While the government wrangles over pandemic relief, bills still need to be paid. Fast-cash side hustles can help.
We took a look at the 327 online platforms reviewed and rated on SideHusl.com, seeking out those that pay freelancers within days of completing an assignment. We also filtered for reasonable pay, decent working conditions and those that didn’t shift too much risk to the freelancer.
The result: Here are more than two dozen fast-cash side hustles, broken down by category.
Babysitting apps typically pay for your work immediately after you complete it. Better yet, gone are the days when babysitters earned less than minimum wage. Babysitters currently command between $12 and $25 per hour. Some of the better babysitting apps: Bambino, Urban Sitter and Sitter City.
Bambino and Sitter City sitters are generally paid immediately either in cash or with Venmo. Urban Sitter has several payment options. Standard payment hits sitter bank accounts within three to five business days. The site’s “Instant Payout” service will deliver payment in minutes, but sitters pay a $2 fee for this option.
There are two main animal care sites — Rover and Wag. Wag specializes in dog-walking. Rover lets you offer services as a dog-walker, pet-sitter and, in some cities, as a groomer. While both offer good work at reasonable hourly rates, Rover charges lower fees, allows freelancers to set their own rates, and pays within 48 hours.
Citizen Shipper provides animal moving services for people who have purchased a pet from an out-of-town breeder, or who moved across country and had to leave their pets at home. The site allows shippers to bid on jobs they want, setting their own rates and collecting their own fees — usually in cash — on delivery. The site also serves as a marketplace for those who want to ship/move household goods.
Although Instacart and Shipt are better known, Dumpling is a far better option for people wanting to shop for others. The site essentially sets you up in your own business. You set your own rates and your availability, and determine what stores you’re willing to shop.
When customers order through the app, Dumpling advances enough to pay the bill to your debit card. Customers are charged on delivery. You get paid by direct deposit within three days.
It doesn’t matter whether your specialty is tutoring in math or music — online tutoring platforms are swamped with business and adding tutors as fast as they can. Some of the fastest-paying tutoring platforms include Wize, which will pay you on demand, and TutorMe, which pays via PayPal once a week.
LessonFace, a platform that specializes in teaching language, acting and music, pays tutors within three days of completing a session.
There are dozens of companies that will pay you for your opinions, but only two pay a reasonable rate. Both pay within hours after completing a job, too.
Ivueit asks freelancers to take photographs of commercial properties and answer a short survey to help property managers know the state of construction projects or maintenance. Each “vue” pays between $5 and $32, which arrives via direct deposit within hours of completing the assignment.
ProductTube pays between $5 and $35 for short videos describing consumer shopping habits. The site pays via Amazon gift cards within two days of completing an assignment.
Got muscles and a truck? Several moving platforms also offer good wages and fast pay.
Dolly pays $15 to $30 per hour once weekly via PayPal. GoShare promises between $33 and $66 per hour, depending on the vehicle you drive, and pays weekly via direct deposit. Truxx, which pays between $35 and $49 per hour, pays within five business days.
Whether you want to clean or provide home repairs, maintenance or landscaping, you can do it through JiffyOnDemand, which promises earnings ranging from $40 to $85 per hour. Payments are direct deposited into your account within four days of completing a job.
Another option for landscapers is GreenPal, which pays within 48 hours.
A great all-purpose site is Nextdoor. Though technically a social media platform that aims to connect neighbors in tight geographic areas, Nextdoor generally allows individuals to post their help-wanted — and jobs-wanted — messages on the platform for free. In my neighborhood, everyone from tutors to handymen pop up with pitches for customers. They’re usually rewarded with plenty of interest.
The one caveat is that Nextdoor is largely governed by volunteer Neighborhood “leads,” who are not a homogenous group. Some leads allow plenty of neighborhood work referrals; others shut them down. But, since there’s no cost, there’s nothing to lose if you want to post your availability for almost any kind of work. Naturally, since you’re working directly with neighbors, you determine how much and how you get paid.
Fast-cash rental options
If you have a home or a recreational vehicle, you may be able to rent it out for a substantial amount of fast cash, too.
Several sites rent homes by the hour to movie producers and people who want to host events. If having large gatherings isn’t verboten in your neck of the woods due to COVID restrictions, renting your house by the hour can be highly lucrative. Homes typically rent for rates ranging from $50 to $500 an hour, depending on the home’s size, location and amenities.
There’s a lot of interest in renting homes for parties today, partly because many of the traditional options for hosting a group are not available. Restaurants and banquet rooms are shuttered in many cities and states. Naturally, if you choose to rent your home, you should take safety precautions, including getting (and charging for) professional cleaning before and after events, requiring most events to be held in outdoor spaces, and screening guests for any sign of illness.
The sites collect payment for the rental as well as any required extras such as cleaning and PPE fees in advance. Payments are made to owners within hours after the event is completed.
Sites that allow you to list your home by the hour include Peerspace, Giggster, ThisOpenSpace, Splacer and Avvay. Most of these sites operate in relatively narrow geographic regions, however. Giggster, for instance, operates mainly in California, New York and Georgia. Avvay is available in Illinois, Texas, Tennessee and Oregon. But, between them, they’re in most major cities.
It’s also easy and lucrative to rent out an RV. Sites such as Outdoorsy, RVShare and RVnGo provide a platform to advertise your listing and collect payment. Payment is generally remitted to the RV owner within hours of handing over the keys.
If none of the work options appeal to you and you don’t have a house or RV to rent, there’s always the option of selling personal items on Craigslist. Craigslist allows you to list almost anything for sale for free. Payment is typically made in person. If you’re wise, you also should demand payment in cash.
Why demand cash? Although Craigslist is a wonderful site, it’s riddled with scammers who try to pass off fake checks in exchange for goods. Typically fake check scams involve third-party checks written for more than the cost of the item being purchased. Scammers ask you to refund them the difference.
What if a buyer wants to write you a personal check for the exact amount of the item? That’s probably not a scam. But, you’re also not a bank. And you’d probably be out of luck if the check bounced. If you’re selling items to get quick cash, demand cash before you part with your goods.
Kristof is the editor of SideHusl.com, an independent site that reviews hundreds of money-making opportunities in the gig economy.