How to Make Money on Mat Leave: Ways to Earn Extra Income

Are you a new mom wondering how to make extra money while on maternity leave? Good news, there are legitimate ways to earn money during this time while still spending quality time with your newest family member. Whether you need extra cash to cover baby gear and clothes or just want to boost your savings, there are plenty of side hustles you can start from home.

One of the best ways to make money on maternity leave is by leveraging your skill sets. Do you have a talent for writing or graphic design? Consider freelancing for blogs or online publications. Are you a social media whiz? Offer your services to small businesses in your area. By using your existing skills, you can earn extra money without having to learn a new trade.

Another option is to take advantage of the gig economy. You can sign up for ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft, or offer your services as a pet sitter or dog-walker on apps like Rover. These flexible jobs allow you to work when you want and earn extra money without having to commit to a full-time schedule. With a little creativity and effort, you can find the perfect side hustle to help you make the most of your maternity leave.

Understanding Maternity Leave

If you’re expecting a baby, understanding maternity leave is essential. Maternity leave is a period of time that new mothers take off work to care for their newborns. Maternity leave policies vary by country and employer, so it’s important to know your options. In the United States, there is no federal law that requires paid maternity leave, but some states have their own laws.

Types of Maternity Leave

There are several types of maternity leave, including paid maternity leave, unpaid maternity leave, sick leave, short-term disability insurance, and family medical leave. Paid maternity leave is when an employer pays an employee’s salary during their time off. Unpaid maternity leave is when an employee takes time off work without pay. Sick leave is when an employee takes time off work due to a medical condition. Short-term disability insurance is when an employee receives a portion of their salary while they are unable to work due to a medical condition. Family medical leave is when an employee takes time off work to care for a family member with a serious medical condition.

Financial Planning for Maternity Leave

Financial planning is crucial when it comes to maternity leave. Before your due date, you should create a budget to prepare for the time you’ll be away from work. You’ll need to calculate how much time you’ll be taking off work and how much money you’ll need to cover your expenses. If your employer offers paid maternity leave, find out how much you’ll be paid and for how long. If you don’t have paid maternity leave, you may be able to use sick days or vacation time to cover some of your time off.

Short-term disability insurance may also be an option if you’re unable to work due to a medical condition. The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for the birth or adoption of a child. If you’re considering taking unpaid leave, make sure you understand your employer’s policies and your legal rights.

In addition to budgeting for your time off work, you’ll also need to plan for medical bills and other expenses related to the birth of your child. If you’re concerned about the financial impact of maternity leave, consider talking to a financial advisor or seeking out resources from your employer or government.

Online Opportunities

If you’re looking to make money while on maternity leave, online opportunities are a great way to do so. With the flexibility of working from home and setting your own hours, you can easily find a side hustle that fits your needs. Here are some online opportunities to consider:

Freelance Writing and Proofreading

If you have writing skills, freelance writing and proofreading can be a great way to earn money on maternity leave. You can take on projects that fit your schedule and interests, and work with clients from all over the world. Websites like Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer are great places to start looking for freelance work.

Virtual Assistance

Virtual assistance is another great way to make money online. As a virtual assistant, you can offer a variety of services, such as email management, data entry, transcription work, and more. You can find virtual assistant jobs on websites like Virtual Assistant Jobs and Upwork.

Online Tutoring and Courses

If you have expertise in a particular subject, you can offer online tutoring services or create an online course. Websites like Udemy and Skillshare allow you to create and sell courses on a variety of topics, while websites like Chegg and TutorMe allow you to offer online tutoring services.

Graphic Design and Digital Creatives

If you have graphic design skills, you can offer your services online. You can design logos, social media graphics, website layouts, and more. Websites like 99designs and Upwork are great places to find graphic design work.

E-Commerce Ventures

If you’re looking for a way to make extra cash during maternity leave, e-commerce ventures can be a great option. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Starting an Etsy Shop

Etsy is an online marketplace where you can sell handmade or vintage items, as well as craft supplies. If you’re crafty, starting an Etsy shop can be a great way to turn your hobby into a business. You can sell anything from digital printables to simple ebooks, and there’s a huge audience on Etsy looking for unique and personalized items.

