We all experience times when we need money now. It might be an unexpected bill, having to replace your car prematurely, or a last-minute opportunity to take the trip of a lifetime.
Regardless of the circumstances, having to replenish your emergency fund is never a fun task. These suggestions can help you make money quickly to stay out of financial trouble.
You can pursue one or many of the following income ideas. Once you decide how much time you can commit each week for your new side hustle, you can focus your efforts on what you excel at most.
Online Opportunities to Pursue When You Need Money Now
Making money no longer means having to work an evening shift at a restaurant for a couple months to make ends meet. That might be what our parents did, and what plenty of people still do, but we have one tool today that previous generations didn’t have: the Internet.
Finding side hustles online might be the first place you start for the following reasons:
- You can name your own hours (no shift work)
- Can still be home with your family while you work
- No commute required
Online side hustles offer the most flexibility because you can work from anywhere with an internet connection. Think about this, an online side hustle I pursued two years ago even let me quit my job! ?
Do you need any more reasons why anybody should try making money online?
1. Take Online Surveys
Online surveys are one of the easiest ways to make money quickly. Most surveys take less than 15 minutes to complete. You won’t get rich from surveys, but they are an easy way to make money when you have a busy schedule. Surveys can be taken online or with a survey app on your phone in between errands, on a lunch break, or before you go to bed.
I participated in online surveys to make money as a student and to help repay my student loans. Personally, I enjoyed the variety of topics as I might rate a product I used recently one day and a current event survey the next day.
Money Tip: Survey Junkie is our favorite survey site and is the most user-friendly site for surveys. They also have a Trust Pilot rating of 8.8 out of 10 from users just like yourself.
2. Sell Your Unwanted Possessions
One of the first places to start making money online is selling items you no longer need. You can try selling your items to an instant buyback vendor for immediate payments or selling the item yourself. Instant buyback vendors are more convenient, but you might not always get the most cash back.
But, if you need money now, you might not want to risk having your item sit for two months before it sells.
Some of the online marketplaces you might consider are:
In a matter of seconds, you can scan the item barcode using the vendor’s mobile app to get an instant buyback quote. When you’re ready to sell, you print off the prepaid shipping label and receive next-day payment after the vendor receives your shipment.
Some of the best DIY marketplaces to sell are Craigslist, eBay, and Amazon because they are high-traffic marketplaces with reasonable seller fees.
Tip: You can also sell used shoes for cash online too.
3. Get Paid to Use The Internet
Maybe surveys aren’t exactly your cup of tea, but you still want an online side hustle that requires minimal effort. You have two different options in this instance.
MobileXpression is an app that pays you to use the internet. Each week, you receive credit based on the number of hours you use your phone’s internet. You can then request a cash payment.
Another popular online niche is “get paid to” sites like EarningStation. With EarningStation, you get paid to complete some of the following activities:
- Surf the internet
- Complete surveys
- Watch videos
- Play games
- Sample products
- Shop online
One reason to consider EarningStation is that you earn bonus points when you visit at least 10 days in a row. This “EarningStreak” opportunity is what helps set EarningStation apart from the others.
4. Shop Online and Get Paid
Even when you no longer need money now, you should still consider using a cashback app like Ebates or Honey. Every time you shop online, you have the chance to get money back and you don’t pay extra. Online shopping is very competitive and retailers offer cash rewards through these portals so they don’t lose a sale to the competition.
Instead of going directly to the retail website, open a shopping session with Ebates and you’re all set. In most cases, you can expect to receive your cashback email before you go to bed.
You will need to wait a month before you can cash out your earnings, so you will still want to pursue another income stream, but cashback apps are an effortless way to get cashback on every purchase.
Money Tip: Install the browser extension to make sure you never forget to activate a shopping session. And, learn more about how Ebates works.
5. Sell Unwanted Gift Cards
You might have a few gift cards in a drawer collecting dust. If you’re not going to use them, sell them for cash on Giftcard Granny. In many instances, you can get instant cash payment that you can immediately withdraw via PayPal or Direct Deposit.
To save some cash when you shop online, you can also use Giftcard Granny to buy gift cards at a discount. You also earn rewards points that can be exchanged for free gift cards too.
I’ve sold a few gift cards online and it’s very easy and the sale proceeds can be in your account tomorrow when you sell your unwanted gift cards today!
