Whether you need to reel in your spending or just want to get ahead with your finances, consider picking up a side gig for extra cash flow. You can become a ride-share driver, take online surveys, make deliveries for Amazon or leverage your unique skills to earn more. Keep reading to learn about 26 ways to build your wealth.
How To Make Money Fast: 20 Ways
There are plenty of ways to get money fast, whether you’re looking to make money in just a single day, online at home or via a side hustle. Some income generation methods that can help you make money fast include:
- Sell your gently used items on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace
- Trade in old gadgets and electronics for cash
- Sell unused gift cards
- Host a yard sale
- Work as a freelancer
- Track down unclaimed money
- Rent out your stuff
- Flip websites
- Open an online dropshipping store
- Be an affiliate marketer
- Sell digital products
- Become an online survey taker
- Be a rideshare driver
- Be a delivery driver
- Become a user tester
- Tutor students online
- Work as a virtual assistant
- Work as a content translator
- Become a music coach
- Translate phone calls
- Become a pet sitter or dog walker
- Assist with last-mile deliveries or moving
- Mow lawns
- Access your paycheck earlier
- Consolidate debt
- Ask for a raise
1. Sell Your Gently Used Items on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace
Do you have gently used items that you no longer want? If so, there probably is someone — or several someones — who gladly will pay you for them. Take a few photos, write a brief description and post your items for sale on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
2. Trade in Old Gadgets and Electronics for Cash
- Fitness trackers
- Game consoles
Buyback services will purchase old gadgets and electronics like these online. Some electronics buyback services include ItsWorthMore, Decluttr, Gazelle and Trademore. You can also use eBay and other third-party marketplaces to price your items appropriately and sell them independently.
3. Sell Unused Gift Cards
If you have unwanted gift cards gathering dust in a drawer, sell them. You might not get full face value for the cards, but it’s not like you’ll take a loss. Remember, you didn’t buy them — it’s essentially free money in your pocket.
Sell unused gift cards on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace or eBay. Or visit sites such as CardCash to see how much you can sell your gift card for and make the sale in just a few clicks. You also can offer gift cards on your social media accounts to see if there are any takers.
4. Host a Yard Sale
Yard sales are an effective way to figuratively kill two birds with one stone. Not only can you put money in your pocket fast, but you can also get rid of items in your home that are doing nothing more than collecting dust.
The process is simple.
Go through your house and find all the items that have been hidden away in closets and cupboards for longer than you remember. Next, get your hands on a few pieces of construction board and make signs to point people to your home for a yard sale.
Now, set your unused items up nicely in your front yard or driveway and post signs starting at the nearest main road to your home, directing people to your sale. Be sure you have cash on hand to offer customers change. Then watch the money roll in!
5. Work as a Freelancer
- $5 or more per project
Fiverr is a great place for first-time freelancers looking to build experience and their portfolios. From logo design and animation to editing and voice-over work, you can find tasks suited to your skills. Prices start at $5 per project.
Once you accumulate feedback, referrals and experience, you can start charging much more. Some people have taken their Fiverr gigs full-time, with jobs paying as much as $10,000 per project, according to the company’s website.
6. Track Down Unclaimed Money
About one in seven Americans have unclaimed property that’s being held by state governments and treasuries, according to the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. If you’ve ever rented an apartment, switched banks or insurance companies, changed jobs, purchased traveler’s checks or paid a utility deposit, you could be one of them.
Each state maintains its own unclaimed money database you can search for free. The U.S. government maintains a web page, located here, that links to state sites as well as to federal government resources for finding unclaimed VA life insurance, FHA mortgage insurance, tax, investments, savings bonds and other funds.
7. Rent Out Your Stuff
Chances are you have something someone else wants and is willing to pay you to use. It might be shelf space in your garage, a parking space, a spare room or even tools, a kayak or camping gear. Although you can find platforms dedicated to specific types of property, such as Airbnb for your spare room or Turo for your car, all-in-one sites like Yoodlize let you rent nearly anything you own.
8. Flip Websites
- Earnings start at a few dollars for a bare-bones template site
If you have a website that’s generating income — or you can build a turnkey site a buyer could use to launch their own business — you might be able to sell it for serious cash. Flippa, a popular platform for buying and selling websites, has a number of categories, including content, e-commerce, Saas, services and marketplaces. About half the sites currently for sale are listed for $1 to $5,000, but the site also lists a number of multimillion dollar sites for sale.
9. Open an Online Dropshipping Store
- About $2,000 per month
Amazon and Shopify are two sites where you can open your own store, automatically add products and have the products shipped directly from the suppliers to your customers. You’ll need to do your due diligence when it comes to selecting products and suppliers and marketing your store, but both platforms have extensive educational resources to help you get started. Shopify’s Oberlo dropshipping app also has lots of information plus a profit margin calculator.
