How To Easily Make $500 Fast In 2020

What’s up y’all. So, here’s a quick story about my desperation to learn how to make money fast online a few years ago.

I had just moved to a high cost of living (HCOL) city. Prior, I had been living and working abroad, pulling in decent living. More money than I knew what to do with, actually. I thought I was prepared for life in an HCOL city.

Boy, was I wrong.

The years prior, I was sitting first class, drinking top-shelf beverages around the world. Suddenly, I found myself living in an HCOL city with a roommate, stuck in a small apartment, and paying over $3K/month in rent.

My credit card debt was building up fast because I could not afford the lifestyle I desired. I felt stuck and needed to make money fast.

How to Make Money Fast

At the time, I Googled “How to Make Money Fast“, and realized there were hundreds of ways to quickly make money online or around town.

I also realized that I was not alone.

You Are Not Alone in Your Search to Make Money Fast

Over 110,000 people search for the phrase, “How to Make Money Fast” per month!

This realization made me feel a bit better. Knowing that I was not the only one trying to make extra money at the end of the month was sort of calming.

How to make money fast google search volume

But, with too much information, comes disorganization. Literally billions upon billions of webpages (currently 3.15B and growing!) exist to help you figure out how to make extra cash fast.

What do you do with all this information? For me, it felt like everyone was trying to sell me something in my journey to make money. Furthermore, there were pages with titles like, “101 Best Ways to Get Rich Quick”, or “57 Sites Online That Will Make You Money Fast”.

I didn’t want 57 ways to make extra cash. For me, I needed fewer options. I desired only a few actionable steps to take to make a realistic amount of extra income.

Let me share with you what worked for me (so you don’t have to go through the struggle of filtering out all the ways that do not work!).

In this post, I compiled 13 of my favorite tricks to help you make more money. $500 to be exact!

Before we go any further, you need to know that these quick and easy ways to make $500 fast are not a substitute for your day job.

That said, they are a great way to supplement income in the short term.

Related: Check out my list of best side hustles in 2019 article for ideas intended to serve as a safety net in the event you need extra cash.

Luckily, 2019 has never been a better time to utilize apps and technology to make an extra 500 dollars fast.

1. Take Surveys Online & Make $500 This Month

Survey Junkie is my absolute favorite way to make money in my spare time.

You can earn up to $45/survey in just 20 mins (though most pay betwen $0.50 and $3!). Look closely at how long each survey will take vs how much it will pay to maximize the ROI on your time. After that, the earnings just depend on how much time you’re willing to give!

Side note: there are many places to take surveys online that will pay you cash via PayPal. Not all are legit though, so be careful.

TOOL: Survey Junkie
EARNING POTENTIAL: $0.50 – $45/survey

Survey Junkie - Earn cash to Take Surveys Price: FREE Survey Junkie is the most reputable online survey company and an easy way to make some extra money in your free time. Earn Cash Now Survey Junkie - Earn cash to Take Surveys

2. Vindale Research

Unlike many other paid survey websites, Vindale Research shows the compensation in cash (instead of points), making it easy to see exactly what you’ll earn.

You can expect anywhere between $0.25 and $50 for paid surveys, depending on the time requirement, topic, and demographic criteria of the survey.

And surveys aren’t the only earning opportunities with Vindale either, giving you a little more variety to earn cash.

TOOL: Vindale Research
EARNING POTENTIAL: $0.25 – $50/survey

Vindale Research - Get Paid to Take Surveys Price: FREE Vindale Research is a legit company with multiple opportunities to earn money including taking surveys. Learn More Vindale Research - Get Paid to Take Surveys

Bonus: Also check out Pinecone Research and I-Say by Ipsos for even more surveys and rewards.

3. Download Ibotta for Free and Make $20 Now

Ibotta is a legit way to earn extra cash, just by shopping for things you’re buying anyway. Plus, they’re offering up to $20 in sign-up bonuses right now for Millennial Money readers….$10 just to sign up!

Ibotta is a cash back and rewards app that started in the groceries sector but now has rewards for almost anything. Unlike some of the other cashback companies, Ibotta rewards you for shopping online or in-store, which I find more convenient for groceries and local shopping.

Read more in our in-depth review of Ibotta.

TOOL: Ibotta
EARNING POTENTIAL: up to $20 in sign-up bonuses + % cash back on anything you buy

Ibotta Price: FREE Ibotta let's you get paid for shopping in-store and online...It's that simple. Get started saving today. Get Your FREE $10 Now Ibotta

Bonus: Also check out Wikibuy, a popular browser extension (or app) that finds the cheapest prices and coupons on products while you shop online or in-store.

