There are lots of things that you can do to save money or to “passively” earn extra money for things like Christmas gifts. But what if you need a lot of money right now? What if you only have days or, worse, hours to come up with a big lump sum of cash to get your family out of a bind? Here are some of the things that you can do:
What Can You Sell?
Even if you hate the idea of pawning stuff, it can be a great way to get cash quickly in the event of an emergency. Take a look around your house. Is there anything that you are confident you can buy back in a couple of weeks? Better, is there something that you can simply sell outright? Now’s the time to do it. Put it up on Craigslist—you’ll get emails and offers almost immediately. If it is something truly valuable, like a piece of jewelry, take it to an antiques dealer or appraiser to ensure you get a fair price.
What Can You Borrow?
If you’re facing a medical emergency, now is not the time to succumb to pride. Suck it up and get on the phone. Calling your friends and family and asking for small loans isn’t something that anybody wants to do. Still, the more help you can get from people who know and love you, the better off you will be. This is, obviously, a resource that is easy to exhaust, so only use it when you absolutely have to and you have no other options available.
Short Term Loans
If you have a steady job you can apply for a payday loan. Just make sure you go over the terms carefully before you sign on the dotted line. Payday loans charge an astronomical amount of interest and fees and if you can’t pay them back right away they can put you in a financial bind for months.
By that measure, it might be safer to get a car title loan—a loan against the title value of your car. You can usually get bigger loans against your car title. Just make sure you can pay it back according to the terms of your agreement, though, because if you don’t you could lose your car!
Some banks will have funds in place for families in your situation. The approval is quick and you can usually have the entire loan in hand within 24 hours of starting the application process. If you’ve got passable credit and a steady income, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether or not you can repay the loan. Even better—repaying the loan in full and according to the terms of your agreement actually helps you build your credit rating.
Walk through your neighborhood and ask your neighbors whether they have any work that you can do for pay. The benefit of walking through your own neighborhood is that the people there already know you so you’re more likely to get a good response after you tell them what’s going on. You’ll be surprised by the number of jobs people will have for you.
Get creative. The more creative you are, the more likely you will be to find the money you need as quickly as you need it. Good luck!