Weekly Roundup – Loose Change Edition

We have moved and settled into our home – well, at least we’ve moved! It will be a while before we unpack the last box, especially since I went back to work today and left a house full of boxed up stuff for the family. Pretty sad when you go back to work to rest up!

Over the weekend, while packing, I came across a handful of change. With my coin jar already packed, and time running out to move, I felt like tossing the change in the trash bag and moving on. But that would have really hurt me!  After all, the $1.30 I collected under sofa cushions represented about a year’s worth of interest on a $100!

Can you believe some people actually throw money away? Don’t believe it? Check out the fifth article below.

The Frugal Roundup

7 Critical Ways You Need to Take Your Life Off Autopilot. Here is a great list of things that you should really focus on. (@ My Super-Charged Life)

Redbox Testing $2 Per Night Rentals. Redbox has started testing $2 per night rentals. Will you still rent from them with that type of increase? (@Your Money Relationship)

Master Your Money with a Financial Health Day. When you have your financial health day, make sure you involve you spouse in the decision. (@ Get Rich Slowly)

How to Become a Successful Secret Shopper and Supplement Your Income. Need some extra cash to beef up your budget? Become a secret shopper! (@Generation X Finance)

Best of the Rest

Comments

  1. Can you believe some people actually throw money away?

    I used to do this on a daily basis.

    I had a job writing for a daily tax newsletter. Every day about 3:00 in the afternoon (as deadline anxiety began to kick in), I would make a trip to the cafeteria and get a Mountain Dew and a bag of M&M peanuts. The change was comprised of some quarters and dimes and two pennies. My regular practice was to toss the two pennies in the trash. I didn’t want them weighing down my pockets (or so I rationalized).

    In one of the drafts of my book on saving, I wrote a long explanation of what I think was going on psychologically. I think that I found emotional relief in throwing money in the trash. I was making a statement (not so much to others as to myself) that I had “made it” to an extent that I could afford to toss pennies in the trashbin. I was above having to worry about pennies.

    Intellectually, it’s stupid as sin. Emotionally, it makes a certain amount of twisted sense. This is why it is often people who are most comfortable financially who also happen to handle their money well. Those who are not financially set are always trying to reassure themselves re their financial futures. So they buy expensive clothes or expensive meals or just toss pennies into the trashbin to gain a bit of temporary emotional relief.

    I had zero savings (except for perhaps $1,000 in a checking account) at the time I was making it a daily practice to toss good money into a trashbin. And I had graduated not only college but law school too. I was oh-so-smart and I was oh-so-dumb. My sense is that I might not be the only one for whom that characterization holds.

    Rob

  2. I’ve been tempted to toss pennies, but other than one or two disgusting ones, I never can bring myself to do it, thankfully. I appreciated Rob’s analysis above, though, because I think that makes perfect sense!

    Glad to hear you’re on your way to getting settled in your new home! And thanks for linking to my January series!

  3. Hmmm, That gives me an idea.

    Maybe I’ll create a “I hate Pennies” or “Pennies Haters Club” jar at work. I’ll tell my coworkers about it. Then once it fills up, I’ll give it to charity.

    Maybe even the Ronald McDonald’s House charity (I think this is a medical one?), it’s quick and easy to do. I’ll have to look into this one further…

  4. I googled Ronald McDonald House Charity, and went to the wiki. Pretty much the charity is as described:

    A Ronald McDonald House (named after Ronald McDonald) is a place where the parents of children that are in a nearby hospital can stay at night for reduced or no cost.

    That works for me!

    P.S. I wonder if it’s illegal to throw away pennies… I know there are laws that prevent people from melting the coins… I bet the same law probably applies to destroying (even by throwing them away) US currency too…

    “Kids! Don’t throw away money, it’s against the law” hehe… ;)

  5. I talked to a municipal garbage collection guy once who told me he routinely gets to enjoy a free coffee from the coins he collects that others throw away. He told me that after doing the job for a while, you get sense of the sound of loose change in a trash bag….give the bag a couple of shakes to get the coins into the bottom and then give the bottom corner of the bag a twist to collect the tip before tossing the garbage bag into the compactor!

  6. Every penny counts especially when you are trying to get out of debt. Many people use the snowflaking technique with their debt snowball to get even more traction. Loose change is a great way to snowflake.

    Thanks for highlighting my article!

  7. Bennett: “… on a daily basis. My regular practice was to toss the two pennies in the trash. I think that I found emotional relief in throwing money in the trash. I was making a statement (not so much to others as to myself) that I had “made it” to an extent that I could afford to toss pennies in the trashbin.

    I had zero savings (except for perhaps $1,000 in a checking account) at the time I was making it a daily practice to toss good money into a trashbin. And I had graduated not only college but law school too. I was oh-so-smart and I was oh-so-dumb.”

    I would say that based on your writing here, things have not so much ‘changed’ as they have ‘evolved’ — you seem to have not cured your irrationality as much as just moved it to a new arena.

    Some of us never threw pennies away to begin with.

  8. you seem to have not cured your irrationality as much as just moved it to a new arena.

    None of us ever entirely “cures” our irrationality, Anti-Crank. I am not entirely sure that we should want to. I’m not Mr. Spock and I don’t aspire to be Mr. Spock.

    There’s no question but that some of the things that I say today are rooted in irrationality. And there’s also no question but that I am not able to see what it is that I am irrational about. If I were able to see it, I would be able to change it.

    Some of us never threw pennies away to begin with.

    But did you never waste money, Anti-Crank? Is there that much of a difference between spending more than you should on a car or a house or a vacation and tossing pennies into a trashbin? I see these two things as different varieties of the same basic problem.

    Can you really say that you have never spent too much because of the emotional relief it brought you to do so? If you swear that you have never done so, can we trust your assessment? My take is that we cannot. My take is that humans are emotional and that emotional beings often engage in self-deception. One of my big beefs with the conventional saving and investing advice is that it pretends that this is not so. I don’t think it is possible to offer truly effective money advice without first acknowledging the basic money reality that money transactions are engaged in by humans and that human decisions are often governed by emotion.

    I see emotion in your comment here, Anti-Crank. You can say that I am wrong to see it. But that won’t persuade me. Right or wrong, I see it.

    Rob

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