During the coronavirus pandemic, lawmakers provided stimulus money to help struggling Americans. This money made a big difference in many people’s lives, helping them pay off debt or put away some cash in savings for emergencies.
Unfortunately, the chances of a fourth stimulus check aren’t very high. Without that money coming from the government, you may be worried about filling gaps in your budget that stimulus checks helped you cover over the last year.
The good news is that you may have plenty of other options for getting some extra cash. Here are six of them.
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1. Look for a new job
As the economy reopens and demand surges, many companies are hiring workers. Some are even paying sign-on bonuses and offering higher salaries than pre-pandemic. If you haven’t looked around at available employment opportunities for a while, it may be possible to make a career shift and increase your income in the process.
Plus, getting a new higher paying job could be way better for your finances than a fourth stimulus check would be since your bigger salary should continue coming indefinitely.
2. Ask for a raise
If you don’t want to switch employers, consider asking your current company for a raise — especially if you haven’t gotten one in a while.
Because it’s difficult for many employers to find workers right now, your company may not want to lose you and may just decide to give you a salary bump. Again, this could be far more valuable than a one-time stimulus check would be.
3. Consider a side hustle
If you can’t boost your income by getting a new job or more money from a current employer, think about taking on a side gig for a few hours a week.
There are ample opportunities to find flexible work that you can do on your own schedule, often from the comfort of your own home. Reliable and consistent extra money from a second job could be used to accomplish financial goals or ensure your spending doesn’t exceed your income.
4. Work overtime
Your current employer may also allow you to put in some extra hours for overtime — especially if they are struggling to hire.
A major benefit of overtime is that you are generally paid time and a half. That means you’ll have more money both because you’re working more hours and because you’re being paid a higher rate to do so.
5. Look into other government benefits
While stimulus checks may have come to an end, there are many other benefits available to those in need.
Some states are providing added support to those damaged financially by the coronavirus pandemic, and there are also standard benefits available all the time to qualified individuals, such as Medicaid or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
6. Sell unnecessary items
Finally, if you have unused items sitting around your house, you could potentially sell them to bring in some extra cash now that stimulus checks are done.
While this likely won’t provide a steady stream of income like some of the other suggestions on this list, it could give you the money you need to pad an emergency savings account or cope with unexpected costs during tough times.
Although it may be disappointing that another stimulus check probably isn’t coming, most people can find some ways to bring in extra money. Consider trying some of these tips to see if you’re one of them.