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Flexible career options for Dads

Author GreatDad Writers
Submitted 09-07-2007

Having a new baby often changes everyone’s perspective on their lives and careers. Some dads, and even some moms, bury themselves deeper into their jobs because they can’t or won’t connect with domestic life, or need a break from the crying and clinging. However, there are more and more working dads who want to spend even more times with their kids. They find it difficult to leave the baby with a nanny or in childcare.

If you’re one of the dads who is wondering how to get more time with your kids, one solution would be to look for ways to work from home.

Here are some of the possible options for dads:

  • Re-negotiate your contract with your current employer to allow you flexibility to work from home.
  • Become a freelancer or a consultant.
  • Start a home based business venture.

The reduction in your income, when you give up full time employment, can sometimes be overcome by careful budgeting. In fact, the shift towards self-employment may actually save you costs related to:

  • Cost of hiring a nanny, babysitter, or day care
  • Cost of gas or transport  to the office
  • Restaurant and lunch bills
  • Business clothes and shoes
  • Tax deductions for home businesses

The first thing to do is to make a careful assessment of your financial situation and real costs. Carefully analyze the costs you might save, while over-estimating new costs in a home business or consulting job.

Areas many people forget when considering the move:

  1. Home businesses often have a long ramp time, so you need to plan for some time without income.
  2. Don’t forget about health insurance. A home business or self-employment is much easier to consider if your spouse will continue a job that has benefits.
  3. If you have a dream of taking a loan and buying a house, consider two things very carefully: it will be much harder to get a loan without a regular paying job, and it will also be more stress to pay a monthly mortgage if you are starting a new job from home.
  4. Finally, are you the right person for a home business? Starting a business is no longer as difficult as it once was and the internet makes working from home a lot easier. However, you will need to consider your own levels of motivation, how much you need social interaction (and even a boss), and whether you need the comfort of a daily job. 

Making the transition may be difficult, especially when you factor in how much time will be required for childcare during the day. Most stay-at-moms and dads find it necessary to give up work entirely until the child is old enough for pre-school, at which time they can start to take on half-time work. In a future article, we will outline jobs that can start small and grow as childcare needs change.