Digging Out Of Debt In 8 Steps To Critical Thinking

Disclosure: This post may contain links from our sponsors.

We’ve all felt the financial crunch of living paycheck-to-paycheck which is why I’ve put together this list on how to make money fast.

These tips have worked for tens of thousands of people. And not only have we included links and steps on how to get started, but I’ve shared my own examples of times I’ve paid people for many of these things.

Ready to get some extra money in your wallet or purse? I spent a lot of time finding the best ways to earn extra money, and came up with 112 legitimate ways to make money fast.

There won’t be any ridiculous money-making schemes like being a NASA test subject or offers to sell you a get-rich-quick $2,000 course for building an online business.

This is an awesome list, and I guarantee there are ideas you haven’t come across. Some will make you a few dollars, while others can be very lucrative and even turn into careers.

This article is super long, so please bookmark it so you can come back to it later. You won’t be able to do all of these tips to make money fast in one sitting. I’ve broken the list up into 11 sections to help you find just what you need.

Find free money

We’ve shown thousands of people how to make money from home with many articles on this site. But by far the quickest way for you to make extra money is to get free money without having to do any work.

1. Make money while you’re watching TV

No, you can’t retire on the extra money you can make while filling out surveys, but why not make a few bucks while you watch your favorite shows (Walking Dead anyone?)

Signing up is easy and only takes a few minutes.

Survey Junkie and InboxDollars are two of the best survey sites. InboxDollars will give you a free $5 bonus for signing up.

On both sites, you earn points by completing surveys. You can redeem your points for cash via PayPal or gift cards. If you want cash instead of gift cards you can always sell your gift cards online for cash.

2. Provide search engine feedback

How would you like to get free cash by swapping your search engine? SwagBucks pays you to use their search engine. Plus there are other ways to earn money including shopping online and other activities.

Sign up for SwagBucks here and get a free $5.

3. Negotiate your current bills and save money with a few phone calls

If you have insurance, cable, a cell phone, utility bills, or any recurring monthly charge you can get more money today just be calling and negotiating with your current service providers.

You could potentially save thousands of dollars on your monthly bills by making a few phone calls and asking for a discount.

Check out our guide and get the exact word-for-word scripts that will help you negotiate and get big savings.

4. Get bank fees waived and overdraft fees refunded

Did you receive one of those annoying overdraft fees from the bank? Or a $3 fee for having a low balance?

If you have a few minutes on your lunch break you can often get money back today by getting bank fees waived and overdraft fees refunded.

Follow the scripts and see how it goes.

5. Check if you have unclaimed money

According to Money magazine there is an estimated $60 billion in unclaimed money. If a government or company owes you money and you don’t collect it, the money is unclaimed.

I found $100 in missing money from a credit card refund mailed to the wrong address. And I found my mother-in-law had $20 from an old utility provider. – Scott

How to find missing money

  • Visit MissingMoney.com to search for missing, lost, and unclaimed property, money, and assets.
  • Don’t forget to search for your friends and family too! All you need is a first and last name, and a state of residence.

6. Get a free $10 Amazon gift card

MyPoints is a cash-back website where you can earn points by shopping online or by printing and redeeming coupons. It’s a simple way to save money by getting rewarded for stuff you’re buying anyway.

MyPoints is a Better Business Bureau accredited business.

How it works

  1. Join MyPoints for free
  2. Shop for your favorite brands and make purchases, including Amazon, Walmart, Ebay, Groupon and Target
  3. Get a free $10 gift card when you and spend $20 or more with a qualified partner.

7. Get $36 for telling about your Amazon purchases

Do you shop at Amazon? Then here is another way you can earn money simply by sharing your purchase history with companies interested in researching consumer buying habits.

Install the ShopTracker app and connect it to your Amazon account. You’ll get a free $3 for signing up, and another $3 for every month it’s installed, and you report your purchase history.

How it works

  1. Take two minutes to sign up
  2. Install the ShopTracker app
  3. Earn rewards – you’ll get a $3 code within 48 hours of signing up

8. Automatically get reimbursed for price changes

Do you keep your online receipts for your purchases or do you delete them? If you delete them – hold on! You could be costing yourself.

The Paribus service searches your email receipts to check if a product’s price was reduced. For example are the $40 pair of shoes you ordered on Amazon now $30? Paribus will notify you – automatically!

Sign up for Paribus and it will check receipts from Target, Walmart, Costco, and many more major retailers.

9. Get a free $5 to start investing with Clink

Are you afraid of investing or don’t think you have enough to get started? Clink is the answer to helping you get started towards a rich retirement.

There are a lot of investing apps out there, but Clink is one of the few that follows a proven investing philosophy backed up by academic and Nobel Prize winning research. I wouldn’t recommend anything less. – Scott, author of the best-selling book 99 Minute Millionaire

Opening a Clink account is easy and takes about 5 minutes. You can choose to invest as little as $1 a day.

To get the $5 bonus:

  1. Download the Clink smartphone app
  2. Set up your account with your email address.

10. Mystery shop to save money

I’ve done a lot of mystery shopping, though not as much since my twins were born. A myth about mystery shopping is you can make money.

