Financial Emergencies: How To Make Small Amounts Of Money Fast

So you're a little, shall we say, financially embarassed at the moment. No need to worry, there are many ways to generate quick funds.

Most people have felt that sinking feeling of realizing that they're running somewhat low on cash. Depending upon the circumstances, these emotions can run from slight irritation to a desperate, gut-wrenching panic. If you've found yourself in a similar situation, don't fret. There's lots of ways to come by a little extra cash. Hopefully you have a friend or family member that's willing to float you a loan for awhile and your troubles are over. If you're not that fortunate, you'll have to think of other ways to get out of the jam.

If you're only needing some help for a few days, consider taking one of your possessions to the local pawn shop. It could be a chainsaw, a sewing machine or a spare television. But, be careful choosing this method of getting money. There will be a financing charge when you retrieve your belongings and if you don't pay the money in time, you could lose your possessions. On the other hand, you can sell an item outright, but it'll take a day or so to list it in the newspaper then another day or two to actually sell the item if someone is interested. A quicker way is to check if the area radio stations have a "home ad" type of show. The seller calls in and lists the item and his phone number, then interested parties call on the spot. If possible, arrange to meet the purchaser in a public place when selling in this manner.

A less radical idea is to clean out closets, basements and attics then have a yard sale or go to the flea market. What seems like a useless stack of clothes, books or movies might well bring you a pretty penny at the nearest flea market. For best results, set out only clean, slightly used items. Popular flea market buys are children's items, jeans, jackets, dishes, tools and collectibles. Most yard sales are held on the weekends and that might be too far in the distant future to help you out, so you might want to check out some other options. There are now institutions which will loan you money against your next paycheck. Some people fall into this trap, though, and end up borrowing money against each and every paycheck, week after week. The finance charges are somewhat inflated, so only use this method when there's just no other way.

Investing is a good idea if you have a little money on hand but you know it's not enough to see you through. One idea is to check with local furniture manufacturers. Often they have a small supply of recliners and such that didn't quite make the cut for first quality. You can sometimes purchase a load of these at a reasonable price and have a blow-out sale in the parking lot of a nearby mall. A great time to do this is around Father's Day or Christmas. Other factories that make items like picture frames or toys may also offer you a deal. If investing seems a little chancy, what about a bake sale? Bakery goods have become very expensive at the grocer and people will usually line up to purchase great home baked goods. Offer whole baked pies and cakes, or just individual slices. If possible, include cookies and handmade candies.

Some additional ways to earn cash might seem far-fetched, but in desperation you can:

Check to see if the fair is in town. They often offer temporary jobs, like parking cars or helping to tear the rides down on the last night.

Set up a drink stand, selling cold drinks at places that are having a 4th of July celebration or special town festivities.

Catch nightcrawlers to sell to the local bait shops.

Mow yards, trim hedges or do odd jobs for neighbors.

Check the local pizza parlors and restaurants to see if they need delivery drivers. Or, apply for a waitress position, where you will normally earn tips the first night.

Set up a car-detailing spot where you can offer car washing and cleaning services.

Cash in paper, cardboard, aluminum cans or any other recyclables that you might have on hand.

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