Need to earn money within a day or a few hours?
Maybe you need to fill up your gas tank so you can get to work, or perhaps you have bills that need to be paid before your next check comes in.
Either way, it’s easy to stress out when your bank balance is oh-so-dangerously close to $0. And if you’re stressing over that, be comforted in the fact you’re not alone. According to CNBC, 63% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to make money quickly, either by making money at home or using your skills and expertise to earn cash. Some of the best ways to earn money quickly require creative thinking and hard work, yet others require hardly any effort.
Sure, you want to learn how to invest to feel financially secure later in life, but that will have to wait. If what you need is cash you can spend right away, consider these 21 ways to earn money within a day, a week, or a few months of time.
What are the best ways to make money fast?
Table of Contents
- What are the best ways to make money fast?
- 1. Work as a freelancer & earn money online
- 2. Build a digital real estate portfolio
- 3. Create and sell homemade or digital items on Etsy.com
- 4. Sell stock photos online
- 5. Start a home organization business
- 6. List Your Home on Airbnb or host experiences
- 7. Work as a virtual assistant
- 8. Help install Christmas lights for the holidays
- 9: Complete home-based tasks through TaskRabbit or Amazon Mechanical Turk
- 10. Answer questions on JustAnswer.com
- 11. Become a financial coach
- 12. Become a rideshare driver
- 13. Deliver food or groceries
- 14. Take care of pets through Rover.com
- 15. Babysit kids
- 16. Take inventory of your items and sell stuff you no longer want
- 17. Sell used electronics you don’t need anymore
- 18. Sell off unused gift cards
- 19. Take surveys online
- 20. Open a new checking or savings account
- 21. Donate plasma
- The Bottom Line – Making Money Fast
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on How to Make Money Fast
First off, you should know about the ways you can use your creativity and skill to earn money on the side. Some of these hustles can help you earn money within a day, yet others will require work to build up streams of passive income that can change your life.
1. Work as a freelancer & earn money online
Potential money: $5 to $500 or more per gig
Have a skill you can use on the internet? You’ll have an opportunity to make extra money online. Currently, according to Zippia.com, over 36% of the U.S. population does some sort of freelance work.
If you have any skill that translates into work you can do online, you can find freelance gigs and start earning extra cash right away. This is true with freelance writing, graphic design, programming, or even helping others get their business organized.
You can use all kinds of platforms to start freelancing, including Fiverr. This platform lets you pick up easy work that offer starting pay of $5, but you can use it to build up your portfolio and work your way up to higher-paying gigs over time.
Other platforms that facilitate gigs for freelancers include Upwork, Freelancer.com, and FlexJobs, to name a few. You can almost always create an online profile for free, and the amount of good money you can earn through freelance work is limited by how much time you want to put in.
2. Build a digital real estate portfolio
Potential money: Unlimited
While you can invest in digital real estate that someone else has already built, building your own brand can be considerably more lucrative over time. Building a digital real estate portfolio can mean starting a blog to creating and nurturing an affiliate marketing site. However, digital real estate can also come in the form of a monetized TikTok account, an Instagram account, or even a heavily-followed gaming account on Twitch.
I’m not shy about the fact this website has helped me earn millions of dollars over the last decade. Also, be aware that starting a blog isn’t that difficult or expensive but that there will be a major learning curve as you sharpen your online skills.
For the most part, it just takes time to learn all the ins and outs of running a digital real estate empire and monetizing every aspect of your brand. Like anything else, though, the first step to earning money online with your own website is getting started and seeing where the journey takes you.
3. Create and sell homemade or digital items on Etsy.com
Potential money: Unlimited
If you love making homemade items or have a genuinely creative mind, you can make money the easy way by making items and selling them on Etsy.com.
Your homemade items could be anything from customized floor mats to unique Christmas ornaments or home decor and graphic design prints. The sky’s the limit when it comes to items you can make and sell, and the amount of cash you can make depends on your craft, the items you’re selling, and the market demand.
While Etsy does charge a small listing fee (20 cents per listing) and takes a percentage of each sale you make (6.5% of the total order amount), your start-up costs for this gig could be minimal. You can also boost your income over time by growing your audience and your sales.
The best part about Etsy is that you can start small and see what happens. You can also experiment with different items you make to see which sell fastest and with the largest profit margin.
4. Sell stock photos online
Potential money: $1 per photo and up
If you have a good camera and an eye for detail, consider taking stock photos and selling them to websites like ShutterStock or iStockPhoto. Websites like these need new photos they can market and sell to potential clients over time, yet they don’t necessarily want to take the photos themselves.
