Whether you are facing a slew of unexpected medical bills, have recently lost your job, or your car has decided now is the perfect time to give up the ghost, one thing is for sure: you need cash immediately. Sadly, when a financial emergency strikes, most of us are caught completely off guard.
You are not alone if you find yourself in this situation. According to FEMA, approximately 60% of American households experience at least one financial emergency each year, and approximately 30% of American families have no savings at all.
Where do you turn when you need quick cash to cover an unexpected expense? Here are some smart ways to raise money quickly without causing irreversible financial harm.
#1 Sell some of your possessions
No one wants to sell precious belongings, but sometimes, needs must. You could pawn jewelry, sell those antiques and turn some possessions into cash.
You may also be able to make quick money by selling off new electronics such as TVs, tablets, phones, laptops, and game consoles, as well as media such as DVDs, CDs, books, and games. There are plenty of online marketplaces and services where you send them in and get cash in return. Alternatively, you could try posting them on Facebook, or in your local newspapers.
#2 Take on some odd jobs
If you don’t have any high-value items to sell, you can try selling your services instead. This is particularly useful if you are out of work and have plenty of free time. From babysitting to pet sitting, dog walking, and car washing, there are all sorts of things that you can do to raise a few quick dollars.
If you have particular skills – writing, or graphic design, for example, you could also dabble in some quick gig work. Look at sites such as Fiverr and Upwork for available jobs.
#3 Look down the side of your couch
No, really! According to a Bloomberg news report from 2016, Americans discard approximately $61.8 million in coins in the trash each year. That is a lot of money! There is an untold wealth hiding under the cushions on your couch, in piggy banks, in old coat pockets, and in purses that have been left languishing in the closet.
Search the house for all of the hidden coins. Once you have found every last penny, take it to your nearest bank or credit union. Some banks will count change for their customers for free, while others may require you to count and roll it yourself. Either way, it could tide you over or get you that carton of milk you desperately need.
#4 Ask friends and family
This one should only be used as a last resort. While borrowing money from friends and family may seem like a quick fix, it can have some negative consequences. When a loved one lends you money, it can strain your relationship, especially if you do not repay the person quickly. If you do take this route, draw up a repayment plan and what will happen if you miss a payment or pay late.