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Starfield: How to Make Money Fast

Making money in Starfield is actually really easy. Here's how to do it quickly and efficiently.

Earning money in Starfield is one of the easiest parts of the game. Almost everything you can do has some sort of monetary reward. But if all you do is quest or mission run, you won’t become a rich space kingpin very quickly. Getting more credits is about combining strategies, selling the right items, and engaging with the right systems in the game. Here are our top 10 ways to make money fast in Starfield.

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How to Make Money Fast in Starfield

There are tons of ways to make money fast in Starfield. If you want to be as efficient as possible, you’ll need to multitask. There are also several perks and ship parts you’ll want to pick up to make the biggest possible fortune.

10. Pick Up and Sell Everything That’s Not Nailed Down

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You’ll find thousands of little knick-knacks in your adventures. Many of them have little value, but you should pick up any item you find with a base value of 150 or more. They won’t sell for that at most vendors, but choosing only the most valuable items guarantees at least a few dozen credits when you sell them at a vendor.

This is doubly true for any weapons, space suits, or packs you run across. After taking down an enemy base, pick up any higher-rarity weapons or high-value gear if you have room in your inventory. You can increase your carry weight if you have some skill points available. You’ll want to keep some of these for yourself, but any you don’t plan to use immediately should be sold. They’re worth a few hundred credits at the start of the game, increasing to greater amounts later.

9. Fight Pirate Ships and Sell Their Contraband

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Contraband items are a great way to make money fast in Starfield. They’re the most valuable single items, with default prices that start around 10,000 credits and go up from there.

You’ll need the ability to sell that contraband, a shielded cargo hold, and some ship jammers, but few items in the game go for as much. Better yet, when you fight a pirate ship with contraband, you also get to loot the pirates. Just don’t take their ship. It may not have a shielded cargo hold big enough to get past the authorities’ sensors.

You can also jettison the contraband if you like the ship, take it and everything else in it to the nearest port, and sell the thing wholesale. This option may be more profitable depending on how much contraband was on the ship. If you happen to find contraband randomly in a pirate base on a planet, take it to port whenever you please, so long as you have the means to get it past the scans.

8. Run Missions and Do Sidequests

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Every major port city and most random settlements on planets have a Mission Board in their bar. These missions are great ways to make money fast. They award a few thousand credits on completion, and most are easy enough. They usually ask you to take specific cargo to a particular place or to defeat a certain enemy on some distant planet. The best of these missions have you fighting another ship somewhere, allowing you to not only reap the mission rewards but also loot all the juicy tidbits from the disabled ship.

Many of the sidequests in Starfield are more financially rewarding than the main quest. They also give you more opportunities to loot, or explore planets and parts of space you’d not have seen otherwise.

7. Sell Survey Data to Vladimir

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One of the easiest ways to make money fast in Starfield is to complete planetary surveys. Go down to a planet and scan every type of flora, fauna, and resource. When you’re done, you’ll get a Survey Completed note on the planet’s scan menu. Vladimir, the keeper of The Eye for Constellation, will buy any completed survey data you have for double what other vendors will pay.

One trick: gas giants are the easiest surveys to complete in Starfield. You simply jump to the planet, scan it once, and you’re done. It’s the simplest 1,000+ credits you’ll make in the game. I’d check the Lodge before you fly to the Eye, as sometimes Vladimir hangs out planetside.

6. Invest in the Right Perks

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There are three perks in the Social tree you’ll want to put at least a few points into: Commerce, Scavenging, and Theft.

  • Commerce is a flat upgrade to how much you can sell items for. At Rank 4, it’s a full 25% buff to merchant sell-to prices.
  • Scavenging Rank 1 randomly places extra credits in loot containers. Higher ranks add things like ammo and medicine to the loot pool, but it’s the credits part that’s most important.
  • Theft allows you to pickpocket almost any unaware NPC in the game and take whatever’s in their pockets. At Rank 4, you can even take their weapon, and depending on what type of NPC you’re dealing with, that weapon might be worth a pretty penny.

