Here’s a situation that I’ve found myself in, that you might have as well – it’s the 26th, rent is due this week, you’re $100.00 (or more) short, and you’re not hot enough to be a stripper. It’s a scary and stressful thing when you urgently need money for a vital bill like rent or electricity, but with a little creativity and discipline you can make that extra $100.00 this week to keep the lights on without having to take your clothes off.
(No offense to strippers here – your job is difficult and your upper body strength is great. I’m just tragically not hot enough to be one of you.)
Why have I listed the things that you DON’T want to do as well as what to do INSTEAD? Simple – being broke and having urgent bills to pay makes people really desperate. The sharks and scammers of the world thrive on people’s desperation, and I like my readers too much to let any of them get scammed when they’re just trying to get by.
Additionally, there are a lot of longer term things you can do to improve your financial situation such as negotiating a raise or finding a new job, but those are topics for another article. I’ve exclusively focused on things that you can do, this week, to put money in your pocket immediately. Short term solutions below to pay the bills, long term solutions to improve your life coming to a blog near you very soon.
So! Let’s go on a journey through some of the ways I highly recommend making that extra cash, and a few common things that you’ll absolutely want to avoid in your quest for money.
Don’t – Spend hours filling out surveys on sketchy websites
If you’ve spent any time on the internet, you’ve probably seen ads or blog posts telling you that ‘You’ll make $50.00 per hour just filling out surveys! You can do it while you watch Netflix!’ The truth of the matter is that you’ll make $0.05 an hour to find out you don’t qualify for any surveys, with the added bonus of having given your email address away to be sold to marketers. Don’t do it.
Instead – Look at the gigs section of your local Craig’s List
The gigs section of Craig’s List can be an absolute goldmine, if you ignore all the creepy ads for escort agencies. I once landed a $150.00 weekend gig scaring drunk people at a haunted house just by applying to a gig, which was some of the most fun I’ve ever had. People advertise on there for quick cash in hand jobs like clearing lawns, temp work, festival bartenders, and all sorts of things.
Don’t – Become part of a MLM scam
There is a whole host of information on why Multi-Level Marketing is bullshit, but I think the key takeaway is this: if you have to pay to work somewhere, you are a customer and not an entrepreneur. If you have to buy your own knives or clothes or candles from a company to try and sell to friends/family, pass go and do not lose $200.00.
Instead – Sell plasma
On the one hand, selling your body’s vital fluids to make rent sounds like something out of a weird dystopian sci-fi novel. On the other hand, it is a good way to make $50.00 – $100.00 for sitting in a chair for a few hours and watching movies on your iPhone. If you’re in good health and need a very quick influx of cash, this will help.
Don’t – Work on sites like fiverr and up work
If you have a skill like writing, programming, or graphic design, working on the side is an extremely effective way to put money in your pocket. The issue a lot of people run into here is finding clients, and instead of looking for well-paying high quality clients, they sign up to work on bidding sites to try and avoid marketing and to access a base of customers. This is an understandable train of thought, but a really bad idea. Clients who want to pay you $6.00 to write a 5,000 page article or $15.00 to create an entire website from scratch are unreliable and the time you’ll lose doing work for them is way more valuable than the pennies they’ll pay you.
Instead – Start teaching on the side
If you have a skill, you have a side gig. There’s almost no limit to what you can do as a teacher – a few ideas include singing, cooking, playing guitar, writing essays, painting, and any school subject. Put up a few flyers at a university, post your services on Craig’s List, or take a look at Facebook groups for schools and universities. With a little creativity, you can set your own hours/rates and avoid churn and burn bidding sites.
Don’t – Download apps that pay to be on your phone
The valuable space on your phone is limited, and installing an app that lets some marketer track your whole life in return for $5.00 a year is not a great bargain.
Instead – Become a driver or pet sitter
There are a lot of legitimate apps that you can make good money on! I have friends that have used apps like Uber, Rover, Care.com, Task Rabbit, Grubhub, and Instacart to pick up side gigs. The pay isn’t incredible for these, but you can set your own hours and have a nice variety in the work you do. The bar to entry is also relatively low, which makes these relatively easy and accessible options to pick up extra money.
Thanks for taking the time to read through this, and I hope that this has been helpful to you in some way. If you have any other ideas or things you’ve tried to make extra money when cash has been low shoot me a message or leave a comment, I read every email. Have an amazing day, and go out and make that dollar.