How to Make Money Fast
If you’re living paycheck to paycheck, or just looking to earn extra money, you’re not alone. Luckily, making extra money on the side is well within reach for many Americans. From lucrative side hustles to earning a few bucks with survey apps, you have options.
Financial constraints make it difficult to save for the future, with a recent study pointing to how dire the state of savings is among American consumers. Less than half of adults have $1,000 set aside in case of an emergency, and the majority feel as though they are living paycheck to paycheck. The reality of not having enough leads many to seek out opportunities that create additional cash flow.
The good news is that the following money-making options are available to just about anyone. With a little extra time and financial motivation, one or more of the opportunities below can change your financial picture and help you make extra money.
In this guide:
19 Ways to Make Money Online and In-Person With Side Hustles
One of the most common ways to earn additional income is through a side hustle. This is essentially a second job or contract gig where you put in a few to several hours each week to boost your income. For most, a side hustle is related to something they are passionate about or expertly skilled in. However, side hustles for today’s workforce are widely varied, and in some cases, incredibly creative. Here are the top 15 options for taking on a new side hustle to earn more each month.
Use Your Vehicle
Ridesharing apps have become increasingly popular over the last five years, with people recognizing the benefits of using technology to hail a ride from here to there. But ridesharing applications are not just for travelers; they can be an easy way to make some extra cash every day. Signing up for a service as a driver with Uber, Lyft, or the like can generate an additional $100 to $500 in income on a regular basis.
Most ridesharing applications have some criteria you need to meet in order to qualify, such as a car that is in relatively good shape and less than a decade old. You may also need to have different or additional car insurance and a plan for ongoing cleaning and maintenance to keep your vehicle ready for new passengers. If you’re able to meet these simple requirements and you have some extra time each week, consider this as a viable option for earning more cash.
Rent Out Your Space
Another aspect of the sharing economy, similar to ridesharing, is the home rental market. This does not mean rental income from a traditional sense, where you purchase a home specifically for renting it out to tenants. Instead, you can use sites like Airbnb or VRBO to offer up your fabulous or conveniently located apartment, condo, or single-family home to potential renters. On average, hosts for short-term rentals can earn $924 per month.
There are, of course, considerations to think through before listing your pad on a short-term rental site, including legal and tax ramifications for doing so. Be sure to understand these limitations before deciding this is the money-making option for you.
Do you have a love for the written word? Writing as a freelancer can provide an excellent source of additional income each month. Freelance writers are not the highest paid contract workers, but if you can find a steady gig with ongoing article assignments from a client or two, you’d be surprised how much you can rake in by putting the proverbial pen to paper.
Freelance writing gigs are more widely available than you may think. Sites like Upwork and writing job boards can be invaluable resources for finding new clients, understanding what your rates can or should be, and recognizing the opportunity for creating written works for blogs, white papers, or other technical pieces for companies or individuals.
Similar to the writing option, your skills in graphics or marketing design may be valuable to someone else in the world. That someone else may be able and willing to pay you for a job well done. You can use the same freelance or contract gig sites like Upwork or a specific graphic design site like 99Designs to share your skills and availability to take on new work easily. The amount you can earn in this niche depends heavily on the skills you have and the design portfolio you’re able to share with potential one-off clients and customers.
Offer to Sit
We don’t mean just sit and reap in magical money from the universe. No, we’re talking about house/pet/babysitting. Giving a few hours of your time each day or each week through a sitting gig can mean easy cash in your pocket. There are several online sites that make it easy to offer up these types of services, like Rover for pets or Care.com for children, for whatever sitting you prefer to tackle. If you don’t want to use an online platform, simply ask neighbors or friends if they need one or more of these services and name your price.
Unlike petsitting, which requires you to spend extended periods of time with a customer’s pet, dog walking can be an easy way to generate more income. Picking up dog walking gigs is simple either through online platforms or networking with dog owners at dog parks, your apartment building, or neighborhood. According to Glassdoor, dog walking can bring in an additional $900 per month, even on a part-time basis.
Be a VA
If you’re a champ at helping people organize their work life and tasks, reaching out to prospective or current customers or clients, or scheduling meetings, conference calls, or travel for executives, you may have an opportunity as a virtual assistant. With this side hustle, you can simply offer up your time and administrative know-how to small or large companies’ executives or managers and get paid for doing relatively simple work. With many companies taking on a global perspective, virtual assistants are in high demand.
If you have skills that others are eager to learn, consider teaching through an online course or in person. This can be nearly anything people are willing to pay for, including musical lessons, the English language, or athletics. Think about what you are good at and think about how you can turn this into a money-making opportunity.
Offer Your Skills
In addition to teaching, your skills can be valuable to those who don’t have the time, energy, or desire to take on tasks themselves. Sites like TaskRabbit make it easy to put up a listing for nearly any task you are willing to complete for others. These tasks may include heavy lifting, helping with a home or office move, handyman services, or helping organize a room or clean the house. You get to set your own rates and work as often or as little as you’d like.
