$60/hr: How can it be done?

@myst4au wrote:

I am continually amazed by the auto shop that pays $20 (sometimes with a $5 bonus) and insists that it will take only 15 - 20 minutes on site. Are you kidding? Has anyone ever managed to complete a new car shop in 20 minutes and have it accepted? "Test test drive not required" - sure, but if one is offered, take it. 20 minutes on site is absurd.

I've done about five or six of those. They take an hour. My first mystery shop was one of the $20 ones, but I won't touch them without large bonuses.

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You are not a wife.

@MFJohnston wrote:

I teach full time. I am a wife, kids and a granddaughter.
I completely disagree with your statement.

@jlovesnyc wrote:

One caveat needed here: you must have no other responsibilities in life except Mystery shopping.
Oops

@JASFLALMT wrote:

You are not a wife.

@MFJohnston wrote:

I teach full time. I am a wife, kids and a granddaughter.
I completely disagree with your statement.

@jlovesnyc wrote:

One caveat needed here: you must have no other responsibilities in life except Mystery shopping.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
I have never eaten a hockey puck. I was thinking more along the lines that you could hit them with a hockey stick and they would probably fly pretty well without falling apart.

@MFJohnston wrote:

I can tell you that digestion is slow.... You'll have a lump in your stomach for hours... Is that what eating a hockey puck is like?

@JASFLALMT wrote:

I've heard that they make really good hockey pucks.

@Mum wrote:

MF you are a Rockstar! Your posts are really helpful and precise. But, my question is what did you do with those 31 JIB's. I really want to know.
Selfless and helpful post. Thank you. It makes me wonder if video shopping is next turn I need to take.
Hockey puck reminds me of the late, hysterical Don Rickles.

The problem with winter sports is that - follow me closely here - they generally take place in winter. - Dave Barry
I shopped for an hour and a half today, completing 3 shops. I made $185.

HOWEVER, the round trip drive time was 6 hours.

Which shelters the income from taxes.

smiling smiley

Tomorrow, I'll drive 3 hours round trip, and complete 2 shops. The two shops will take me an hour and a half. But I'm only making $150, and only $100 of it is sheltered by the mileage deduction. Before I leave in the morning, I'll check a couple job boards for fillers, maybe make the day a little better.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/27/2019 02:43AM by ceasesmith.
@1cent wrote:

I don’t get the “that” in “That is exactly why.”

The portion of you post that I quoted is the "that." What you said is exactly indicative of what I was saying. No worries though, seems we aren't on the same page at all.

There are reasons that a body stays in motion
At the moment only demons come to mind
@ceasesmith wrote:

I shopped for an hour and a half today, completing 3 shops. I made $185.

HOWEVER, the round trip drive time was 6 hours.

Which shelters the income from taxes.

smiling smiley

Tomorrow, I'll drive 3 hours round trip, and complete 2 shops. The two shops will take me an hour and a half. But I'm only making $150, and only $100 of it is sheltered by the mileage deduction. Before I leave in the morning, I'll check a couple job boards for fillers, maybe make the day a little better.

At 54.5 cents per mile the mileage deduction on a 6 hour highway drive should be enough to zero out the $185 dollars you made. The question is at the end of the day were you compensated enough to cover the wear and tear on your vehicle. Were you compensated fairly for the risk you took of getting stranded out in the middle of nowhere? Were you compensated enough for the risk you took for your own life zipping down the road 60 miles an hour for 6 hours.
As I said, the drive shelters the income.

Adequate? Hardly.

However, in 2019, I had a one-hundred mile commute every day. Not deductible. I worked 18.5 hours to make $185. And my take-home would be $148, and my gas cost for each daily commute was $12.

So am I compensated adequately? No.

But it beats the alternative all to Hades and back.
I'm not a car shop fan because if you take a test drive, they get your info off of your driver's license...and they'll hound you looking for a sale for a couple of months afterward.
They only get your address. They don't get your email or phone. Every mystery shopper should have a dead gmail/google voice account that you pay no attention to except for follow up if you need it.

There are reasons that a body stays in motion
At the moment only demons come to mind
I have had $60/hr. days and $0/hr. days so it all kind of avarages out to a medium income for me. I choose not to have a regular job because, frankly, I am spoiled now, being my own boss. But I live cheaply and have no monthly rent/mortage/car payment so I don't want or need $60/hr. every day. We all have different goals and preferences. I do admire those go-getters who can make top dollar or travel to exotic places on shops, sometimes I wish I had that energy and drive! But I don't and I am ok with that. As long as I make enough to live and put a little away, I am good.

sestrahelena
SoBroke seems to be forgetting, many of us, myself included want a higher quality to life, which means being one's own boss, working from home, not putting up with people you don't want to be near, scheduling on your own and doing what you want and don't want. Just had lunch at one of my favorites which I've gone to many times on my own, and now shop. 15.00 lunch, no buying food, no dishes, fun to go out and enjoy....I'll take it any day after having been our own bosses in a 50 year old business and making plenty of money. Retirement and MSing go hand in hand, while allowing one to do what one wants...60.00 an hour isn't even the question and not my goal, although I've scheduled two airport jobs for 30.00 each which will take 20 minutes ...wala, 60.00 in 40 minutes...needing a decent "hourly" wage has you in the wrong business, after eight years, you must have found something you like or why stay so long....waiting for an answer.

