The 8 best places to start making money right now

Courtney Hale /

There are times when an emergency or unexpected expenses arise. If you don’t have an emergency fund to rely on, you’re probably thinking, “I need money right now” and don’t know where to find it. If payday is too far away to be of any help, there are options and strategies that might help you find the quick cash you need to solve your problem.

1. Sell some items

When you realize “I need money now,” the quickest way to get some cash fast is to look at what you currently have and sell it. Selling items is a great way to tidy up your life — especially if you’re not using the goods you’re trying to sell.

Some of the most profitable items that can be sold and cashed out quickly are:

  • Electronics such as mobile devices and video game consoles
  • jewelry, especially gold
  • designer goods
  • collectibles

Depending on the items you want to sell, sources like OfferUp, eBay, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Swappa (for mobile devices/electronics), and Poshmark (for clothing and accessories) are good options. In most cases, all you need to do is take a few clear photos of the items you want to sell and list them.

Do research to sell the item quickly. And if you receive interest in your goods for sale, be careful when making a deal to avoid scams, especially on Craigslist, OfferUp, and Facebook Marketplace.

2. Grab a side hustle

If you’ve exhausted your options for selling items, another good option is to earn some quick cash on the side. Some gigs don’t even require any special skills to make money now. The following platforms could help you increase your income fast.

Grocery and Grocery Deliveries

You can earn quick money by working as a delivery driver. In most cases you will need a mobile phone and app download, a driver’s license and an insured vehicle. If you meet the app’s requirements, you can start making money today. Some platforms worth trying are:


Uber and Lyft are the two most popular ridesharing apps. You could work in your free time to raise the money you want. In many cases, working after hours can help you earn more.

If you’re unsure about driving passengers around, an alternative is to work as a package delivery guy for Amazon Flex.

earn rewards

Certain websites partner with brands that pay you to take surveys, watch ads and videos, play games, shop online, and more. Signing up is easy – in many cases all you need to do is provide an email address to get started and a PayPal account to withdraw. In other cases, you can cash out using electronic gift cards. Cash reward websites worth checking out are:

teach online

You don’t need to have any special skills to teach online. You could teach English to foreign students through sites like VIPKid. Or you could be a homework tutor and advertise your services on Wyzant and TutorMe.

3. Rent your stuff

There are websites where you can list your rental items. Why not make some money from your existing wealth, especially if you don’t use it all the time? Tools, spare rooms and vehicles are some options. Some platforms worth checking out are:

4. Use your credit card

An open line of credit is a lifesaver in an emergency. You can use your credit card to cover last minute expenses, using the card to make the purchase or get a cash advance.

Keep in mind

A cash advance has higher fees than a regular purchase. And in both cases you have to pay back the card balance. Make sure to pay your installments on time to avoid damaging your credit and avoiding additional fees and financing costs.

5. Take out a personal loan

If your credit card limit isn’t high enough to cover necessary expenses, a personal loan can be an alternative. However, personal loans often take time to apply for and be approved — and require good credit.

For those who are struggling to get a personal loan, payday loans or loans for bad credit are available, but they come with very high interest rates that can lead to bigger problems later if you can’t repay them quickly. Think of them as a last resort.

6. Look for government funding

Depending on the expenses you’re struggling with, you may be able to find public or municipal funds to help. There may be nonprofit organizations or churches in your area that could help. Some communities may offer short-term help that can help you with rent and utilities. Some hospitals offer grants or waive hospital bills if you can’t afford them. The key is to research what’s available in your city to find the help you need.

7. Pledged Items

If you have valuable items that you don’t want to sell, you can pawn the items. Wondering how a pawn works? You take your goods to a pawn shop and the representative will appraise your items to determine what they are worth. They will loan you cash based on the item’s value.

If you accept the loan, you get paid, but you have a certain amount of time to repay the loan. If you do this, your items will be returned. If you cannot repay the loan, the pawn shop keeps your items and resells them to get their money back.

8. Please forgive me

Forbearance essentially means requesting a temporary deferral of your payments due. Although this option doesn’t put any cash in your hand, it could free up money that you would normally spend. Before postponing any payments that are due, make sure you understand your responsibilities – you will need to settle the payment in the future. Make sure you can afford the payments later so you don’t get into financial trouble.

Bring away

Needing money now can happen to anyone. After all, life tends to throw a curve ball on occasion. You can get through the situation with some knowledge of what types of options you might have. The options in this guide are some of the quickest ways to get cash. First, look for creative ways to help you avoid debt.

FAQ on the best places to make money

Many people have questions about how to get money, the quickest way, and where to start. Here are some answers to those questions.

  • How do I get money instantly?
    • One of the quickest ways to make money right now is to sell some of your goods. It’s also a great way to remove clutter from your life.
  • Who can give me money for free?
    • Check with your local library or dial 311 to find out if your community has programs that give you money for things like rent, groceries, or utilities.
  • Can I borrow money with the Cash App?
  • How can I make money in an hour?
    • You can make money in an hour by selling goods, working as a delivery driver or taking surveys online. This guide offers many ideas on how to get cash fast.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that is accurate, impartial and timely. We verify every single statistic, quote, and fact against trusted primary sources to ensure the information we provide is accurate. Learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

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