What kind of photos can you sell? Stock photos can be almost anything, but the best sellers tend to be generic photos of nature, roads, cars, and families.
The key to succeeding in this gig is taking a ton of generic photos to apply to a range of situations. From there, you can see which ones sell and tailor your approach to what works the best.
5. Start a home organization business
Potential money: $100 per gig and up
If you love to organize and want to earn some fast cash on the side doing something you’re good at, consider starting your own home organization business.
Home organizers are often getting paid $100 or more for each gig they take. You can use your skills and experience to help people organize their homes, garages, or office space.
While you can create and pass out flyers or advertise your business with platforms like Facebook Marketplace, you can also offer home organization on platforms like Care.com. This platform lets you set your own rates, and you can create a job posting or apply to jobs that others post.
6. List Your Home on Airbnb or host experiences
Potential money: $15 per booking and up
If you live in a tourist area or another place that people frequently visit, you can market and sell all kinds of unique experiences to travelers who want to explore. You can host walking or food tours in your area, or you can teach people about something you know, such as gardening or glassblowing.
Examples of unique Airbnb experiences from a simple search include flying lessons in the Chicago area, in-person farm tours, and a fun campfire experience with cows to keep you company. A guy I know (Martin Dasko of Studenomics) even hosts coffee-drinking tours in his hometown, which people book and pay for regularly.
If you can come up with any kind of fun event people will pay for, you can host it with Airbnb and earn some easy cash along the way.
7. Work as a virtual assistant
Potential money: $20 to $50 an hour or more
If you’re looking for an awesome self-employed job opportunity you can do from home and you have plenty of online skills, consider working as a virtual assistant. People who work in this gig do many different online tasks for their clients, including writing newsletters, editing content, answering emails, and creating graphics. Most virtual assistants also juggle a handful of clients that assign them different tasks, and they can work flexible hours that fit with the rest of their life.
While the amount you can earn as a virtual assistant varies, most charge $20 per hour or more. According to Zip Recruiter they average $34/hour. Virtual assistants with the highest skill level can even charge $50 to $75 per hour. I can go up from there.
To find work as a virtual assistant, you can look for gigs on websites like Fiverr, Upwork, and FlexJobs.
8. Help install Christmas lights for the holidays
Potential money: Varies
Are you physically fit and enjoy rooftop views? You can find work installing Christmas lights around the holidays.
How much you can charge will vary depending on where you live, consumer demand, and the size of the homes that need decoration, yet you should be able to set a pricing floor of at least $100 for up to two hours of work.
How do you find side work installing holiday lights and decor?
Pass out flyers in neighborhoods where your target customers reside, or post an ad on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
The best part? You can start this side hustle with almost no upfront investment if you have a ladder, or you can use your client’s ladders when you book a gig.
9: Complete home-based tasks through TaskRabbit or Amazon Mechanical Turk
Potential money: Unlimited
TaskRabbit and Mechanical Turk are online platforms connecting you with all kinds of gigs that can lead to extra income. Examples of gigs you can get through these platforms include assembling IKEA furniture, hanging flat-screen televisions, or doing data entry work.
You can even help people move furniture or complete basic handyman tasks. When earning quick cash with either site, your best bet is to create a profile and search for work in your area to see what fits.
10. Answer questions on JustAnswer.com
Potential money: $2,000 to $7,000 per month
If you’re a professional with a significant amount of expertise in a subject, you can make extra money online by answering questions using a website called JustAnswer.
This online platform says that some of their top experts earn $2,000 to $7,000 per month from home, and they accomplish this entirely by answering the questions paid users send their way.
The best part about this app is that you can work as little or as much as you want. You can also complete all the work at home and on your own time, and you can make money doing what you love.
What kind of experts does JustAnswer look for? Many of their questions go to professionals like doctors, lawyers, and veterinarians, but nearly any expert can use the platform.
11. Become a financial coach
Potential money: $150 to $250 per hour
If you’re interested in personal finance and want to turn your hobby into profits, you can also consider becoming a financial coach. Financial coaches don’t have the same educational requirements as financial advisors, so breaking your way into this industry is easier. That said, financial coaches are not legally allowed to offer investment advice. Instead, coaches help their clients with tasks like tracking their spending, getting on a budget, and planning for their long-term financial goals.
While the earnings of financial coaches vary by quite a bit, many coaches charge $150 to $250 for each one-hour session they book. However, they often meet several clients each month, and they meet with each client at least once per month throughout the year.
