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Stardew Valley Money Making Guide: From Rags to Riches

Need some tips on how to make money on Stardew Valley? Well look no further!

Just started on your new farm and don't know what to do? Need money for upgrades? With this guide, I will be explaining different ways to make money in Stardew Valley -- starting with profession perks, then moving on to crops, artisan goods, fishing, and mining.

Breaking Down Perks and Professions

Want to know which skills will help you make the most money? Here are the best professions and perks to boost your profits.

Farming

For Farming, you get to choose between tilling and ranching at level 5. I would highly recommend choosing tilling, since it increases the profits of farming, and farming is a quicker and more reliable source of income than raising animals. Tiller gives a 10% increase in the sell price of crops.

You can grow more crops in the time it takes to raise an animal. You also need to build barns, which cost a lot of money, and barns have limited space. You can grow way more crops than the rate of products your animals produce.

At level 10, the Artisan profession should be taken. Artisan goods add a multiplier to the price of the crops used in the product. With the Artisan Skill, all of the items will be worth 50% more.

Agriculturalist is apparently bugged. It gives variable growth times depending on the crop, and does not affect the regrowth time of crops.

Mining

Taking the Miner profession at level 5 will give you +1 ore per vein. This will be especially helpful if you decide to take Artisan. The ores will help you to craft equipment for Artisan Goods. At level 10, Blacksmith should be taken. This skill increases the price of your metal bars by 25%. Later on in the game, you'll probably end up with a lot of bars that you'll end up selling.

I don't recommend taking the Geologist profession, because once you get a Crystalarium, you can grow copies of any gem of your choice. Geologist seems to be more luck dependent and more of an early-to-mid game way to make money. 

Foraging

For Foraging, I would recommend going for Gatherer at level 5, then taking Botanist at level 10. Gatherer gives a chance of getting 2 of a foraged item, and Botanist will always make foraged items gold quality. Double gold quality items? Yes, please.

I don't recommend going for the Forester profession. Chopping wood takes a lot of energy, and why would you focus on selling it?

Fishing

Choosing Fisher at level 5, then Angler at level 10 is recommended. Fisher makes fish worth 25% more, and Angler makes fish worth 50% more. These two perks together will give a huge boost in profit to the fish you catch. While the Pirate Skill at level 10 doubles the chance to fight treasure, the treasure you get is very random.

Crops

It's important to take note that each season has 28 days, and crops planted will wilt at the beginning of the next season, with the exception of corn. Remember to use fertilizer before planting your crop to get higher quality crops.

I will list the price of buying the seeds, profit, the amount of time it takes to grow, and other important notes about the crop.

I'll list the top 3 crops to plant for each season.

Best Spring Crops
  1.  Strawberries - 500g profit per crop
    • Purchased for 100g from Pierre at the Egg Festival on day 13 of Spring. It's recommended to buy the seeds on your first year, then save them for the second year to maximize profits.
    • Takes 8 days to grow, then continuously regrows throughout the season every 4 days.
  2.  Rhubarb - 240g profit per crop
    • Purchased from Sandy at the Desert for 100g.
    • Takes 13 days to grow.
  3.  Potatoes - 175g profit per crop
    • Purchased from Pierre for 50g.
    • Takes 6 days to grow.
    • Chance of yielding multiple potatoes when harvested.
Best Summer Crops
  1.  Blueberries - 880g profit per crop
    • Purchased from Pierre for 80g.
    • Takes 13 days to grow, then continuously regrows every 4 days.
    • Chance to harvest up to 3 berries each time.
    • Basic and Quality Fertilizer only affect the first berry, so Speed-Gro is the best fertilizer to use and will increase the profit by at about 20%.
  2.   Hops - 365g profit per crop
    • Purchased from Pierre for 60g.
    • Takes 11 days to grow, then continuously regrows every day.
    • You can't walk through hops, so plant them in a way that won't block you from harvesting them.
    • Hops can also be used to make Pale Ale, which will be helpful in making money during Winter.
  3.   Starfruit - 800g profit per crop
    • Purchased from 400g from Sandy in the Desert.
    • Takes 13 days to grow.
Best Fall Crops
  1.  Rare Seed - 2k profit per crop
    • Purchased from the Gypsy for 1k each. Check the Traveling Cart in the Cindersap Forest on Fridays and Saturday.
    • Takes 24 days to grow.
  2.  Cranberries - 1k profit per crop
    • Purchased from Pierre for 240g.
    • Takes 7 days to grow, then continuously regrows every 5 days.
    • Produces 2 berries per harvest.
  3.   Pumpkin - 400g profit per crop
    • Purchased from Pierre for 100g
    • Takes 12 days to grow.
Ancient Fruit

There's also a special, rare fruit called Ancient Fruit. You can obtain these seeds from artifact hunting, and there's a chance that the Traveling Cart may sell it. Ancient Seeds can also be obtained by using a Seed Maker with an Ancient Fruit.