The truth is you’ll get reimbursed for your shopping costs in exchange for the time you put into making a very detailed review of the experience. So is it worth it to spend an hour writing up a mystery shopping report in exchange for a free $30 or even $60 meal?

For me it was. The experiences are fun, and you get to eat at some amazing restaurants.

So if you have a friend and you like to eat out, mystery shopping is a great way to trim your eating out budget.

Check out the following legitimate mystery shopping companies:

11. Get a free $10 gift card from Ebates

Ebates is cash-back shopping site that will give you a free $10 gift card if you sign up as a new user and earn your first cashback rebate.

It’s super-simple. Just sign up and then shop where you normally shop, including Target, Walmart, Kohl’s, Macy’s and much more! Ebates earns a small commission when you buy something, and they split that commission with you. Win-win.

You basically get money back on stuff you’re buying already. You do have to wait 30 days to get your cash back, but money is money!

Those are the ways you can get free money fast. Now we’ll get into the ways you can use your skills to make money fast.

Selling your skills

12. Tutor on your own schedule for $20/hour

Are you smarter than a 5-th grader? Yes! Tutoring someone can give them the knowledge and confidence they need to succeed. Not only can you get paid, but you’ll be rewarded by helping a child or adult grow.

Working at Chegg Tutors top tutors can earn $1,000+/month and start at $20+/hour.

How it works

  1. Apply with Chegg
  2. Choose the subjects you’re best at
  3. Students get sent to you
  4. Tutor from anywhere and on your schedule
  5. Get paid each week.

You can work with middle and high school students, college students, and even professionals.

13. Teach locally at a community center

Every community – large or small – has some community center that offers adult education classes.

Example topics:

  • How to use a smartphone efficiently
  • How to organize
  • Self defense
  • Driver safety
  • CPR
  • Sewing + crochet
  • Home brewing

You get the idea. If you have a skill or hobby, you can make money by teaching others during a one-time 2-hour course.

After listening to your show, I found a lead to my first side hustle. For my wife’s program and mine, we are required to have CPR. We took our class to meet these requirements, and I talked with our instructor who passed my name to the owner letting him know I was curious about becoming an instructor. I was contacted about certifying myself to teach classes! – John S.

How much can you make?

If you get 20 students paying $20 each for a two-hour course, figure you can earn half and half goes to the community center.

14. Give referrals to sales people

When my brother moved from Ohio to Texas, we referred him to a home builder in our neighborhood. Once my brother closed on his house we got $500 from the builder!

There are all kinds of programs and people that will pay you for referrals.

  • car salespeople
  • insurance sales people
  • realtors
  • travel agents

Check with the people you know and ask if they have a referral program for their business. By handing out someone else’s contact information to the people you know you can be compensated for 2-minutes of conversation.

15. Work as a transcriptionist or translator

If you’re good at listening and typing, you can make $15 to $25 an hour transcribing audio.

I’ve paid out thousands of dollars to transcriptionists over the years for taking my classroom recordings and my shows and typing them up into a word doc. – Scott

You can bid on jobs on Upwork or apply to be a freelancer on Rev

Rev pays $0.40 – $0.65 per audio minute. Keep in mind if it takes you five minutes to transcribe one minute of audio, you’ll get paid for the one minute. Attention to detail and a good ear are a must to maximize your earnings.

Transcribing is perfect for people who want a flexible schedule.

16. Earn up to $60/Hour working from home as a part-time bookkeeper

The average bookkeeper earns $40,000/year, or around $60 an hour. And they can work from home (or Starbucks) or wherever else they want. Sound interesting?

No, you don’t have to be a CPA to be a bookkeeper. In fact, I hired my dad (who was a former pastor) for over six years to run my business books using QuickBooks.

Check out the free training series by Bookkeeper Business Academy showing you how to prosper in this proven profession-even if you have no experience.

Interested in becoming a bookkeeper? Find out more at Learn To Be A Bookkeeper

17. Easily create and sell online courses

Do you have skills but can’t figure out how to package and sell them? Teachable is service that lets you easily build online courses.

Over 7,500 instructors have used Teachable to earn over $36M in sales. Where teaching locally, you might get 10-20 students in class; teaching online exposes you to thousands of potential students from all over the world.

How it works

  1. Create a course
  2. Upload the content
  3. Make it pretty
  4. Promote your course
  5. Get paid monthly for every student enrolled

Teachable costs $39/month to host your courses.

If you want a completely free option where you can earn an average of $3,000/year, take a look at Skillshare

Skillshare is similar in that you upload videos of yourself teaching, and promote your content. Students pay a subscription fee for access to the Skillshare course library. You get paid based on how many people watch your course.

18. Fix grammer and splling errors for $17/hour

Haha did you spot the errors in the title? Are you cringing right now at a misspelled word? Freelance proofreading might be for you.

In 2014, Caitlin made $43,000 as a freelance proofreader, while also going on several fun vacations. Caitlin teaches other people who want to correct bad grammar to build a lifestyle business where they can earn money and have freedom in their life.

Freelance proofreaders earn an average of $17 an hour.

Check out the FREE 7 day course on how to become a proofreader. And learn more at Make Money Proofreading By Becoming A Freelance Proofreader.

19. Become a freelance writer

As a freelance writer, you can work as much or as little as you want (which means you can make as much or as little as you want).