4. Take Back an Extra $500 through Price Adjustments

Yes, you read that correctly. It’s possible that a store owes you money!

A lot of the major retailers (including Amazon!) have price adjustment policies which state that if an item you bought drops within a certain period of time, then they’ll refund you the difference.

But with as much online shopping as you probably do, who has time to monitor for price changes?

Similar to Trim, Paribus is a convenient and totally free bot that will do the heavy lifting for you.

Try it out; who knows how much you’re owed! It could be a quick way to “earn” (back) $20, $30, or even to make $500 fast!

TOOL: Paribus

Paribus - Claim Your Cash Price: FREE Paribus automatically finds you refunds when prices change. It will even negotiate the refund on your behalf! Learn More Paribus - Claim Your Cash

Note: Paribus compensates us when you sign up for Paribus with the links provided at no cost to you.

5. Cut Out Unused Subscriptions (Trim the Fat)

How many service subscriptions do you have? I have way too many to keep track of month to month, and I’m not alone. Forbes estimates that the average American spends $200-$300 EACH MONTH in subscription services. You set and forget, and companies know it!

Trim to the rescue!

This free, money saving bot will comb through all your subscriptions and report out how much you are paying each month. It’ll also help negotiate down some monthly subscriptions and allow you to cancel any that are not being used simply by sending a quick text.

TOOL: Trim
EARNING POTENTIAL: More than you’d think!

Trim Price: FREE Lean on Trim's AI to identify and manage your recurring subscriptions, find savings with your daily expenses and even renegotiate your bills to save you money each month! Get Trim App Trim

6. Take Advantage of Sign Up Bonuses

Cash in on the following sign-up bonuses available through and you will be on your way to making an extra $500.

  • Swagbucks: $5 welcome bonus! Swagbucks is a get-paid-to site with lots of different tasks available to earn money. You can take surveys, watch videos, search the internet, etc.
  • MyPoints: $10 welcome bonus! MyPoints your daily rewards program is yet another cashback website that works similarly to Ebates/Rakuten.
  • InboxDollars: $5 welcome bonus! You can earn dollars for small tasks such as taking surveys, watching videos, and signing up for offers.
  • Ibotta: $20 welcome bonus!. Ibotta is also a cashback site and app. It is most frequently used for groceries but now offers cash back on many products.
  • Rakuten (formerly Ebates): $10 welcome bonus! Rakuten is a cashback/coupon shopping site. If you shop online through Rakuten you can earn cash back on your purchases. Read my Ebates review.
  • Vindale Research: $1 welcome bonus! Vindale Research lets you earn money by sharing your opinion, similar to SurveyJunkie.

TOTAL: $51 fast

7. Host on Airbnb

Do you have a guest room that sits empty (or acts as a junk-catch?)? Move the boxes into the garage (or better yet, sift through and sell what you don’t use to help make that $500 fast) and rent it out.

You can set your own terms: rent a spare room year-round, your entire place for a week while you’re away, or crash on a friend’s couch to capitalize on your town’s big event weekend.

You can rent a room for $125/week or $425/month to a boarder – more if you live in a big city. Nightly rates for your entire place will be even more lucrative.

It’s best to use a platform like Airbnb, which can easily connect your listing to renters. It also takes care of scheduling and payment processing; gives you the opportunity to build credibility through reviews (which will make renting out your space even easier in the future!); and protects you by verifying guests and covering every booking with $1M in property damage protection.

Airbnb - Rent Out Your Apartment Price: FREE TO LIST List your space, set your terms, then start earning easy cash by hosting qualified guests. Learn More Airbnb - Rent Out Your Apartment

8. Deliver for Postmates or DoorDash

If you live in a city, you will agree that people are spending less time in stores. The delivery industry is on the rise, so take advantage and get paid!

Use your spare time (or even your lunch break) to side hustle for extra cash.

Can you really earn that much?

YES. By delivering for Postmates, I saved up enough money to buy an engagement ring! Seriously – you can easily make 500 dollars this week by completing 50 deliveries.

Another service similar to PostMates, but centered around food delivery, is DoorDash. This service is really starting to take off, so lots of earning opportunity depending where you live.

There are 3 easy steps: drive to restaurant, pick up food, deliver to customer…get paid. It’s that easy!