Ancient Fruit has profit of about 1.1k a fruit. It takes 28 days to grow, and then regrows every 7 days. The plant grows through all of Spring, Summer, and Fall. 

Unlocking the Greenhouse

The Greenhouse can be unlocked by completing all the Pantry bundles in the Community Center. It allows you to grow crops from any season at any time of the year. Although you might be tempted to grow only the best crops for each season, at least grow the needed crops to unlock the Greenhouse. Growing crops in the Greenhouse will allow you to produce crops even during the Winter.

Overall Best Crops

Growing berries are one of the crops for making money, especially since they regrow throughout the season. Cranberries are the best berries to grow, possibly beating out even Ancient Fruit in the long run, if you decide to grow them in the Greenhouse.

Other Ways to Make Money

If you don't have a Greenhouse, making money may be a bit more difficult since crops don't grow in Winter. During the Winter time, you can craft artisan goods, mine, fish, and raise animals instead. I don't really recommend raising animals, since it's expensive, so we will go more in-depth with artisan goods, fishing, and mining.

It should be noted that fishing and mining are nowhere near as profitable as farming, especially since the two activities use a lot of stamina. You should not focus on fishing and mining to make money, and should only go fishing and mining after finishing all your farm chores.

Artisan Goods

Artisan Goods are made with special equipment that the player can craft. The recipe for these equipment are unlocked at different levels of Farming.

Preserves Jars are unlocked at Farming level 4, and turn vegetables into picks and fruit into jam. Jams and pickles add 2x the value of the crop plus 50g. Apparently the quality of the fruit or vegetable does not affect the price of the jam. If you have a ton of fruit or vegetables, you should place some in the Preserves Jars.

  • For example, a regular quality Blueberry sells for 80g. But if you turn it into jam, it will sell at 2x the price plus 50g, selling for a total of 210g.

Kegs are unlocked at Farming level 8, and will allow you to brew drinks from fruit, vegetables, Wheat, or Hops.

  •   Beer is made from Wheat and will give 200g. I don't recommend growing Wheat for Beer, because unlike Hops, Wheat does not regrow.
  •   Pale Ale is made from Hops and will give 300g. Since Hops regrow daily, you can save your Hops to brew throughout Winter.
  •  Juice is made from any vegetable and gives 2.25x the price of the vegetable.
  •  Wine is made from any fruit and gives 3x the price of the fruit.

Since Wine and Juice give a higher increase in profits than Pickles or Jams, you should only use fruits and vegetables with high base values in Kegs and those with lower base values in the Preserves Jars. For example, Ancient Fruit would make good Wine because of its high value.

If you also have the Artisan perk, your profits from these products will increase by 50%.

Fishing

When you're finished with your farm chores, you can chose to either fish or mine.

The best time to fish is when it's raining or snowing. Rain will water your crops, so you will have plenty of time to fish. Certain fishes, such as the Catfish, will appear only during rain or snow.

The best place place to fish are areas with deeper water. Deep water is designated by darker colored water. Also, the farther you cast your line, the better the chance of getting a high quality fish.

The Stardew Valley wikia has a much more in-depth fishing guide. There is also a detailed fishing guide on Steam. These guides will have fish prices, fish locations, as well as other helpful tips. 

Mining

Mining is best done during the Winter season, especially since you won't need to spend time or energy growing crops. You can also always mine after you're finished with your farm chores, and go fishing on rainy and snowy days.

When you go deeper into the mines, the chance of getting more ores and rarer ores increases. If you find rare gems, such as Diamonds, you can place them in the Crystalarium to make more. Remember to bring food, because mining is very stamina draining.

You can also craft Staircases to advance through levels of the mine quicker. Staircases can be particularly helpful in Skull Cavern for advancing through the levels faster to increase your chances of getting Iridium Ore and Prismatic Shards.

Summary

Farming and making Artisan Goods are the best way to make money in the game. Fishing and Mining are good to supplement your income. However, Fishing and Mining should not be your main focus for money making. With these tips, you will be making money in no time. 

If you need more tips for your farm, check out our Stardew Valley achievements guide, or our guide to Stardew Valley mods.

Published Jul. 6th 2016

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