To showcase the portfolio of your work, you can start a blog to show off your writing skills. Prospective employers will want to check out your writing style to make sure it’s a good fit.

Some sites will pay three cents a word. As you grow your business, top freelancers can command $500+ per article.

To get started as a freelance writer learn from one of the best. Holly Johnson has a course called Earn More Writing where she teaches how she went from earning $0 to $225,000 a year as a writer.

Here’s a list of websites that pay writers $50+ per article

20. Dress others for success

Do you have a passion for fashion? Consider being a virtual stylist and help people look and feel their best.

Stitch Fix Stylists work part-time from home (or the coffee shop) helping clients hand pick clothing that meet their style, size, and price preference. If you’ve ever thought about being a fashion consultant, now you can do it from anywhere!

On a personal note my cousin works for Stitch Fix and loves it.

Learn more about Stitch Fix

21. Organize closets and homes

Some services are needed, but people don’t even think about having them done. Cleaning out attics, garages, and closets are one of those tasks people will put off until they move.

Entire industries (Container Store, Self-Storage) have popped up to accommodate all the stuff we own. An industry of professional organizers and de-clutterers exist to help us get rid of our stuff.

If you’re good at cleaning and re-organizing things why not get paid for it? Post an ad on Facebook or Craigslist to get started.

Things you’ll need

  • Cardboard boxes – You’ll get more organized if you have storage containers to pack stuff in
  • Marker and tape to label containers
  • Trash bags

The bonus to organizing closets is someone doesn’t want the stuff you clean out, you can sell it on eBay for extra money.

22. Develop websites or apps

Can you build a web page? Code an app? Fix a broken responsive design?

I have a computer science degree. If you love to code, you can make extra income doing part-time or occasional contract work. It pays well, and you can work from anywhere. – Scott

Top programmers can earn $75 to $150 per hour depending on your skill set. Linux gurus and Oracle database administrators can make big bucks. HTML and web page coders earn less because as far as programming goes, it’s a much easier skill to learn.

There are tens-of-thousands of freelance development jobs on sites like Upwork. Some jobs might only take 5 minutes while others require long-term contracts of weeks or months.

23. Graphic design services

How many millions of websites are out there? And they all need a good logo – the perfect job for a graphic designer.

There are many places for freelancing as a graphic designer.

How much you can earn varies by the size of the job. For example, on Fiverr, you might earn $5 for a quick, simple logo. For a custom logo with multiple revisions and multiple concepts, you might charge $300. Some jobs are quick cash and others might take a couple of weeks.

Read how much you should charge for design work for an idea of setting prices.

The best way to showcase your work is to have a personalized website with your portfolio. Include your availability, skill set, and examples. Your website should be a visual resume of your work.

24. Address envelopes (no, not that scammy business)

Getting paid to stuff envelopes is one of the oldest scams around. But addressing envelopes with calligraphy – the art of creating beautiful lettering – can turn your writing skills into cold hard cash.

If you’ve mastered the art of fine writing, you could make a lucrative side hustle out of addressing envelopes.

How much can you make?

Hand-lettered envelopes run $2 to $5 each on sites like Etsy. During wedding season that could earn a fair amount of income.

How to get started

  1. To start practicing head to your local library and check out books on how to learn calligraphy. While you can also find books on Amazon, you can’t beat free resources at the library.
  2. Once you’ve learned the basics, you can continue to learn through free online courses like Skillshare or by watching YouTube videos.
  3. You might also consider a local course to get training from an expert. Here in the Dallas area, Lyndsay Wright offers workshops on calligraphy.
  4. To figure out how much to charge for your work see what other people are charging

25. Write or improve resumes

With all of the resources available to write such a simple document, it’s shocking to me how many people have bad resumes.

Which is good news for you if you want to help people land their next job. People change jobs ten times in their lifetime, on average. Having a great resume is one of the tools you need to get your foot in the door.

Sites like Freelancer and Upwork will let you bid on jobs. While you’re helping people create the high-quality resumes they need for their career, you’ll be making some side money for yours. Win-win!

26. Write and sell ebooks

What’s nice about an ebook is you can write it once and earn money on it with every sale. Writing a book is something 95% of people say they want to do but never do. It’s too bad because it’s pretty easy to self-publish a book.

An ebook doesn’t have to be that long. You could probably write a rough draft in a week during the evenings. Bestselling author Jeff Goins has a list of simple steps for writing a book

What’s the easiest way to create a book? If you’ve already started a blog you can package up some of your posts and sell them as a collection.

How much can you make?

I’ve made thousands of dollars selling my book on the Amazon Kindle platform. Kindle Direct Publishing is free to use and gets your book on Amazon. Amazon takes a percent of the sales, but you can’t beat being in front of all those potential customers. – Scott

Amazon will pay you 70% royalty on books priced between $2.99 and $9.99, and 30% for books priced $0.99 to $2.99.

Learn how to write and launch a profitable eBook in 90 days or less with Abby Lawson. Abby makes over six-figures a year with the sales of her digital products. Wow!

27. Create and sell info products

Ebooks are pretty easy to create. Information products require more time and include more resources. You might include videos, audio, checklists, templates, worksheets, and other resources. Think of them like mini-courses on a specific subject.

