21+ Ways to Make $500 Fast [In a Week or Less]

Life doesn’t always go as planned, whether you have an emergency or something unexpected occurs, you might need more money. Even if you have money set aside, it might not be enough, forcing you to look for ways to make $500 fast.

It might feel impossible, especially when you’re in the midst of an emergency, but there are ways you can make 500 dollars fast, usually in a week or less, to ease your financial strain.

skip down to see all the ways to make $500 fast

How to Make 500 Dollars Fast

Here’s how to make 500 dollars fast today:

Make $500 Fast With Freelance or Gig Work

Gig work is another great way to make $500 fast. This obviously requires work on your part, but you’re also in control of how much you make. The more you work, the more money you’ll make.

1. Freelance Writer

If you know how to write with proper grammar, have a basic sense of SEO, and love to write, you can make money as a freelance writer.

Content is king, and every company needs help with its content. Unfortunately, small businesses don’t have the time to handle their content needs. They often let it sit on the back burner but then regret it because they lose business when they don’t have an updated blog, website content, or social media presence.

You can write blog posts, website content, or social media posts. Fiverr is a great platform to advertise your services, or you can market on social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn.

Most content writers charge per word and have a niche they specialize in to get more clients. It helps if you have a portfolio of any work you’ve completed so potential clients can see your writing style.

2. Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants provide business owners with a variety of tasks. For example, they can manage social media, write content, manage emails, make appointments, design websites, and provide customer service.

As a virtual assistant, you decide what you’ll offer, whether it’s one or more services. You can work for one company or diversify your efforts and support multiple businesses with your services.

3. Tutor Online or In-Person

Tutoring is a great way to make money in your free time. Because most tutors charge a high hourly rate, you can make $500 fast by tutoring.

First, decide how you want to tutor. For example, will you tutor in person at the student’s home or the local library, or do you prefer to work online?

If you’ll work in person, hang flyers at local schools, libraries, and grocery stores. Advertise your services on social media and tell friends and neighbors that you’re offering tutoring. It works best to narrow down which topics or grades you’ll tutor to get the right audience.

Make sure to talk about your credentials, whether you have a teaching certificate, a bachelor’s degree in a subject, or excel in a specific topic and want to help those that struggle.

If you prefer to tutor online, you have a couple of options. You can create your own business and advertise your services locally and nationwide or work for a company like VIPKid. At VIPKid, tutors help students in China learn English.

It’s a rewarding job if you are a teacher but are taking a break or you need to supplement your teacher income. You must be able to work evenings or very early mornings since you are teaching in Beijing time. Tutors that work the later shifts usually earn a premium, which can help you earn 500 dollars fast.

4. Childcare

If you love working with kids, consider offering childcare in your home. You can offer before and after school care or watch smaller children throughout the day.

Check with your city and county ordinances to see if you must be licensed to handle childcare. Next, check the rates in your area, asking local daycare providers what they charge and what services they offer, such as serving breakfast, lunch, or after-school snacks.

You can charge hourly for your childcare services or consider a daily or weekly fee, depending on the ages of the children you watch.

5. Pet Care

Pet owners often need help caring for their pets when they’re at work or on vacation. You can make 500 fast offering pet sitting or pet walking services.

Decide what you’re comfortable doing, whether walking dogs at lunchtime, letting dogs out and feeding them throughout the day, or caring for them while their owners are away.

You can set up your own pet care business or work through apps like Rover, a marketplace that matches pet sitters with pet owners. Either way, you choose how much you charge per hour or day and what animals you’re comfortable caring for while their owners are away.

6. Running Errands

People need help with errands all the time. If you don’t mind doing odd jobs, like running to the dry cleaners or a local store, hanging pictures, helping with landscaping, or cleaning house, set up an account on TaskRabbit.

List the tasks you’ll help with, and you’ll get matched with local people looking for help. This can be a great way to make 500 dollars fast, but make sure you provide great service for each task you accept. The app relies heavily on customer reviews. The better the reviews you get, the more jobs you’ll get, helping you reach your 500-dollar goal faster.

7. Handyman Work

If you’re good with small or large repairs, advertise your services in your area. List your skills, and negotiate rates with locals who need help with things like repairing drywall, finishing a basement, fixing a leaky pipe, or any other tasks for a house.

