How Someone’s Lunch money Bought a Washer and Dryer

bought a washer and dryerI’m going to do it. I’m going to bum change off people for two months and pay for it. My wife thinks I can’t. She think it’s impossible, but just watch me.

My friend seemed pretty determined and sure of himself just a day before he had finally given in to his wife’s demands for a new washer and dryer. But instead of heading off to the local Sears or Best Buy and swiping plastic, he was determined to do things the good old-fashioned way — by asking for simple pocket change.

“Can you give me a dollar or two for lunch,” he asked friends and acquaintances (and sometimes even strangers) every day. He did this for two months and he proved his wife right â“ in a short amount of time he had enough money to buy a new washer and dryer.

His experience teaches us a couple simple truisms about money: where there’s a will, there’s a way and (even more importantly) that small change adds up, even in a short amount of time.

Tracking Expenses: From Pennies to Big Bucks?

My friend knew he could bum enough change off friends and strangers to pay for two big-ticket consumer items. He had no shame in asking for change from the same folks, over and over, too.

Even if you would never go to this extreme in seeking new cash streams, consider that his experience shows the possibility of creatively seeking out new sources of cash flow and (more importantly) that his friends, acquaintances and some perfect strangers had no idea just how much money they willingly forked over to him. They were literally bleeding pocket change that added up to big bucks over time.

Learn from my friend’s accomplices: Keep track of your expenses! If possible, forgo cash because it’s so difficult to track. Create a family and household budget that narrows in on spending and is as focused as a laser beam. Above all, remember: small sums add up over time, but small losses and untracked purchases and expenses do too.

There’s a Saying About Change…

You’re happy and rich but you need to change your change to cold, hard cash. Head to your local bank and ask for some (free) coin wrappers, roll the coins in the privacy and comfort of your home and deliver them back to the bank for cash, free of charge.

Credit union members take heed: many credit unions offer coin machines — free of charge — to their customers. You can dump your unsorted shinies into the machine without facing the 10% haircut charged by commercial coin changers. If you have several hundred dollars in change (or even more, like my spouse-betting friend), that’s one very expensive haircut.

Wonderfully Weird and Wacky Ways to Wealth… or a Washer and Dryer

Bumming change to best a betting spouse may be uncouth, but it proves that small things can add up to bigger things? People unfortunately often overlook the fact that they are losing money by throwing away every item passing through their household. Instead of trashing it, you should try cashing it (in). For example, did you know that empty wine bottles could fetch up to 50 cents? Or that used toner cartridges can command even 20 bucks?

If you don’t want to deal with ink, bottles or basketball player undies, you can even earn a tidy monthly sum by testing websites.

If bumming change can buy you an appliance, why not selling your garbage or website testing? Be creative and the change will start to add up very quickly…

(Kyle Taylor is the editor of The Penny Hoarder, a daily blog with weird & wacky tips on how to make extra money. Connect with him on Facebook/Twitter or subscribe to his newsletter to get his 5 wackiest ways to make money via email!)

photo by editor