For example check out Unconventional Guides, founded by bestselling author Chris Guillebeau. The guides are on topics ranging from saving money traveling to building a more profitable business. Some of the topics include:

  • Make money working as an artist
  • Get paid to write
  • Empire building
  • Publish your book
  • Get rich slowly

How much can you make?

Chris’s Upgrade Unlocked is a $39 program that shows how to travel hack and see the things on your bucket list, all while saving you money. The product contains a field manual, spreadsheets, cheat sheets, checklists, and videos.

I earned 800,000 miles and took my wife to Hawaii- and then I took my mom to the Bahamas for $6 plus tax. – Austin Yoder

Designed to Sell shows artists, designers, and crafty people how to turn their creativity into a career. The product is priced at $147 and includes a book, audio interviews, pricing toolkits, and templates.

The infamous Scoop No More cat toilet training DVD made me $5,000 profit in the first year.

For a more serious business, my business where we created classes for architects and general contractors about green building technologies was built into a seven figure per year business with products that averaged $50 in price.

The first step towards success is to get started and try something. – Scott

28. Become a virtual assistant to help others create a profitable business

A virtual assistant helps a business or person run more efficiently. Businesses require a lot of skills to run and grow. As a virtual assistant, you allow people to focus on what they do best.

While the following list isn’t extensive, here are some things you might do as a virtual assistant:

  • Schedule travel
  • Manage email
  • Research
  • Manage appointments
  • Social media updates
  • Editing and writing

How much money do virtual assistants make

For someone based in North America, you might make $15 to $50+ per hour. The pay range varies widely based on location, your skills, and what tasks you’re responsible for. For example, a virtual assistant who is an expert in search engine optimization would earn much more.

How to get started as a virtual assistant

Check out the course 30 Days or Less to Virtual Assistant Success by Gina Horkey. Gina started a freelancing career and within six months was earning $4,000 per month on the side.

29. Use your voice to make money

Can you speak? This next one might be for you – recording voice overs.

If you’re concerned you don’t have ‘the right‘ voice, you’ll never know what people are looking for unless you try. We’ve hired:

  • A 60-year-old man with a raspy voice
  • An Irish person to sound like a hobbit from Lord of the Rings
  • A Darth Vader impersonator
  • A woman to do an English accent for the end of Scott’s show
  • And many other ‘normal‘ voices

How much can you make?

In our previous company, we hired dozens of people over the years to do voice-overs for our online courses. For one hour of voice over we paid a contractor $350-$750 per project.

Note – as a voice over artist you might spend 4-8 hours to record and edit one hour of audio. You’ve got to take out all those pauses, umms, ahhs, coughs, sneezes, dog barks, screaming kids, etc.

How to find work:

You can post your voice samples on places like Upwork, Voices, Freelancer and Fiverr to find voice over work.

Related: Read Carrie’s story about how she was able to quit her job, be a stay-at-home mom, and make more money doing voice over work than what she used to make at her corporate job.

Sell your stuff

30. Sell your used cell phones and iPads for cash

Gazelle is a site where you can buy or sell used smartphones and other devices. The service has done over 2 million trade-ins and paid out over $200 million.

How it works:

  1. Fill out your device information and get a free offer
  2. Ship your device to Gazelle
  3. Get paid! You can pick from a check, gift card, PayPal or Amazon.com

How easy is that? Now go check out your junk drawer for that old phone.

31. Sell your books

Do you have old college textbooks? There are several places you could unload them (Craigslist, Amazon, Half-priced books).

One of the easiest ways to get cash for your books is using Bookscouter.

How it works:

  1. Find the ISBN of the book (that long number on the back)
  2. Type the ISBN into Bookscouter
  3. Bookscouter will search over 25 companies to find you the best price for your book
  4. Once you’ve found the best price, fill out some additional information about how you want to get paid
  5. Ship off the book and you’re done!

Most of the companies buying used books offer prepaid shipping labels. All you’ll need is a box or padded envelope and some tape to package things up.

32. Sell your used clothes the easy way

Long gone are the days of dragging a trash bag full of clothes to the consignment shop. Sites like Poshmark and thredUp make it easy.


With thredUp you order a Clean Out Kit to pack all your clothes in, then ship it. That’s it! You send in your clothes, and they handle the rest.

For clothes that are in style or trendy, you’ll get paid as soon as the items process. For unique items, you’ll get paid when they sell.


Poshmark is similar in that you can sell your used clothes, but you list them through the Poshmark app. Buyers browse by brand or categories. When you make a sale, you print a pre-paid, pre-addressed label and drop off your package for shipping.

33. Sell your CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays, video games and electronics

Do you still have these lying around? Me too. But for every DVD I own, I can watch it for free on Netflix or Amazon Prime.

With Decluttr you can get cash for your stuff using the FREE, easy to use iPhone and Android apps.

How it works:

  1. Download and install the Decluttr app
  2. Scan the barcode from your stuff. You’ll get an instant price.
  3. Pack up your stuff and ship it for free.
  4. Get paid by check, PayPal, or direct deposit the day after your package arrives.

Maybe I need to get off my butt and use this service.

