Question: How can I get $1,000 fast? I already got hit with a dentist bill this month and now I need to pay for car repairs. My credit isn't good enough to get a bank loan and I don't have a credit card. I do have a job but I'm barely making ends meet. What's a legal way to get $1,000 quickly so I can get my car out of the shop? --Jason
Answer: As you know, it's difficult to get that much money so quickly. One option is to borrow the money for now, which will solve the immediately problem and give you a few weeks or months to work at paying it back. Even if you have bad credit, there are lenders who are willing to help.
A payday loan that's due on your next payday can help if you'll have the money in a week or two but need it immediately. If you want more time than that, a short-term installment loan, which you pay back over several months, is a better option. If your credit is too poor to qualify for a signature loan at a bank or credit union, online lenders offer such loans even to those with credit scores below 600. As long as you have a regular source of income, a bank account, and aren't currently in bankruptcy or don't have similar unpaid loans, you can generally qualify. Many offer loans of $1,000 or even $1,500 to first-time borrowers.
That gives you more time and takes care of the immediate issue, but still doesn't solve the problem of how to get the money. A combination of any of the ways below can help raise the funds.
Sell extra items on eBay or Craig's list. When you're done selling your own things, offer to sell for friends for a percentage of the proceeds. Lots of people have things around the house that they don't need and wish they could get some money out of, but don't know how or don't want to take the time, but would be willing to give up a percentage if someone would help. When selling for others, make sure you have an agreement about what happens if things go wrong, such as a buyer returning an item or claiming it didn't arrive in the mail.
Let your friends on Facebook or Twitter know that you're available for pet-walking, house-sitting, baby-sitting, running errands, help with cleaning, lawn-mowing, or similar services at a reasonable price. If you have a special skill, such as repairing computers or cars, you can charge more and earn faster.
Garage sales. Selling doesn't need to be online, if you live on a street where there's lots of traffic. Check local regulations. If you're having a sale you can also offer to sell for friends who don't have time to wait on customers but need things sold. This works best on a good-weather weekend, not so good in winter.
Look for places to save money. Pack a lunch instead of eating out; put off buying new clothes or electronics; look for cheaper internet service or mobile phone contract; see if there's a cheaper place to shop for groceries; carpool or consolidate trips to save on gas; choose less expensive brands or look for coupons. Every bit you don't spend is like money earned.
Ask for overtime at work or look for a second part-time job. That's not necessarily easy in the current job market, but by spreading the words among friends, you might be able to find temporary work to earn some extra money. Avoid job offer scams. You shouldn't have to pay money to make money.
Once you've earned the $1,000, continue for a while longer with whatever money-making method works best, to build up some savings. It's tempting to spend extra income, but if you can put some in savings, you can use it for future emergencies and then pay yourself back, which will save the cost of a loan.
You can try borrowing from friends. It's cheaper, but absolutely you have to take it seriously and pay it back, or you'll lose their friendship. --S.T.
Also see if where you work will give you an advance on your pay, if you need the money quickly. That gives a little extra time. --Harry777
A $1,000 installment loan will be cheaper than taking out a payday loan and then extending it. If you can pay the loan back the first time, great, otherwise look for a place that offers biweekly or monthly payments. --Geo
About the Author
John Baker comments on short-term and installment loans from the perspective of consumers who have poor credit but need money for temporary emergencies. All articles and comments on Loanwhere.com are the opinion of the authors, and we cannot guarantee the accuracy or the currency of the information. Loanwhere.com participates in affiliate advertising programs and may receive compensation for sales through links from the site. Pen-names, fictional examples and models' photos are used.