How to make $100 today

So I’m just chillin when I get this text message from my buddy Tim Sykes:

…instead of just emailing him back, thought I’d make a post about it.

I didn’t speak with him on the phone about this, and have no idea what he’ll be presenting on The Today Show, so I thought I’d make my own criteria based on what I THINK he is requesting.

I’m presuming he’s asking how a person of average ability can make $100 in 24 hours in a legal way without many resources, specialized knowledge or abilities.

Remember, you can see how much money you will make by evaluating the amount of service you give to others. Since $100 is a small sum of money, these are all usually small-scale jobs that only provide a marginally important service.

So here we go:

1.) Selling bottled water
I’ll start with this example simply because I’ve proven this can make money in The Bottled Water Experiment and Part Deux. If you don’t partner with a homeless guy like I did, the profits could easily be $100 on a good day. In one of the undocumented attempts of this experiment Barry The Bum made $60 by himself in one day, and would have made $100 profit if half the money didn’t go to me.

2.) Painting curb addresses
I pseudo-tried painting curbs and found out it wasn’t all that hard. It may take some trial and error testing at first, but in a day a person can easily make much more than $100 in a day. In fact one of the readers of this blog (a college student) makes $80,000/year doing this very thing. At $25/house making $100 in a day should be simple.

3.) Manual labor for a store
I’ve personally seen and spoken to bums on the street who do this from time to time: help out a store in exchange for cash. Often stores with have a very messy back-room area or trash area in the back. If you’re willing to clean this area up, the store manager wouldn’t mind hiring you for a small fee. Usually the bums I’ve seen get these small jobs are employed to break down boxes that are being sent for trash or recycling. Glamorous? No. But asking around at a few local businesses if they can part with $100 in exchange for your services can work. Keep in mind they’re going to want to pay you low as possible, lower than $8/hour.

4.) Selling goods from your state surplus store
When something gets confiscated or lost at a state building or airport, it all ends up at your state Surplus Store. I did an experiment to see if I could sell confiscated stuff from the airport and it worked. Selling these goods over eBay obviously wasn’t a one day affair, but perhaps you could get lucky, find some good stuff and sell it at a pawn shop or flea market.

5.) Pawn or Ebay your stuff
Self explanatory. You got junk, trade it for around market price for cash or PayPal funds. This isn’t really “making” money, so I’m not sure if this will qualify for Tim’s list.

6.) Power washing driveways and houses
I’ve also actually performed this a long time ago (unfortunately it went undocumented). I borrowed a power washer from a friend, rolled it around a neighborhood and asked people if they wanted their driveway power washed. My only cost was $2 worth of gasoline, and you can power wash a driveway for $45, and a house for well over $100.

7.) Mow lawns.
This one’s pretty obvious.

8.) General help wanted post
Post an ad on Craigslist in the “Gigs” section or alike saying something along the lines of, “Hard working, general help for one day. Will do anything (legal) for 8 hours. Price $100.” I’ve seen posts like this on Craigslist, and based on my experiences from finding ANYTHING on Craigslist, it’s highly likely you can find someone who needs some general help for the day.

If you have some special talents, abilities or skilled set of knowledge, you probably stand an even better chance of #8 working. If you know how to setup Quickbooks for a business, or are good with computers etc. you can post those qualifications (and command a higher price).

9.) Experiments on college campuses
Go to the psychology building of many college campuses and scout for flyers boasting “get paid for research.” I used to participate in these experiments if I had some free time. They usually pay between $10 and $25 for an hour or two of your time. This suggestion is more wishful thinking than the others. Yes, it COUULLDD make $100, but it’s unlikely you’ll make more than $30 in a day (if you are even lucky enough to catch an experiment taking place on a certain day).

10.) Bum it….creatively
I’ve always wanted to try this out, and would LOVE to see it done. Make a big ass card board sign that says “NEED $100 FOR (insert purpose here)” and then draw one of those fundraiser thermometers next to it. Stand on corner and basically fly the sign like bums do.

I never give money to bums, but would probably toss a few bucks someone’s way if they had a sign that said “Need $120 more for rent” and showed their progress through the day. Whenever someone gives you money, use a Sharpie to bump up the amount on the sign. After the bottled water experiment I got to know a lot of bums and see who gives what at the street corners, and sincerely think this suggestion could make $100 quicker and with much more ease than any other suggestion! Artist rendering of what it might look like:

Anyhow, there you go Tim; my suggestions for how anyone could make $100 in a day.

