What is Easy Money?

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Easy money can be defined as money made that requires little to no effort. Though this concept is a title of a 1983 Rodney Dangerfield film, in real life, there is seldom a path to easy money. Fantasizing about money made without much work is certainly a key theme for many. Yet for the most part, this concept remains the stuff of dreams and not a reality.

Winning the lottery is a way of gaining easy money.
Winning the lottery is a way of gaining easy money.

People are often quickly exploited by the idea of making easy money. Websites and various businesses have advertised for years on the idea of the “get rich quick” scheme. Some of these businesses continue to attract new customers, but usually not because their promises to make easy money come true. Instead, such businesses are very good at selling the fantasy of making money quickly, and this appeals to many who would very much like to find a quick way to make lots of money.

People are often quickly exploited by the prospect of making easy money.
People are often quickly exploited by the prospect of making easy money.

Another easy money draw is gambling and especially things like lotteries or jackpots where the payoff is extremely high. Numerous people invest significant amounts of money in buying lottery tickets, for instance. Most will not have a return on their investment, but the potential to suddenly be rich almost beyond measure keeps people buying tickets.

Others look to certain professions that seem to make easy money. High profile jobs in sports and the entertainment industry may be viewed as “Money for Nothing,” like the 1984 Dire Straits song. While it’s true that very well known actors, musicians and athletes can make exceptionally high salaries, the path to fame is not necessarily easy.

Few people get highly paid celebrity positions without significant hard work and sacrifice. Like the lottery, many people try to enter these professions and are unsuccessful because competition for jobs is incredibly stiff. There are talented actors, athletes and musicians who are never recognized for their craft and end up having to make their money “the hard way.”

Some people view investments as a potential way to make easy money. Those who got in on the ground floor of dot com companies before they boomed made money that many envy. However, every investment comes with risk, and it can be just as easy to lose your shirt instead of making enough to buy a whole closet full of designer clothes. Similarly, investments in real estate always come with the risk of economic downturn wiping out an investment.

There are a few legitimate ways to make easy money, but they are typically not within a person’s control. People can inherit huge sums from wealthy relatives, but no one gets to pick their relatives or the circumstances into which they are born. Also, losing a close and loved relative is never easy, and many people would prefer more time with their loved ones instead of a large inheritance.

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Tricia has a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and has been a frequent wiseGEEK contributor for many years. She is especially passionate about reading and writing, although her other interests include medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion. Tricia lives in Northern California and is currently working on her first novel.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discussion Comments


I always thought the way to make easy money was to win a lottery and put the prize money into bank accounts that paid the highest amount of interest. Instead of spending the original money, all I'd have to do is live off the interest for the rest of my life. When I finally died, my family would still get all of the winnings, and they could do the same thing. I'm sure there's a good reason why most lottery winners don't do this, though.

I probably get two or three offers a week that promise I'll get easy money, but every one of them has proven to be a scam. Sometimes they want me to hold onto some huge sum of money that's been smuggled out of a country, or else my name has been drawn in a secret international lottery. I've also been told I'm the sole beneficiary of a late billionaire's estate. There's no such thing as easy money, in my book.


I thought when I monetized my videos I would be making easy money online. All I had to do was get people to watch those videos and then click on an ad. I'd only make a few cents per click, but it would add up to some serious money later. I thought I'd just wake up every morning and have a hundred more dollars in the bank.

I found out how wrong I was. I had to spend a lot of time promoting those videos at different sites, and some places charged a fee to post advertisements. Instead of getting thousands of views, my videos only got maybe 20 hits a day, and none of the viewers clicked on the ads. I've earned maybe ten dollars since the videos went active three years ago. People told me that viral videos would help me earn easy money, but it's just not true.

Post your comments
Forgot password?