How to Raise Cash Quickly
Whether you've fallen behind on bills, need cash for a sudden emergency, or simply want to start up a savings account, there are many ways to raise money quickly and legitimately. Depending on your situation, you may be able to sell unwanted/unused things, find quick work, get paid for things you do every day, or all of the above. Raising cash quickly can help you deal with current emergencies and save money away for future needs.
Selling Unused or Unwanted Items
Hold a garage/yard sale.Garage/yard sales are an easy way to get some money in a hurry. However, be aware that people typically come to garage sales and yard sales to try and bargain you into giving them the best possible deal. If your customers are too pushy, or if they can tell you're desperate for cash, you may end up giving away valuable items for a fraction of their worth.
- As you price each item, keep in mind that most buyers will try to talk you down to a lower price. If you start too low, people will try to go even lower; if you start too high, though, people might just walk away.
- If you're really desperate, you can try going through a pawn shop. However, be aware that you probably won't get the best deal from a pawn shop (usually a percentage of the estimated value of that item), as their main goal is to make money too.
.In the digital age, it's easier than ever before to sell things online. If you're relatively familiar with online selling and bidding, you may even fetch a higher payment there than you would through a physical garage sale.
- Try websites like Ebay and Craigslist.
- Post a high-quality photograph of the item(s) you're trying to sell, and a thorough and honest description.
- Make sure you agree to meet in a public place if going through Craigslist, and ask the buyer to bring cash. You may want to consider bringing a friend or family member with you, just so that you know you won't be intimidated by the buyer.
Sell your old electronic devices.If you're like most consumers, there's a good chance that you've got one or more old cellphones lying around your home. You might also have an old MP3 player, tablet, or computer. You may have kept these devices around as a "backup" in case something happened to your new device, but there's a good chance that your once-new device is now a backup to an even newer device. You can sell anything you're not currently using for cash online or in person, and free up some closet space while you do it.
- You can use exchange websites like uSell and Gazelle, or online market places like Ebay.
- You can also get cash in-hand on the same day by using an ecoATM. EcoATM tests your device to ensure it works, searches an online network of potential buyers for the highest price, and if you agree to the terms of the sale, dispenses cash to you on the spot.
- Before selling any device, make sure you transfer or backup any content you want to save. You may want to invest in an external hard drive for computers, or talk to a representative at your cellphone carrier to find out how to backup/transfer pictures, contacts, and messages.
- Delete any personal information off the device that you wouldn't want others to find. This may include photographs, contact information, text messages, email accounts, and social media accounts.
- You can also reset your phone to ensure that all of your personal data is erased.
- Make sure you disconnect your phones and tablets from your contract and network so that no one makes calls or uses data on your bill.
Get cash for unused gift cards.Lots of people give and receive gift cards for birthdays, holidays, or as thank you gifts throughout the year. However, sometimes you might get a gift card that you know you'll never use or that you did not completely use. Small amounts left on gift cards can add up . You can use these small amounts to save money on items you would normally buy with your own money, or sell the remaining amounts. Whatever your situation, selling an unused or partially used gift card is a quick and easy way to get money for any need.
- Find gift card exchange services online. Some of the bigger websites people use are GiftCardRescue.com, Cardpool.com, and CardCash.com.
- You may get paid within 24 hours if you can enter the card's code online. But sending the cards through the mail will often get you more money, and you'll be paid in three to seven days after your card is received.
Taking On Short-Term Jobs
Get paid for online tasks.Online jobs are an easy and often quick way to make extra cash. You'll need a reliable computer and access to the internet, but once you get set up on a specialized website you can earn small, medium, or large amounts of cash in exchange for your work.
- The payout is typically not very substantial, but it's easy work that can get you some cash.
- Many jobs measure payment in cents, but some pay a few dollars per task. With regular task completion, you could potentially earn enough money for groceries or a nice night out.
- Sites like Amazon offers you opportunities to complete Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs), which are advertised by Mechanical Turk Workers who pay you if you complete the task in a designated time frame.
- There are also ways of getting paid for online surveys, with some paying up to per survey. Try Toluna, Vivatic, MySurvey, OnePoll, SurveyBods, The Opinion Panel, Valued Opinions, YouGov, and iPoll.
- You can also get paid just for doing your usual online searches in Google, Bing, or Yahoo. Install a browser add-on through a web group like Qmee.com and earn cash for every sponsored item you click on.