In other words, a financial coach with 20 clients they meet monthly could earn $3,000 to $5,000 per month (or $36,000 to $60,000 per year) with this gig. That’s quite a bit of money for a business with minimal start-up costs, but you will have to market yourself and find a way to get your first several clients to trust you.
12. Become a rideshare driver
Potential money: $20 per hour or more
If you have a reliable car and you want to earn money driving people around, signing up as a driver for Uber or Lyft makes a ton of sense. Both rideshare platforms have minimum requirements for vehicles you can drive, but your car will likely qualify if it’s relatively newer, clean, and safe.
With Uber, for example, your car needs to be 15 years old or newer, have four doors, and be free of major cosmetic damage or missing parts. Drivers also have to have a clean driving record and insurance on their cars.
How much you earn driving for Uber or Lyft can vary by quite a bit, yet the average seems to start at around $20 per hour. That said, drivers can earn much more during “surge pricing,” during peak travel times, or special events. Drivers for both platforms also get tips, so their earnings can fluctuate based on the generosity of their customers and how friendly and helpful they are.
13. Deliver food or groceries
Potential money: $20 per hour or more
Another gig that’s always hiring comes in the form of food delivery. Of course, we’re talking about delivering food and other purchases through platforms like DoorDash, GrubHub, or Postmates. You can even sign up to shop for groceries through platforms like Instacart and Shipt, which let you earn an hourly wage plus tips.
These side gigs let you work the hours and days you prefer, so you can set your schedule around your regular job and other responsibilities. Most food delivery drivers also earn $20 per hour or more, although pay can vary depending on the platform, the gig, and the tips you receive over time.
14. Take care of pets through Rover.com
Potential money: $29 per night or more
If you love animals and want to earn cash taking care of cats, dogs, and other pets, consider setting up a profile on a platform called Rover. This online platform can help you set up your own small business walking pets, feeding pets, or caring for them overnight in your home. Nightly stays can easily help you earn $29 to $50 per pet, and dog walking or feeding gigs can pay $20 or more.
This gig is also incredibly flexible since you can set up your availability and choose your work days through Rover.com’s online platform. You can also set minimum requirements for pets or be somewhat picky about the kinds of pets you’ll watch or care for. If you’re willing to take care of pets with poor health that needs medicine administered or special care, you can increase your rates.
15. Babysit kids
Potential money: $15 per hour or more
Maybe you love kids a lot more than you love people’s pets. In that case, you can look for babysitting gigs in your local area or find them through Care.com. While how much you’re paid will vary depending on the job, how many kids you watch, and where you live, you can easily earn $15 per hour and up with babysitting gigs.
While setting up an online profile can help you find this type of work, you may have better luck reaching out to people in your network. Tell people you know you’re looking for babysitting work or set up a job posting in Facebook groups you already belong to. Chances are good that, with some time and effort, you’ll find all kinds of people who need help with childcare in your area.
The best part about babysitting is that you typically get paid the day you do the job. You could babysit for a few hours and then walk away with cash.
16. Take inventory of your items and sell stuff you no longer want
Potential money: Varies
People may be willing to pay for the brand-name clothing you no longer wear, the treadmill you haven’t been on for years, or the antiques you inherited but don’t know much about. The key here is finding items you can sell, figuring out how much they’re worth, then posting them on reselling platforms.
Once you have sold off your own unwanted items, you can also consider flipping items from garage sales and thrift stores for profit. While any item you can sell for more than you bought it can work in this realm, some of the best items to flip for profit include brand-name sneakers, antiques, electronics, household appliances, and children’s toys.
The key to making money flipping items is doing your research upfront and knowing how much you can pay for something while still turning a profit. With time and experience, you’ll also find out which items sell the fastest and for the most money.
17. Sell used electronics you don’t need anymore
Potential money: Varies
You can also sell or trade in old, unwanted electronics for cash. Some of the best items to sell for money include phones, iPods, fitness trackers, tablets, and laptops, but any high-demand electronics will work.
While you can sell these items on any of the platforms we mentioned already (i.e., Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, etc.), websites like ItsWorthMore, Decluttr, and Gazelle specialize in buying these items and may offer more cash than you can get selling on your own. Generally speaking, you’ll share details about your item and get an instant offer. However, you’ll have to mail them to each platform so they can be inspected, leaving you waiting weeks before you get your money.
Therefore, it may be better to sell your items yourself first. If you can sell your electronics on Facebook Marketplace, for example, you can meet the buyer in person and walk away with cash.
18. Sell off unused gift cards
Potential money: Varies
Like most people, you probably have a stack of unused gift cards around your house. Some of them were likely given to you as a gift, but they aren’t doing you any good if they’re sitting in a drawer collecting dust.