34. Sell your handbag for instant cash

I’ve sold a Kate Spade purse on eBay for quick cash, and Scott even sold on eBay a Coach man-purse (don’t ask) he used for an overseas trip one time.

With Cash In My Bag you can turn your designer luxury handbags, jewelry, and accessories into cash. Cash In My Bag immediately pays top market prices. Selling your unwanted designer items is no longer a hassle. They pay you upfront, so you don’t have to wait for consignment.

How it works

  1. Get a quote by submitting your item along with pictures
  2. Ship your items
  3. Review the final offer
  4. Cash in

Check out Cash in My Bag

35. Sell your unused gift cards for cash

Who doesn’t have unused gift cards in their wallet or junk drawer? Now you can sell your unused gift cards for cash.

CardPool and Raise are two sites that you can sell your unused cards. You won’t get the full value, but you will get money which you can spend on anything.

Dig through that kitchen drawer and see if you can find any old cards to sell!

Related:Best places to sell your gift cards

36. Sell your junk

When all else fails, and you can’t find a specialty site to sell your things, use the old stand by’s:

  • Ebay
  • Craiglist
  • Have a garage sale
  • Facebook groups

And be sure to check out letgo where you can buy and sell secondhand products in the United States quickly, safely and locally on the free letgo app.

The free app let’s you post your stuff for sale using your smartphone quickly and easily.

37. Sell other people’s junk

No, this isn’t buying and reselling. It’s offering to list other people’s stuff on eBay for them and taking a cut of the sale.

Some people are either too busy or not technical enough to use a computer and sell stuff. Ask your friends and neighbors if they want help unloading their junk.

38. Sell on Amazon

Yes, the Amazon marketplace is a thriving place to sell your used stuff. Right along with new items you can have your used book, electronic device, or just about anything else for sale.

If you have a lot to sell, it can take quite a bit of time to get everything listed. You might be better off with a garage sale if you want to sell things quickly. But if you don’t mind shipping every item and going to the post office to drop off packages, you’ll likely make more money.

Check out Amazon Seller Central if you’re an individual selling a few items.

39. Gold, jewelry, and silverware

Cash for gold! You’ve probably seen the signs before.

If you have jewelry or valuable silverware visit a jeweler or reputable gold dealer for the best price. The storefronts found in strip malls will give you pennies on the dollar.

40. Visit a pawn shop

In college I had a couple of gold necklaces that I sold to a pawn shop. I think I got about 1/10th of what they cost me. But I wanted the cash more than I wanted the jewelry. – Scott

Pawn shops are still a way to get quick money. And if you need the money now, there might not be a better option.

41. Where to sell music instruments and gear

Scott’s take: I’m an avid musician and have bought and sold all kinds of music stuff over the years. From pawn shops, eBay, Craigslist, Amazon Marketplace, and probably other online sites I don’t even recall.

By far the best way to make the most money on your instruments is on eBay. The bidding process results in people getting emotional and paying too much for stuff. Which is good for you!

Craigslist is hit or miss (mostly miss). People want to hardcore negotiate, or offer trades. Neither is a good way for you to get the most money.

42. Sell crafts and other things you can make

Etsy is a great place to sell things you make. Hold on – it’s not just for knitted scarfs and scrapbooks!

Scott bought me wine glasses and a couple of t-shirts for Christmas off Etsy. Take advantage of current trends, hot topics, and seasonal items to create things to sell.

43. Return stuff

Did you buy something and never use it? Returning it for a refund is a quick way to make back your money.

Check your garage, junk drawer, closets, the attic – anywhere where something might be that still has the price tag on it. Even if you don’t have a receipt, bring it back to the store and see if you can at least get store credit.

44. Flip electronics, lawn equipment, cars, appliances

My brother found a $4,000 riding lawnmower at a garage sale being offered for $800 because it didn’t run. He replaced the battery, spark plugs, and put in some engine starter and vrooom! A perfectly working lawnmower. – Scott

Most people will replace a faulty appliance or piece of lawn equipment before spending $80 on a repair person to show up and diagnose the problem.

Fixing and flipping broken things you can buy on Craigslist or at garage sales for pennies on the dollar can turn into a nice little side business.

I knew a person in my small hometown that fixed and flipped kids bicycles!

Make money fast by doing quick projects

Quick projects you can do in person or online can make a few extra bucks for each project. You make money fast by doing a lot of small projects in a short period.

45. Sell your smartphone photos

Got pictures on your smartphone? With the Foap app you can upload pictures to the Foap community and sell your pictures.

Companies buy photos on Foap for $10 each, and you make $5 for every one of your pictures that sell. It’s that easy! You can turn your photos into cash.

How it works

  1. Download the free Foap app
  2. Sign up for an account
  3. Take new pictures or upload existing photos to the Foap marketplace
  4. When someone licenses your photo for $10, you make $5.

If you sell 20 photos, you’ll make an easy $100 for just a few minutes of your time. And who doesn’t have photos to sell on their phone?

46. Use your intelligence with Amazon

Amazon has 700,000+ micro tasks that require human intelligence to complete. You might get paid $1-$2 per task. You can work from home, choose your own hours, and get paid quickly.

