When You Need Cash Fast, Be Smart

From time to time, everyone finds themselves in a cash crunch. You need money for a certain expense, but you simply don’t have it. In moments like these, do you know how to proceed so you don’t damage your financial future?

Don’t Make a Decision You’ll Regret

Desperate times call for desperate measures – or do they? When you find yourself in a situation where you need cash fast, you have to adopt a long-term perspective. Failing to do so could provide you with a quick infusion of cash at the expense of long-term financial problems.

There’s never a good time to experience a financial emergency. But when you feel the walls crashing in around you, do everything within your power to avoid the following:

  • Car title loans. No matter how attractive it may seem in the moment, a car title loan isn’t something you should get. Sure, you can get a $1,000 loan pretty quickly, but it’s probably going to come with an interest rate of 300 percent or more. In fact, Pew Charitable Trusts has found that most people spend at least $1,200 on top of the original $1,000 loan. Even scarier is the fact that 11 percent of people who sign up for a car title loan actually lose their vehicle in the end.
  • Second mortgages. Not all second mortgages are bad, but don’t use one to cover a short-term cost. If you’re already having trouble making your payments, this is only going to worsen your situation. Eventually, it could put you at risk of foreclosure.

These are just a couple of examples of poor cash generating methods. Anytime you run across a financial product that puts one of your assets at risk, it’s best to avoid it.

4 Legitimate Ways to Get Money Fast

While car title loans and second mortgages are best avoided, there are certain methods you can use to generate some cash in a pinch. Use the following options with discretion:


  • Personal Loans


When you need money fast, the last thing you want is a complicated process with lots of paperwork and hoops to jump through. One of the advantages of using a personal loan is that you can usually circumvent all of this. Find a close friend or family member, set clear terms, and pay them back as soon as you can.


  • Quick Cash Loans


As the name suggests, a quick cash loan is designed for people who need a small amount of money between paydays. The amount of the loan depends on a number of factors, but is generally between $100 and $5,000. You can get in trouble pretty fast if you don’t pay off these loans on time, but otherwise there’s very little risk.


  • Selling Possessions


You may not have to take out a loan of any type. If you’re in a cash crunch, you might be able to solve your problems by selling items you have laying around the house. Common items include golf clubs, TVs, jewelry, tablets, bikes, tools, and furniture. For best results, try Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist.


  • Pick Up Side Jobs


If you have the time, there’s no excuse for not picking up a side job to earn some cash. Thanks to the rise of the gig economy, there are countless ways to earn extra money – including driving for Uber, selling services on a site like Fiverr, or turning your house into an Airbnb.

Make Smart Choices

Money problems aren’t typically isolated. If you make poor decisions now, then chances are pretty good that you’ll pay the consequences down the road. On the other hand, making smart choices will set you up for long-term success.

Remember that there’s a distinct difference between a need and a want. When it comes to getting cash fast, always weigh the pros and cons of each method and consider how much you actually need the money. Sometimes the simple act of pausing and contemplating the situation in more detail will allow you to make a more intelligent decision.