Clean Things Up
If you don’t mind getting a little dirty from time to time, offering up cleaning services to friends, neighbors, or others can be a great way to make money. Similar to other side hustles, you can determine your own price, the hours you want to work, and the cleaning you will — and won’t — do. You can either use an online platform to list these services for sale or connect with neighbors or others around you to get started.
Consumers are always looking for unique goods that cannot be found readily in big retail stores or an overseas company. If you have crafting skills, including creating gifts, clothing, or décor, you can make a decent additional paycheck by providing these goods online or at local craft fairs.
Coaching is another great way to generate additional income if you have the time and the skills. Putting your leadership skills to work on the field for a youth team, college team, or recreational team may provide an easy, enjoyable way to earn more money each month.
Start a Blog
Like putting your writing skills to work as a freelance or contract writer for a company, you can start writing on your own blog to generate extra cash. Blog writing takes some time to get up and running, and you have to put in the effort to build a following. However, once you accomplish this task, you may have opportunities to get paid ads on your blog site or sponsorships that help pay the bills.
Start a Podcast
Don’t like writing but want to generate income from what you have to say? Consider starting a podcast. Creating a podcast can create an additional income stream for you through paid sponsorships, coaching opportunities, or valuable relationships with guest speakers. Starting a podcast from scratch takes some technical know-how and an interesting subject, but over time, this can be a smart, fun way to make money.
While multi-level marketing opportunities don’t always get the best reputation among consumers or participants, there are ways to make money through these programs. Skincare and makeup lines, essential oils, clothing, and health and wellness companies offer several ways to make a buck on pushing their products to friends, relatives, co-workers, and neighbors. If you don’t mind selling, these schemes can be beneficial in creating a profitable side hustle.
Apps That You Can Use to Make Money
In addition to starting a side hustle, you can use your phone or tablet to make money easily. Here are a few apps that make the process simple — and fun.
With iPoll, you can sign up either on your computer or on your phone to take product-specific surveys. You also provide your opinions in exchange for small dollar incentives. This app is easy to use whenever you want. While it may not turn you into a millionaire, it can be a great way to add to your bank account over time.
Google Opinion Rewards
Designed by the Google Surveys team, Google Opinion Rewards is available to individuals with an Android mobile device. After signing up through the app, you have the opportunity to answer quick surveys and earn credit for Google Play. You can receive up to $1.00 for completing a survey, and that can be used for gift card redemption.
Through Shopkick, shoppers can earn free gift cards both in-store and online for purchases made through the app. Rewards, or kicks, are earned by simply walking in certain stores, scanning products, or buying items, or selecting certain offers online. The rewards earned can only be redeemed for digital gift cards, but using the app can add up to extra money over time.
If you don’t like surveys or coupons, you can download the Foap mobile app and earn cash for your photos. When you add photos for sale through Foap, you allow thousands of users access to view and ultimately pay for your pictures. You can receive $5 for each picture sold, with no cap on how many photos you can sell.
Swagbucks is another option for those who like earning money while shopping, watching videos, answering surveys, or simply surfing the web. Anyone can join Swagbucks through a simple sign-up on the mobile app or online. When tasks are completed, users earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards to major retailers like Amazon and WalMart.
Other Ways to Make Money Fast
Side hustles and mobile apps aside, you can also earn extra cash through one or more of the following activities.
Sell What You Don’t Need
Most of us have material items lying around the house or in storage that aren’t being used as often as we’d like. That old treadmill that you jumped on one time three years ago or clothes that haven’t fit in a decade can all be quickly turned into cash. Think about having a garage sale, or post your unwanted but good condition items online to generate some extra income for the month.
Sign Up for a Study
There are several medical studies taking place around the country every day, but most people are unaware that they can participate, possibly for compensation. Medical studies that test new prescription medications, treatment options, or devices are not for everyone, but they can be a smart way to earn a little extra. A quick online search often reveals current studies that are taking on new participants.
Change Your Credit Card
Going to your credit card for extra money may seem counterintuitive, but you can make a nice chunk of change if you play your literal cards right. Many credit card issuers offer sign-up bonuses when you spend a certain amount in the first few months, and these rewards can equate to big savings. If you’re planning on making a big purchase in the near future, check out credit card offers with sign-up bonuses to see if you could reap some serious savings.
Search for Unclaimed Income/Assets
Although rare, you may have unclaimed money out there in the world that you don’t know about. This could be from an inactive bank account, a government source, wages, pension funds, or tax refunds. Finding this information is made much easier through a search of USAGov’s list of official sources, and it doesn’t cost anything to see what you may be owed.
Get a Bank Bonus
If you’re in the market for a new bank or credit union to manage your finances, look at options that include bonuses for new members or customers. Some financial institutions pay you to move your direct deposit after opening a checking or savings account, for making a single deposit after establishing an account, or by taking out a new loan or credit card product. Be sure to look closely at the limitations on bank bonuses before signing up.
Refer a Friend
Similar to bonuses for new members or customers, some companies, including financial institutions, offer cash incentives for referring friends, family members, or co-workers. If you’re comfortable sharing your experience with someone close to you with a particular company, check and see if they offer a referral program to help you boost your bank account.