Do you need money now?
Life happens, and it isn’t uncommon for people to need quick cash. The good news is that there are many options in today’s world for procuring funds when you need money now. Even better, not all of them require you to borrow money.
Need money now? Here are 21 ways to get money when you need it.
Ways to Earn Money When You Need it Now
1. Ridesharing Apps
Uber, Lyft, and Via are just a handful of the ridesharing apps, but they are among the most popular. These apps connect people looking for rides, which drivers like you provide.
It’s easy to sign up to be a rideshare driver. First, you must decide which rideshare app you want to drive for, sign up, and follow the instructions. You could start driving for a rideshare app as little as a week after signing up and providing the company with your personal and vehicle information.
Once everything is set up, you log onto your app when you’re available to accept rides. When you accept a ride, you’ll pick the passenger up and drop them off at their destination. Your account is then credited, and you can start withdrawing your earnings. Many apps allow you to withdraw funds the same day you earn them.
Realistically, you can easily make a few hundred dollars per week as a rideshare driver. In general, you can start getting cash within two weeks of becoming a driver for most rideshare apps.
However, you must have car insurance and a newer vehicle to be eligible to become a rideshare driver. It’s also important to be aware of potential unexpected expenses that could affect your profits, such as car repairs.
2. Course Creation
If you have a teachable skill, why not get paid to teach it to others? And best of all, you don’t have to do it in person. Instead, you can join a platform like Udemy, which sells online courses. Udemy offers courses on just about anything, so the chances are you can teach something you already know.
Some of the skills you can teach include writing, web design, marketing, art, how to play instruments, and much more. All you do is join Udemy, follow the instructions to create a course, and then start selling it.
As for how much you can make, you can easily earn around $1,000-$2,000 per month. Selling online courses via Udemy can result in fast money and sustainable cash flow. However, creating a course will take some upfront work and may take longer to begin bringing in cash.
3. Deliver Food
Like ridesharing apps, delivery food apps require you to sign up for an account, have a reliable form of transportation, and have a license, to name a few basic eligibility requirements. Once you’re all set, you can start accepting orders and delivering food for cash. A few of the top food delivery apps are DoorDash, UberEats, and GrubHub.
How much you earn depends on how far you have to deliver, whether or not you get tipped, and how many orders you pick up. If you work a few days per week, especially on the weekends, you can earn a few hundred dollars every week. Many apps also eventually allow you to get paid the same day for those who need cash quickly.
4. Grocery Shopper
You can earn money every week by being a grocery shopper for InstaCart or another grocery shopping service if you like shopping. InstaCart is the most popular grocery shopper app, and they operate in many areas. The application process is quick and easy. Before you know it, you’ll be logging into your app, accepting orders, and then picking up groceries for your customers. Best of all, you’ll be getting paid for it.
5. Freelance Writing
If you can write, there are plenty of article writing sites that will allow you to make fast, easy money. Join a few sites that accept freelance writers, take orders, complete them, and then wait until those articles are approved. Once they are, you’ll be paid for them.
Many freelance writers can quickly start earning $100-$200 per week when they first begin. Best of all, you can start making money freelance writing within a week or two.
Check out this article to learn all about getting started with freelance writing.
Even if writing isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other in-demand freelance skills that you can use to make extra money. Some of the most sought-after skills include website design, marketing representative, marketing consulting, virtual assistant, and computer coding and/or programming, to name a few.
Freelancers can make significant money, and you can earn even more as you grow your client base. The easiest way to become a freelancer is to join a platform like UpWork or Fiverr. Another alternative is to create a website and advertise it across social media to prospective customers.
One of the best things about freelancing is you can start to make money within the first few days or weeks of launching your freelance career. Depending on the platform you join, you can get paid weekly or even daily in some cases.
7. Test Websites
Businesses of all kinds want to know whether their websites are user-friendly, but receiving customer feedback that isn’t biased is not that easy. As a result, some companies specialize in connecting businesses with website testers.
You can sign up to be a website tester with companies such as Analysis, UserTesting, and TryMyUi, to name a few. The way it works is simple; You test and reviews brand new sites, and you get paid to do it. You can easily make around $1-$10 per site you review. Best of all, you can do this whenever you want, and from anywhere you want.
You may not make as much money as with some of the other options already discussed, but testing websites is a great way to make quick cash between other life events.
8. Have a Garage Sale
If you want money today, one of the top ways to do it is by having a garage or yard sale.
Gather up anything you don’t use anymore or don’t want, and then put them up for sale. You can advertise your sale on social media, on neighborhood sites like Nextdoor, and with signs on the streets around your place.
Remember to price your items commiserate with what is expected at yard sales, and don’t expect to get top dollar for everything. However, depending on how many items you sell, you could easily earn a couple of hundred dollars on the very first day of your garage sale.
