Sounds good, doesn’t it? But if you’re hoping you’ve finally found that special place that will show you the form you can fill out and get a bunch of money just because you need it, you’re going to be disappointed.
Real “Free Money” comes in many different forms … and often it requires some effort from you. So you might not consider it free at all. If you’re smart though you’ll take a second look. Just accept the fact that you’ll probably never find that person or agency that will give you thousands of dollars because you’re down on your luck or you have a lot of debt or your life has been tough. And beware if someone tells you that you will, because they’re probably after your money rather than really intending to give you some.
If you’ve read our previous “free money” annual articles you know that we focus on legitimate ways that you can earn some more money pretty easily. Or we share new or unique ways you can save money that you might not have been aware of. And every once in a while — though rarely — there really are some people who are experimenting with a new program called “basic income” that guarantees everyone an annual income of $15000! This year we focus on ways that you can earn and save more:
Discover your program today!
A recent article in Time Magazine claimed to show you over one hundred ways that you could earn or save $1000 in 2018. It’s not exactly “free money” — you do have to make some effort to make each of the suggested tactics end up getting some extra money (or better yet, your savings account!). But it could be a very good way to alter your thinking and to focus on ways you actually can get an extra $1000 in your life. Try several of these ideas and you could end up with even more…
Here are some we considered worth the effort without being too hard to handle:
- Do you hate the thought of carpooling because you want to feel in control of your own schedule and transportation? We get that, but have you considered what it might save you? Havng more money could make you feel a lot more in control too! The gas costs where you live, the more you stand to save. If you commute around 25 miles each way then your cost each year just for the gas needed is about $2,000. Adding one or two others and each driving one day would save you more than $1000 each year in gas alone!
- Looking for a new car? If your dealer has the car you want but it has lots of extras that drive up the cost of the car, try being patient rather than insisting on buying the car right now and paying the extra money (which can be significant).
- This may sound silly, but it turns out you really can save some money by making sure your tires are properly inflated. One report says the amount saved could add up to anywhere from a little over $110 to $800. That sounds worth paying attention to …
- Did you know that you could save on insurance if your car is an older model and is no longer worth at least 10 times the premium you’re paying for insurance? That’s according to the Insurance Information Institute. They suggest if you’re in that situation you should take a look at dropping your comprehensive and collision coverage, saving anywhere from $375 to a whopping $1500 per year!
- The writers considered this option absurd but — maybe you could consider it. If you’re spending $3.65 everyday for a pretty expensive cup of coffee, could you maybe do without it? That one change could put over $1300 total back in your pocket by year end…
- We’ve already suggested you give Uber or Lyft or TaskRabiit a try in order to earn extra cash in our article about How to Make Extra Money. But have you considered other options like Postmate? They operate in 20 cities around the country and promise to make it possible for anyone to get anything delivered whenever they wish. Customers pay a fixed amount each year to get deliveries when they want. If you become a “postmate”, or local courier, they claim you can make as much as $25 per hour and do so on to your own schedule - and your own means of transportation (bike, drive, walk, whatever. If you’re in one of the cities they’re in, could be worth looking into…
- Find a part time job that works for your schedule, whether you’re currently working or not. SnagAJob makes it easy to find hourly work that could work for you.
- Consider changing your health plant to a high deductible one. For the average family that could mean close to $2000 in savings per year. Of course you need to be able to pay that high deductible should the need arise, so don’t take this one lightly….
- Did you know that Groupon is good for more than restaurants and salons? You can also get some coupons that work for eye appointments, dental work and chiropractic exams. For chiropractic in particular you can save a bundle if your insurance doesn’t pay for your chiropractic fee and you can get a Groupon deal for just $25 per visit — or even less.
- This one may not appeal, but think about it — especially if you’ve considered becoming a vegetarian. If you stop paying for meat you could not only improve your health but also save more than $700 each year.
- Have you heard the saying that lotteries are for people who aren’t good at math? It's actually true. In some states, based on people’s average monthly ticket purchases, you could save over $1000 annually and possibly closer to $2000 if you stopped buying tickets. And given the extremely low probability that you will win a big jackpot, this move is likely to be a very safe bet…
Check out Grants for Seniors. If you're a “seasoned citizen” you could be missing out on grants and other benefits that can both save you money and earn you money!
Smartphone Apps That Pay You for Surveys
Yes, they do exist - though often you are paid in credits or points toward prizes rather than in cash. For starters, here are some apps that pay you to take surveys:
Google Opinion Rewards: Take one survey weekly, earn from 25 cents to one dollar per survey.
Quick Thoughts: Take as many as 5 surveys each day; earn $1-3 per. When you reach $10 you get a $10 Amazon Gift Card.
Ipsos Mobile: Mostly surveys about politcs and advertising. Earn points that you can use to get prizes.
Check out How To Make More Money to learn more about apps that let you earn money by giving rides, doing errands, offering your own courier-type service, etc.
Just for Seniors
And by “Seniors” we don’t mean high school or college students, we mean those born before 1953! If that’s you, and you are proud of your writing skills, consider the “Ageless Authors Writing Contest.” You can write about anything — fiction or non-fiction, an essay, a poem, whatever — as long as they fit into one of three specific categories. First prize is $100, second is $75 and third gets $50. You can submit as many entries as you like, but there is a $20 entry fee for each. Winners’ entries will be published in an anthology — and we’ll bet there’s a cost to get that book too….. The deadline for submissions is February 28 of this year (2018). Find out more by looking up this contest in The Penny Hoarder.
Previous Free Money Articles
Don’t forget to look at our previous annual articles about free money ideas for that year. Though they might be specific to that one year chances are that they are still full of good ideas that you could find useful right now. So take a look at Free Money 2015, Free Money 2016, and Free Money 2017.