A great way to start rounding up a bit of extra cash is by saving your change. Instead of using it to round up to get a bill back at the store, hold onto it. Then when you get home empty your pockets/wallet/purse into a designated container (like a piggy bank or jar.) While it may take longer to fill a bigger container, you’ll also have more money when it’s time to cash in.
A great way to lose your money when your container is full is to take it to a coin-star-like machine. The fees range anywhere from 10-20% of your “deposit,” which is no small sum. Say you have $100…that’s $10-20 you just lost. Yes, you now have the option of loading it onto gift cards without losing that 10-20%. This is great if you’ll use them. But if you’re just looking for extra money, I highly suggest investing a little bit of time into the lost art of rolling your own change.
You’ll need paper rolls. Which you can buy at most dollar stores or get FREE at a bank. Most banks don’t even require you to have an account open with them. Quarter rolls hold $10 (40 coins,) dime rolls hold $5 (50 coins,) nickel rolls hold $2 (40 coins,) and penny rolls hold $.50 (50 coins.)
So you have your jar of change. You have your rolls. Now, dump out your coins onto a designated surface. Make sure you either lay a towel down first or have an easy-to-clean surface…money is DIRTY! Rolling can be tricky, but here are my tips. Start by sticking your finger into one end of the roll, then pack it about 1/4 of the way with coins. Now you should be easily able to fold the bottom closed. Pack it up all the way, then fold the other end shut. Okay, so it doesn’t sound that tricky, but you’ll see what I mean when you’re developing your own technique.
After you’ve rolled all your change (put any extra back in the jar for next time!) count it. Write the number down. Then you can take it back in to any bank to cash it or deposit directly into your bank account. Make sure what they give you is the same as the number you counted before your trip! While you’re there, pick up some rolls for the next time your jar gets full…save yourself a trip 🙂
Congrats on saving your 10-20% and finding a rainy day fund!