TaskRabbit is a great app for handyman work, too; just make sure you’re clear about the services you’ll offer. You’ll send a rate offer to interested buyers, and they’ll hire you for the job if they’re interested.

8. Audio/Video Editor

If you’d rather edit work that’s already completed, you can work as an audio or video editor. Just like written content is king, video, and podcasts are just as important to businesses today.

Companies often put together videos and podcasts but don’t have the means to edit them. If you have the software and knowledge to edit audio and video content, you can advertise your services on Fiverr or Upwork. In addition, companies will pay you to make their podcasts and videos search engine friendly and engaging.

You might cut excess content, add music to the background, handle transitions, or make other changes that create a powerful marketing piece for companies.

Make $500 Fast With Your Car

If you have a car in good condition and you don’t mind driving, you can make $500 fast with your car. Whether you drive people, food, or advertise for companies, there are many ways to get paid to drive.

9. Deliver Food

If you need to make 500 dollars fast, consider delivering food. Of course, you still need a good car and to pass a background check, but you’ll drive for apps like DoorDash or  UberEats.

When you deliver food, you pick up the customer’s order at a restaurant or sometimes a store (not grocery) and deliver it to them. You are the middle-man between the customer ordering and the place of business delivering the food.

Like Uber or Lyft, you must pass certain requirements, including the background check, but once approved, you can set yourself as available and take the deliveries you want. Again, you’ll earn a flat fee for your services, but customers can tip you, which you keep 100%.

If you can wait for your payment, you’ll receive it weekly. But if you need your 500 dollars fast, all apps offer an instant pay option for a small fee so that you can have your money fast.

Pay attention to the different offers DoorDash or UberEats offers. For example, if they are busy and there aren't enough drivers, they may offer peak pay, or they may motivate drivers to make themselves available by creating challenges, such as delivering ten deliveries in the next two days. This is common in areas that don't have enough drivers so the apps can continue providing great customer service.

10. Deliver Groceries

If you love to shop and drive, consider making money delivering food for Instacart. Rather than picking up an order that’s already bagged and ready to go, you do the shopping.

Customers purchase their groceries online, making their grocery lists. The order then goes out to approved Instacart shoppers to take. You’ll see the size of the grocery list, the amount you’ll make, and the tip the customer will pay.

If you take the order, you head to the store they ordered from and shop their list. You can communicate through the app if you have questions while shopping or if the store is out of a product the customer ordered. It’s good practice to greet the customer when you take the order, inform them when you arrive, and update them with any issues throughout your shopping experience. This will increase your tips and reviews, which will help you get even more jobs.

Like other delivery app jobs, you are an independent contractor, so account for the taxes you’ll pay on your earnings. You’re also responsible for any costs you incur outside the customer’s grocery costs. They pay the costs online, and the app you use to deliver groceries will give you a card to pay for the groceries at the store.

11. Drive for Uber or Lyft

If you don’t mind driving, download the Uber or Lyft app and become an approved driver. Of course, you must pass a background check, and your car must meet their basic requirements, but if approved, you can make money in your free time.

You don’t have to set specific hours to drive for Uber or Lyft. Instead, you make yourself available on the app when you have time. When you’re available, you can view active ride requests and accept the rides you’re willing to do.

Uber and Lyft pay drivers a flat fee, but customers can tip too. You keep 100% of the tips earned.

Both platforms also offer special incentives, such as peak pay during busy times and challenges that pay you a bonus if you complete them.

You work as an independent contractor if you drive for Uber or Lyft, so keep in mind that you’ll pay taxes on your earnings, and all expenses incurred are your responsibility, such as fuel, car repairs, parking, and tolls.

Both platforms offer the option to get paid weekly for no fee or instant pay for a small fee. So if you're in a bind for the 500 dollars, you can take advantage of the instant pay and have your money, minus a small fee, in seconds after earning it.

12. Wrap Your Car With Advertisements

If delivering food, shopping, or taking riders doesn’t appeal to you, there’s one more way your car can make you $500 fast. You can wrap your car with advertisements.

With companies like Wrapify, you allow them to wrap your car in a company’s advertisement. Then, they pay you for the time the advertisement is on your car. All you have to do is drive like you usually do.