Fortunately, you can sell used gift cards online using websites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, or eBay. You can also use a website called CardCash to sell unwanted gift cards to popular stores. While this website will take a cut of your gift card balance to make a profit, you still get the chance to earn quick and easy money, and you can get paid via PayPal, ACH transfer, or a check in the mail.
19. Take surveys online
Potential money: $3 to $10 per hour or more
If you have free time to kill and you want to do something mindless to earn some extra cash, consider checking out the best online survey sites. A survey app (like Survey Junkie) will pay you money to answer simple survey questions, take online quizzes, or watch videos they post, and you can get paid via PayPal or with gift cards in most cases.
While you won’t earn a ton of money taking online surveys, you can easily earn $3 per hour or more by completing simple tasks from the comfort of your home. That’s easy money.
Some popular online survey sites include Survey Junkie, Swagbucks, Inbox Dollars, LifePoints, Vindale Research, Google Opinion Rewards, and Global Test Market. Another option called UserTesting.com even lets you get paid to give your opinions on advertisements and consumer-focused marketing strategies.
The best part? You can use several online survey sites at once, and you can do a lot of the “work” on your mobile device. This means you could be earning part-time income on your phone while you lay in bed or watch television at night.
20. Open a new checking or savings account
Potential money: $200 or more
If you have a certain amount of start-up capital and want to earn free money you can access in a few months, consider opening a new bank account. Start a checking or savings account that comes with a big, fat bank bonus.
Most bank bonuses require you to keep a specific amount of money on deposit for a few months, set up a qualifying direct deposit, or both, but you can earn anywhere from $200 to $500 for meeting their minimum requirements and keeping your account open for several months.
For example, Chase lets new customers earn $200 when they open a new Chase Total Checking account and set up a qualifying direct deposit within 90 days. However, you do have to keep a minimum amount of money on deposit or meet direct deposit requirements each month to avoid monthly service fees.
21. Donate plasma
Potential money: $50 to $100
If you have some time to kill and you’re not scared of needles, you can donate plasma and get some cash in return. Most plasma donation centers pay anywhere from $40 to $100 for your first donation, and your earnings typically stay fairly constant. However, donating plasma only takes a few hours, and you don’t have to do anything other than sit there and wait.
You can also donate plasma regularly to build up a regular income stream. Generally speaking, most people can donate twice every seven-day period or up to eight times per month. If you get paid $50 each time you donate, this hustle could help you bring in an extra $400 in cash every 30 days.
The Bottom Line – Making Money Fast
There are so many ways to earn extra income that it’s hard to keep track, but it’s important to remember that you can do more than one simultaneously.
For example, you could sell unwanted items in your home, donate plasma, and pick up odd jobs on Fiverr, all within the same week. You could even do all those tasks while watching someone’s dog and setting up an Etsy store to sell homemade crafts.
None of these will help you get rich over the long term. Instead, they can help you earn money quickly to buy groceries, pay bills, or cover unexpected expenses.
The good news is that most of these ideas make it easy to get started right away. The longer you wait to earn money in your spare time, the harder you’ll have to work.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on How to Make Money Fast
There are a several options available to make money quickly:
-Selling items you no longer need or use
-Participating in focus groups
-Driving for a ride-sharing service
-Renting out a spare room on Airbnb
-Delivering food or packages for companies like UberEats or Amazon
-Offering freelance services such as writing, editing, or graphic design
-Investing in stocks or real estate
-Starting a small business or side hustle
If you’re short on time and need money right away, however, completing online surveys (like Survey Junkie), delivering groceries, or selling plasma may be the best option.
There are a few ways that you can make extra money in a short amount of time. You could offer to do side jobs for people in your neighborhood or start a small business doing something you’re good at. Other options include offering your services as a pet sitter, babysitter, or house-sitter.
Alternatively, you could also try to sell some of your belongings online or through a garage sale. Whatever route you choose, set aside enough time to complete the task and be productive!
There are several ways to make quick money at home. One option is to sell your stuff you no longer need online or through online marketplaces like eBay, Amazon, or Facebook Marketplace.
You can also offer pet-sitting, yard work, or house-cleaning services. Additionally, you could start a small business, become a virtual assistant, or work from home for a company that allows telecommuting.
Yes, there are many legitimate ways to make money online. Some examples include starting an e-commerce business, selling products through online marketplaces like Etsy or Amazon, or offering online services such as graphic design or writing. Online surveys, focus groups and remote data entry are also great options to make money from home.