Top 25 Independent Contractor Jobs that Pay Well in 2024

With the expansion of "gig economy companies," more and more individuals seek opportunities to work as independent contractors.

Yet, what precisely are "freelance" occupations? What are the upsides and downsides of working in this field? In addition, what are the most effective methods for locating freelance opportunities that are a good fit for your qualifications and experience?

We will answer questions like these and more as we go into the pros and cons of contracting as a career, the top 25 contracting jobs, and how to discover the proper contracting gig for you.

What Are Independent Contractor Jobs?

An independent contractor, in the simplest terms, is a person who provides a service or piece of labor to a business or organization without being paid as an employee of that business or organization.

25 Best Independent Contractor Jobs

Independent Contractor Jobs that Pay Well

1. Virtual Assistant

Often working from home, virtual assistants are responsible for various administrative duties. Some of the tasks of a virtual assistant include taking and making calls.

Instead, you may communicate with customers through email or by setting up appointments. You might also be tasked with overseeing a blog or website.

Earning as much as possible as a virtual assistant requires excellent time management, organization, written and verbal communication, and customer service abilities.

2. Masonry

A mason's primary responsibilities revolve around using bricks and stones in construction. Walls, walkways, and patios might benefit from skilled masons' craftsmanship.

They may either develop something for their customers or follow the blueprints of another specialist (like a landscape architect) to complete the task at hand.

3. Management Analyst

Management analysts, who function similarly to consultants, assess business operations and provide recommendations to improve productivity.

As a management analyst, you can choose which companies you work with to ensure their success. If you've found your niche and made a name for yourself in your field, the average hourly wage is $40.

Strong analytical and communication abilities are universally necessary for success. Administrative assistants, interns, and customer service agents are the most popular positions held before entering the field of management analysis.

4.Professional interior decorator and stager

If a homeowner needs assistance with the interior design of their home before listing it for sale, they may hire a home stager to make it look its best.

Before showing the property to prospective purchasers, you'll need to decorate it to make it appear nice.

Alternatively, you may work as an interior designer whose job is to make a home aesthetically pleasing for its existing owners.

One of the first things to consider if you want to become a home stager is how much training is required. According to our research, most home stagers have at least a bachelor's degree.

Home stagers often have a bachelor's degree, although a high school diploma or GED is sufficient for entry.

5. Photographer

Photographers focus on capturing static photos. It's common for photographers to operate independently like painters, creating original works of art and selling them to the public.

Contract employment is another option for photographers, particularly those specializing in wedding or fashion photography.

6. Painter 

Painting Contractor

Painting is a skill that requires special training and experience, yet painters are there to assist you if you need anything painted. They may apply a fresh coat of paint anywhere, whether inside or outside a house or business, at a shop, or even in a field.

Almost forty percent of the painting workforce is self-employed, and the low barrier to entry means that anybody may try their hand at the trade. On average, one can expect to make around $35,000 annually as a painter.

7. Property Preservation Contractor

The real estate industry is a great way to build wealth with little or no initial investment. It's brilliant, and I bet you never thought of it that way before. I'll explain how it works:

Almost wherever you go, you'll see forsaken homes that require repair and care before they can be put on the market. Most homes have been foreclosed on or are in the process of being foreclosed on.

Banks often hire independent contractors specializing in historic building restoration to avoid the hassle of property management. Every building within your service area that needs fixing or upkeep falls within your purview as the preservation vendor.

8. Independent Contractor Merchandiser

In merchandising, you may find employment with the firm or an outside agency. Although some businesses have their marketing teams, others contract with outside firms for assistance with more elaborate window displays.

A company specializing in one-off creative projects might be hired to design a storefront window show. 

Career paths in merchandising may lead to roles in wholesale purchasing, store management, and other retail areas.

Jobs in merchandising are in high demand, and a degree in fashion, design, or merchandising is usually required for these positions in the fashion business. Internships and prior relevant work experience might boost interview prospects.

9. Social Media Manager

A social media manager's primary responsibility is to monitor and maintain the client's profile across all relevant social media channels.

Some social media managers are employed full-time by large companies, while others operate independently, giving their skills to various clients.

A firm's social media manager's job is to build a consistent brand and encourage more people to watch and engage with the business's social media posts so that the company receives more exposure and makes more money. Hence, it is a great chance to earn extra cash.

10. Personal Trainer

Personal Trainer

Maintaining physical fitness is essential, but not everyone can do it independently. One need not be a professional athlete to assist others in reaching their fitness objectives.

You may concentrate on the more physical, muscle-building side of things, or you can help individuals become healthier by teaching them to eat better. In addition, you get to choose your coworkers and office space, making it very adaptable.

Depending on their location and level of expertise, personal trainers might charge anywhere from $20 to $40 per hour.

Most places require a bachelor's degree and 6-12 months of experience before hiring someone as a personal trainer. Earning your CPT designation will give you an edge in the personal training industry.

11. Personal Driver

A career as a driver may be quite fulfilling if you like being on the road and want to assist others in reaching their destinations. You can decide when you're open, how far you'll go, and who will use your services.