Some companies require you to drive a certain number of miles, and all companies have campaign periods. They pay you monthly for advertising for them, and when the campaign ends, they remove the advertisements from your car.

Make a Quick $500 Renting Your Stuff

If you aren’t ready to part with your stuff, you might be able to make $500 fast if you rent items you have. The renting marketplace is becoming more popular today, with people looking to rent from individuals rather than large companies. This includes places to stay and even cars to drive.

13. Rent Out Your Spare Room

Airbnb has increased in popularity a lot since the pandemic. This is because people want more space and privacy than a hotel offers.

You can rent out your spare room or entire home with Airbnb. If you’re in a pinch for money and need it fast, list a room in your home on Airbnb. Before you do, determine the amenities you’ll offer and how you’ll handle sharing your space. Then, decide when you’ll have the room available and find tenants.

You can rent it to tenants for a day or two or the long term. You can even have tenant turnover, renting to multiple people in the span of a week to increase your earnings further.

If you have an entire house or townhome that will be vacant for a week or two, you could list the entire home on Airbnb and make even more money.

You aren’t obligated to keep the property listed long-term, either. You can make it available for a few days and then take it off because you’ll be back home or don’t want to share your space during that time.

Because you get paid when they rent, it’s a great way to make money quickly using your existing resources.

14. Rent Out Unused Space for Storage

If you have a large unused space, you can rent it to others who need storage space. For example, families who live in a small apartment or home without a basement, the elderly, and people getting divorced often need storage space but don’t want to pay the high rates typical storage facilities charge.

Join Neighbor and list your available space for rent. Make sure you’re specific about the space you have. For example, is it temperature-controlled, affected by weather, or are there stairs leading to it? Be as detailed as possible about the space and watch people rent it.

You can rent out space in your basement or garage, empty storage shed, or even attic space. If you use Neighbor to rent your storage space, they provide $1,000,000 host protection, so you don’t have to worry about being liable for your tenant’s belongings.

15. Rent Out Your Parking Space

You’ve heard of Airbnb to rent your home, and now there’s Pavemint to rent your parking space. You’d be surprised to learn how in-demand parking spaces are, almost as much as places to stay. This is especially true if you live in an urban area where parking is tight.

You decide how you’ll charge tenants. You can charge by the hour or day. Depending on how much you charge, you can quickly make the 500 dollars you need fast. Check out what others in the area charge for their spots and make your costs competitive, or even a few dollars lower, so you get the business.

Provide your tenants with a safe place to park their car and make it easy for them to get in and out, and they’ll likely refer you to others in a similar situation.

16. Rent Out Your RV

Owning an RV makes for great family memories, but it collects dust when it’s not in use, and it can be expensive to let it just sit. So instead, turn it into an opportunity to make 500 dollars fast by renting it to others. RVShare is a marketplace that brings together RV owners and people who want to rent an RV.

It works a lot like Airbnb. First, you list your RV, its features, and available dates, and renters look at your listing. If they like what they see, they may ask you some questions or book the RV to rent. Then, you choose all the details of the rental process, including how much you want for a security deposit.

You are required to meet with the renters to provide the keys and show them how everything works, but beyond that, it’s a pretty easy gig. RVShare offers $1 million in liability insurance and $200,000 in comprehensive and collision.

Depending on the size of your RV, how long you rent it, and the local market, you might make the $500 you need in one rental.

17. Rent Out Your Car

If you have an extra car, or won’t be using your car for a while, consider renting it out. This is a great way to make 500 dollars fast, especially if someone rents it long-term or you rent to multiple people in a short time.

It might sound crazy to rent out your car, but it can be a great way to make passive income. You must ensure the car is in good shape, clean, and has gas for your renters.

There are a couple of ways to rent out your car. First, you can rent it through Turo or Getaround, which are marketplaces that bring together car owners and renters. Much like renting a car from Enterprise, you list the car, its features, and the cost per hour or day. Then, you set the terms, they provide the insurance, and you make the money you need renting out your car.

You can also rent your car to rideshare drivers through HyreCar. This is a marketplace for car owners with spare cars and rideshare drivers. You set the daily rate, and the transaction goes through HyreCar. They provide the insurance, and you collect the money. Because you’re renting your car out to people using it to make money, the rates you earn are usually higher, and you might earn more than the 500 dollars needed for this emergency.