6. Freelance Online
This can be one of the most lucrative income ideas. After all, many people have eventually replaced their full-time income by freelancing online. Although it might start as a one-time gig, you will earn a steady income if you stick with it. Trust me, I’m living proof!
You can freelance in almost any industry, but there’s always a demand for:
- Graphic design
- Social Media
- Virtual Assistant
You should create a profile on Upwork and Fiverr to begin connecting with clients. Upwork might be the better option because you can apply for jobs. To earn more per job, also keep your eyes open to pitching clients.
Tip: On Episode 80 of the Money Peach Podcast, learn how Kayla earns more than $10,000 a month by being a “jack of all trades” virtual assistant with her $10K VA course. Use the discount code PEACH to get $50 off too.
7. Sell Customized Gifts
On CafePress, you can also sell custom t-shirts, drinkware, stickers, and home decor with your unique designs. This is one of the easiest ways to design clothing and gift ideas because you upload the design and CafePress handles the printing and shipping when an order is made.
8. Teach English Online
Teaching English online to international students can be the perfect side hustle opportunity if you want to work before your children wake up or after bedtime. VIPKid is one of the leading online classrooms. To get started, you need a webcam, microphone, and a love for teaching.
Most of these online teaching sites require you to have a teaching degree or prior classroom experience.
It’s also possible to tutor online or locally. Tutor.com is one place to try so you can tutor students of all ages and any subject. Being able to tutor advanced classes and the “hard sciences” is a definite advantage too.
If you have an eye for detail and can spot typos from a mile away when you read the news or visit a restaurant, you might find your calling as a proofreader. Several proofreading companies require prior experience, but you can also get your foot in the door at Cactus Communications or freelancer platforms including Upwork and Fiverr.
11. Transcribe Audio Recordings
Do you excel at dictation? Audio transcriptionists put sound recordings to paper. With sites like TranscribeMe, you transcribe one or two-minute recordings on a variety of topics. If you have medical or legal experience, you can make extra money transcribing these recordings that require a professional background.
12. Create an Online Course
With Udemy, you can create a video course to teach others something you’re an expert in. Your video can be teaching computer coding, cooking skills, making a craft, or anything else in the Udemy course catalog. You collect a royalty for each course purchase and you can easily create new courses to continue earning residual income.
13. Test Websites and Apps
Another fun way to make money online is testing websites and apps. UserTesting is one of the most popular testing platforms. Each test takes up to twenty minutes to complete and you make $10. At that rate, you make $30 an hour for testing websites!
To become a tester, you will need a computer or app that has a functioning webcam and microphone. You are given a series of tasks to complete during the test and you verbally share your thoughts as you complete each task.
Lucktastic can give you a break from your other side hustles. This app is an instant win game where you can scratch multiple tickets each day and potentially win cash prizes. If you need money now, you should still pursue other recommendations that provide a guaranteed income first.
Make Money Locally
You should also consider making money within your local community. After all, not everybody wants to stare at a computer screen to make extra income. If you enjoy being on the move or have handy skills there are plenty of ways to have a gig without working a regular shift.
Also, ask your friends and family if they have any potential clients. Word of mouth referral is always one of the most effective forms of advertising.
It seems like you see cars with Uber and Lyft stickers in the windshield more frequently. If you own a four-door vehicle, you can make some extra cash in your free time driving passengers from point A to point B. You can name your own hours and choose which ride requests to accept.
The highest demand for rides is usually on the weekends and during rush hour, but you can also earn a steady income driving in mid-day too.
You will need to be at least 21 years old to drive and pass a background check. Many rideshare drivers drive for Uber and Lyft to pick the best available route at the moment. You’re an independent contractor and aren’t restricted to only working for a single company.
Tip: New drivers often have the chance to earn a signup bonus with both Uber and Lyft!
16. Deliver Food
Many restaurants are moving away from hiring an in-house delivery team. While many pizza joints are still looking for drivers, restaurants are partnering with UberEats to offer delivery service for online orders. Once again, you have the flexibility to deliver during your free time and choose the days and hours.
The requirements for being a food delivery person are more relaxed than being a rideshare driver. You’re not required to have a car, for example, because you can deliver by bike, scooter, or foot.
