Quick and Easy Ways to Earn Extra Cash
If you’re looking for some ways to earn extra cash, getting a side hustle can be a good idea. Having extra money can help you cover your bills or pay down debt. Maybe you want some spending money for the weekend? Or you’d like to save up for a vacation? Earning money on the side can make a big difference and help you achieve your goals faster.
There are many different ways to make extra cash. Some require you to have specific equipment while others don’t need much in terms of startup costs. Browse through the ideas below and pick a few you can try out over the next few weeks.
What can you do with some extra cash?
First off, giving the extra cash a purpose will help you keep going. If you’re working a full-time job and a side gig, you’re bound to hit a wall at one time or another. Having a clear picture as to why you’re earning extra cash can help you push through burnout.
Write out the reason you’re earning the extra cash and put it somewhere you can be reminded every day. You can post it on your fridge, put a sticky note on your mirror or stash it in a wallet. You want to make sure you can quickly look at it and remind yourself why you’re doing it when you’re thinking of giving up.
Here are a few ideas for how to use the extra cash from your side hustle:
- Pay off debt
- Save up for a big goal such as a vacation or a car down payment
- Put extra money toward retirement
- Pay for a wedding
- Start or rebuild your emergency fund
- Get started with investing
- Save for your child’s college education
Whatever your goal, make sure it resonates with you. This will give you the added incentive to get up early or stay up late and work on your side gig. Make sure your goals line up with your big picture and support your values.
Quick and easy ways to make extra money
If you’re looking for quick cash and don’t want to set up an on-going side hustle, there are a few options. This can be a good idea if you just need some money to get you through to payday. It can also help you get some spending cash for a night out with friends.
Find missing money in your name
This sounds like something out of a movie but in fact, you could have money out there with your name on them. The money could be from that rent or utility deposit you forgot to collect. Or they could be from old bank accounts, insurance policies, a check you forgot to cash, and so on.
How can you find out if there is any money out there with your name on them? A couple of good resources are MissingMoney.com and/or Unclaimed.org. Check both of them and while you’re at it, plug in the names of your family and friends to see if they’re owed anything. You never know what you’ll find but it’s definitely worth a try.
Participate in a focus group
Companies will pay you if you share your opinion with them. Focus groups are a great way to earn upwards of $100 for 1-2 hours of your time. However, keep in mind there are a lot of scammers out there so only use vetted websites to search and find focus groups to join.
A couple of good sites you can use to check for legitimate focus group opportunities include FocusGroup.com and FindFocusGroups.com. If you live in a major metropolitan area, there’s going to be more opportunities for focus groups. However, some companies do virtual focus groups so if you’re in a smaller city, check both sites to see if you can find something that’s online only.
Open a new bank account
Some banks offer bonuses if you open a new bank account. Bonuses can range from tens to hundreds of dollars so keep your eye out for these types of offers. Make sure you read the fine print carefully and follow all the steps, so you can receive the cash.
Keep in mind that most banks require you to take extra steps such as setting up direct deposit, using your debit card a certain number of times, and maintaining a minimum balance to avoid fees. Don’t sign up for an offer if you can’t meet all the requirements. Make sure you keep a copy of the offer as proof in case the bank does not automatically honor it.
Need quick cash? Donating plasma is a great option if your goal is to get the money quickly. In addition to getting paid the same day, you’ll be helping others in need. Not all donation centers compensate donors and for those that do, the rate varies.
Before you make an appointment for a donation, call up the center to find out if they offer compensation and how much you’ll be paid. Find a location where you can donate by visiting DonatingPlasma.org. The donation process takes approximately 90 minutes to two hours. If you’re scared of needles, you may want to think twice before trying this side hustle.
Make extra cash using what you have
An easy way to make some extra cash is to use what you already have. This is a great way to take advantage of what’s going unused and turn it into dollar bills. You can earn tens to hundreds of dollars at a time.
Rent out a room on Airbnb
If you have an unused room in your house, why don’t you rent it out? You can either find a permanent renter or just go with seasonal rentals. There are upsides to each depending on your needs and your particular situation.
Getting a permanent renter means steady monthly income. Renting seasonally through Airbnb, on the other hand, can be a great option for people who are visiting your city for a few days. You can choose to rent out the room a few times a month or keep it booked up the entire month.