You may have one-time clients who require rides to the airport, or you may have repeat customers who need frequent transportation.

In most cases, you can expect to earn around $15 per hour. Cashiering, driving a truck, and making deliveries are the most frequent entry-level positions in the transportation industry.

A driver's license and a high school diploma are often required for entry-level employment. 

12. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Expert

Core responsibilities: Search engine optimization (SEO) improves a website's visibility in search engine results for a given set of keywords via creating new content and editing existing material.

Although bigger businesses may be able to justify employing an SEO expert full-time, most SEO professionals operate on a contract basis, juggling the demands of many different enterprises.

A search engine optimization (SEO) expert may also work under contract with other specialists, such as copywriters or web designers, to provide their customers with optimized material.

13. Freelance Writer

Do you fancy yourself a good writer? Freelance authors create articles for a wide variety of publications.

You may make a living as a freelance writer if you have a passion for writing and a talent for putting your thoughts on paper.

Both fiction and nonfiction authors may get work as freelance writers. Go on online websites and ask about your favorite blogs to see if they have any opportunities for freelance writers.

One of the best-paying work-from-home opportunities is freelance writing, as more and more companies recognize the need to provide their customers with informative and engaging content.

14. Virtual Beauty Expert

The growing interest in cosmetics and personal grooming that is experienced worldwide makes this a great time to consider becoming an online beauty expert. Advising on skincare and cosmetics is a sure way to boost a customer's self-assurance.

This ideal side job from home allows you to work on your schedule and set your hours while helping others worldwide.

15. Web Developer

Designing websites is a very lucrative at-home occupation. Website designers may find employment with various groups, from NGOs to tech startups. Adobe Illustrator, User Experience Design, and Cascading Style Sheets are all areas in which potential employers may evaluate your expertise.

If you have some fundamental skills and can build engaging websites, you may be able to earn a comfortable income doing it.

16. Software Tester

Another one of the finest jobs for telecommuting is testing software. Companies often have third-party testing companies evaluate the usability of their websites with real people. As a website tester, your job will be to answer questions as you look through a website.

Furthermore, you'll record videos demonstrating your feelings about the UI and UX. The videos need to be between 20 and 30 minutes long. Also, your understanding of how the Internet works might be invaluable.

17. Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent's commission on the sale or purchase of a house may range from one percent to three percent or more before taxes. A property costing $300,000 equates to a minimum savings of $3,000.

You may get your real estate license in as little as four to six weeks; however, this does vary by state. 

An impressive proportion of 2022 homebuyers (86%) utilized a real estate agent, suggesting a sizable market to tap into.

One of the perks of being a real estate agent is having flexibility in scheduling and client selection.

Consider getting your real estate license if you like interacting with different individuals. 

18. Tour Guide

Do you have an in-depth familiarity with the city where you now reside or a city near it? If this is true, you might consider working as a tour guide.

Work for a firm that provides tour guide services and make the average salary stated above, or strike out on your own and become an independent tour guide and earn more.

Customers may be driven about in a van, driven around on foot, or shown the sights via a trolley, among other options.

19. House Cleaner

Is cleaning something you particularly excel at? Why not try your luck as a maid? You may get employment with a cleaning company or go into business for yourself and see your earnings skyrocket.

While operating alone, home cleaners may easily get $25 an hour or more.

To be successful in this line of work, you must, of course, be both thorough and efficient. Also, unless your clients are OK with you utilizing their supplies, you must provide your cleaning materials.

20. Customer Service Support

Customer Service Support

To handle client inquiries, many organizations nowadays deploy remote customer service representatives. You'll get training, and then you may choose from available shifts at different times.

If you like helping others and have strong interpersonal skills, you may want to look into working in an online customer service department. While looking for the best remote, part-time employment, remember that you'll need a quiet place to get your work done.

21. Voice-Over Performer

If you have a pleasant voice and a neutral accent, you can easily perform voiceovers as a side gig while staying home.

Dubbing on foreign-language films, podcasts, apps, audiobooks on public transit, and more are just a few examples of the many internet settings in which voice actors might get work.

Be ready for future job applications by investing in a high-quality computer, a reliable internet connection, audio editing software (such as Audacity), and studio-grade headphones.

22. Professional Advertising Manager on Facebook

Nevertheless, most businesses lack the necessary expertise or time to launch Facebook advertising campaigns. The need for Facebook advertising experts makes it a wonderful field to pursue remote employment in.

If you can design engaging ad creatives and target certain demographics with your marketing efforts, you may pick and choose whatever internet employment you wish to pursue.

23. Event Coordinator

You might succeed in event planning if you have a flair for throwing spectacular celebrations. Party planners also handle weddings and large-scale business gatherings.

While formal training in event planning is available, anybody with the will and aptitude to master the trade may succeed in the field.

Promote your business in locales appropriate for such events as wedding expos, bridal boutiques, and on the web.

24. Gamer/Tester of Video Games

Consider working in the video game industry if you like playing them. That's one of the numerous methods to generate money with video games.