Shopify says dropshippers can make $2,000 per month working part-time on an established store.
10. Be an Affiliate Marketer
- Up to $300 a day or more
Affiliate marketing involves sharing products online and earning a commission by joining one or more affiliate programs, such as Amazon Associates, ClickBank or ShareASale. You’ll earn by promoting and selling those products through your blog or social media channels.
According to Affise, a performance marketing platform for advertisers, low-level affiliates can earn up to $300 a day, while high-level affiliates can earn more than $3,000 a day.
Affiliate marketing can be an entire career — not just a side hustle — based on passive income, which is as close as most people will ever get to free money.
11. Sell Digital Products
- Pay depends on the pricing of products and units sold
Digital products can be sold through a number of marketplaces, many of which also handle physical sales: WordPress blogs, eBay and Etsy are a few popular options to sell courses, artwork, printables and more.
According to Oberlo, there are 2.64 billion global digital buyers in 2023. The more digital products you have to sell, the more passive income you’ll potentially make.
12. Become an Online Survey Taker
- Up to $16 an hour
You also can visit the website of the Columbia Business School Center for Decision Sciences to sign up for online research studies that pay about $16 an hour.
13. Be a Rideshare Driver
- $25 per hour (median)
Driving for a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft make it easy to earn money in your spare time, using your own vehicle. Both services require a background check and vehicle inspection as part of their application process, but once you’ve been accepted, you can start driving right away and cash out multiple times each day.
14. Be a Delivery Driver
- $23 per hour (median)
Spark, Amazon Flex, GrubHub, Roadie, UberEats and DoorDash are just a few of the companies that pay drivers to make deliveries using their own car. Rules, pay and requirements vary by company and platform. However, you can stack delivery gigs to maximize your time.
15. Become a User Tester
- $10 per 20-minute assignment
If you have 20 minutes to spare, you can make money fast at home on UserTesting, which pays $10 per test. The company pays people to visit websites and apps, complete sets of tasks and give opinions on the experience.
16. Tutor Students Online
- Up to $25 per hour before commission
If you have a computer, an internet connection and expertise in just one subject area, you can tutor students online. TutorMe hires tutors in more than 300 subjects and pays $16 an hour. Preply uses tutors in more than 100 subjects. Tutors set their rates and earn an average of $18.30 per hour, according to Preply’s internal data.
17. Work as a Virtual Assistant
- Average income of $24.40 per hour
A virtual assistant can work for an individual or a big business, performing tasks that include responding to customer phone calls, setting appointments, assisting with travel or event planning, or posting to social media. Since many people do these things daily as part of their personal agendas, they are well suited to virtual assistant jobs.
18. Work as a Content Translator
- Average income of $20.62 per hour
If you know two or more languages, you’re in luck. Content translation is a booming business with hundreds of job postings on sites like Indeed at any given time. All you need to do is convert content from one language to another.
Some of these jobs can be quite lucrative, as well. Many listings on Indeed have rates starting at around $50,000 per year, but that price can climb significantly higher.
19. Become a Music Coach
- Average income of $52,214 per year
If you know how to play the piano, guitar, saxophone, drums or any other musical instrument, or even if you’re a great singer who can convey how it’s done, you can make money helping other people learn how to do what you love.
The average private piano lesson could be anywhere from $40 to $100 in your pocket for each lesson. You could make even more money teaching groups of three or more, with the average group lesson costing between $40 and $50 per hour per participant.
You can earn a similar amount of money teaching other instruments, like the guitar, or giving vocal lessons.
20. Translate Phone Calls
- Average income of $25 per hour
Another option if you know two or more languages is to become a phone call translator. Several companies are happy to pay $20 or more per hour to have you translate phone calls for their foreign language-speaking customers.
Some jobs for phone call translators pay $60,000 per year or more if you want to translate full-time.
21. Become a Pet Sitter or Dog Walker
- Median income of $14.32 per hour
Sign up to watch pets while their owners are out of town. Pet-sitting sites, such as Rover, connect pet owners with sitters for a cut — 15% to 25% — of the sitter’s earnings paid by client users. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, pet sitters make a median of $14.32 an hour, or $29,790 a year.
22. Assist With Last-Mile Deliveries or Moving
- Average earnings of $38 to $109 per hour, depending on your moving vehicle
Delivery drivers often need some muscle to help them load and unload their trucks for deliveries and moves. Sign up with GoShare to become a “helper” and earn a minimum average of $45 per hour. Or, at Dolly, the “hands” are paid $35 an hour, plus tips.