17. Deliver Groceries
You can also sign-up to be an Instacart grocery shopper. The most lucrative option can be working as a full-service shopper because you shop for the order and deliver it to the buyer. If you don’t own a car, you can also be an in-store shopper who gathers the order so the buyer doesn’t have to walk the aisles.
18. Get Cashback on Grocery Purchases
Each time you shop at grocery stores, you can get cashback with Checkout51. By activating offers and scanning your receipt, Checkout51 gives you a cash reward for every redeemed offer. These cash rewards are in addition to any paper coupons you might clip, and you can potentially double your savings.
Checkout51 publishes their newest offers every Thursday. Once your account balance reaches $20, you can request a cash payment.
19. Rent Your Spare Bedroom
You can also make money by listing your spare bedroom or a second house as an Airbnb host. An increasing number of travelers prefer staying at Airbnb because it’s typically more reasonable than most hotel rooms and it’s a more enjoyable experience. Airbnb will help you through the listing process so you can begin taking guests and putting your vacant real estate to good use.
20. Be a Handyman
If you enjoy working with your hands or completing projects around the house, you can be the neighborhood handyman at TaskRabbit. You can get paid to perform some of the following tasks:
- Assembling furniture
- Basic home repairs
- Installing TVs and appliances
- Moving and packing
- Pressure washing
Many homeowners don’t have the time or skills to perform these tasks and you can be there to lend a helping hand.
By joining Care.com, you can get paid to:
- Pet care
- Senior care
Caregivers are in high demand. Maybe you only need to babysit for date night or you can find a long-term client. Either way, you get paid to do what you love.
22. Deliver Phone Books
This job is seasonal, but it can be perfect if you only need to work for a few days. Neighborhoods all across the country still get a phone book delivered at least once a year. You can even get your daily exercise requirement in on delivery days too!
You can find local positions online to begin delivering phone books.
23. Pick Up Trash
You might find this income stream a tad bizarre, but you can make money picking up trash! Brian from Clean Lots has been doing it for thirty years and makes a six-figure income.
Business and shopping center parking lots don’t clean themselves. If you’re not afraid of getting your hands a little dirty, you can put some extra green in your wallet.
Tip: Hear Brian’s story on Episode 59 of the Money Peach Podcast.
24. Sell Your Clothes
You could do what you always do and hold a garage sale, or you can also try selling your clothes to a nearby consignment store. It’s less work and you might make more money! You can also use the same tactic for bulky household goods that are too expensive to ship to an online buyer.
Another option is to try selling your more valuable clothes online if you think you can earn more selling it yourself. Make sure you take good pictures and factor shipping prices into the equation too.
25. Flip Garage Sale Finds
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Some people might be selling their treasures at a discount because they need money now. By perusing garage sales and thrift stores, you can find bargains that can be sold online for a profit.
You can also scour the “Free” section on Craigslist for steals too. Once you figure out the average selling price of the items you plan to flip, shopping will be much easier and quicker.
You will need to find the system that works best for you to find treasures and the best places to sell them.
Every town has a different dynamic to find discounted items. One tip is to visit the thrift stores in the wealthier parts of your town as they are more likely to sell quality items at steep discounts. For example, you might be able to find designer clothing for a dollar that can be sold for $10 or more.
26. Wash Cars for Cash
You can offer to wash cars by hand by having a mobile car wash station or you can travel to a person’s house to wash the car. If you provide house calls or interior detailing, you need to provide your own cleaning supplies in addition to the car wash soap you use.
It’s also possible to offer exterior car waxing services to if you have the time and want to make some additional cash.
27. Pressure Wash Houses
Here’s one task that many homeowners neglect is pressure washing their home. Some people only pressure wash their homes when they get ready to sell it. You can advertise your services online or the old-fashioned way of knocking on doors.
To increase your chances of landing a job, take before and after pictures of a few homes that you pressure wash. Being able to show your clients visual examples of your quality work goes a long way.
28. Mow Lawns
You can also mow lawns and offer basic landscaping services to make money to while improving curb appeal for the homeowner. This is a great idea to boost your income in the summer months when there’s more daylight and you’re probably outside already.
If you live in a region with significant snowfall, you can get paid during all four seasons to keep lawns and driveways in tiptop shape.
