Make $250 in Half the Time it Takes to Watch a ‘Stranger Things’ Episode
Low on funds? Need money fast?
Hey, we’ve all been there. Personally, I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve searched my couch cushions and the cupholders in my car, scrounging for spare change.
Don’t do that. There’s a better way.
Spend the next 30 minutes checking these tasks off your list, and you’ll earn over $200 — without even leaving your house!
Get out your smartphone or your laptop. Flex your fingers. Focus your thoughts. Follow these steps to make money online fast.
1. Collect $3 From ShopTracker
If you’re a regular Amazon shopper, the ShopTracker app will pay you each month for contributing to research to help companies understand what people are buying online. Companies use this information to improve the online shopping experience.
To earn your first gift card today:
- Sign up and download the ShopTracker app on your Windows computer and Apple or Android phone. It takes about two minutes. You’ll need to answer a few questions about your Amazon use to qualify.
- Open the app and log in to your Amazon account to automatically share your purchase history.
- You’ll receive your Visa e-gift card code for $3 via email within 48 hours.
- Take a couple of minutes to share your purchase history to earn another $3 each month.
Your information is collected securely by The Harris Poll, a trusted market research company for more than 20 years. ShopTracker removes your name, shipping address and any personal payment information before reporting your purchase history.
2. Collect $25 From JOANY
JOANY is a health care concierge service. It helps people find and compare plans, seek out doctors and navigate complicated medical bills.
To best cater to customers, it needs you to answer some survey questions. It takes less than 10 minutes, with fewer than 50 questions.
If you meet these qualifications and complete the survey, you’ll pocket $25:
- You purchased health insurance for 2017 or 2018 through your state exchange, Healthcare.gov, a broker or a plan like Oscar or Aetna.
- You don’t receive health insurance through your employer or school.
- You aren’t on Medicaid, Medicare or VA health insurance.
JOANY promises fewer than 50 questions and less than 10 minutes of your time. Most questions are multiple choice, which makes answering easy. Your answers are private and protected under federal law.
3. Download This App to Collect $50 This Year
You know Nielsen, the company that tracks TV ratings? It also measures the popularity of websites and online videos. To do that, Nielsen wants to pay you to let it anonymously collect information from your favorite web-surfing device.
And best of all, this won’t slow down your phone or computer.
Of course you have a laptop, tablet or smartphone. You’re a human being in the 21st century, after all. Shoot, you’re probably reading this on one of those devices right now.
Here’s the deal:
If you have a smartphone or tablet, the Nielsen Panel will pay you $50 a year to keep its app on your device and browse the web like you normally do. The information it collects remains totally anonymous.
If you have a desktop or laptop computer, you’ll receive entries into the company’s $10,000 monthly sweepstakes for every month you keep Nielsen’s software installed on your computer. Every month, 400 people win prizes, with the two top prizewinners taking home $1,000 each.
4. Share Your Thoughts
Surveys aren’t a way to make money fast — but sign up is super easy, and you can fill them out in your down time. Great way to cash in on commercial breaks! Here are some of our favorite paid survey sites:
- The Swagbucks mobile app is one of the best, legitimate paid survey apps out there.The questions are pretty simple: Which do you like more: Coke or Cherry Coke? How many times have you been to the movies in the past 12 months?You get the idea. The average payout for answering a series of questions is 75 SBs, which is equivalent to 75 cents. You won’t qualify for every panel, but you can usually earn about $5 for 30 minutes of work.
- Opinion Outpost offers surveys from all kinds of businesses and organizations. Most of them take around 10 minutes to complete and will earn you points you can redeem for free gift cards to places like Amazon and iTunes.What sets it apart from other survey sites is it gives away $40,000 every year. It has a quarterly drawing for a $10,000 cash prize — and for every survey you complete, you’ll get one entry into the sweepstakes!
5. Collect $10 From Ebates
Have you heard of Ebates? It’s a cash-back site that lets you earn rewards by shopping online. We love it around here, because it’s an easy way to save on everything you buy.
For example, you’ll earn up to 6% cash back on every purchase you make at Amazon. Plus, you’ll get a $10 bonus to shop at Walmart when you sign up. Here’s how to get it:
- Sign up for Ebates using your email or Facebook account. (It’s free.)