9. Sell Your Stuff
If hosting a yard sale doesn’t appeal to you, don’t worry. There are many other ways to sell unwanted items, one of the best being Facebook.
Join Facebook groups that focus on letting people advertise their items for sale. Consider putting your things up for sale via Facebook Marketplace. Generally speaking, selling items via Facebook is probably one of the quickest and easiest ways to get cash when you need money now.
Aside from Facebook, you can also use Craigslist to buy and sell items in your local area. There are also many Craigslist alternatives for selling, with some targeted toward specific types of products. A classic online option is eBay, and don’t forget about a local pawn shop as an option for getting quick cash.
Whatever platform you choose to find customers, you can often quickly make a good deal of money by selling your things. Gather unwanted electronics, old books, jewelry, CDs, movies, clothes/shoes, gift cards, and anything else that is still worth something.
You can even sell your plasma for several hundred dollars a month!
Babysitting used to be thought of as being something teenagers do. While you can still find babysitting opportunities in your neighborhood or through family acquaintances, there are now many ways to earn fast cash through babysitting services.
As for how to find clients, you can join sites such as SitterCity and Care.com. These sites have a constant flow of parents looking for babysitters. After you create your profile and are verified, you’ll be on your way to earning good money.
11. Rent Your Home or a Room
House hacking is a great way to bring in significant cash when you need it.
If you own a home and have an extra bedroom, you can rent it out by listing it on sites like Airbnb, VRBO, and Furnished Finder. If you want to make even more money, then offer to rent your entire property out.
You take a few pictures of your place, then create a listing that describes your space. Once everything is ready to go, keep an eye on your account because you’ll need to accept reservations as they come in.
If short-term rentals aren’t your thing, you could also look to rent a room out in your home long-term by getting a roommate. You could bring in $400-$700 a month by renting out a room, depending on the space.
12. Take Online Surveys
There is no shortage of sites that pay you to take surveys. The downside to doing surveys for money is they rarely pay good money, and you’ll likely only earn a few dollars at a time doing it.
If you don’t need a lot of money, then taking surveys might be worth your while. But, realistically, you will probably earn a maximum of $50 per week taking surveys, and only if you spend hours taking them.
A survey-taking tip is to sign up for as many sites as possible because this will increase your chances of finding surveys you qualify for. Survey Junkie is one of the most popular survey sites, along with Swagbucks and a few others.
13. Rent Your Car
Do you have an extra car or a car you rarely use? Another fast way to get money when you need it is to rent your vehicle out.
Sites like Turo and Hyre Car allow you to rent your car out to others and make a few bucks doing it. If you live near a major tourist attraction or a major city, you have a good chance of making decent money renting your car.
Now is a perfect time to rent your vehicle, as the pandemic has resulted in a rental car shortage.
Another option for making money is to rent an RV. If you have a trailer, motor home, or camper you rarely use, consider renting it to bring in more cash.
14. Dog Walker
Do you like dogs? What if you could get paid to hang out with dogs? You can by becoming a dog walker.
You can use a site like Wag or Rover to find people who need their dogs walked or find pet-sitting jobs. You can easily earn hundreds weekly, especially if you live near or can travel to a major city.
15. Gig Apps
Aside from the various gig economy jobs we’ve already discussed, several other popular gig apps allow you to make $5-$20 at a time for completing simple tasks.
Apps like EasyShift, Field Agent, and TaskRabbit will pay you a small amount for completing simple tasks. These tasks may be taking pictures and writing descriptions of apartments for rent, taking photographs of beverage aisles in supermarkets, and many other easy tasks.
These jobs typically take no more than 20 minutes, and you can stack tasks back-to-back for further efficiency. Once your task is approved, funds will be added to your account that you can typically withdraw quickly.
16. Gig Work
Not all gigs come via gig apps. Many people are looking for people to complete tasks on a one-time basis for some quick cash under the table. These tasks may include yard work, repair or handyperson work, cleaning, labor jobs, etc.
One of the best ways to find gig work is to look at the Gigs ad section on Craigslist and Craigslist alternatives. Then, send an email to jobs you’re interested in and get started making some extra cash.
If you can play an instrument, speak a language, or are good with school subjects or take tests, you could make some good money as a tutor. And the best part is you don’t need to have a degree to become a tutor.
There are several ways you can approach tutoring. You can tutor online by teaching English with VIPKid or join a local tutoring program and tutor in person. A quick Google search should reveal tutoring programs in your area that are hiring, or you can look on a site like Craigslist.
Alternatively, you can try to find your own tutoring clients by advertising your services locally on social media, Craigslist, flyers, and through other means.
Tutors can make anywhere from $15 to $50 or more an hour, depending on your expertise, experience, and whether you work through an agency or on your own.
18. CashBack Credit Cards and Cashback Sites
This last way to earn money when you need it now is a bit different than the others. Rather than working for money, cashback credit cards and sites allow you to earn money by spending on the card or through the site and earning cashback over time.
