If you’re like me, I hate to carry loose change around. Whenever I need extra coins to pay for an item in exact amount, I always ask my girlfriend if she has a quarter or a nickel and she never fails me. Women have it so easy since all they have to do is throw the change into their purses and be done with it. Guys, on the other hand only have their pants pockets to put their change in. Couple that with your wallet and cell phone, your pockets are unattractively and uncomfortably bulging out, hindering the way you may walk, not to mention the clanging noises made from your coins. It’s just not a comfortable situation to be in.


At the end of the day, I put all my coins in a jar or some kind of collection plate where they are easily accessible for future use. I think over the past 10 years, the total value that accumulated is almost $1,000. That’s a lot of  loose coins. With the recent state of the economy, it seems like every penny matters. What good ‘ole Mr. Franklin said couple hundred years back seems true and logical nowadays, “A penny saved is a penny earned.”

I’m currently in the market for a new laptop and a new LED TV, so this money will help me offset the costs. I know it’s still my money, so technically speaking, I haven’t “saved” any money, but it sure does feel like it to me. It’s almost like finding a $20 bill in your pant’s back pocket.

Now, when you’ve collected as much coins as I have, you need to figure out how to cash in these coins. One easy option is to go to a grocery store where they have a Coinstar machine. These machines are very easy to use. All you have to do is dump all sorts of coins in there and it automatically counts the value for you. Then they give you cash, of course minus their fee which is 8.9 cents for every dollar counted. So for my case, if I have exactly $1,000 in coins, they will give me $911 back. If this fee is too much for you, another option Coinstar provides is to convert your coins into gift certificates for select retailers, such as Amazon.com. In this case, the conversion is 100%.

Additionally, you can always go to your local bank and have them convert them for you for fee. Not all banks provide this service so make sure you call them first.

Perhaps, you can start “saving” money by collecting your loose coins today.