29. Clean Houses
Another way to make money any month of the year is to clean houses or places of business. You can find openings on Craigslist. For example, you might be able to clean vacation cabins on the weekends if you live near a touristy area. Or, cleaning services might also be looking for people to clean office buildings or industrial properties.
Depending on your personal network, you can also ask your friends and family if they know of anybody that needs help cleaning. Asking a simple question can help you find long-term clients or cleaning before somebody has company arrive to visit.
30. Donate Plasma
For two hours a week, you can make up to $400 a month by donating plasma and help save a life in the process. Plasma donation centers are in most large and mid-size cities. This can be your time to read a book, watch a movie, or pursue an online side hustle while you make a donation.
You get paid cash for each complete donation, but you need to donate twice (two one-hour sessions) before you get paid. This is because the donation center needs two separate donations so your plasma can be used to help others.
31. Participate in Paid Clinical Studies
Another option for making money locally is to participate in paid medical studies. You can find studies by searching for “paid medical studies near me” to find paid opportunities. You can also ask your local college or medical center if they are aware of any opportunities too.
When medical studies are available, you may have to be experiencing certain medical conditions. You will also need to be okay with being a “medical guinea pig” and testing new medications and treatment ideas.
32. Teach Lessons
All those piano lessons or karate lessons your parents paid for can finally be put to good use. You can teach a skill one night a week or multiple nights depending on how many students you have. Whether it’s music lessons, karate, gymnastics, or another talent you can teach individually or to a group, you can advertise locally to get students.
Once you decide what you can teach, you can advertise your services on Craigslist or also leave flyers at local businesses, community centers, or the public library.
33. Recycle Scrap Material
It’s also possible to make money recycling scrap material for cash. You can get cash for some of the following items you might have in your house:
- Loose metal (i.e., sheet metal, copper, tire rims)
- Metal cans
- Glass bottles
For larger objects like your old washer and dryer, you will need a truck and trailer to haul your scrap off. You can look online for scrap yards and recycle-for-cash facilities near you.
Immediately Cut Your Spending for an Instant Pay Raise
Are you ready to learn the secret on getting an immediate pay raise? Reduce your monthly spending.
For example, if you can spend $100 less each month than right now, you get an instant $1,200 indirect pay raise for the year. And, it might only take a few minutes to make a few quick changes to immediately begin saving money.
Besides using your free time to make money, you can also use these money hacks to instantly cut your spending. Another mantra you might take to hear is, “Spend less, work less.” By cutting your spending, maybe you don’t have to sacrifice your work/life balance to make extra money.
34. Cancel Unwanted Subscriptions with Trim
Do you know how you spend every dollar each month? Trim is a free app that analyzes your spending and cancels the unwanted subscription, especially those ones you’ve been meaning to cancel but haven’t because it’s only $10 a month and doesn’t pinch your wallet.
You can cancel subscriptions ranging from streaming plans like Netflix to gym memberships with a text message. Trim will also apply the best promotions to your cable tv, home internet, and cell phone plan so you don’t overpay for these services either.
Finally, Trim can also monitor your bank accounts and credit cards to make sure you don’t overdraft or forget to pay a bill.
35. Cancel Your Cable TV Subscription
The average cable tv bill costs $100 a month. You most likely have the internet at home, so you can watch the same channels for a fraction of the cost when you switch to a streaming service like SlingTV or Hulu.
Even better, you can completely cut the cord because you’re using your free time to launch a side hustle instead of watching tv. There’s nothing wrong with watching a movie or your favorite sports team from time to time, but tv doesn’t have to be your full-time hobby.
36. Switch Bank Accounts
This hack won’t give you more spending money, but you can avoid overdraft fees, monthly account fees, and earn more interest on your deposit. In addition to thinking about short-term ways to make money, you should also pursue long-term income streams to earn recurring wealth.
CIT Bank offers some of the most competitive online interest rates and you won’t pay any bank fees to keep your account open. All the money you earn from your side hustles can be deposited into this account!
37. Stop Going Out to Eat As Often
Food is a large portion of most people’s household budget. You might be spending more on food than you must because you go out to eat all the time. In many cases, you can make the same meals at home for a fraction of the cost. For a family of four, you can easily spend at least $40 for each restaurant meal.
If you don’t think it’s possible to feed a family on a budget, visit $5 Meal Plan. You can access delicious recipes that let you feed an army for pennies.