Make $500 By Selling Stuff

Selling items is one of the best ways to make 500 dollars fast. Buyers can’t take the item until they’ve paid for it, so it’s a great way to earn money instantly. You probably think you have nothing to sell, but thinking outside the box a little will turn up ideas you won’t believe you missed.

18. Sell Unwanted Items Around Your House

This is one of the easiest ways to make $500 dollars fast. You can sell items around your house. Of course, you’ve heard of garage sales, but did you know you can sell items anytime and don’t have to wait for garage sale season?

Use sites like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist to your advantage, and sell your items. Also, consider selling on eBay if you have collectibles, electronics, or other items that might sell for more than a garage sale price.

You might be surprised to learn how much people will pay for secondhand items. Things you find around your home that you consider junk could be treasures to someone else.

Before you sell unwanted items, search for similar items on marketplaces to see what others are getting for them. Then, keep your prices competitive but high enough that you make what the items are worth.

19. Sell Unused Clothes

If you have a closet filled with clothes you don’t wear, sell them, especially if you have clothes with tags still on them.

It happens to all of us. We buy clothes intending to wear them for a certain purpose, but the occasion never happens, or we find something else to wear. If you wait too long, you lose the chance to return the items for a refund, so they sit in your closet collecting dust.

Instead of letting them sit, make money on them. A great place to sell unused clothes is Poshmark. You can create a ‘closet’ on the site with all your items, including shoes and accessories. Then, set the price and market your closet on your social media pages.

If you sell items, you ship them and get paid from Poshmark after the buyer accepts them or within three days if the buyer doesn’t complete the transaction.

Poshmark keeps a small percentage of your sale, but you keep the difference. If you have name-brand clothes or hard-to-find styles, chances are you can make good money selling your unused clothes. Make sure when you show the item, you take pictures with the tags still attached as new with tag items usually sell for more money than used clothing items.

20. Sell Baked Goods

If you have a yard sale, consider other ways you can make money at it. Sure, you’ll make money selling the items you don’t want in your home any longer, but there are other ways to make more money, including selling baked goods.

If you’re a great baker, make cookies, bread, and cakes and sell them at your yard sale. If you host the yard sale for a few days, you could sell quite a few baked goods to supplement your earnings.

If you aren’t having a yard sale, you can sell baked goods online or by word-of-mouth with friends. For example, if you’re great at cake decorating, make cakes for friends and family and have them spread the word. If you share pictures of your creations on social media, chances are people will ask who made the cake, and before you know it, you’ll have more orders for custom cakes.

You can use this method for any type of baked good. If you have a specialty, share it with the people that know you best and let them spread the word.

21. Sell Your Crafts

If you’re crafty, turn your hobby into a money-making opportunity. You have several ways to make money selling crafts. First, figure out your niche. What do you make and want to sell? Next, decide if you want to sell them in person, online, or both.

Consider vendor fairs, craft fairs, flea markets, and yard sales if you sell in person. Anywhere there will be a large group of people with the intent to spend money is a great place to sell your crafts. If you want to make a side job out of it, you can find out about the craft shows in your area and sign up as a vendor at each of them. Create a flyer that says which shows you’ll be at and pass them around, even at your other craft shows.

If you prefer to sell your crafty items online, Etsy is a great place. You can create your own store and leverage Etsy’s large audience. You can sell just about any homemade item on Etsy. Just make sure you size up your competition. Then, see how they create their listings, what they charge, and how they take their photos.

You shouldn’t copy other crafters, but you can use what they do as inspiration to make your offerings even better so you can make $500 fast.

22. Sell Unused Gift Cards for Cash

If you have gift cards, you won’t use, consider selling them for cash. The easiest way is to advertise the gift cards for sale on your social media pages. You can ask for the full price of the gift card or discount it if you want to move it faster.

If you have gift cards to sell and don’t know anyone who could use them, download the app CardSell and see how much you can get for your gift card.

23. Flip and Sell Other People’s Stuff

If you love DIY projects, you can buy cheap furniture and other items, fix them, and flip them for a higher price.