Supervise children, pets, or homes.Babysitting, petsitting, or housesitting can earn you some cash in hand for a few hours' worth of work. You'll need to be responsible and trustworthy, and it helps if you have previous experience. If you're new to house/pet/babysitting, try asking friends and relatives if they need anyone to watch after things for them - just make it clear (in a tactful way) that you're trying to raise some extra cash so that your friends/relatives don't think you're offering to do it for free.
- Depending on where you live and how financially secure the family you're helping is, you may be able to earn anywhere from to for every hour you babysit or petsit.
- Housesitting payments may be easier to negotiate by the day or week. Search around online to see what the going rate in your city is.
Find a "work for pay today" job.There are plenty of websites that can help you quickly find short-term work that will get you cash payments at the end of the day. It's important to know your own abilities going into it so that you're not overwhelmed or at risk of injury, but if you're able to do the work it can be a lucrative prospect.
- Try searching online, or visit a website that specializes in placing you into immediate jobs. Common websites in this market include LaborReady, LaborWorks, and LaborFinders.
- You can also search on Craigslist under "jobs" or "gigs" to find short-term jobs in a number of fields.
- Make sure you negotiate and agree upon a payment before you begin the work. You may want to ask for some type of written agreement that the amount you agreed to will be paid at the end of your shift that day.
Be a part of a medical experiment.This obviously won't be for everyone, but if you're in good health you may be able to make some substantial money by participating in a study or experiment. Always read the full terms of the study in advance, find out how much you'll be able to make, and learn about the risks involved.
- Some research facilities seek out volunteers to test vaccines or pharmaceutical treatments, while others may simply seek out members for a comprehensive study.
- Know in advance that the study may require participants to meet certain health qualifications. Researchers may be looking for someone in perfect health, or they may want someone who suffers from chronic health ailments.
- Be aware of the risks. Most experiments are relatively harmless, though some may have a high risk.
- Always read the fine print in any study you're considering, and talk to your doctor about the potential risks before agreeing to be part of any experiment/study.
Finding Extra Money
Gather your change.It's easy to forget about the change you carry in your pocket everyday. Whether you deposit it into a designated change jar, toss your coins in a pile or in a drawer, or simply let change fall out of your pockets on laundry day, those coins can add up to a potentially decent sum over time.
- Check under sofa cushions, in the pockets of your pants, under washers/dryers in your laundry room, or in a drawer where you stash spare change.
- Look in your car. Check under the seats, in the cup holders, in the ash tray, inside the center console, and in the glove box.
- You can roll coins on your own using paper sleeves from the bank, or take your change to a coin exchange machine (often found in super markets). Exchange machines typically deduct a user fee, but can quickly net you cash for your jar of dirty, unused coins.
Recycle scrap metal.Scrap metal can net you surprising sums of money. Of course, in order to really make any substantial money you'll need to gather a lot of metal, but with diligent work this can easily be done in most areas.
- Go through surplus building materials that may be left over from your home's construction. Just don't loot other people's materials, or you could be charged with theft.
- If you're remodeling and you're planning on replacing old copper pipes in your house, you can get decent money for the copper by taking it to a salvage yard.
- Look for old metal in your basement, garage, or outdoor shed.
- Check in dumpsters around your neighborhood, but be careful to avoid injuring yourself. It's easy to fall into a dumpster, and climbing into one may lead to injuries if there is any broken glass, sharp metal, or used syringes in the dumpster.
Cash in other recyclables.Scrap metal like copper isn't the only valuable recyclable. You can typically make money by cashing in any type of recyclable. You won't get much per item (most aluminum cans and glass bottles net five cents apiece, for example), but if you gather up a lot of recyclables they can potentially earn you some spare cash.
- Try asking local businesses if you can collect their recyclables. Some businesses return these items for the money, but many end up simply leaving them in recycling bins or throwing them in the trash.
- If you're really desperate you can try searching for recyclables in the trash, but be aware that you'll get very dirty and may be exposed to broken glass, used syringes, and other unsanitary/unsafe items.
Borrow money from family/friends.If you're in a bind and need money fast, you might want to consider borrowing money. However, You'll need to proceed with caution when borrowing money from people you know. Money that isn't paid back, or that you take too long to repay, could result in bad feelings between you.
- Be upfront about your needs, as well as any risks involved.