TOOLS: Postmates or DoorDash

9. Teach

You can make money teaching anything as long as you know a little more than someone else.

Are you good at guitar? Pick up some extra cash by helping others master their passion for music. Are you artsy? Teach someone how to design, craft, or master lettering. Are you into fitness? Teach someone how to get fit.

In 2019, it’s never been easier to teach something in person or – even better – online.

Why is online better? Because you can use a platform like Teachable to easily develop an engaging, interactive course, and then earn easy, passive income thereafter.

Say it again for the people in the back!

Put in the up-front effort to build a meaningful course based on your unique skills and experiences, and then collect checks for months (or years!). The ROI on your time could mean you’ll never be googling “how to make money fast” again. 😉

Alternatively, connect with clients and sell teaching services on Upwork or Fiverr.

TOOL: Teachable
EARNING POTENTIAL: $500/mo+ after you’ve built your course

10. Sell Products or Goods Online

Do you have a passion or hobby for making things? Are you crafty? Etsy is a fantastic platform to connect your product with potential buyers.

Are you into quilting? Do you make jewelry? Do you like making surfboards? Sell your goods online by opening your own Esty shop!

It is so easy to sell things online in 2019 and make an extra $500.

Check out Millennial Money’s side hustle master class. It is worth your time, I promise!

11. Review Websites in Exchange for Cash

Over the past few years, I’ve been reviewing websites for quick cash paid via PayPal. My favorite and trusted website review platform is UserTesting.

No, this is not an affiliate link. I do not get paid to promote this site. In fact, I only recommend apps or finance tools that I personally use, believe in, or have reviewed thoroughly.

TOOL: UserTesting

12. Rent Out Your Parking Spot When You Leave on Trips

If you live in an expensive city, you know how valuable parking can be. If you live downtown, renting out your parking spot will make you real cash, fast.

People in my apartment are renting out their parking space for $300/month!

If you leave with your car on the weekends, try an ad in your neighborhood. Put that parking space to work!

13. Sell Unwanted Items

If you need extra money fast, an easy way to get it is to sell your unwanted things. We all have junk we’re never actually going to use again.

You can sell online through sites like Gazelle. Old cell phone laying around? Trade it in for $100+. You’ll even get a $5 first time trade-in bonus.

Or, do it the old-fashioned way: host a yard sale. Go through your closets and take out everything you haven’t used in a year. Post flyers around town, share on local Facebook groups, and tell your friends. This is a sure way to help make $500 fast.

Side Hustles with a Delayed R.O.I.

If you live in an expensive city, it may be important to increase your revenue streams. Many millennials have 2 or 3 side hustles that bring in substantial income.

There are plenty of side hustle opportunities to make more money from home but require a longer-term investment.

Blogging, for example, can bring in a large amount of revenue, but it will take some time to generate income through affiliate marketing and advertising.

You can start a blog in 15 minutes for less than a cup of coffee per month when you use my Bluehost discount code.

The items above are ways to make $500 fast in the short term.

Do You Live In An Expensive City?

Let’s face it. Cities are expensive and extremely competitive.

It’s hard to get ahead, let alone achieve financial freedom when living in expensive cities.

A common theme across urban centers is that they are booming, everyone wants their share, and the suppliers know it. How do we pay for it?

If you live in an expensive city like me, most of your hard earned income is spent on housing, transportation, and food/drinks.

If you are not paying close attention to your budget, you can find yourself with little money left over at the end of the month.

Sometimes, you might even overdraw your account. I’ve been there.

Do You Need To Make Money Fast?

Life can sneak up on you at times, and you may need to make 500 dollars fast online. I get it.

I have expensive taste. So does my wife. While we are usually money conscience, sometimes we spend more than we can afford.

Perhaps you need extra cash to make that car payment or make next months rent.

If you do a combination of these, it is possible to make an extra 500 dollars quickly.

But promise me that you will budget better next month!

Don’t forget, money does not come easily. You are going to have to work for it!

Grant Sabatier

Creator of Millennial Money and Author of Financial Freedom (Penguin Random House). Dubbed "The Millennial Millionaire" by CNBC, Grant went from $2.26 to over $1 million in 5 years, reaching financial independence at age 30. Grant has been featured in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, BBC, NPR, Money Magazine and many others. He uses Personal Capital to manage his money in 10 minutes a month.

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Posted in: Make Money

1 Comment
    Gwendolyn Watson
    Posted Sep 04 2019
    Wow. Thank you!

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