This works great with the furniture you find at Goodwill, the Salvation Army, or the antiques you have lying around your house you no longer need. You can even find furniture or other items curbside on garbage day that people don’t want, but you know you can turn them into a treasure.

You can sell your items on sites like Facebook Marketplace, Etsy, or Craigslist. Where you sell the items depends on your market. For example, Etsy is a great place to sell items if you make boho chic pieces. Antiques and other unique collectibles also do well on Etsy.

If you’re fixing and flipping ordinary furniture, such as a table and chairs, you’ll have better luck on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist.

Like any platform, check out what others do. While fixing and flipping is a unique opportunity, and no two sellers will have the same items, you can get an idea of what the market wants and what they’re willing to pay before you put any money into your efforts to make a profit.

24. Sell Photos Online

Did you know people pay for stock photos? You can take photos and sell them online for money. This means you can take a picture one time and sell it as many times as people will buy them. There are many sites you can sell stock photos, some that work better than others for specific photo types.

Check out sites like Shutterstock and iStockPhoto and see what types of pictures members upload and sell. Follow your favorite photographers and get ideas for pictures you can take and sell.

Like most sites, the platform you upload your pictures to will take a cut of your profits, but you can upload your picture to multiple sites to diversify your earnings and maximize how much you make.

Other Ways to Make $500 In a Week or Less

There are also a few ‘non-working’ ways to make $500 in a week or less. Some methods require a chat with your boss, but it can be worth the nerve-wracking experience if you can reach your financial goals.

25. Sign-up Bonuses

Pay close attention to large sign-up bonus opportunities. For example, banks offer sign-up bonuses when you open a new account. For example, you might earn $150 for depositing $500 in a bank account and leaving it there for three months.

Reward credit cards often have sign-up bonuses too. Most reward credit cards pay in points, but you can earn the equivalent of $500+ if you sign up for a new credit card and reach their spending requirement to earn the bonus.

The downside of sign-up bonuses is you won’t get the money immediately. They usually take a few months to obtain, but they can help you with your next emergency.

26. Donate Plasma

If you’re in good health and have a few hours to spare, you can make more than 500 dollars fast and help people in need.

Companies like CSL Plasma pay you to ‘donate’ your plasma. It’s not really a donation since you get paid for it, but you’re helping people in need of it. Most places that accept plasma donations pay $1,000 or more for the first month, but you must pass a health exam and meet the height and weight requirements.

They’ll test you each time you try to donate, checking your vitals and asking specific questions about any medications or other substances you’ve taken in the last two weeks.

You get paid immediately after your donation, which can be a good way to get the money you need quickly.

27. Ask for a Raise

If you think you aren’t getting paid what you’re worth, consider asking for a raise. Be careful when you do this, though. Timing it perfectly is the key, as is preparation.

First, decide why you think you deserve a raise and gather your facts. Think of ways you’ve helped the company or differences you’ve made in their bottom line. The more facts and figures you can provide, the easier it is to prove you deserve the raise.

It doesn’t hurt to look around at what others in your industry make for the same position. If you earn less than the average in the area, you can also bring that up in your discussions.

Before you ask for a raise, set an appointment with your boss. Don’t just barge into his office and ask for the raise. Set aside time when you can have a closed-door meeting and when you can have your boss’s full attention.

If your boss doesn’t say yes immediately, it doesn’t mean you can’t get the raise. Sometimes they have to get approval from HR or a boss with more seniority than them, but pleading your case can get the ball rolling.

28. Work Overtime

If you get paid hourly, and your company allows overtime, use it to your advantage to make 500 dollars fast.

Even if you get paid bi-weekly, you’ll know that your efforts will pay off in two weeks, and you’ll have the money you need. The nice thing about working overtime is you get paid time and a half, so you have to work less time to make the same amount of money.

How to Best Use the $500

Once you make the extra $500, it’s important to know how to use it best. Sure, a shopping spree would be fun, but that’s not the most practical way to use your hard-earned money.

Here are some great ways to use the extra 500 dollars you earned.

1. Take Care of Your Emergency

If you had an emergency that prompted you to find ways to make $500 fast, take care of it first. Don’t be tempted to use the money for other uses. Instead, immediately pay for the emergency. For example, if you charged it on a credit card because you had no other options, pay off the credit card or if the vendor is waiting for payment, pay them immediately.

