I never used to have a lot of pocket change since I hardly ever used cash. In the past year, we have used cash more than our debit card, and it really does add up. Some financial experts estimate that most people can save $40/mo from just their change. We have been saving over $50/mo the last 4 months. To get the most back is to never use change even if it’s for a few pennies. I don’t do that but I keep 4 pennies in my wallet so that way I never get them back and always nickels or bigger coins.
So what to do with all that spare change? Anything you like but here are some good tips. I am currently saving for our vacation next year. It won’t pay for much of it but mainly food and spending money. Also, you can save Christmas or gifts in general, a fun day out, eating out, or use it to help pay down debt. I know some people save theirs for something they normally wouldn’t buy, or to help pay for an upgrade like a new appliance or piece of furniture. You can also use it to help save for your kids college funds. $30-50 a month might seem like much but if you did average $40/mo that is a total of $480 a year. Not too shabby if you ask me. Those pennies really do start to add up over time.
I can keep my change in a designated jar with a slit and it’s not too easy to get into which is good so it’s less tempting to steal from it. Some people use mason style jars with a lid with a slit cut in the top, those bigger 5 gallon water jugs, soda bottles (the 2 liter kind) or anything. It’s a great way to recycle. Now some are asking what’s the easiest way to cash my change? I’m very fortunate to have a bank that doesn’t charge me a fee where I can bring my jar, and they will dump it in a counting machine. I do have to deposit it in my checking but that’s fine with me. Some people sit down and roll them. There are also those Coinstar machines but if you don’t want to get hit with fees then you have to convert it into a gift certificate. They have vendors like Amazon, Disney Shopping online, ITunes, Circuit City, JC Pennys, Borders, AMC, Old Navy, and more. This is a good option if you plan on using it for gifts or want to buy something at one of these stores.
I think if you plan on a goal and then get a jar started, it will give you more motivation to save as you see the amount growing. I think a clear container is visually the best to literally see your savings grow. This is also great to try and get the kiddos involved. I also don’t put dollar bills in mine and kept strictly as a change jar. Everyone can do their own as they want which is great. What I like to do is take out any leftover money at the end of a year from the envelopes to use for our Christmas gifts. Happy collecting!