Blog posted on: December 2, 2008

40 comments on “How to make $100 today

  1. linda

    you were late with this entry btw, and i couldn’t bug you about it since i was out of internet for a week.

    i’ll let it slide because i loved the link back to the homeless water bottle entry :)

    1. Dhruv Bhagat

      One way that is worth the efforts is Affiliate Marketing..

      If you want to get paid for longer period, you have to work for few months for producing effective content online..

      Affiliate Marketing is what I call a real “Smart Passive Income”..

      And its worth the efforts.. :)

  2. Gary Zaydman

    I will tell you exactly how to make $100 dollars a day. You will need $100 dollars to start. here are the steps.

    Send $1.00 physical dollar (yes, one actuall dollar in the mail) in an envelope with an offer to somebody. Ask them to go to your website. Present an offer to them with something of value to them that is worth 3x more then $100 dollars.

    Tell them that if you don’t do what you say you will do in the offer, then they keep the $1.00 dollar you sent them.

    They will purchase your product. Important: Deliver on you promise!
    Shower, Lather, Rinse, Repeat

  3. Anonymous

    Enter a Karaoke Contest that pays the winner at least $100. It’s a group activity and contestants usually get free drinks. Can we say fun for the whole family? :)

    I did this when I was short on rent (a few times), and won.

  4. Sergey Rusak

    I heard about guy who makes more than $100 on some forum for webmasters (i forget name of this forum). All he does, he just buy links on a websites where webmasters are willing to sell text links… and sell it to people who are crazy about SEO.

  5. Allison

    Am really enjoying your blog. Just found it. Posted a copy of your piggy bank picture and a link to your site on my blog today. Maybe you’ll get some new visitors!

  6. Rich

    A friend of mine told me about a site that will buy articles. The story goes that these sell for anywhere between $4 – $20. The site splits the profit with you. So, I’d imaging you could make $100 in a day by writting articles. This is assuming you were a good writter and had the patients to actuall write articles.

  7. Joel

    I actually tried the water thing and it worked beautifully. We're in Philadelphia and we went to a Phillies game a few weeks ago and made $600 between 4 of us that stood out before and after the game. We did the shirts and used backpacks. Awesome…we got the idea from you! We found a couple of these sites like yours that have legitimate ways to make money. is good and can bring in $200 a day with some effort.

    Pan handling is out though, I refuse, but God Bless you for triying it.

    I love your blog…keep it up!

  8. By Michael Burke

    Hello, this is my first visit.
    you have a great blog.
    I have really enjoyed your ideas,
    keep up the good work.

  9. Premium Finance

    Great entry! This is such a good read for people who are hoping to have financial independence. Even students can do this on their own. Your tips are very practical and easy to do! It’ll be amazing to see every average man in the country do this. It will definitely help the economy.

  10. Latika

    haha Sameer did the bum thing in Europe once and it actually worked. “American Students Need Money for Ice Cream”

  11. Pennyroll

    Thanks for the suggestions I Love mkaing money because it’s like a game. My favorite is the water bottle experiement. Another I like is the idea of cleaning up store fronts. I was in Colorado the other day, I took a walk, 21 miles walk im fact, I figured at an average of 3 miles an hour for 7 hours it was 21 miles. The best way to learn a new town is to walk through it. I wondered how many ways I could make money walking through this town and noticed cigarette buts littering a smalll business and thought I could easily make 20.00 dollars cleaning up this little mess in front of this businesses store front. What an easy way to make the money for lunch.

  12. $100 per hour

    I own a small niche t shirt copany for servers (waiters and waitresses). I print what they think on t shirts. I walk into a restaurant during the slower times and ask the servers what they think and they ALWAYS love the shirts. they give me cash right then and there. I have sold multiple hundreds of thousands of dollars of these things in CASH. I even have hidden pen cam videos of me selling. I am now looking for a few others who would like to do the same thing…I will train you.


    1. kashonnda black

      i need to make $500 dollars for rent as soon as possiable please can someone help me before me and my children are on the streets

  13. JDRobison

    I love this post, and especially love the creativity. I am always trying to brainstorm ways to make a few extra bucks, but I am an accountant and struggle with the creative side of things. I am going to start checking out your blog more often for sure, and maybe it will help kick-start my creativity.

  14. Making Money

    Valuable info. Lucky me I found your web site by accident, and I am shocked why this twist of fate did not came about earlier! I bookmarked it.

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  16. David Moore

    This is really a nice post.You have shared such a great info.I was looking for best way to make money and I found your blog.You have written so many ways to make money online.Thanks a lot for sharing this info.


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