2. Put Money Away in an Emergency Fund

If you took care of the emergency and have money left over, consider building an emergency fund. This way, if there’s an emergency in the future, you won’t have to scramble to find ways to make 500 dollars fast.

Ideally, you should have three to six months of expenses put aside. Unfortunately, most people don’t have that, and many don’t even have $1,000 for a basic emergency. Consider stocking your emergency fund with cash, so you’re prepared for the next round of emergencies.

3. Open a High-Yield Savings Account

After you earn extra money, make it work for you. Don’t stuff it under your mattress. Instead, open a high-yield savings account and let your earnings grow. If you leave the money untouched, your interest will earn interest.

High-yield savings accounts usually have much higher APYs than traditional banks, and they often don’t charge the typical bank fees, so you get more for your earnings.

4. Create a Sinking Fund

If you took care of your emergency, set yourself up for the future. Create a sinking fund for things like holiday spending, a large upcoming expense, or future plans, like a vacation or kids’ summer camp. Create an account for each goal and contribute money to each fund monthly so that when the expenses come up, you won’t find yourself without the funds.

5. Invest

If you have an emergency fund saved, consider investing a little of your money. Only invest in assets that match your risk tolerance so you don’t lose more than you can handle.

You Can Invest In:

You don’t need a lot of money to invest. Most platforms have opportunities for everyday investors to invest with as little as $10, so there’s no excuse not to invest. You can even start by investing your spare change with Acorns.

Avoiding This In The Future

If needing 500 dollars fast was stressful for you, it’s important to figure out how to avoid this from happening in the future.

While life happens and sometimes we can’t control it, here are some ways to help yourself.

Create a Budget

If you don’t have a budget, create one, and if you have one, use it. Budgeting is the number one way to avoid overspending and finding yourself in a financial bind when emergencies happen. In your budget, account for savings, ensuring you regularly put money away for unexpected issues.

Don’t Use Credit Cards

Credit cards aren’t an extension of your income. If you use credit cards, stop and try to pay off your debt. The interest you pay on your debt removes the chance to save or invest money and increases the risk of needing money quickly.

Save as Much as Possible

Even if you live paycheck-to-paycheck or don’t think you have enough money to save, find ways. Whether you start a side gig, rent out items, or donate plasma, find ways to bring in even a few extra dollars each month and put it in a separate savings account for a rainy day.

Frequently Asked Questions

It can be overwhelming to need to make $500 fast, and you likely have a lot of questions. So here are the questions we hear most often.

Is it possible to make $500 in a week or less?

It’s possible to make $500 in a week or less, but you must be willing to hustle. In other words, the money won’t just land in your lap. You will need to work hard and diversify your efforts. Don’t rely on one source to make you the entire $500. Instead, combine your efforts, taking on passive and active income opportunities to maximize your income.

How can I make $500 every day without a job?

You might not make $500 a day without a job, but you can make extra money if you diversify your efforts with several side gigs. Consider doing things like:

…or offering services to people, such as running errands, or driving for Uber or Lyft.

You’ll have to work for your money, even if you don’t have an employer. Just remember, you will owe taxes on any money you make at tax time.

How can I make $500 a day at home?

It’s easy to make money at home. Side gigs that pay the most include freelance writing, website design, virtual assistant work, and tutoring. You choose the rates you’ll charge your clients and advertise your services. The more diligent you are about advertising your services, and the better reviews you get from current clients, the more money you’ll make.

What can I sell to earn $500?

Sometimes all it takes to earn $500 is to sell items you have. Clothing, electronics, toys, sporting goods, and collectibles sell well online or at a yard sale. If you really need to make money fast, having a yard sale for a couple of days can earn you the money needed.

If you have more time, consider selling items on eBay, Facebook Marketplace, or, if you’re crafty, set up an Etsy store. Another great place to earn money selling clothing is Poshmark. This works great if you have high-end brands to sell, whether clothes, accessories, or jewelry.

How can I earn $500 in one day?

You might not earn $500 in one day doing one task, but if you diversify your efforts, you might get close. Ask your boss for a raise, start a side gig or two, find things to sell online, and donate plasma, and you might be right where you need to be, making $500 fast.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.