Cashback cards like the Chase Freedom Unlimited allow you to earn a percentage of cash back for every purchase you make with the card. These rewards credit cards typically give you between 1.5% and 5% cashback, depending on the card, spending category, and any promotions or bonuses.
Similarly, cashback sites like Rakuten allow you to earn a percentage of cashback on money spent using their portal. So if you prefer online shopping, try shopping through cashback sites and earn rewards for the money you would already be spending anyway.
If you’re in a pinch and need money now, it may be worth it to cash out any cash back rewards you’ve earned with a credit card or a cashback site. Just make sure you utilize credit cards and cashback sites for spending you would already be doing, and make sure to pay off any credit card bills every month so you don’t cancel out any rewards you might earn by paying interest.
Ways to Borrow Money When You Need it Now
Sometimes a few hundred dollars just isn’t going to cut it. Whether it’s unexpected medical bills or some other more significant emergency expense, there are times when you need money now, and you need a considerable amount.
If you cannot earn money using the above suggestions or need more than can be made quickly, you may need to consider borrowing money.
Here are some potential borrowing options when you need emergency money.
19. Borrow from Family/Friends
If you need money now, one possible way to get it would be to borrow from family or friends. This option is probably best for smaller amounts of money, up to perhaps a few hundred dollars. But, of course, you want to make sure you pay the money back as soon as possible or offer another way to pay off your debt.
You don’t want to ruin your relationships with family and friends by borrowing money and then not paying it back or offering compensation somehow. On the other hand, you also don’t want to get to a place where you regularly rely on family/friend loans.
Be clear about a timeline and repayment schedule, and then stick to that.
Use family and friends sparingly for money, for smaller amounts, and make sure you offer some way to pay them back.
20. Personal Loans
If you need a larger amount of money or don’t want to rely on friends or family, personal installment loans are likely your best bet.
Personal loans can be gotten through traditional banks, credit unions, and online lenders. These loans range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. Make sure to borrow only what you need and use personal loans sparingly when you need money now and have no other options. Also, pay attention to the interest rate you’re charged and any fees for originating the loan. Finally, follow the repayment terms to avoid late payments and fees.
Another potential option is peer-to-peer lending (P2P), where you can borrow money from private individuals via an online service. The benefit of P2P lending is that it often comes with lower overhead, so you may be able to get the loan for cheaper than you would at traditional financial institutions.
21. 0% APR Credit Card Offers
The last potential option for borrowing money when you need it now is to take advantage of 0% APR credit card offers. While credit cards come with risks, there are plenty of ways to make them work for you, and 0% APR introductory periods are one of them.
While you’ll likely only have access to these offers if you have a good credit score and credit history, there are regular offers of 0% interest for 6 to 12 months on various cards. This means you can make purchases and carry a balance for the 0% APR period without paying interest. The 0% period allows you several months to get back on your feet.
Just make sure you pay your card off BEFORE the 0% period ends, or you’re likely to be hit with all the interest starting when you made your first purchase.
Some Other Loan Options
If you own a home or a car, you might be able to leverage these assets to access funds if the above options aren’t available. While leveraging your home or vehicle requires using the asset as collateral and comes with risk, these options often carry a lower interest rate and better terms than credit cards or other short-term loan options.
Visit your local financial institution to see the options for auto title loans or a home equity loan. If the terms and repayment plan work for you, consider leveraging your assets when you need money now.
A Word About Payday Loans
Many people are tempted to apply for a payday loan when they need money now, so we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention them.
However, payday lenders are some of the most predatory financial institutions in this country and do more harm than good. Therefore, before you even consider a payday loan, you should try out the previously discussed ways to get money fast, including other ways to borrow money.
Payday loans should be the very last option when you need money fast after all others have been tried and exhausted. Although these loans may be easier to qualify for, especially if you have poor credit, there’s a good chance you’ll end up in even more debt due to the extremely high-interest rates.
Moral of the Story
It’s likely that at least once in your lifetime, you’ll be in a position where you need money now, and luckily, there are many options for getting that money.
We’ve detailed the top 21 ways to get cash when you need it, including 18 ways to earn money and three ways to borrow it. Try one or several of these ways to get money fast.
Need money now? Which method for getting fast cash will you try?
Tawnya is an elementary special education teacher by day and co-blogger at Money Saved is Money Earned by night.
She holds an Honors BS in Psychology from Oregon State University and an MS in Special Education from Portland State University. She has had a pretty successful writing career, first as a writing tutor at the Oregon State University Writing Center, and in recent years, as a freelance writer.
Tawnya and co-blogger Sebastian have a wealth of knowledge and information about personal finance, retirement, student loans, credit cards, and many other financial topics. They teach people how to save money, make money, and understand money.