Why I Stopped Going to Restaurants
With my old job, I spent $20 every workday at restaurants or $5,000 a year. While I wouldn’t have recouped the entire $5,000 each year by cooking my own meals, I would have spent significantly less at the grocery store. After seeing how much money I could save by not going out to eat as often, I made the switch and instantly saved about $200 to $300 a month in food costs.
38. Rent Movies Instead of Buying
You might be trying to sell your old DVDs because you buy movies instead of renting them. Instead of buying moves for $15 each, you can rent movies for free from Redbox or even stream movies online for free too. Not only will you save money, but your movie collection will no longer collect dust.
39. Borrow Clothes Instead of Buying Clothes
Another area where it can be easy to overspend in clothing. Instead of buying name brand clothing in the mall, you might decide to rent designer labels from Rent the Runway. You can also find bargains at local thrift stores and consignment stores, but make sure you don’t buy something you really don’t need.
40. Ditch Your Permanent Life Insurance Policy
One of the worst “investments” an adult can make is buying permanent life insurance. In most cases, the policy benefits are not worth the extra cost. Apply for a term life insurance policy instead that can be ten times cheaper than a permanent life insurance policy.
Your policy won’t earn cash value, but your money will work harder. Instead of paying $100 a month for a whole life insurance policy, your term life insurance policy might only cost $20 a month. You can invest the $80 price difference to build your retirement nest egg.
41. File Price Protection Claims for Online Orders
You can already get cashback on every online purchase when you shop with a shopping app like Ebates and you can get additional cash back if the price drops after you make the purchase.
With Paribus, you can get free price protection notifications when a retailer drops the price on recent purchases. Paribus then submits the claim on your behalf, which means you don’t have to monitor for price changes yourself and then submit it.
Disclaimer: Paribus does compensate MoneyPeach when you sign up for Paribus using the links we have provided in this post.
42. Earn Credit Card Rewards
Many people stick with debit cards because you’re still required to immediately pay for your purchases with cash. While you won’t go into credit card debt, you’re missing out on credit card rewards for cash back or travel rewards.
Debitize is a free service that treats your credit card like a debit card. With each purchase, you earn your credit card rewards points and Debitize withdraws the cash from your bank account and pays your monthly credit card balance. So, you never have to worry about carrying a balance and you still make money on every purchase.
43. Save Your Spare Change
Maybe you’ve heard the tip of stashing all of your $1 bills in a savings envelope instead of keeping them into your wallet to spend on coffee and candy bars to easily save money for the future. The Acorns app makes it even easier to save your spare change instead of spending it.
With each purchase, Acorns rounds up the purchase amount to the next dollar for every credit or debit card purchase. For example, a $4.25 purchase becomes $5 and the extra 75 cents is invested to build a small nest egg. You can also get extra cash investments by shopping online through Acorns retail partners too.
Tip: Read our Acorns review to discover how easy it is to build wealth with a few pennies a day.
44. Stop Paying High Investing Fees
Each time you buy or sell a stock or ETF, your brokerage might charge up to $7 per trade. If you’re only investing small amounts of income at a time or are simply tired of paying hundreds of dollars in trade commissions each year, Swell Investing or M1 Finance are two options you might like to try.
You won’t pay trade fees with either investing platform. With Swell Investing, you have the option to invest in socially conscious funds that only hold companies that share similar values as yours.
45. Refinance Your High Interest Debt
There are much better options for you instead of high interest credit card debt or any high interest debt for that matter. Borrowers are literally saving thousands of dollars in interest payments by trading their higher interest debt for a lower interest personal loan. The nice thing is you have so many more options than you did just a few years ago and with the competition for your business, your new interest rate could be much lower than what you have now.
Check our our favorite places to start for lowering your high interest debt.
46. Refinance Your Student Loans
If you have a mountain of student loans to repay, you can refinance the balance for a potentially lower interest rate. This is because you now have a job and your credit score has likely improved since you earned your diploma. Credible is a leader in student loan refinancing and they even offer job loss protection benefits and incentives for entrepreneurs too.
Instead of shrugging your shoulders and thinking you need to borrow money or do the “same old thing” when you need money now, try a few of these tips instead. You will make money and you even save money by making a few adjustments to how you utilize your free time.