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Altho i don't have a lot of need for gold at level 15, i find that respecing my skill and attribute points takes a huge chunk out of my budget. I know its not something i should do every day, but being a new player, i like to play around with my skills and see what works best.

Unfortunately i seem to lose a lot of money this way and regaining it happens slow. Most loot only sells for a couple of pieces of gold, don't think i have sold anything yet above 100 gold.

What are some good ways to earn gold quickly at low level?

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There's no quick and easy way to earn money (solo), otherwise money would be meaningless. :)

But there are other options you can try:

  • Go and explore. Try to find Skyshards. Every three Skyshards you're rewarded with another skill point.
  • Complete group dungeon quests. Every instanced 4 player dungeon has some storyline associated with it. Each of these quests rewards you with another skill point. In addition, some loot cab ne quite valuable to other players, but you'll need some luck obtaining it.
  • Play the main story and guild quests. Completing these will reward you with even more skill points.
  • If you enjoy gathering and/or crafting, collect resources and refine them. If you're lucky, you'll get crafting improvement materials as random rewards. These are rare, but can net you a few thousand gold coins. Note that you'll need some of the crafting passives to have a reasonable chance at obtaining them.

Only respec if you think you really have to. I don't think I've ever respecced before level 40 or so. There should be more than enough points to try most things you want, you just have to work a bit for those skill points rather than for the money.

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    I have also found that stealing things is profitable and quick; taking only the items classed as "treasures," the ones that can only be fenced, until you hit the cap on fencible-items-per-day has made me a fair bit of coin.
    – user6789
    Commented Oct 27, 2016 at 15:50
  • @JoshPetrie This has also become my goto to get some extra cash, with 2 low level alts in Auridon, i steal until i get a certain bounty, then go fence and log out to lose the bounty over time. Easily gets me 4-5k a day, which is not much but it helps a lot for someone who likes to respec to much :p
    – Vahx
    Commented Nov 26, 2016 at 7:55
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Although Mario gives some good tips on how to acquire SkyShards to avoid having to respec whilst leveling, I don't feel it gives enough tips on how to earn some quick and easy cash. With the new housing update in sight and the cost prices of these houses being quite high compared to other aspects of the game, I believe this question will become more important when the update is released.


Guilds & What they mean to you

The first thing you want to do when you start playing as a completely new player is to find yourself a (trading) guild.

  • [Q] Why is it so important that I find a guild quickly?
  • [A] Because guilds are the only way to have access to any sort of auctioning/public trading/market system.

Guilds with more than 50 players have the option to start a guild store, a guild store allows players from that guild to trade with each other. Guildleaders also have the ability to bid on a public trader (An NPC located somewhere in the world), this public trader allows people who are not part of the guild to access the guild store to buy items that are listed. So a guild is your only way to get into the trading business.

  • [Q] Communication on console isn't very great, how am I ever going to find a trading guild on console?
  • [A] Your best chance to find a guild is probably the official ESO forum, where they have specific boards for recruiting, split by platform and server location.

Okay so you are part of a guild now, but you still haven't made any money.


Crafting & The difference between making money and becoming a hoarder

ESO has a great crafting system compared to many other games, unlike most it allows you to always have access to every type of crafting on every character. This also means you will be collecting a lot of resources over time.

Raw and Refined Resources

Don't be afraid to sell some of your raw and refined resources, you will be collecting more than you can spend, especially the lower levels. Crafting skills increase more from deconstructing then they do from actually crafting things (Appart from Crafting Writs), so it is better to sell some of those extra stacks of materials than to blow them all on crafting and deconstructing. A stack of 200 can sell for 2000 gold on your guild store, depending on the economics of your guild store.

  • [Q] But you just said that deconstructing will increase my skills faster?
  • [A] That's right, but let's look at the next part for that.

Having access to every crafting skill also allows you to collect every type of resource. Putting extra points in finding those resources will allow you to build up those stacks of resources faster.
So if you enjoy exploring, don't forget to collect those resource nodes!

What to sell & What to deconstruct

Deconstructing your own crafted items will not wield you as much skill points as you would from deconstructing someone else's items or from looted items, your own crafted items are also standard white items and will not return a lot of resources compared to what they cost to craft to begin with. Unless you are very focused on crafting or a specific crafting skill line, you should probably sell all white items unless they are for research. Except for the items that give 280% experience when deconstructing of course!

Green items and higher usually fetch a higher price at a vendor but they also return more resources and give you a chance to get tannins, tempers or resins. These materials are needed to upgrade an item to the next level. (See this question for more information) You can either do the following with green/blue/purple/gold items:

  • Sell them directly to a vendor for quick cash (44 gold)
  • List them in your guild store for a few hundreds (244 gold)
  • Deconstruct them and sell the returned items in your guild store

Selling things to a vendor is quick and easy, but you are not using the power of your guild store here to get more money. If you loot a ring with a set bonus, you can easily sell those on your guild store if there are enough people that aren't in their champion levels yet. I have sold green rings and amulets for 200-300 gold in a few days, not a GetRichQuick method, but that's still 5x more than what a vendor would have given me.

Note: Don't spam your guild store with every green item you find, make sure the item has at least some sales value.

