If you’re in a pinch and strapped for cash, the punch list below are ideas to earn and save money. Some are more obvious than others and some take more effort and involve more risks and long term implications. Be careful making a short term decision that could impact your long term financial well being.
Make a list of ideas that apply to you. Assess the pros and cons along with the short-term and long-term risks. Evaluate those that have the biggest impact to help meet your needs and spend the time and energy getting those done first.
- Sell items on a marketplace such as Ebay, Amazon, Facebook, Craigslist, and garage sale. Pawn shops may be an option but you’re likely to get a fraction of its value. The value of collectibles almost always depends on condition; use care when handling collectibles you plan to sell.
- Review memberships (gym, music, online storage, software). You may be able to freeze the membership or decide to cancel it all together. It doesn’t hurt to at least ask for money back if you can prove that you haven’t used the service over a period of time. You may be surprised, especially if you have proven loyalty with the company or you can convince them that you may come back. If you’re not sure, look at your bank account and credit card history and make sure you understand every transaction. You should go back at least a year to catch those with annual renewal terms.
- Review reoccurring subscriptions (cable, music, online streaming, satellite radio). These can also be memberships as described above. The same concepts apply. You may be surprised of all the nickel & dimes you pay on memberships from the least expensive that could $1.99/mo. to those that more obvious like cable of $200/mo. There’s a good reason for this type of income stream getting so popular lately…because people forget and these costs fly under the radar.
- Can you reduce or eliminate insurance on anything from home, vehicles, boat, jewelry, etc? Some insurance is ala carte and it never hurts to get an updated quote from other providers. You should get a pro-rated refund from an existing provider if you do make a switch.
- Can you sell a vehicle? This could also save money by eliminating insurance.
- Take time to find coupon codes before making a purchase.
- Pick up a side job.
- Selling photos or artwork has become more popular. You may be able to earn money when people buy your photo or use your artwork. If you can create company logo’s, take pictures of unique scenery, then maybe this is an option for you.
- Return items that you have the option of getting store credit, cash, or credit back to your charge card. You don’t always need to have a receipt. If you get store credit you may be able to turn that into cash by selling on a marketplace (but likely you’ll have to discount it).
- Consider selling gift cards that you may not need or use for long time. Again, you’ll probably have to sell at less than the value but it could generate quick cash.
- Go online to join companies that pay you to complete surveys, add comments and reviews. A couple popular sites are MyPoints (also has coupon codes) and Survey Junkie.
- Look into placing advertisements on your vehicle. One example is through Wrapify
- Pick up a side hustle. Consider joining TaskRabbit or advertising a service or good you can provide on Craigslist or Facebook.
- For those with more time consider starting a website or a blog. You can earn money reselling, affiliates, advertisements, selling memberships, goods, services, and the best thing about it is that it can work for you while you sleep, 24/7.
- Do you know a lot about a topic? Consider tutoring online (maybe in person when the time is right). Teach a language, a software package, how to repair something, or make something….get creative.
- If you don’t mind company consider babysitting or pet-sitting.
- Sign to up to drive for Uber, Lyft, Doordash, UberEats, Grubhub or other transportation and delivery companies.
- Deliver goods for Amazon using Amazon Flex.
- Did you prepay for services that you can request a refund (such as lawn care, fertilization, snow plowing? Think about anything that is prepaid or paid in advance. Contact those companies/people and negotiate money back.
- Do you have an extra room to rent out and open to sharing? Consider a temporary roommate instead of a traditional yearly lease and make it work for both parties.
- If you have put away FSA funds you may want to submit eligible FSA expenses to get a refund.
- Is your house going to be empty for a week or longer? If so, consider renting out your space for that time period.
- Rent out your car at Turo.com. If you have an RV or camper that is collecting dust you may be able to rent out that too.
- Some last resort ideas are to reduce contributions to investment or retirement accounts or withdraw from retirement accounts. Be careful with this idea. Due your due diligence. There may be a cost to withdrawing early from an investment.
- If you feel you can not make a obligatory payment such as a loan, the sooner you notify them to discuss options the more likely you will probably have success in getting some form of relief. You may be able to defer payment(s).
Consider taking the time to create a detailed budget and discipline yourself to execute accordingly. A monthly budget can help you realize the potential to meet your goals. Evaluate various scenarios and understand the implications of your decisions whether it pertains to income or expenses. Keep in mind, not all months will have equal events. There will be seasonal periods where you may have extra income or expenses within particular month(s) that don’t apply to other month(s).
We don’t have affiliations with any of these companies for which the links are provided above. We’re simply trying to give you ideas to save money and get money back.