway when you’re on maternity leave as there will be fewer nights out at the pub after baby is born. 

There are lots of other ways you can make savings as well, such as: 

  • Meal planning 
  • Switching to a cheaper supermarket 
  • Cutting energy bills by switching supplier 
  • Ditching underused subscriptions for TV, magazines and services like gyms
  • Always use cashback sites when shopping online – check out Top Cashback here

You can find more tips for affording the salary drop during maternity leave right here. 

Related post: Frugal living tips

This post contains affiliate links.

Ways to make money on maternity leave 

Survey sites 

You won’t make a fortune on survey sites, but they are a great way to make some extra cash every month. 

The surveys can be done from home, on your phone, at your own convenience (maybe while breastfeeding your baby). They are a great way to earn cash in your PJs. 

My favourite survey site is Prolific. It’s easy to get set up – although you will need to answer a LOT of questions to get your profile sorted – and you can start earning straight away. 

Your first payout doesn’t come until you’ve reached a certain threshold but after the first payout you can claim your cash whenever you want to. 

I also use YouGov, BUT a word of warning. I’ve been on YouGov for six months and am yet to get any money from them! You have to reach 5,000 points on there before you get a £50 payout and I’m still barely a quarter of the way there.

However hopefully by the end of the year I will get my first £50!

This issue pops up on other survey sites too that have a certain number of surveys you must do before you get your payout. 

If you need cash fast this is worth bearing in mind, as you’re sometimes sat around waiting for invites to relevant surveys. There aren’t always surveys available when you have time to do them. 

But don’t let this put you off. Some sites will provide immediate payment for your time.

The great thing about this way of earning extra cash is that all you need is an email address and access to the internet to take part. 

Other popular survey sites include: 

  • Swagbucks
  • Survey Junkie 
  • OneOpinion 
  • Toluna 
  • i-Say 

20Cogs is another popular site that asks users to do surveys and tasks such as signing up to membership on other websites. Payment for completing all “20 cogs” is more than £100 so it’s worth doing, although you may be asked to pay a little money as part of the process of completing the 20 Cogs. 

If you fancy earning extra cash with surveys then I recommend setting up a new email address to do so as it often leads to an avalanche of spam in your inbox that’s easier to manage from a separate account. 

Make your own products to sell online 

If you have a talent for sewing, knitting, jewellery-making or anything crafty then there will be a market online for your goods! 

You can set up an online store on sites such as Etsy within minutes. 

Great images of your products are a must to sell online, as is a good description of the product. You will need to research prices of similar products to make sure you are hitting the right price point for customers. 

The trickiest part of selling your own products online is getting them seen, as there are tons of online sellers on the market. 

Setting up social media profiles to promote your goods will help, as will promoting them on local Facebook community sites. 

Some things you can make and sell online include: 

  • Jewellery 
  • Baby clothes 
  • Baby keepsakes 
  • Printables such as decorative posters 
  • Face masks 
  • Scarves 
  • Special occasion cards 

Matched betting 

It takes a little learning to get started with matched betting, and you need to commit time to doing it, but people make thousands of pounds extra a year this way! 

Matched betting is where you use the free bets bookies offer to place bets that are risk-free, so you win no matter what the outcome! 

Profit Accumulator has a great guide to getting started.

Use cash back sites 

You should always try to use cash back websites when making purchases as this is money that’s there to be taken! 

Cash back sites receive commission for referring customers to brands. When those customers make a purchase, the cash back site then shares that commission with the customer. 

So when you’re shopping online, remember to sign up to a cash back site such as Top Cashback and click through their links. You can get cash back on purchases from many large retailers. 

Sell stuff on eBay 

Clearing out your clutter and selling it on eBay or Facebook Marketplace has the dual benefit of making you extra cash and freeing up space in your home. 

You’ll be amazed what you could make from clearing out your own unwanted stuff. 

Root around through your stuff and look for things like: 

  • CDs
  • DVDs
  • Books
  • Clothes 
  • Gadgets
  • Bicycles
  • Scooters
  • Toys
  • Games 
  • Furniture 
Mum working at home with baby on maternity leave

Freelance writing 

Becoming a freelance writer is a brilliant way of making extra cash in your spare time! 

You can take on as many commissions as you can cope with and the work is interesting. 

It’s often easier to find freelance writing work if you have a specialist subject you can write in. 

I am a former journalist and so write a bit of everything for my freelance writing clients. 

However if you have a background in, say for example, science then there may be science journals or publications that would benefit from your knowledge when it comes to writing articles. 

Look for publications, online and in print, that have blogs or publish freelance work and pitch some ideas to them. 

Download task apps 

Like survey sites you won’t make a huge fortune from doing the tasks you are set on tasking apps such as Roamler. 

But they are a great flexible work option for a new mum! 

The work you get through task apps are kind of like being a mystery shopper. 

You will be set assignments such as visiting particular store branches and taking photos of their display and then feedback to the app. 

You earn between £2 and £10 depending on the assignment. 

Some great tasking apps you can sign up to include: 

  • Roamler 
  • Field Agent 
  • Streetspotr
  • Mobeye
  • Microwork 
  • Clickworker 
  • BeMyEye
  • Streetbees 
  • Clic and Walk
  • Premise 

Keeping in Touch Days 

You can get paid by your employer during maternity leave by using up to 10 Keeping In Touch (KIT) days. These are days where you return to work as a one-off during your leave. 

Speak to your employer about organising these. Many women use them as a way to ease back into work before returning from leave. 

Start a pet-sitting or dog-walking business 

This can quick to get started if you know lots of people in your area who may need help with walking a dog or feeding a pet when they’re away. 

Advertise your services locally on Facebook group boards and set up a website too to get yourself noticed. 

You can also sign up to sites such as Tailster that connect dog walkers and pet-sitters with owners. 

Although you can work flexible hours in this particular work, you will need to head out of the house to carry out work for your clients. If you’re looking for work that’s done entirely from home then this probably isn’t the money-maker for you. 

However it’s great if you love to get extra fresh air during the day! 

Test websites 

You can get paid to browse the internet! This is perfect if you’re trapped under a napping baby for hours and hours every day! 

Companies employer website testers to look at sites and feedback on how they work and look. 

Sites to find this kind of work include UserTesting, PingPong, and intellizoom.

Become an online transcriptionist 

There are many online transcription companies that employ freelancers to convert audio and video into written transcripts. 

The type of content you are asked to transcribe varies hugely. If you have a background in medicine or science this can give you a real advantage in those particular niches!

Some online transcription companies has that you have experience in this type of work, with a particular typing speed. But not all of them do! 

There’s a complete guide to becoming a freelance transcriptionist on this post plus loads of companies where you can find freelance work in the field! 

Start a blog 

I started my blog on maternity leave so I had to add this one in here. 

You are highly unlikely to make your first bit of cash with a blog in the first month. I would say it takes at least six months to see any return from it. 

But if you start a blog with intention to make money from it, follow the best practices to build a money-making site and put the work in it can become a really nice earner. 

I make a full-time living just from my parenting blog that I started four years ago. 

It’s a side hustle that with a little time and nurturing can really pay off. I can now spend as little as five hours a week on my blog but it still brings me in a good safe wage every week. 

It’s also really exciting work. Pick a blog subject that you’re passionate about and you will be doing work that you really enjoy every single day! 

Final thoughts on making extra cash on maternity leave

These are all great ways to make extra money that fit around life with a baby during maternity leave.

My personal favourites are survey sites, which are a really easy way to make a few extra quid every week, freelance writing and blogging.

Have you made extra cash on maternity leave? Let me know how you did it!

How to make extra money while on maternity leave