To get started, sign up for an Etsy account and set up your shop. Make sure to take high-quality photos of your items and write detailed descriptions. You’ll also want to promote your shop on social media and other online marketplaces to drive traffic and sales.

Learn how to sell printables on Etsy with this course.

Selling on eBay and Facebook Marketplace

If you have items around your house that you no longer need, selling them on eBay or Facebook Marketplace can be a quick and easy way to make some extra cash. You can also buy items at thrift stores or garage sales and resell them for a profit.

To get started, create an account on eBay or Facebook Marketplace and start listing your items. Make sure to take clear photos and write detailed descriptions. You can also offer free shipping or bundle deals to attract more buyers.

Print-on-Demand Business

Print-on-demand businesses allow you to sell products online without having to hold inventory or handle shipping. You can create designs for t-shirts, mugs, phone cases, and more, and the print-on-demand company will handle the rest.

To get started, sign up for a print-on-demand service like Printful or Teespring. Create your designs and upload them to the platform. When someone orders a product with your design, the print-on-demand company will handle the printing and shipping. You’ll earn a percentage of the sale price as your profit.

Social Media and Content Creation

If you’re looking to make money on maternity leave, social media and content creation can be a great way to get started. By creating content, you can build a following and establish yourself as an expert in your niche. Here are a few ways to make money through social media and content creation:

Blogging and Podcasting

If you enjoy writing or speaking, starting a blog or podcast can be a great way to make money. With a blog, you can write about anything that interests you, from parenting to fashion to cooking. You can monetize your blog through affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, and advertising. Podcasting is another great option, especially if you prefer speaking to writing. You can monetize your podcast through sponsorships, advertising, and selling your own products or services.

Social Media Management

If you’re good at social media, you can make money by managing social media accounts for local businesses. Many small businesses don’t have the time or expertise to manage their own social media accounts, so they’re willing to pay someone to do it for them. You can charge by the hour or by the project, depending on the client’s needs.

YouTube Channel and Video Content

If you’re comfortable on camera, starting a YouTube channel can be a great way to make money. You can create videos on anything that interests you, from makeup tutorials to product reviews to vlogs. You can monetize your channel through advertising, sponsorships, and selling your own products or services. You can also create video content for social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok.

Passive Income Strategies

If you’re looking to make extra income while on maternity leave, passive income strategies are a great option. These strategies allow you to earn money without having to actively work for it. Here are two popular passive income strategies to consider:

Creating and Selling Digital Products

Creating and selling digital products is a popular business model for generating passive income (and my personal favorite). Digital products can include e-books, digital planners, printables, and more. Once you create your product, you can sell it on your website or through a third-party platform like Etsy or Gumroad.

To create a successful digital product, start by identifying a need within your niche. What information or tools are your audience members looking for? Once you’ve identified a need, create a product that solves that problem.

Learn how to get started by watching my FREE masterclass, How to Create Passive Income with Your Own Digital Products!

To promote your digital product, consider using affiliate marketing. This involves partnering with other bloggers or influencers who will promote your product in exchange for a commission. This can be a great way to reach a wider audience and increase your sales.

Creating a Membership or Subscription Service

Creating a membership or subscription service is another popular passive income strategy. This involves creating a service that your audience pays for on a recurring basis, such as a monthly membership site or a subscription box.

To create a successful membership or subscription service, start by identifying a need within your niche. What ongoing support or resources can you provide to your audience? Once you’ve identified a need, create a service that meets that need.

To promote your membership or subscription service, consider offering a free trial or discount to new members. This can be a great way to entice people to sign up and try your service.

Utilizing Task-Oriented Platforms

If you’re looking for a way to make money on maternity leave, you might want to consider utilizing task-oriented platforms. These platforms connect you with various tasks and gigs that you can complete in your spare time. Here are some popular options:

Survey Sites and Cash Back Apps

Survey sites and cash back apps can be a great way to make some extra cash in your free time. Some popular options include Swagbucks, Survey Junkie, and YouGov. These sites allow you to complete surveys and other tasks in exchange for cash or gift cards. Additionally, cash back apps like Rakuten and Ibotta give you cash back on purchases you were already planning to make.

Micro Task and Gig Economy Apps

Micro task and gig economy apps are another way to earn money on maternity leave. These apps connect you with small tasks and gigs that you can complete in your spare time. Some popular options include Prolific, TaskRabbit, and Fiverr. These apps allow you to complete tasks like data entry, graphic design, and even pet-sitting.