Live consciously....
So I did pick up a couple "filler" jobs at $35 each, plus reimbursement. So $238 for the day. Left home at 12:15, was back home by 6:15. Not $60 an hour, but close to $40. And part of it was sheltered by the 200 miles travel.

And no, I can't do it every day.
Thanks so much for the post MFJohnston!

Is this the kind of thing we could put as a sticky on the new members section?
Ceasesmith: I am SO jealous!! I would LOVE to do a shop at Wall drug, but I'm afraid the drive from Indiana, and my all day "wandering" would probably eat up any profit! Lol I have some disabilities that curtail me from spending to much time walking and/or standing for long periods or like you I pay dearly the next day (s) after... Isnt it great to have this to do though?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
You take this circus, I'm sick of these clowns! I'm ;-p
After a few years of this, I have an opinion about dollar goals. As time passes and I think about what I may or may not want to do in mystery shopping, I always come back to this: A dollar goal might not be as important as the act and fact of working. Are you the kind of shopper who celebrates when you roll over, at least halfway, all by yourself, in bed? Or, are you the kind of shopper who will not roll over in bed for less than some designated amount of dollars?

I want to celebrate the uniqueness of shoppers and their situations. I want to cheer for the ones who might not be able to move tomorrow because they did so much work today. They worked! And, they will work again, when they can. This is magnificent and at least as good as consistent big bucks. I want to congratulate the ones who can do so much work that they can bring in the big bucks and not feel it the next day. I want to encourage the rural shoppers who do not want to or are unable to travel for routes or an array of shops. (I value the wide open spaces far more than I do the developed places that have multiples of many shop types and can provide near-constant mystery shops for people who can get there.)

As long as each unique and independent shopper is meeting their own goals, all is well. As long as the wide open spaces exist, all is well in my world.

The problem with winter sports is that - follow me closely here - they generally take place in winter. - Dave Barry
When I was doing mystery shopping full time I would take on routes, but only set a goal of $40 an hour (But usually would go above that). Now that I"m working full time again and doing shops part time I go for $25-30 an hr since I'm mostly doing all phone and web shops now.
I was thinking the same thing. Lots of burgers. I had a friend who fed them to his dog. LOL. True story.
Good idea for a thread. I enjoyed reading this. Valuable info. I have always maintained an attitude that when I mystery shop I look to make $60 an hour, but won't accept work that pays me less than $30 an hour (I'll just do something else instead. My free time is valuable).

I get $60 an hour on apartment shops (audio recorded only. The MSC I shop with has very few video shops). I don't know of hardly any video shops so I don't do them. I wish there were more where I live.

Ath use to have high paying bank shops, but they have decreased in fees lately.

I get special projects from time to time that pay north of $100.

Those are all examples of great paying shops. I end up making north of a thousand dollars a month. I just do this in my spare time. I have a full time gig. That means I have to find time in the morning, night, or at lunch to do shops. If it's busy at work then obviously I have less time to shop. I have averaged over a thousand a month for several years now. I use this money for my vaca money (trips, eating out, buy $11 beers at sporting events, etc.). grinning smiley
The other things that I do to generate additional $$ is focus groups. Those pay great. I sit in a room and answer questions and get paid a lot of money. I have one tonight that pays $125 for 2 hours of "work". They usually feed me too. One of them that I did was to evaluate the local news channel. I ended up being on TV. My 5 seconds of fame. Lol!

I also do credit card promos. I can't count how many times I get a cc offer for "spend $500 in the first three months and get $100". Bank of America has a baseball cc promo right now for $200. I've worn those promos out. I bet I've opened and closed 55 credit cards / bank accounts with B of Am. Oh wait. Doesn't that hurt my credit? Nope. It does take a small hit in the short run. My credit score is north of 800 right now. I have all the credit in the world.

Good luck folks. I really appreciate forums like this where shoppers help other shoppers.
@MFJohnston wrote:

Here is how I am able to make $60/hr.

1. Video Retail. The typical retail video assignment pays $60 and involves 10-15 minutes onsite with a 20-30 minute report.

2. Video Apartments. The typical video apartment pays $60 and involves 15 minutes onsite and a 20-45 minute report. I don't take these for less than $80 for some MSC's - sometimes I require more.

3. Video New Homes: The typical new home video assignment pays $60 plus a reasonable travel expense (always added in) for 5-120 minutes onsite (45 minutes is typical) and a 5-minutes invoice.