Making a comfortable living by playing video games professionally, reviewing them, or participating in competitive gaming is possible. If you want to work in the video game industry, you may contact developers directly or establish yourself as a recognized expert.

25. Research Study Participant

Being a guinea pig is a requirement of this independent contractor position. But don't worry; you'll earn good money as a guinea pig. This is not exclusive to the pharmaceutical industry; many businesses may fund studies on their products or the habits of their target demographic.

Several businesses are looking for individuals like you to interview, and they're willing to pay good money to do it.

Benefits of Independent Contractor Jobs

Benefits of Independent Contractor Jobs

If you're trying to decide whether or not to become a freelancer, familiarizing yourself with the pros of this work arrangement will assist. Among the many benefits of being a freelancer are the following:

  • The Art of Balancing Work and Leisure: Working as an independent contractor may allow you to choose your schedule and workload. By accepting or rejecting proposals and contracts as needed, you may manage the work you must perform in a given time frame.
  • Flexibility in work schedules: You may have more freedom in executing tasks as an independent contractor. The client's primary concern is whether you will deliver the final product by the agreed-upon quality and timeframe.
  • Independence in one's work schedule: Due to not being tied to any one business, contractors can switch gears in their professional lives as they see fit. Alterations like relocating to a new location may also be less hassle.

Drawbacks of Independent Contractor Jobs

Independent work has certain drawbacks, as we discuss below:

  • No Advantages (Health insurance, life insurance, dental, car mileage, etc.) You'll have to pay for everything yourself.
  • When it comes to Tax filing for independent contractors, you're on your own. If you need assistance with your taxes, hire a certified public accountant. The same goes for the 1099 pay stub for contractors. You will need to figure them out alone.
  • Independence - If anything goes wrong with your present customer, you'll need a backup plan and enough money to see you through until you find a new one (s)

How to Find Independent Contractor Jobs

Whether you're self-taught, have a bachelor's degree, are just starting, or have a doctorate, you may be able to locate a variety of interesting work-from-home opportunities that pay well from top independent contractor companies.

You may find the best independent contractor jobs near you or online. Opportunities for freelance work, independent contractor deals, and temp jobs are available on online job boards and marketplaces.

When it comes to giving the greatest remote employment opportunities, Upwork is unrivaled in its dedication to freedom.

This means you can do any job posted on Upwork without leaving your house. Upwork is also unique because it puts the power of your job search squarely in your hands.

Also, Indeed's search tool allows you to narrow your results by keywords, location (including "remote"), and even job title. 

Many companies post job openings on LinkedIn, and users may choose to be notified when a position matching their criteria becomes available. When you combine the terms "freelance" and "remote," you get many relevant results for your search.

How to become an independent contractor?

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is mandatory for filing federal income tax returns. This is a unique identification number assigned to your company by the Internal Revenue Service.

Don't rush out and purchase business cards and stationery once you've settled on a company name. Before filing your company name with the state, you should check whether someone else has already claimed it.

Establishing a reputation with your vendors and suppliers is easier when you have a company checking account. With the aid of this method, you can keep track of your business's financial health, file a separate tax return for your company come tax time, and maintain a wall between your personal and professional money.

You'll need accurate records to deduct legitimate company costs from your corporate tax return. You may utilize this easy system:

You should have a point-of-sale system and accounting software set up first so that you can record your sales. Finally, at regular intervals, double-check to ensure that your records of each transaction are comprehensive and accurate.

At the very least, maintain a record of all business dealings once a week. Examine the data using financial statements like a profit and loss statement and a balance sheet.


What independent contractor makes the most money?

The typical annual income for construction workers and building inspectors is nearly $62,000. This makes them some of the highest-paid independent contractors in the construction business. If you're just starting in your career, this isn't the position for you.

Which industries hire the most contractors?

It may come as a surprise to learn that sales and customer service aren't on top. The industrial sector, on the other hand, consistently outperforms the rest of the economy. Hence, 37% of all temporary employees work in fields as diverse as waste management, metal production, building and construction, and even aerospace and military.

What are the best work-from-home independent contractor jobs?

Remote employment Depending on the company, remote or contract workers might be classified as independent contractors, freelancers, or self-employed. Among the many possible remote jobs are writing, editing, photography, design, sales, telemarketing, virtual assistance, web development, and social media management. 

Is it better to be an independent contractor or an employee?

Being an independent contractor has several advantages over working for someone else. This includes the freedom to set your hours and determine your success. With the freedom of self-employment comes the possibility of increased earnings and potential tax breaks for things like work-related travel and equipment. Being an independent contractor comes with additional responsibilities.

Final Thoughts on Top Independent Contractor Jobs in 2024

If you're prepared to put in the time and effort, you may discover low-stress occupations that pay well. The challenge is in locating a position that is a good fit for your interests, abilities, and availability.

It's OK to dabble with various forms of supplemental income before settling on the best option for you. What we recommend most strongly is that you just begin. Reading and research may be time-consuming and not always productive.

So put your current abilities to good use and launch that side business you've considered.