Pandemic Job Loss? Here’s How to Make Money Quickly

In 2018, roughly 126.07 million people made up the U.S. civilian labor force. By 2020, however, millions of job layoffs have done a number on the American economy, thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

But while you might not be alone in your professional setbacks, the matter may be rather serious. Even prior to our current health crisis, over 157 million Americans were in credit card debt and many others had little to nothing saved in the event of an emergency.

There are a few steps you can take now to mitigate the financial fallout, like canceling unnecessary subscriptions, creating a budget, and planning out your meals. And once you’re back on your feet again, you’ll hopefully be able to not only pay your bills but to put money away for this type of situation in the future. But if you’re experiencing financial difficulty due to a pandemic layoff and you’re having trouble securing employment, what can you do to legally make money in the meantime? Here are a few hustles that can keep food on the table until you find a more permanent solution.

Sell Items You Don’t Want Or Need

Unless you’re in dire circumstances, you shouldn’t immediately sell any major purchases like your furniture, your wedding ring, or your big screen TV. However, you probably have some forgotten items that you could easily get rid of for a little bit of extra money. Although 5% of Americans pawn jewelry when they need cash, there are other ways to make some money and declutter your home at the same time. There are a number of platforms out there (like Poshmark, Mercari, eBay, Facebook Marketplace, LetGo, ThredUP, Craigslist, and many others) that allow you to sell new or used goods to buyers all across the country or even the world. You’ll need to do some research beforehand and make sure your expectations are realistic — but if you have some designer items or have a lot to list, you could end up making a substantial amount.

Drive Or Deliver

Although you might not relish the thought of driving for Uber or Lyft during a pandemic, this can be a short-term solution that gives you control over your work schedule. Depending on where you live and the type of car you drive, becoming a contractor for a ride sharing app could be relatively lucrative. However, you’ll want to factor in the costs of gas and maintenance to ensure you’ll actually be making as much as you think. If you aren’t comfortable picking people up, you could easily become a delivery driver for a service like GrubHub or Postmates. This can minimize the amount of contact you have with others while you earn some potentially great tips. Keep in mind that you’ll likely need a car for this job, as well — but since food delivery demand is high, it might be worth considering.

Freelance Work

Freelancing is becoming an incredibly popular option for Americans who want more control over their schedules. If you have a special skill (such as writing, photo editing, transcribing, teaching, web designing, or providing customer service), you could be a great candidate for a freelance position. If you have advanced technical, medical, or legal knowledge, you might even be able to get paid by JustAnswer to field questions. Since many of these jobs can be done remotely, you can minimize your risk of catching COVID-19 while still making money. Of course, freelance rates and job availability will vary — and most won’t offer any kind of health insurance coverage. However, this can be a good way to make up your monetary shortfall until something more long-term presents itself. Many people continue their freelance work as a side hustle even when they’re gainfully employed!

Losing your job can be emotionally devastating. Not knowing where your next paycheck is coming from can fill anyone with anxiety and dread. But if you’ve already filed for unemployment benefits and are looking for the next step to take, these job opportunities can help you keep your head above water until you find something perfect for you.

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