Penny, Nickel, Dime, Quarter: Paying for Retirement on a Budget

An important key to meeting your retirement savings goal is to find small ways to bump up your retirement savings. Although it may not sound like much, saving your coins can have a profound impact on your retirement fund.

Two ways to save coins for your retirement are:

• Collect your loose change and deposit it into your retirement account.
• Start a coin collection: put collectible coins in albums and save them for the future when they’ll be worth more money.

Collecting Your Loose Change

1. Make a commitment. Vow to save your coins rather than spend them.

2. Make it convenient to collect your change. Keep a container in your car (a plastic cup, for example) so you have a place to put your spare change. In your purse, carry a zippered pouch or coin purse to store coins you receive back as change.

3. Watch your money grow. When you get home, dump all your loose change from your car and purse into a bank or decorative jar. To make it fun, use a large clear glass or plastic container so you can see it add up.

4. Deposit your funds. After your container gets half-full or once a month, take it to your bank or credit union to pour your coins through the coin counter and deposit them into your retirement savings.

• Avoid using coin counters that charge a usage fee; they’re free to use at most financial institutions. If your bank charges a fee for change that exceeds a certain amount, simply pour the change in slowly to avoid going over that amount. Simply bring back the balance of your coins on your next trip to the bank to avoid paying any coin counter fees.

Starting a Coin Collection

1. If you’ve never done coin collecting before, you’ll find the activity entertaining. Plus, it will make you money in the future.

2. Acquire some albums in which to store your coins. Go to your local discount or hobby store to inquire about coin albums. These are sturdy cardboard folders that have cutouts into which you place the various coins.

• Coin albums come in all sizes and types. There are coin albums to collect pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, half-dollars, silver dollars, and more.

• Typically, the albums specify the year, the mint where the coin was made, and the type of coin to be collected.

3. Start small when you first begin a coin collection. A really fun first coin collection is the “50 state quarters.”

4. Begin filling up your albums. Go through your coins regularly to find coins that you need for the albums. Visit coin-collecting hobby shops for ideas on specific collections that may interest you and to purchase coins you won’t usually find in your regular change.

5. It may take months before you complete a coin album. But that’s okay; that’s part of the enjoyment – the anticipation of knowing you’ll have all the coins to someday cash in for your retirement.

• Eventually, though, you’ll complete your coin albums. Place them in your safe deposit box at the bank for safekeeping.

6. Let your coins gain value over time; then sell them. If you have a large collection, it can make a huge difference in your retirement fund.

The leftover coins you collect throughout your day can be put to good use. Deposit them monthly into your retirement savings account. Or start a coin collection and enjoy the journey of saving, sorting, and watching their value grow to cash in for big retirement savings in the future.

Your coins might be worth more than gold after years of collecting for your retirement!


The FTG Knowledge Bank