How it works
1. Visit Amazon Mechanical Turk
2. Browse through the Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs)
2. Accept the HIT to get started
3. Submit your work
4. Get paid by Amazon

I’ve hired workers to do HITs and love the quality of work I get. It’s a great low-cost way for me to have small tasks completed quickly. – Scott

47. Start Gigging

Gigwalk is a mobile app for Android and iOS that allows you to find quick jobs (Gigs) in your area. A Gig is represented by a pin on the map in the app and can take anywhere from 5 minutes to a few hours to complete. Each Gig pays anywhere from $3 to $100.

Work when and where you want to – you can even start making money today.

How it works

  1. Become a Gigwalker by downloading the app
  2. Pick Gigs to work.
  3. Link your PayPal account to get paid
  4. Apply for Gigs to start working

48. Inspect things for others

How would you like to join one of 30,000 field agents responsible for inspecting things like autos, homes, vacation rentals, or auction items for purchase?

Sometimes a picture just isn’t enough. People will hire you to be their eyes to inspect things they can’t visit themselves if they don’t have the time or are too far away to travel.

You can turn your time into income with the WeGoLook app. For example, you might get offered $15.00 to inspect a vehicle and take pictures of it.

How it works

  1. Install the WeGoLook app and sign-up for free
  2. You get notified when Looks are available near you
  3. Accept the Looks you want
  4. Schedule to view the item or property
  5. Complete the questions, take photos, and submit your report to get paid

49. Become a PostMate and earn up to $25/hour plus tips

Instead of just delivering food, how about delivering anything? Post Mates is a service that connects customers with local couriers that deliver anything from a store or restaurant quickly.

You might be asked to pick up a food delivery, packages, groceries, or whatever the customer wants delivering.

You can deliver items with your car, bicycle, a skateboard, or on foot – whatever way you like to get around.

Learn more about becoming a Post Mate

50. Sell your skills on Fiverr for $5 and up

Fiverr is an online marketplace where you can sell your services for a $5 minimum.

While $5 may not sound like much, you can add on additional services for another $10, $15, $20 or more.

I’ve used Fiverr before and bought:

  • voice overs
  • custom logos
  • book promotion
  • copywriting
  • Instagram quotes

And you can sell just about anything (which doesn’t mean people will buy it):

  • Making prank calls
  • Drawing your face on a pizza with sauce and cheese
  • Doing pushups on camera (???)
  • Shooting things with a gun

51. Get paid $10 to test websites (only takes 15-20 minutes!)

Have you ever gone to a website and asked yourself ‘what are they thinking?’ Well now is your chance to get paid for your thoughts and help companies improve their websites and apps.

Companies like Home Depot, Walmart, Apple, Facebook and more contract with testing services to get feedback. I’ve done a few myself, and you can earn $10 per test in about 15 minutes. Plus the money hits your PayPal account within seven days (that really is making money fast). There are several companies that will hire you to test websites.

How it works

  1. Sign up at User Testing
  2. Visit a website or app
  3. Follow the instructions to provide feedback by speaking your thoughts out loud into a microphone
  4. Get paid $10 via PayPal

Earn extra money by freelancing on the side

It’s easier than you think to get started with a side hustle or freelancing and make money fast. You don’t need a business card (though they can help) or to start a blog

You can take the skills you already have and make money off them.

52. Sell your photos

Do you have photos on your smartphone? Of course you do! Turn your photos into cash is easy.

I’ve bought somewhere around $2,000-$4,000 of stock photography over the years. You never know what photo someone might want to buy. – Scott

Shutterstock has paid over $350 million to photo contributors in over 150+ countries. People (like us) are always searching for images that include cityscapes, people, objects, landmarks and more.

That dinner out you ate last week and put up on Instagram? It could be worth cash.

Check out Shutterstock to sell your photos.

53. Become a driver for Uber or Lyft

Uber and Lyft let you drive people around when you want and earn the money you need. The more you drive, the more you’ll make.

On the weekend you can easily pick up 10+ hours of work, and you get to set your own schedule.

Uber was recently sued for over-inflating the amount of money drivers can make. It’s reasonable to expect to earn on average $10/hour driving people around, not the $20/hour claimed.

Click here to join Uber and start making money ASAP.

54. Sell on Amazon

Amazon – the world’s biggest online store – has millions of products for sale. And there are hundreds of thousands of people just like you that are making money selling products that they don’t even make or keep inventory on!

Jessica and her husband started selling on Amazon in 2012 and made over six figures profit working 20 hours a week.

It’s called FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) where Amazon stores your products in Amazon’s warehouses, processes all your orders and takes care of shipping and customer service too.

My friend Jeff is living the RV lifestyle now. He sells on Amazon in his free time as he travels the country. – Scott

Check out these courses on Amazon FBA:

55. Busking

Busking – or street performing – is a way for you to make money from your musical skills. Or maybe you could take your balloon making, magic, or dancing skills to the street.

There are even training courses on how to become better at busking, showing people how to make up to $50,000 a year working 10-15 hours a week.

56. Baby sit

Babysitters can earn $10-$14 an hour

We made several decisions that propelled us toward the goal of paying off our debt.  These are ten of the most important things we did!

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links for your convenience.  You can read my full disclosure policy here.

