I’m going to go ahead and put it out there. . .making money in GTA V isn’t as important as you might think. However, for those willing to put the time and effort in, being able to afford the best cars, mods for said cars, private jets and a hanger to park them can make getting through the single player missions much easier.
. . . and lets be honest, who doesn’t want to be able to buy a tank?! So without further ado, let me present a few of my favorite methods for earning cash in GTA V.
Don’t Complete Stock Market Assassination Missions
Seriously. Don’t. Not yet.
As Frankin, you’ll gain access to missions from Lester that require you to take out a leading member of a large corporation listed on the LCN/BAWSAQ. Before killing the target you can invest in the stock of a rival company hinted at by Lester. Once you kill the target, the stock of said rival company can shoot up by as much as 50% for a short time. . .which means the return on your initial investment will be stratospheric.
For the love of all the gold in the Union Depository, do NOT complete those missions until you’ve completed the main game. Just don’t. I won’t spoiler it with reasons so you’ll just have to trust me.
Complete the main game and then pursue these missions. So, to reiterate. . .DO NOT COMPLETE THESE MISSIONS UNTIL AFTER THE FINAL STORY MISSION
Ahem. . .where was I? Ah yes. . .
Those squishy pedestrians that are more often than not bouncing off the bonnet of your car are actually a rather good source of cash if you know when and where to strike.
Keep an eye out for people standing in front of ATM’s. . .wait for them to finish making a withdrawal and then take ’em out! They’ll drop whatever random amount of cash they’ve just withdrawn, which can be anything from $50-$200.
I prefer to sneak up behind them and perform a stealth takedown; using a gun, even when silenced, tends to earn you a Wanted Rating, whereas simply knocking someone out (even in front of witnesses) can sometimes go without being reported.
Did you know you can rob supermarkets, petrol stations and most other shops in the game? Sure, it’ll earn you at least a two star Wanted Rating and perhaps a few bullet wounds from the occasional would-be hero cashier, but it’ll also net you anywhere from $80-$1000!
Be on the lookout for Supermarkets and petrol stations you can enter. . .walk into one and draw a gun on the cashier. They’ll either refuse, pull a gun, or start filling a bag full of cash from the register. Clothes Stores, Tattoo Parlors and other shops are slightly different; you can’t draw your gun while inside. . .you’ll have to pull your gun while outside the store and aim it at the cashier. With the gun pointed at the cashier, walk into the store and they’ll start emptying the resisters for you. . .hopefully.
If the cashier flees/dies, you can go behind the counter and empty the register(s) yourself but you’ll end up with slightly less cash. If you can’t empty a register, simply unload a few rounds into it until it breaks and drops a money bag. Make sure to have your getaway vehicle nearby and try not to shoot anyone because there’s nothing worse than having to pay what you just stole in medical bills. . .
You’re a career thief, so if someone asks you to catch that guy who just stole $500 off them. . .well, that’s their own stupid fault for cluing you in, isn’t it? Don’t take it back to them. You’ll get a fraction of what you’re giving them back.
Other events will reward you with huge payouts if you manage to save help an investment banker or save a rich guy’s daughter.
On the other hand, you’ll encounter some set events that are much larger in scale. . .there’s a drug deal gone wrong that can be encountered just off west coast highway out of Los Santos. There’s also a motel near the Alamo Sea that is the scene of a police battle with some criminals. Both encounters will earn you between $5k and $25k, and a fair amount of heat as well. As you’re driving around you may notice police cars and maybe even a helicopter chasing a car or van around. The criminals being chased in this instance usually have a fair amount of cash on them should you want to take the risk and make the police chase a little more interesting.
Invest in some starter property. Spend your first few hundreds of thousands after the early missions on property for each character. Once you’ve bought some property, not only will they pay you weekly rent but you’ll also occasionally get missions from them which can net you anywhere between $1k and $50k.
You won’t be looking at the Golf Club any time soon, but the Hen House in the north, and the Taxi Rank within Los Santos all provide a modest income and optional missions. Trevor also gets the option to purchase his own property very early on. Also, some properties are only purchasable by one character. Franklin can also purchase Los Santos Customs, which gets him access to free vehicle mods and repairs.
The Weed Farm
Somewhere just slightly north east of the Alamo Sea is a weed farm, tucked away from the prying eyes of police and players alike. Eventually you’ll get the option to raid this farm on a weekly basis, earning you upwards of $100k a time! Sure, there will be a gun battle, and sure you might get a wanted rating. . .and yes, unless you come on a dirt bike, you’ll have to fight your way back to the highway, but the payout is very worth it!
And Finally. . .Complete The Damn Game!
Alright, I don’t want to spoil anything so that’s my final and most important tip. Just complete the main missions. I managed to get through the entire story mode without buying any extra cars, weapons or mods. I bought one property when prompted, but that was pretty much it. . .and that has left me with a nice chunk of spending money which is helping massively in pursuing that coveted 100% completion. . .
In any case, GTA Online gets launched soon with many more options to make money for your customized online persona. . .and we’ll be back with more in depth guides once we’ve robbed you blind and stole your favorite sports car. Until then!