Babysitting and Pet Sitting Services

Babysitting and pet sitting services are always in demand. As a new mom, you likely have experience with caring for children, making babysitting a natural fit. You can also consider offering pet sitting services, as many pet owners need someone to take care of their furry friends while they are away. Advertise your services on social media or local classifieds sites to attract potential clients.

Home-Based Services and Errands

Another option is to offer home-based services and errands. This can include anything from data entry to grocery shopping services. Many people are willing to pay for help with tasks they don’t have time for or simply don’t want to do themselves. If you enjoy running errands, you can offer your services to busy professionals or elderly individuals who may have difficulty getting around. You can also consider starting a dog-walking business if you enjoy spending time with animals.

The best part about these side hustles is that they can be done on your own schedule, making them a great option for new moms who need flexibility. With a little effort, you can turn your skills and interests into a profitable side hustle that can help you make the most of your maternity leave.

Maximizing Sales and Flipping

If you’re looking to make some extra money while on maternity leave, maximizing sales and flipping can be a great way to do so. Here are a few ways you can get started:

Flea Market and Thrift Store Flipping

Flea market and thrift store flipping involves buying items for a low price and selling them for a higher price. This can be a great way to make some extra money, especially if you have an eye for valuable items. Some popular items to flip include vintage clothing, furniture, and home decor.

To get started, do some research on what items are in high demand and what sells well in your area. You can also check online marketplaces like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist for items to flip. Once you have some items to sell, consider setting up an online shop or selling at local flea markets or craft fairs.

Selling Handmade or Custom Items

If you’re crafty or have a skill like sewing, selling handmade or custom items can be a great way to make some extra money. Baby clothes and accessories are always in high demand, so consider making and selling items like bibs, burp cloths, and blankets.

To get started, do some research on what types of items are popular and what materials you’ll need to make them. You can sell your items online through platforms like Etsy or set up your own website. Consider offering custom orders to make your shop stand out.

Financial Management During Maternity Leave

As a new mother, you may find yourself on a tight budget with new expenses and weeks of unpaid maternity leave. Managing your finances during this time can be challenging, but with proper planning and budgeting, you can make it work. Here are some tips to help you manage your finances during maternity leave.

Budgeting for New Expenses

Having a new child comes with new expenses that you need to account for in your budget. These expenses may include diapers, formula, baby clothes, and other baby supplies. It’s important to create a budget that takes these new expenses into account and adjust your spending accordingly.

To create a budget, start by listing all of your income sources, including any maternity leave pay or side hustle income. Next, list all of your expenses, including bills, groceries, and new baby expenses. Make sure to prioritize essential items like housing, food, and utilities. Once you have a clear picture of your income and expenses, you can adjust your spending to fit within your budget.

Cutting Costs and Saving Tips

Having a new baby can be expensive, so it’s important to be mindful of your spending. However, there are many ways to save money on baby equipment and supplies, such as buying second-hand or borrowing from friends and family.

Cutting costs and finding ways to save money can help you stretch your budget further during maternity leave. Here are some other tips to help you save money:

  • Cut back on non-essential expenses like dining out and entertainment.
  • Look for ways to save on groceries, such as buying in bulk or using coupons.
  • Consider switching to a lower-cost cell phone plan or cable package.
  • Use credit cards wisely and avoid carrying a balance to avoid higher interest rates.
  • Consider opening a separate bank account for your maternity leave pay and set a budget for how much extra you can afford to spend.


Making money on maternity leave may seem daunting, but with the right mindset and some planning, it can be a great opportunity to earn extra income while spending time with your new baby. Whether you’re a brand new parent or a “seasoned pro’,” there are many ways to make money on maternity leave. Some don’t even require a ton of extra work.

This is a perfect time to start a new venture, and you can use your free time to explore new opportunities and invest in yourself. Starting a new business or side hustle can be a great way to create a new income stream and build a more secure financial future for you and your family.

Consider using the extra time you have during your maternity leave to explore new ideas and skills. Whether you’re interested in starting a blog, podcast, or online store, there are many resources available to help you get started. With some research and planning, you can turn your passion into a profitable venture.

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