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Spending That Spare Change
But when that money is in the form of sixty-two thousand coins, well, then, that may be a different story.
Some people are very good at NOT accumulating too much change.
They are the ones in front of you at the grocery store counting down to the last penny for that 88 cent package of gum.
I'm not that person.
They only pay be credit cards.
I refuse to charge $10 or less unless it's an absolute emergency.
They empty the "take a penny / leave a penny" at registers, or else dump all their change in there.
It probably all evens out, but I fear I would dip into a charity jar by mistake.
They top off their gas or plan their other purchases so it's an exact dollar amount.
Who has the patience to do that? Instead, I'm the one with an overabundance of change: * Coins are under the couch cushions.
*Coins overflow the change holders in the car, and the cup holders instead of cups.
*Coins fill random jars around the house.
*Coins are loosely in the bottom of junk drawers in the kitchen.
*Coins are left in pants pockets, and then found rattling around in the washer and dryer.
*Coins are in other places I either won't admit, or have yet to discover.
So what to do with all this change? Coin exchange machines are a popular solution.
Coinstar is at many grocery stores, and there are similar ones at banks / credit unions.
TD Bank for instance has what is called Penny Arcade which counts coins, but is also meant to also encourage kids to learn the value of money.
These machines work similarly.
Just follow the instructions as you go.
It's basically dumping in handfuls of coins (UNROLLED) into the tray, letting the machine sort it out, and dumping in the next handful.
Repeat until done.
Then take the receipt to the cashier / teller and get the cash (unless you've opted to donate it, or get a giftcard as described in the next section).
What's the catch? There's sometimes a fee, of course.
Usually a small percentage of the total coins counted.
Read the fine print before you put your coins in to be sure.
They all have slightly different rules.
Coinstar's fee at this posting was almost 10%, but they have options for getting the coins counted for free for instance.
You can choose "donate to charity" or at some locations you can convert it for a gift card to places like Amazon or others.
Unfortunately that's not an option where I live.
My financial institution charges 3% for members.
Some banks and credit unions will waive these fees to their customers/members, or have special promotions even for non-customers/non-members so it's best to call your bank/credit unions to find out locations and fees.
Is it accurate? The best way to find out is to count your coins beforehand.
But that kind of defeats the purpose of this convenience.
Ultimately, if you're like me, you don't care too much if you get short changed.
That's the point, sort of.
I will just be glad to have less change; and therefore coin-free floors, drawers and dryer.