The final step in making easy money in Starfield is to stack the above strategies whenever you can. If you’re mission running and encounter a pirate ship, take it and everything on it. If you’re surveying, explore pirate strongholds and take whatever’s not nailed down. If you have contraband on your ship and encounter a friendly ship in space, take everything they have. Then, you can head to port with an inventory of loot, complete your quests and missions, and reap all the spoils at once.

5. Be Specific Where You Sell

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You can sell just about any item wherever you’d like in Starfield, but that doesn’t mean you’ll always be getting the most back in return. To maximize your profits, take specific items and sell them to the appropriate stores.

For example, sell your spare weapons to a shop that specializes in weaponry. If you find some books in your travels, sell them at a bookstore and not at a weapon store. You’ll see a value next to all of your equipment when you pick it up, and it might confuse you when you get way less for the item. So, research each area before dumping all of your recently found equipment, and you’ll get a lot more credits in return.

4. Console Commands

If you’re on PC and don’t feel like completing 25 missions to buy a shiny new spaceship, Bethesda games always come equipped with the ability to access the console. This can make your Starfield experience much easier.

To get more credits through the console, type in player.additem f 100 to get 100 credits instantly. You can tweak this to any number you want and essentially break the game. It’s not recommended, as doing this will disable your achievements. But if you want a particular item and need a convenient way to get it, console commands are an easy fix.

3. Pick The Lock on Vaults and Safes

In various abandoned Robotics Facilities and Mining Depots, you’ll find countless amounts of vaults and safes. Unfortunately, if you don’t have the right skills, you won’t be able to unlock these. However, if you do, you’ll find an enormous amount of credits and valuable items to sell within them.

Now, not every single vault or safe you find will have a good reward in it. It’s the annoying risk vs reward that Starfield sometimes thrusts upon you, but it’s worthwhile to invest in lockpicking for the chance of the big score.

2. Steal and Sell Ships

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Whether you’re a pirate of the stars or you fight against evil-doers, you’ll always have the opportunity to take out engines on a ship and board it. You must have a certain amount of skill points in piloting to access the higher-level ships, but it’s worthwhile to do that as these ships can be game-changers in the credits department.

After boarding, you’ll need to take out some enemies to get to the cockpit. Once you’re there, you can take over the ship if you have the pilot credentials and fly away with it. Make a beeline to either The Den or, if you’re a member of the Crimson Fleet, The Key, and you can sell your ships for boatloads of credits.

1. Outposts

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Outposts are not only great home bases, but they can also be the best way to make credits in the game. Once your outpost is built, make a Resource Extractor, which will begin to gather the materials the planet has to offer.

That Outpost will provide constant resources for you throughout your playthrough. Use a Transfer Container to transfer your resources to your ship anytime, making the process supremely efficient.

The more Outposts you build, the more resources you can harvest and the more money you can make from selling them. It takes some time to set up your private business, but once it’s in action, you won’t ever need credits again. You can even hire a crew to increase profits even more.

That’s how to make money fast in Starfield. For more on the many aspects of Bethesda’s space epic, check out our guides on how to cure status ailments, how to get more ship parts, and more in our guides hub for the game.

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John Schutt
John Schutt has been playing games for almost 25 years, starting with Super Mario 64 and progressing to every genre under the sun. He spent almost 4 years writing for strategy and satire site TopTierTactics under the moniker Xiant, and somehow managed to find time to get an MFA in Creative Writing in between all the gaming. His specialty is action games, but his first love will always be the RPG. Oh, and his avatar is, was, and will always be a squirrel, a trend he's carried as long as he's had a Steam account, and for some time before that.
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Adam Braunstein
Adam Braunstein is a video game writer for Gameskinny a VR expert, actor, and all-around gaming enthusiast. His work has appeared on Attack of the Fanboy, Daily Gamer, VR Fitness Insider and The Nerd Stash. He loves games of all genres and exploring the amazing worlds that video games have to offer.