Read our latest newsletter at Free Money News December 2013. Check back each month for updated articles and opportunities!
Over 12 million people in the United States are unemployed. That number is probably underestimated as it does not include those who have simply given up looking for a job. If you are one of them, or if you are simply strapped for cash due to fewer hours worked, no overtime, or other cutbacks or difficulties, you are not alone even though you may feel like you are. Beware: good people in bad situations can unfortunately be easy prey for those who claim to help but are really out to exploit your misfortune. And one of the ways they do that is to claim that they can help you get a grant to pay bills.
The bad news is that there is no such thing as a government grant to pay bills. Period. Regardless of what you read or how good a promise sounds—wishing will not make it so. There is good news, however: there are legitimate ways to raise cash quick to pay bills, spend less and reduce debt. And there are agencies and other organizations you can turn to in your quest for help.
If you are a community advocate, involved in Social Services, or have survived a difficult cash situation, we welcome your guidance in our Community section.
First, there is no way to avoid the fact that the best way to stave off bankruptcy or outright destitution is to earn more, spend less and reduce debt. These are tall orders and solutions that typically take a while. But here we share some ideas, both about what to avoid and what to try:
What To Avoid
Quick Cash Possibilities To Look For
- Offer a service to people in your area. Figure out what you can do that may be of value to others: do errands, walk dogs, be a handyman or woman, wash cars. Visit local churches and see if they have community bulletin boards where you can post your services. See if they might need some services themselves!
- Do you have extra stuff you’ve been meaning to get rid of? Try a traditional yard sale, or sell items on CraigsList or EBay.
- Go non-traditional and offer your services on the website fiverr.com. Read through other people’s offers to get ideas. Or check out the gigs on Amazon Mechanical Turks — typically tasks that are challenging for machines but that a person can do fairly easily.
- Get a part-time job that involves tips — then you don’t have to wait a week or two to see some cash.
- If you are crafty or artistic try selling items on Etsy. Highlight beautiful photographs on Pinterest to drive traffic to your store.
- Avoid getting into this predicament in the future by spending less and saving more. A great way to get started is to get educated by someone with your best interest at heart. You may have heard of Clark Howard — he is a very popular radio host who helps people spend smart and avoid getting ripped off so they can build a future for themselves and their familiies. He has a very highly rated book out called “Living Large in Lean Times” and we highly recommend it.
In addition to showing you how to find great deals and ways to save money he also provides trustworthy tips about finding lost or unclaimed cash in your name and legitimate work-at-home opportunities.
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