I never have MORE than $2.00 of coins in my purse or on my person at any given time. It weighs me down and I don't like handling it. So I have a variety of places I put all my spare change in. A floppy wicker basket. A jar. A ceramic cat. A flower vase. An old teapot. Just to name a few. The other day I noticed these places were getting kind of full, so I decided to empty some of the coins into one big container, instead. I had a plastic shoebox, on hand, so that's what I used. My husband took a wild guess about how much money was actually in there. He guesstimated about $250. I laughed at him. "Your estimate is way too high," I told him. But he insisted it wasn't. Wanting to settle this debate once and for all, I decided I would CASH this PART of my STASH in. I still had other collections of coins, throughout the house, that I was saving. But I didn't want to ROLL any of them. It was time consuming and the bank always gave me a hard time when I brought them in. There was a COINSTAR machine up at the local grocery store, that counted coins, so that's where we headed.
Never having done this COINSTAR thing before... it proved to be a bit of a challenge. You have to pour your coins, very slowly into this little basket, on the machine, that siphons them through the machine to be sorted and counted. Of course, you don't get to see this actually happen... you only HEAR it. Believe me when I tell you, it makes quite a racket. And sometimes it gets backed up. Then you have to wait for it to catch up.When the last coins are counted and it's finished... it spits out a receipt telling you, what's what. You can click on receipts pictured here to make them bigger, so you can see the breakdown of the transaction. It shows you exactly how many nickels, quarters, dimes, etc. that you had. Kind of cool, isn't it?
But also notice that COINSTAR isn't FREE. SURPRISE! SURPRISE! They take a processing fee of about 9%. That was cause for pause, when we realized it. I could have rolled the coins myself and had about $23 more. But the deed was done. I had almost $209 in my pocket. I was impressed. My hubby's estimate wasn't too far off. So I decided to go back home and get the rest of the money I had been saving and bring it back to be tallied up.
This time around the plastic shoebox was even more full of coins. Once again my hubby took a wild guess. He said there was $500 in there. I guesstimated about $300. So we let COINSTAR do the work.
I had an additional $336.42. This time I had guessed the closest. I was so excited. Add that to the original $208.47 and the GRAND total of my COIN STASH was $544.89. Of course that's not including COINSTAR'S 9 %. But still... It's not a bad day's work for someone who doesn't collect a regular paycheck. I think I will put this money to good use. I'm SAVING it for a rainy day. But CHANGE IS GOOD. Maybe I should consider SPENDING it? Did you ever notice dollars burn a hole in your pocket, but coins accumulate?