- Set a repayment schedule you can both agree to.
- Make sure you repay any money you borrow in a timely manner. Remember that your friends and relatives trust you, and that breaking that trust could have consequences.
Take out a payday loan.If you need to borrow money but can't ask a friend or relative, payday loans might be your last option. However, it's important to be aware that payday lenders are in the business of making money. Even a small, short-term loan can quickly land you in deeper debt than you began with.
- Be aware that many payday loans demand very high interest rates, and there may be large penalties if you fail to repay your loan by the deadline stipulated in the terms.
- Always ask about the interest rate, fines/penalties, and any hidden costs that may be added to your bill.
- Check to see if payday loans are legal in your region. Many states and cities have laws that either ban payday lenders altogether, or tightly regulate how and where they operate.
Make Money Through Donations
Exchange your hair for cash.If you've got long, luxurious hair, you may be able to help someone in need of hair and make money in the process. Many wig manufacturers pay good money for real human hair, and if it's in good condition you may get more money than you expected.
- Your hair can earn you anywhere from 0 to ,000, depending on the length, condition, and market you sell it in.
- Hair typically needs to be at least 10 inches long in order to qualify. It should be uncolored, and if it's in good condition (hair that isn't overly-processed, damaged by the sun, or riddled with split ends) you can earn even more money.
- You can search online for places that buy human hair near you, or try posting an ad on a specialty site like Hairwork.com.
Sell breast milk.Lactating women can earn decent money by selling excess breast milk to online buyers.There is a large market, both for people looking to give babies real milk and for adults who believe breast milk may offer additional nutrients that store-bought milk doesn't. Ask your doctor whether you're healthy enough to sell your excess breast milk, and find out how long it will be safe for you to continue collecting and selling your milk.
- Breast milk can fetch around to per ounce. If you keep pumping and selling your breast milk, you could potentially earn up to ,000 a year in milk sales alone.
- You can search online for buyers looking for breast milk, or place an ad on a specialty site like OnlyTheBreast.com.
Get cash for your eggs or sperm.Selling your sperm or eggs can get you a decent (and potentially steady) supplement to your income. Different fertility clinics offer different rates for sperm and eggs, so it may be worth shopping around online to find the best rates. However, be aware that there are many restrictions on who can donate, and there may be stipulations on how often or how many times you are eligible to donate.
- Sperm donations can earn you around 0 for every donation, and you're eligible to donate two or three times each week. This can earn an average income of ,200 every month.
- Egg donations can earn you up to ,000 per egg, but it's much more complicated and difficult than sperm donations. You'll need to see a doctor and take daily hormones over the course of several weeks.
- You can donate eggs up to six times throughout your lifetime, though some fertility clinics may accept more than six donations.Be aware that donating eggs is a very serious medical procedure, and should not be undertaken lightly.
- There is no limit to how many times a man may donate sperm throughout his life.
- In order to donate either sperm or eggs, you must pass a comprehensive personal and family history. Donors should be in good health and are typically required to be a college graduate or current college student.
- Be aware that you may have to pay taxes on income earned through selling eggs or sperm. Check with a tax preparer or go online to review your state's tax laws.
- Only sell your sperm or eggs through a licensed clinic that uses licensed doctors. Selling your sperm to an individual without involving a medical clinic may leave you liable to pay for child support if a child is conceived.
Donate your plasma.Many people donate blood without any compensation, but you may not realize that you can actually get money for your plasma. Plasma is extracted from your blood, with the whole process taking around an hour to an hour and a half. It's worth noting that technically you aren't getting paid for the plasma itself, but for the time you spend during the "donation" process.
- You can earn between to for plasma and can usually donate twice a week. Search online or in the phone book for a plasma clinic near you.
- To sell your plasma, you'll need to be in relatively good health. You will also need to be drug free to ensure that your blood is safe to use.
- Search online or in the phone book to find a plasma donation site near you, and call to find out whether they pay you for your time (and how much).
- Talk to your doctor to see if you're eligible to safely donate plasma.
- Get creative. If you're in need of cash, see what things around the house you can do without, or try finding new ways to generate income.
- If you arrange any kind of in-person transaction, meet in a public place and have someone else come with you. Even at a garage sale, it's best to have at least one other person present to ensure your safety.
- Only try to do things you are capable of, and make sure the tasks you agree to are safe.
Sources and Citations
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