Tuesday, 19 January 2016

"Found" money

I was just doing some washing and checked the pockets of a pair of jeans that I wore over the weekend.

In the pocket I found $90 in notes and a handful of change, mostly $1 and $2 coins.

I honestly have no idea why I'd put that $90 odd into my pocket instead of into my purse. I'd forgotten it was there. I wouldn't have missed it if it had gone... which is pretty awful I have to admit. It was part of my spending money that I'd allocated within my budget, to do with my major purchase. There were some pick up costs associated with it that I had budgeted for and some of them were refunded.

Given that I didn't realise that the leftover money was there, I'm going to consider it "found" money. As in, money I didn't know I had, and therefore unassigned within my budget.

There are two ways that I deal with found money. For coins, I have a very sentimental money box that belonged to my Pop, that he gave to me a few years ago. It's not pretty - its an old milo tin I think, that he punched a slot into the top of big enough to fit a 50c piece. My Pop must have had it for years. It's developed this lovely grey patina of age, and its label is long since gone. Its heavy - I think it must have been before they started to cheap out and use aluminium :)

So all my coins go into that. I've developed a habit in the last few weeks particularly of emptying the coins out of my purse at the end of every few days into the tin. It must be adding up fast - but I'll keep doing as Pop did and wait until its getting quite full before I go and cash it out into my loan.

The notes are a bit more hit and miss, as you'd expect. I sometimes find a $5 or $10 note in my old handbags, or in the pocket of a coat come the winter time. Up till now I've just been adding those into my purse and they get spent along with my weekly allowance. Not any more.

From now on, "found" money will go into my purse, but I will immediately make a corresponding transfer of funds into my loan from my bank account. I think that some people (Dave Ramsay is one) calls these small one-off deposits "snowflakes". Given that I'm snowballing my loans, it makes sense to use that terminology too for the transfers.

So I'm off to make a $90 snowflake thanks to my jeans and my found money!

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