23. Mow Lawns
- Average income is between $48 and $211 per lawn
Lawn care is a booming industry; it takes little more than owning a lawn mower and a weed trimmer and being willing to work. Depending on the lawn size, you can expect to rake in between $48 and $211 on average for every lawn you take care of each time you show up to provide services.
So, how do you get started?
Once you have the equipment, take a stroll through your neighborhood and look for lawns the owners haven’t mowed or maintained. When you find them, knock on the front door and explain that you’re a neighbor starting a lawn care service and would like to take care of their lawn.
Chances are, you’ll run into “no” plenty of times before you get your first “yes,” but don’t let that discourage you. Keep trying until you build a lucrative lawn-care service.
24. Access Your Paycheck Earlier
Although not really a way to “make money,” this tip can help you gain access to your money faster if you’re in a pinch. Many banks offer early access to paychecks you have direct-deposited into your checking account. You can also check into paycheck advance apps to help you access your paycheck two to three days faster than regular bank processing times — or instantly if you want to pay an extra fee, such as 1%.
25. Consolidate Debt
It might be worth it to consolidate your debt if it will help you save money. If you have multiple monthly debts with higher interest rates, see if you can consolidate those debts into one at a lower overall interest rate.
Not only can a lower interest rate help you save hundreds — or thousands — of dollars, but it can also make managing your debt less stressful.
26. Ask for a Raise
If you’ve been in your job for a minimum of six months, and you feel your performance warrants a bump in pay, you can ask for a raise.
Be prepared to present evidence as to why you deserve a raise, just as you would if your raises are tied to periodic performance reviews. Be aware, however, that many employers won’t consider a raise until you’ve been working for at least one year.
What To Avoid When Looking for Fast Cash
While you might be desperate to get your hands on some quick cash, there are some avenues you should avoid, including payday loans, car title loans and high-interest personal loans or debt consolidation loans. All of these types of loans can come with fees and astronomical interest, which can saddle you with expensive debt that can be difficult to pay off.
Also, be wary of online jobs that don’t require any special skills, education or experience but have a high rate of pay or generous perks. If an opportunity seems too good to be true, it likely is. Unfortunately, many online job offers can be scams.
How To Build Sustainable Wealth
Once you’ve made extra money, you should focus on setting yourself up for long-term financial success. It isn’t just about how to make money fast, but also about keeping it.
If you’re a beginner when it comes to investing, take time to set your investment goals. Here’s what you should think about:
- Figure out how much you can budget for investments.
- Choose your investment types based on your risk tolerance.
- Choose a platform to invest with.
With these in mind, you can create a solid foundation where you can not only begin building your wealth but also continue maintaining it.
Creating a budget allows you to compare your income to your expenses, as well as to set goals for spending and saving. While there are different budgeting techniques, all of them revolve around tallying your expenses and reducing expenses where you can.
Regardless of how you choose to make money, you need to be able to store your cash safely and have easy access to funds when you need them.
Opening a savings account can be your first step to building sustainable wealth. And if you find that you need more help in reaching your savings goals, you can work with a qualified and reputable financial advisor.
If you want to get money fast, there are plenty of ways to do so. Scroll through this list, determine which options are best for you and get started today.
FAQ About Making Money Fast
- How can I get immediate money?
- One of the best ways to get money immediately is to sell your unwanted goods. Used electronics, unused gift cards and several other items you might have lying around your house may be just what you need to immediately put some money in your pocket. Of course, selling things isn't the only way to make money fast. Use any of the options above to get your hands on the money you need.
- How can I earn $1,000 today?
- It may be difficult to earn $1,000 today, but it's not impossible. Start by looking through your home for items of value that you're not using. Do you have an old computer, 3D printer or any other piece of technology you can sell? What about gently used clothing or kitchen items? Next, try to find private buyers and sell them as many of your items as possible.
- Take the items you have left to the pawn shop. Of course, pawn shops are in business to make money, so you'll get less than you would for selling your items to a private party, but they can get you closer to your $1,000 goal. Keep in mind that pawn shops will try to lowball, so it's best to negotiate to try and get as much money for your items as possible.
- How can I earn $100 fast?
- Just about anything on the list above can help put $100 in your pocket quickly. Sell your gently used items, give people rides using a ride-sharing platform like Uber, become a music coach or take advantage of any of the other tips mentioned above.
- How can I make $500 fast?
- You can make $500 quickly in multiple ways, but the easiest way is likely to sell your unwanted goods. It might surprise you how much money you have tied up in unused items collecting dust around your house.
Information is accurate as of Nov. 27, 2023.
The article above was refined via automated technology and then fine-tuned and verified for accuracy by a member of our editorial team.
Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.
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