4. Casinos: For 60 minutes onsite, I often get paid $30 and get reimbursed for a meal. Plus, I get to keep my winnings. If you learn how to play Blackjack well, you'll walk out the door with $50-$200 in your pocket almost half the time. Otherwise, you get reimbursed for your losses.

5. Heavy bonuses at the end of a month for driving to those places nobody wants to go. It is not uncommon to have $50-$100 bonuses for 10-minute gas stations, 15-minute bank inquiries, and USPS shops. I have had bonuses of up to $250 for such shops. Of course, you can add shops along the way. Bonused (non-video) apartment shops that pay $70-$110 for 15 minutes onsite and 45 minutes reporting. Apartments often have 18-month rotations, and some need to be shopped two or three times each month. It is not uncommon for the MSC to run out of shoppers, driving bonuses up.

6. Routes: Some shops are super-quick, but don't pay well. If you can get a bunch of them next to one-another, you can make good money. As an example: I did 31 JIB visits plus one box electronics store in a day. My profit for the day was just shy of $400 for about 10 hours on the road. I only spent that long on the road as I had stomach issues (before my first JIB shop) requiring several restroom stops and lost at least two hours when I could not hit all my morning JIB visits (before the 2-4PM no-visit window) on time and had to re-draw my route midday. So.. it was a $40/hr day. On a day when I'm ill and require lots of extra rest breaks, that's pretty good.

7. I almost never take shops at their initial asking price. If work is not available at my price, I take a day/week off.

How I find out about these opportunities:
1. Email and phone calls. Most of my best bonus offers come when I get an email or a phone call from an MSC trying to fill an assignment.
2. Social Media: Sometimes desperate schedulers post offers similar to what they post on this forum.
3. Job Boards: If I see a shop that I know to be difficult-to-fill with a modest bonused attached, I might contact the scheduler and make an offer.
@MFJohnston wrote:

Here is how I am able to make $60/hr.

1. Video Retail. The typical retail video assignment pays $60 and involves 10-15 minutes onsite with a 20-30 minute report.

2. Video Apartments. The typical video apartment pays $60 and involves 15 minutes onsite and a 20-45 minute report. I don't take these for less than $80 for some MSC's - sometimes I require more.

3. Video New Homes: The typical new home video assignment pays $60 plus a reasonable travel expense (always added in) for 5-120 minutes onsite (45 minutes is typical) and a 5-minutes invoice.

4. Casinos: For 60 minutes onsite, I often get paid $30 and get reimbursed for a meal. Plus, I get to keep my winnings. If you learn how to play Blackjack well, you'll walk out the door with $50-$200 in your pocket almost half the time. Otherwise, you get reimbursed for your losses.

5. Heavy bonuses at the end of a month for driving to those places nobody wants to go. It is not uncommon to have $50-$100 bonuses for 10-minute gas stations, 15-minute bank inquiries, and USPS shops. I have had bonuses of up to $250 for such shops. Of course, you can add shops along the way. Bonused (non-video) apartment shops that pay $70-$110 for 15 minutes onsite and 45 minutes reporting. Apartments often have 18-month rotations, and some need to be shopped two or three times each month. It is not uncommon for the MSC to run out of shoppers, driving bonuses up.

6. Routes: Some shops are super-quick, but don't pay well. If you can get a bunch of them next to one-another, you can make good money. As an example: I did 31 JIB visits plus one box electronics store in a day. My profit for the day was just shy of $400 for about 10 hours on the road. I only spent that long on the road as I had stomach issues (before my first JIB shop) requiring several restroom stops and lost at least two hours when I could not hit all my morning JIB visits (before the 2-4PM no-visit window) on time and had to re-draw my route midday. So.. it was a $40/hr day. On a day when I'm ill and require lots of extra rest breaks, that's pretty good.

7. I almost never take shops at their initial asking price. If work is not available at my price, I take a day/week off.

How I find out about these opportunities:
1. Email and phone calls. Most of my best bonus offers come when I get an email or a phone call from an MSC trying to fill an assignment.
2. Social Media: Sometimes desperate schedulers post offers similar to what they post on this forum.
3. Job Boards: If I see a shop that I know to be difficult-to-fill with a modest bonused attached, I might contact the scheduler and make an offer.

Well, you are getting a lot more than one can get around here. You must be a speed writer too!
@jameschicago
I did a little bit of shopping in Chicago last summer. The new home shops I did had precisely the same pay -with a very healthy travel bonus. I did not attempt to do apartment shops as I was on vacation and did not want to deal with targets. However, I *just now* looked at the job board for my favorite apartment company and advertised shops are *more* than they are currently in Seattle. I think there is more video available in Chicago, than Seattle, too. (I've seen them advertised on video shopper boards.)

I do type very quickly - which is one of the reasons I do well with narrative-heavy reports.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
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