Shuffling through the monthly statements and bills was overwhelming.  Thinking about how much money this would cost us over the lengthy “repayment period” was sickening.  “We’re paying how much each month?!” 

Finding ourselves with a lot of debt was not exactly how we envisioned our financial future when we got married.  Devising a plan to pay off our debt was the first step to digging out of the hole we’d gotten ourselves into.  But in order to overcome such a significant mountain of debt, we had some decisions to make about what we would or would not spend money on.

We had to buckle down and cut corners and earn more and do anything we could to climb out of the pit.  The truth that I’ve heard many times is, “You can wander into debt, but you can’t wander out.”  You have to be intentional.

There have been countless steps we’ve taken and decisions we’ve made in support of paying off our debt.  🙂 Update: WE’RE DEBT FREE!! We paid off over $130,000 total!! Read about some of the benefits of our debt-free lifestylehere!

It is important to note that even small decisions add up.  Sometimes it is easy to think, “That will only save $10-15, which pales in comparison to the debt I have.”  And that’s true.  But several $10-15 decisions, made over and over again, add up to significant progress.

Also, small decisions can impact your mindset.  If you get off track in the small things, it’s easier to get off track in the big things, too.

These are just ten of the many decisions we made and steps we took to help us pay off such a huge amount of debt.  I realize some of these may not work for everyone.  But if you are wanting to get out of debt, I hope the actions we took will inspire you and make the goal seem more doable for you!

1. We created a monthly budget.

To get to where you want to go, you first have to know where you are.

Creating a budget is such an important key to achieving any financial goal. Without doing a budget, you won’t really know exactly how much you can afford to pay toward your debt each month. You also won’t be able to see areas where you can potentially cut back in order to increase your debt payment.  Having a budget each month really helped us to see our situation in a better light.

Specifically, we operated with a cash envelope budget system, which was SO helpful in getting us on track with our spending.

Need to create your own budget? You can sign up below to receive my FREE Monthly Budget printables!


2. We decreased our grocery budget.

The grocery budget is one of the easiest places for most people to decrease expenses.  Before we had kids, our weekly grocery budget averaged around $40 for the two of us. I clipped coupons, meal planned, cooked at home, and shopped sales at multiple stores in order to keep our costs low.

Now that we are a family of five, our weekly budget has increased to about $80-100 per week. I no longer realistically have the time to clip coupons, but I still meal planevery single week and cook the majority of our meals at home. I also still shop the sales and loveonline grocery shopping (my favorite options are Kroger ClickList and Walmart Grocery Pickup) as a way to avoid impulse buys!

Get $10 off an order of $50 or more with Walmart Grocery Pickup here.

The USDA published a food plan document that gives the average cost of food at home for four different budget levels: thrifty, low-cost, moderate-cost, and liberal. According to the lowest-cost thrifty plan, the average cost for a family the size and ages of mine would be $156.90/week. So while I could probably trim down our weekly budget a bit with coupons and such, I feel pretty good about the fact that I’m able to feed my family of five well on $80-100 each week.

You can learn more about the steps I take to create a simple weekly meal plan here.

3. We utilized a government-based loan repayment option.

When I first started working as a Registered Nurse, I was employed at a non-profit hospital that was also one of the lowest-paying hospitals in my area at the time.  This hospital cared for a disproportionate number of patients on Medicare and Medicaid. At the time, The Health Resources and Services Administration offered a loan repayment program for individuals with a certain amount of student loan debt who also were working at qualified health care facilities.

Because I had significant student loan debt and worked at an eligible facility, I underwent an extensive application process to be awarded partial loan repayment in exchange for two years of service at this hospital. I could have worked at a hospital that paid me more, but I wanted to work at this hospital for various personal reasons, so being able to participate in this program helped to make up for the difference in income. Over a two year period, this program helped me to pay off about $24,000 of my student loan debt.

4. We worked multiple jobs and found side hustles to save and earn money.

There were periods of time when my husband and I each worked 2-3 jobs at a time in order to earn extra income to apply toward paying off our debt. This was grueling and often exhausting, but it really helped us make significant progress.

We also used many money-saving tactics in order to stretch our hard-earned money as much as possible.  I regularly scour the internet before making a purchase in order to find the best price.  I use Ebates to earn hundreds of dollars back on my purchases.  Free shipping codes, promo codes, and so forth are a normal part of our necessary shopping.

Sign up for an Ebates account and get $10 applied to your account with your first purchase of $25 or more through Ebates.  You can read more about how Ebates works here.

5. We chose to live on only one income.

During the years when both of us were working full-time, we chose to live on only one income while using the second income to pay off debt. This was especially beneficial when, after having children, I chose to work less and stay home more. We were already accustomed to living on one income, so it wasn’t so much of a “lifestyle crisis” for us to make that leap.

I’ll admit, it isn’t a whole lot of fun to only live on one income when you actually have two incomes.  There are so many temptations to simply spend that extra money on things that you want.  But we made a deliberate choice to give up things we love for things that we love even more.

6. We used cloth diapers on our babies.

We have used cloth diapers on all three of our babies, which saved on the cost of diapers each month. While there was some up-front cost associated with purchasing the diapers, they paid for themselves very quickly and we were able to use them on more than one child, furthering their value.

