Turn your Spare Change into Hundreds in Savings Every Year!

Here's a valuable little tip I got from a Suze Orman lecture, The Courage to be Rich: Creating a Life of Material and Spiritual Abundance. And it is effective! If you could make use of an extra hundred or more dollars, check this out.

The suggestion itself is Suze's but I'll take it further by describing what I believe is the wisdom behind the action. So, what is this grand advice? Basically, don't spend your coinage. Anytime you break a dollar, mark the coins that you get in return as unusable. Put it in a box and leave it be. Stave off any temptation to spend it.

The difficulty with coins on the whole is this: They are routinely considered to have less value. Four quarters doesn't "feel" equal to a single paper dollar. They are even described as "spare" which connotes excess or unneeded. As the coins split down even more, the perceived value decreases further and faster. Essentially, they divide until they vanish from view. Ten dimes feel even less identical to a dollar bill than four quarters. By the time a dollar is transformed into pennies, it is virtually worthless in the eyes of the beholder. Coins are not treated with care or dignity. Coins are allowed to spin away as they tumble to the street, to disappear into the couch's cushions, or to pile up on the vehicle floor.

But this is pure foolishness because... money is money! If you can divide the numbers, you can just as easily multiply them. Put these coins away for safe keeping as I have recommended, whether in jars or some other trusty vessel. Once in a while, sure, you'll dip into the stash for the parking meter or for laundry. Yet, I would soundly advise against it. Again, because the change will be spent as throw-aways rather than actual monetary units, capable of notable power. When you actually need coins, instead try cracking a new dollar and again saving the new change.

I have done this for several years now. I typically keep the copper and silver coins separate. In this past year, I changed these coins back into dollars using a supermarket coin machine and here are the figures that I came back with:

MATH: The pennies amounted to $20.32 total - $1.99 fee = $18.33

Not bad huh? Here's what I got for the silver:

MATH: The quarters, dimes, and nickels added up to $156.24 total - $15.31 fee = $140.93

It isn't tycoon stuff but it is another way you can cultivate a healthier relationship with your money. I like to think of it as an early tax refund. Or a new year's gift to myself.

MATH: $18.13 + $140.93 = $159.06 total!

If I wanted to be more suave about it, I may have omitted the processing fees, wrapped the coins myself using an affordable coin organizer and turned them in at my bank instead to rake in the full $176.56. At that total, it's no longer throw away cash, now is it? So, wouldn't someone be thoughtless not to bend down to grab and thoughtfully save $176.56 of their own money?

Again, I want to point out that these aren't "debauchery" funds. Always think: What can I put this towards that might help advance my career or education?

What would you do with your $176, and 56 cents?