Money Making Ideas & Emergency Cash Generators


Need a vacation? Perhaps you need to pay some bills or are just looking for full-time or part-time work. You'll be able to generate some quick cash with these money-making ideas and emergency cash generators.

Sell Your Stuff

  • Host a sale. The first and foremost way to make money quickly and easy is a yard sale. You'd be surprised how many items you can find lying around your home. Be sure to check in old boxes, closets, the attic and the garage. Don't forget that storage shed outside if you have one. You'll be able to round up enough items for at least a small sale. Consider advertising your sale on Craigslist, an online classified website. It is a good source for listing and finding sales.

    If you are crafty, sell your crafts or woodworking at your sale. Handmade jewelry, pot holders, hand painted vases, baked goods, candles and woodworking projects are some of many great sellers.

    Don't forget to purchase some soda, water, chips or candy for your sale. Customers will buy these from you on the spot.

    Online. Consider selling your stuff online at places such as Craigslist, Amazon and Etsy.

    Flea markets are another place to sell your items to large crowds. Almost every city or town holds a weekend flea market. Rent a table and/or space and the cost is usually very minimal.

    Recycle. Websites such as will buy your old books. Additionally, Gazelle will pay you for your old electronics. Consider selling scrap metal at your local recycling plant.

Sell Your Services

  • Print fliers and distribute to homes in your neighborhood or post on free bulletin boards. Some examples of services you can offer include: mowing yards, raking leaves or shoveling snow; babysitting; dog walking; geneaology services; typing service for college students (offer report preparation, resume services and research); aerobic or karate classes (rent the local community building and post an ad in the newspaper offering classes); moving service; errand service; grocery shopping service; hauling service (not everyone owns or has access to a truck, consider completing tasks that people need such as moving, dump runs, store pickups and hauling materials).

Outside Moneymakers

  • Pan for gold if you live near a river. Sell firewood if you have access to trees. Breed worms and sell them during fishing season. Gather driftwood from the beach and sell to local craft stores. Sell pine cones to craft shops. Sell wreaths (at Christmas use items from the outside to make wreaths and sell them at local bazaars or craft shows). Sell vegetables and fruit in a parking lot or at a roadside stand.

Emergency Cash Ideas

  • Common ways to generate cash in an emergency include:

    Payday loans. If you are employed and have a checking account, this may be the type of loan for you. Although the interest rates are a bit high, it will give the cash you need right away.

    Pawn shop. If you own items such as jewelry, movies, games, game systems, electronics, and firearms, a pawn shop can issue you cash.

    Credit cards. Don't overlook that you can usually obtain a cash advance.

    Signature loan. Many banks or credit unions offer quick signature loans.

    Title loan. If you own a vehicle, consider getting a loan from a title company. You'll receive a quick loan and get to keep driving your car.

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