We haven’t exclusively cloth diapered (we do use some disposable diapers, too), but when you consider that we’ve had at least one child in diapers at all times for the last four and a half years, cloth diapers have provided us with a pretty significant savings.

7. We didn’t automatically replace items that were broken.

When our 30+ year old dryer finally broke, we did not replace it until we were able to save up cash and find a good deal. In the meantime, I hung all of our clothes and cloth diapers up to dry, both inside and outside of our home.

When our microwave broke, I considered replacing it, but then realized I didn’t really need it. I could use my oven, toaster oven, stovetop, crock pot, or pressure cooker for pretty much anything a microwave could do.

These are just a couple of examples.  When you are working toward a huge goal, you really begin to examine every purchase.

8. We purchased used clothing for our kids.

Clothing for three kids can really add up if you aren’t careful.  Thankfully, I live in an area where consignment sales abound, and I can purchase great-quality items for a fraction of the cost of new items.  I love shopping consignment sales to find items we need at a very low cost.  Many of the sales in my area have a 50% off day at the end of the sale, which is a great way to really score some great deals!

I’ve also had good success purchasing items from ThredUp.  If you aren’t familiar with ThredUp, they sell gently used (or sometimes new with tags!) clothing and shoes for kids.  They also have clothing for women, including maternity items.  You can click here to read how I use ThredUp to revamp my own wardrobe as well!

I’ve purchased many quality, brand-name items for both my children and myself for very low prices.  I’ve always been impressed with the quality of the items I’ve received.  You can customize your online search and sort items easily, depending on the item type, color, size, and price you’d prefer.

If you don’t already have a ThredUp account, you can sign up here and get $10 off your first purchase!

9. We sold things.

I was such a pack rat growing up.  I kept everything.  I was a pretty sentimental child, and since we moved a lot, I think I held onto “stuff” as tangible pieces of the past I was leaving behind with each move.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve really begun to swing toward the opposite end of the spectrum.  I’ve definitely been moving toward a minimalist lifestyle for a few years, and I find freedom in getting rid of things we don’t use or need.

I enjoy decluttering our spaces and our lives.  I find that uncluttered spaces make me much more at ease, whereas cluttered spaces make me feel uptight.  As a bonus, decluttering has provided some extra money to apply toward our debt!

I love this post that Shannon wrote at The Humbled Homemaker about how decluttering can help pay off debt.  I also found this article from Bob at SeedTime to be good motivation, too, as he made over $2000 in one month just by decluttering!

I regularly scoured our home for books, DVDs, toys, clothes, and so on, and sold as much of it as I could. Oftentimes this was through consignment sales, Craigslist, or online book buyback sites such as BookScouter.

If you want to sell books, BookScouter is a great resource because you simply enter the ISBN of the book and they compare offers from multiple book buyback sites.  This allows you to see which sites will offer the most money for the books.

Many books will not be in demand, but some will, and you can make some cash easily.  I had several textbooks from my graduate program that were still current enough to sell, as well as some personal books.

10. We learned to say “no.”

Learning to say “no” is probably the least fun, but definitely one of the most important things we did.  In order to stay within our budget and be able to have extra money to apply toward debt, we often had to say “no.”

We said “no” to going out to eat when we didn’t have money left in our entertainment fund. We said “no” to traveling more, purchasing clothing, shoes, books, music, event tickets, and so on when we did not have the money in the corresponding fund. We said “no” to buying a home when we were knee-deep in debt already.

We were consistently saying “no” to things we wanted now so that we can more easily say “yes” to things we want later.

My husband and I had to choose between the pain of saying “no” now versus the pain of a life lived in bondage to debt. We decided some temporary sacrifices are worth the long-term benefits of being debt free.

At times, saying “no” has been really hard.  The reality is, it’s fun to be able to buy things and go places and do what we want whenever we want. But we have made many small decisions in support of our larger goal of paying off our debt, and it has been worthwhile in every way.

You Can Do It, Too!

If you are wanting to get out of debt, I’d like to encourage you to set a goal for yourself.  Make a plan.  Once you have action steps planned out, it’s so much easier to stick with it.  Some of these ten things may work for you.  Numbers 1 and 10 are essential steps that will make a huge difference in your journey to debt freedom.

If some of these items don’t apply to you, that’s okay!  Think of other ways that you can save or earn more.  My hope is that our journey can bring some encouragement and inspiration to you on your own journey!

What are some ways that you’ve been able to pay off debt?  I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Do you want to learn how to create and implement a cash envelope budget? My husband and I used cash envelopes for years, and it was hugely foundational to how we view and handle money.  But when we first started, I had so many questions…”How often do I need to go to the bank?  What budget categories should I use cash for? How do I handle the checkout line?”  If the thought of starting a cash envelope budget sounds overwhelming to you, I highly recommend clicking here to check out Cash Fueled Life.  It’s has all of the information that I wish I’d known in the beginning of our budgeting journey, and it walks you through the ins and outs of setting up a cash envelope budget that works for YOU.  Click on the image below to learn more!











Want to Pay Off Debt?

Join the Debt Payoff Jumpstart Email Challenge and get your Debt Payoff Workbook! It's all FREE!!

Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription and begin your Jumpstart right away!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *