Need to get you hands on extra cash to make ends meet? The money may be hiding in your home. I’ll help you find it in piles of clothes, paperwork, and junk!
Here’s where to find extra cash around your home.
I was throwing away $85 in food waste till my father suggested I add up the cost of every rotten item I tossed! The task was such an eye opener that I changed my habits. No more throwing money down the garbage disposal for me. I’ve keep my grocery receipts to have a running list of the items in the fridge and pantry. I’m also setting time aside to plan meals. Put back about $40 in your pocket.
Unused Gift Cards
If you have no plans to spend gift cards, sell them. Selling unwanted gift cards is easy and can bring in cash fast. Sites like PlasticJungle.com and CardHub.com can be quite help when you are trying to get rid of gift cards. Pocket about $40 depending on how many cards you have.
I’m notorious for stashing cash away and forgetting where I put it away. I recently found $40 in a coat that I’d forgotten all about. It was a nice surprise. You probably also have money sitting at home!
Check for stray change:
- under couch cushions
- in your car’s cup-holders
- on window sills
- in your husband’s pants pockets
- in purses/wallets you rotate between
- on your dresser or bureau
- under your mattress (do people still hide money here, or am I the only one?).
Forgotten money can add up once you find it! Another one of my favorite places to find money is when I’m doing laundry as it makes the process much more enjoyable!
Once you collect all your loose change in a jar, head to Coinstar or your bank. Many banks will count change for free for their own customers. And Coinstar waives its hefty 9.8 percent fee if you take your proceeds as a gift card or e-certificate. Process up to $500 in coins!
Do you have clothes hanging in your closet with the tags still on them, but have lost your receipt? Don’t worry! You can still make a return and get your money back. Many retailers will let you make a return without a receipt simply by providing them the credit card used. Watch out, though, as store policies vary.
To avoid losing receipts, stash them away till you know the merchandise you bought works for you. An old shoe box works and can help you tame a cluttered desk. I use the Lemon Wallet app that easily lets me snap pics of receipts and store them digitally. Many retailers are also switching to electronic receipts. In theory, it’s a great option, but I’ve noticed my spam email has increased. Put back about $150 in your pocket!
Buried bills can cause you to miss a due date and accrue a penalty. To avoid paying late fees make sure to open bills when they arrive and set a time and day to deal with bills. I like to include reminders in my calendar to stay on top of due dates. Many banks offer free online bill pay. You’ll save about $1,000 over 12 months.
Get Rid of Your Junk
Declutter your home to find valuables that may bring in money, or score you a decent write off come tax time.
- Clothes – Sell clothes at consignment stores, or donate to a local thrift shop. Here are my tips on selling your clothes for cash.
- Bulky items – List items on Craigslist. I share tips on how to sell stuff on Craigslist.
If you decide to donate items, make sure you don’t short change yourself by using itsdeductible.com to make sure you get the biggest deduction. Also check out our own guide to determining the tax value of donated items. Earn up to $500 from your junk!
How do you make extra cash?
Bargain Babe says
@Yazmin, You don’t seriously keep cash under your mattress, do you???? I’m 98% sure that was a joke, but had to check. You are one of the savviest spenders and savers I know…or thought I knew! 🙂
Yazmin Cruz says
@Bargain Babe LOL It’s sort of a joke. I don’t intentionally save money under my mattress, but I’ve found a couple singles and quarters there. I doubt it’s the tooth fairy, it’s just change that falls out of my pocket when I’m tired and just crash.
Bargain Babe says
@Yazmin A sigh of relief! I’ve never found money under my mattress, but I do find a lot of coins in random places around the house because Hubs unloads his pockets in the strangest places.
I used to throw checks under my mattress. But once forgot about one and it was a year late, Luckily, the bank took it and cashed it. So now, I don’t do that anymore.
Jenny @ Frugal Guru Guide says
There is no upper limit on donations of goods–you just have to document it beyond a certain threshold. 🙂
Bargain Babe says
@Jenny I’m 99% positive the threshold is $250 in one year. If you donate more than that, you need a receipt. Most places I donate to just date it and you fill in what you donated and the value. Big loophole that leaves room for dishonesty, but I think charities do it because it saves them time.
Julie Hills says
I’ve noticed I end up stockpiling gift cards to places I don’t really shop, but when a birthday, holiday, or shower comes up for a friend I find I can often use one of those gift cards to purchase a gift with.
And my trick for receipts on clothing is that I actually pin or tape the receipt to the item of clothing until I take the tags off and wear it! I used to be able to keep things straight better (in a wallet or envelope) but since having a baby discovered my scattered brain needs some extra help like that.
Bargain Babe says
@Julie Hills Pinning your receipt to the clothing item is genius! Why didn’t I think of that? 🙂 I keep important receipts in three places, on my bureau, in my wallet, or in my office. So, you can see how I misplace them often.
I’m not stockpiling gift cards as often as I used to, but I’ve been meaning to buy a few big ones for CVS and Home Depot, two stores we shop frequently.