The Airbnb online calendar lets you block out days when the room is not available. Since most renters only stay a few nights, this can be very flexible.
Sell items through Facebook
If you have valuable items collecting dust in your house or garage, selling them on Facebook Marketplace is a great option. You can declutter your house and make some extra cash in the process.
Do a quick search through Facebook and find some local online garage sale groups where you can sell your stuff. You can sell a wide variety of items from furniture to baby clothes. Make sure you read through the group rules and follow them closely.
One of the great things about Facebook groups is that they’re local so usually, you’re selling items to your friends and neighbors. You can post your for-sale items to multiple groups as well as to Facebook Marketplace with just a couple of clicks.
Hold a garage sale
If you find yourself with a lot of items you’d like to sell, holding a garage sale may be a good option as well. This is especially true if you have some large or bulky items such as furniture. The advantage of a garage sale is that you can sell a majority of your clutter in just a couple of days.
Planning and organizing a garage sale can be time-consuming so make sure you have enough stuff to sell to make it worthwhile. Get the word out on Facebook and in neighborhood groups where you can advertise these types of sales. Don’t forget to post signs around your neighborhood and at the closest major streets to draw in passing traffic.
Rent out your car with Turo
You probably already knew that you could rent out your home for money, but did you know that you can also rent out your car? Turo is a service that lets you turn that car in your driveway into a money-making asset.
According to Turo’s website, renting out your car just nine days per month can cover your car payment. You’re also covered by a $1 million in liability insurance and your car is protected by physical damage. The Turo website has a calculator you can use to find out how much your car can earn for you.
Earn extra cash with a side gig
If you have some extra time and would like to get a side gig, this can be a good way to add more cash to your stash. You can work as much or as little as you want and set your own schedule.
Drive for Uber or Lyft
Driving for a ride-sharing service such as Uber or Lyft is a good and very flexible option. You can work only a couple of nights a week or all weekend - whatever fits your schedule best. There is no minimum and you can target higher earning times such as Friday and Saturday nights.
Both companies tend to run new driver bonuses regularly so keep an eye out. You can make some additional cash on top of your earnings by completing a certain number of rides. Just log into the app during the days and times you want to pick up some passengers and start earning.
Walk dogs in your neighborhood
If you like dogs, becoming a dog walker will help you get in some exercise and make some extra cash. You can sign up with Rover to become a dog walker or pet sitter. They’re always looking for qualified applicants.
You can also run your own dog walking business. Create a flyer and distribute it throughout the neighborhood. Let all of your friends, family, and neighbors know that you’re open for business and would be happy to exercise their furry friends. This way you get to keep all of the money you make minus any necessary expenses.
Try food delivery
Another option is to become a good delivery driver. Companies such as Uber Eats will pay you to deliver customers’ orders directly to their doors. This is a flexible gig and you can make your own schedule.
The application process is fairly quick and straightforward. Once you’re approved, just sign into the app and you can start receiving delivery requests in your area. You can work either day or night - whatever fits your schedule best.
Become a freelancer
If you’re a good writer or a talented graphic designer, consider using it to earn some money out of the comfort of your own home. You can be a content writer, technical writer, digital copywriter, editor, graphic designer, logo designer, and so on.
There are many different options for freelance side gigs. Online marketplaces such as Upwork.com and Fiverr.com can help you get started finding clients. This is another very flexible side gig since you can do the work whenever your schedule permits.
The bottom line
There are many different options for earning extra cash on the side. Making a few extra hundred a month can help you pay down your student loans or dig out from credit card debt. It can improve your finances and build an emergency fund for the unexpected.
If you need help getting your finances in order, talk to a qualified financial advisor who can help you put together a long-term plan for your money. Use the extra money from your side hustle to reach your goals faster.
While getting a side hustle won’t make you rich, it’ll give you financial breathing room. One of the best things you can do when looking for a side hustle is to pick a few ideas to try. Don’t get too hung up on the details or worry about whether it will work out. Just dive in and get started earning money. The rest will follow.This is a post from Clint Haynes, a Certified Financial Planner® and Financial Advisor in Kansas City, Missouri. He is also the founder and owner of NextGen Wealth. You can learn more about Clint at the website NextGen Wealth.