Your last option is to deconstruct it and hope for better items to sell. Deconstructing will give you a chance at:

  • Refined Materials (already discussed)
  • Style Materials
  • Upgrade Materials
  • Trait Materials

Upgrade and trait materials sell for a few hundreds as well, which is again better than selling to a vendor, but you need the luck to acquire them from deconstructing. You can put points into a skill line to have more chance at retrieving resources when deconstructing.

Style materials can be found throughout the world very easily and any of the basic 10 racial motifs will not sell good, I suggest you keep them and use them for Crafting Writs.
Any other style material you have you should decide for yourself; Do I have the motif for this style or do I ever plan on collecting it? Do I even like the look of this style? Some style materials also sell for a few hundreds to even 1k per material.

Same goes for trait materials, some will never serve a use to you and can try to sell these on your guild store as well.
Don't hoard them if you don't need them and if you think "I might need them when I leveled up". Well look at your current level and see how many you collected already in such a short time, you will find more as you go and you want money now, not resources for later.

You will want to find your own balance in what to sell and what to deconstruct while you level.

Researching, The Nightmare of a Completionist

Like I already said, don't be a hoarder. This applies to the research part of the game as well.
There are 9 traits for every type of item to be researched and unlocked. There are 12 types of weapons + 1 shield and 21 types of armor.

Every time you researched a trait on an item, the research time for the next trait will increase.

  • Item 1 = 6 hours
  • Item 2 = 12 hours
  • Item 3 = 1 day
  • Item 4 = 2 days
  • Item 5 = 4 days
  • Item 6 = 8 days
  • Item 7 = 16 days
  • Item 8 = 32 days

Scary huh? My point with this fact is that you don't need to hold on to every item that has a trait, that you haven't unlocked yet.
Inventory space is precious and hoarding 5 sword, 4 axes, 3 daggers and 1 mace for the reason of "I need it for research" is a loss in capital for you. You will be walking around with all those items for atleast 2 weeks before you had a chance to research them all, by then you'll have another 5 swords/axes/daggers on your "To-Research" List.

Keep the ones that provide a good trait to you, if you only have 1 healer on your account and it uses a restoration staff and a bow, you have no need to waste a short time research on increasing the healing done by 5% on a dagger... So don't!
Use that shorter research time for a usefull trait instead.

If you do want every trait unlocked because you are a completionist, keep the useless ones for last.
Sell or deconstruct the ones you don't need or have little to no use to you, you will surely loot more in the future or even find one for trade if you ever desperatly need it.

Tip: Try to keep your Woodwork, Blacksmithing and Clothier skills on 1 character, this will save you time and money for motifs, researches and levling up skill lines.. Sort of a Crafting Character, in the long run, this is worth the effort.

I hope this section has given you a better sight on how to balance crafting and money in ESO.


Stealing, Crime does pay!

Stealing things can be quite lucrative when you are low level and need some extra cash.
Containers that say "Steal From" have the chance to contain Treasure.
Treasure is a special type of item that has no use other then to sell it for money.
White Treasure items are worth 40 gold, greens 100 gold and blue's are 250 gold! Better then that Dirty Fur you sold for 7 gold huh?

Note: If you are caught stealing by any NPC, you will recieve a bounty. If you are spotted by a guard whilst having a bounty, they will try to arrest you or attack you. Running away from a guard will increase your bounty. Being arrested (paying your bounty) will also result in the loss of all items that are stolen in your inventory. So don't get caught or all your hard work is for nothing.

X Marks the Spot

So how do you acquire this treasure?
Most of the containers you will go through will contain food & drink resources, but treasure can be found too.
Cabinets, Drawers, Backbacks, Desks and other types of furniture to have the highest chance for treasure (or lockpicks and style materials that can be fenced).
Barrels, kegs, crate(s), baskets and sacks will usually contain food & drink resources, although treasure is not excluded from the list! So check to be sure when doing some midnight shopping.

Excuse Me, Did You Drop Your Wallet?

Another way to acquire treasure is to pickpocket from NPC's. A succesfull theft will always give you a treasure item.
This is the quickest way to get treasure, but also the more riskier.

Rules of Engagement:

  • Every NPC has a different succes rate when you attempt to pickpocket them.
  • After every succesfull theft, that chance will decrease.
  • Every NPC will be "empty" after 3 succesfull thefts.
  • If a theft fails, the NPC will be aware of you for some time and place a bounty on your head
  • NPC's that catch you stealing (from them or another npc) might attack you on sight.
  • You can put points into Legerdemain to increase your pickpocketting succes chance. (Kahjit have a racial bonus to stealing)

Now What?Do I Burry My Treasure?

No need to burry your treasure, you can just sell it to the underground fencers.
Normal Merchants wont accept your stolen goods and neither will the bank for storing them, you have to find the fencer to sell your stolen goods.
Each major city you pass through will have an area for this, usually with 2 ways to enter (always underground).

You have a fencing limit though, it starts at 50 items per day.
Putting points into Legerdemain you can increase that limit quite fast. 1 Point will allow you to sell 100 items per day.

100 treasures at 40 gold each, thats 4k in a day!

Note: Do not launder your items to sell to a normal merchant, the price to launder is usually the same price as it is to sell it!


If people have comments or remarks about what i wrote here, feel free to comment. I am still a new player myself and all of this is from personal experience. Do remember that this answer is aimed at lower level players and not end game players.

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