- Use the Ebates portal next time you shop online. It’s connected to thousands of stores, including eBay, Amazon and Home Depot.
- When you spend your first $25 at any of the connected stores, Ebates will reward you $10 on top of the cash-back rewards you earn normally.
6. Collect $150 From Chase
If you’re looking for a passive way to earn some money, a cash-back credit card is perhaps one of the easiest methods.
You just have to be sure you don’t get too carried away with those purchases — and that you pay off the card at the end of each billing period.
Here’s an option we like: It’s the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. Its claim to fame? You’ll earn an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all your purchases. Plus, if you spend $500 in your first three months of opening the card (hi, groceries), you’ll pocket a $150 bonus.
There’s no annual fee, and the cash-back rewards don’t expire. We checked Credible’s annual rewards calculator, and it estimates $417 in annual rewards based on our spending habits.
(You can enter your unique spending habits and see what you’d earn, too.)
Get signed up — with 0% intro APR for 15 months — here.
*Annual Rewards amounts will change based on the amounts you enter. The monthly spending category names and definitions may vary among issuers, and categories may not align one-to-one.
The information for the Chase Freedom Unlimited card has been collected independently by The Penny Hoarder. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. The Penny Hoarder is a partner of Credible.
7. Try Your Luck With Lucktastic
OK, think of this as the cherry on top. If you’ve followed our instructions so far, you’re that much richer. Here’s one more chance at some extra money.
Try out a free app called Lucktastic. Each day, it releases a new assortment of digital scratch-off tickets. Instant wins range from $1 to $10,000. You can also earn tokens, enter contests and play games.
The app is free to download — and play.
8. Collect $5 From Stash
Stash is a popular micro-investing app. It lets you start investing with as little as $5 and for just a $1 monthly fee for balances under $5,000.
Automate your investments by allocating, say, $5 per week. You can put your Stash money in over 30 different investment funds reflecting your beliefs, interests and goals.
Bonus: Right now, The Penny Hoarder is teaming up with Stash to fund your first investment so you’ll get a bonus $5 to start.
9. Collect $5 From Acorns
Acorns is another popular micro-investing app. Once you connect it to a debit or credit card, it rounds your purchases up to the nearest dollar and funnels your digital change into a savings and investment account.
Because the money comes out in increments of less than $1, you’re not likely to feel an impact in your bank account. You can also set it up so it doesn’t round up every single purchase.
Sign up through this link, and you’ll get a free $5 when you make your first investment.
10. Collect an Extra $5 From Decluttr
If you have a little more time, start shuffling through your old movies or CDs because Decluttr will pay you for them.
Decluttr buys your old CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays and video games, plus hardware like cell phones, tablets, game consoles and iPods.
One user, Gil Flores, sold about 100 DVDs and 75 CDs and made $275 — an average of $1.57 each.
Just download the app, and start scanning the barcodes on your media to get immediate quotes. It’s completely free to use — no listing or seller fees.
Payment is pretty fast — it’ll take a day or two — but shipping is free.
Right now, when you send in your trades, Decluttr grants you a $5 bonus if you enter FREE5 at checkout.
11. Sell Gift Cards
Okay, I’ll admit it: This one will definitely take more than half an hour, so we won’t include the money from this one in our $255 grand total.
We’ve talked plenty about selling unused gift cards online, but that won’t pay up quickly enough for our purposes here. If you want to turn your gift cards into cash right now, you’ll have to venture into the real world.
Ask friends, family, neighbors, co-workers or (if it’s allowed) store patrons if they’re interested in buying your gift card at a discount. They may be happy to buy, say, a $25 gift card for just $20. And you’ll have $20 more in cash!
Finally, consider this: If you still need extra cash and you have more than 30 minutes to spare, check out our guide to 15 smart ways to make money in the next 24 hours. It includes ideas like nabbing a Craigslist gig or selling some of your little-used clothes.
The important thing is to just keep at it. When you’re broke, it can be really tempting to just take a nap on your couch instead of doing anything about it. Then you search your couch cushions for spare change.
Don’t do that. There’s a better way.
Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. Like you, he could use some extra money.