Got 30 Minutes? Here’s How to Earn up to $259 Without Leaving Home

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Low on funds — and time?

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 $259 — without even leaving your house!

Get out your smartphone or laptop. Flex your fingers. Focus your thoughts. Follow these steps to make money online fast.

  1. 1. Collect $10 for Shopping at Your Favorite Store

    Aileen Perilla carries packages that were delivered using Amazon Prime
    Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

    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 Amazon purchases and 10% at Walmart.

    Plus, you’ll get a $10 gift card of your choice when you sign up. Here’s how to get it:

    1. Sign up for Ebates using your email or Facebook account. (It’s free.)
    2. Use the Ebates portal next time you shop online. It’s connected to thousands of stores, including eBay, Amazon, Walmart and Home Depot.
    3. When you spend your first $25 at any of the connected stores within 90 days, Ebates will reward you $10 on top of the cash-back rewards you’ll already earn.
  2. 2. Collect $150 From Chase

    Stack of credit american dollars cash and credit card
    alexialex/Getty Images

    If you’re looking for a passive way to earn some money, a cash-back credit card is perhaps one of the easiest methods.

    Just don’t get too carried away with those purchases — and 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.

  3. 3. Collect $1 From Free Scratch-off Tickets

    Scratching off a lottery ticket.
    mphillips007/Getty Images

    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 scratch-offs are free because the app is advertiser supported. Plus you’ll get a guaranteed $1 on your first scratch.

  4. 4. Collect $5 in Free Stock

    hand putting coin in jug glass
    lovelyday12/Getty Images

    The Stash app lets you start investing with as little as $5 and for just a $1 monthly fee for balances under $5,000. Plus, you’ll get a $5 bonus for funding your first investment!

    Stash curates investments from professional fund managers and investors and lets you choose where to put your money — but it leaves the complicated investment terms out of it.

    You just choose from a set of simple portfolios reflecting your beliefs, interests and goals.

  5. 5. Collect $3 for Sharing Your Amazon History

    Alexander Olt works remotely from his laptop
    Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder

    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. They use this anonymous information to improve the online shopping experience.

    To earn your first gift card today:

    1. 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.
    2. Open the app and log in to your Amazon account to automatically share your purchase history.
    3. You’ll receive a 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 ($36 a year).

    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.

  6. 6. Collect $5 for Taking a Quick Survey

    man sitting outside checking phone and drinking beer
    Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder

    Surveys aren't a great way to make money fast — but signing up is super easy, and you can fill them out in your downtime. 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, plus you’ll earn a $5 bonus for taking your first survey.
    • 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!
  7. 7. Earn $50/Year for Downloading This App

    Side view of man using digital tablet in hammock
    Morsa Images/Getty Images

    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 don’t worry: This won’t slow down your phone or computer.

    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.

  8. 8. Collect $25 For Taking This Health Insurance Survey

    Mother and baby at hospital
    kate_sept2004/Getty Images

    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. The survey takes less than 10 minutes and has 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.

    Most questions are multiple choice, which makes answering easy. Your answers are private and protected under federal law.

  9. 9. Automate Your Savings

    Saving money is tough. So what if you could do it in a way where you wouldn't even notice?

    Digit makes that possible.

    This innovative app automates saving for you. Simply link it to your checking account, and its algorithms will determine small (and safe!) amounts of money to withdraw into a separate, FDIC-insured savings account.

    Bonus: Penny Hoarders will get an extra $5 just for signing up!

    Using this set-it-and-forget-it strategy, one Penny Hoarder saved $4,300 without noticing — read his Digit review.

    If you need that money sooner than expected, you’ll always have access to it within one business day.

    Digit is free to use for the first 100 days, then it’s $2.99 per month afterward.

  10. 10. Collect $5 for Starting an Emergency Fund

    Money in a Jar
    Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder

    Acorns is a popular savings and 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.

    That means if you spend $10.23 at the grocery store, 77 cents gets dropped into your Acorns account. Once you hit $5, Acorns will automatically invest it.

    The idea is you won’t miss the digital pocket change, and the automatic savings stack up faster than you’d think

    Sign up through this link, and you’ll get a free $5 when you make your first investment.

  11. 11. Collect a Bonus $5 for Selling Your Old Movies and CDs

    cd Collection on shelf
    Ulf Wittrock/Getty Images

    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, told us he 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 — and shipping is free.

    Right now, when you send in your trades, Decluttr grants you a $5 bonus if you enter FREE5 at checkout.

Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. Like you, he could use some extra money.

*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.

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