The last time I wrote a found money update was at the end of February. It seemed to me then – as it does now – that I should probably do an update quarterly and that’s something I’ve put on the calendar going forward.
Since this update needs to capture not only the second quarter months of April-June, but the month of March as well, it’s a four-month update instead of three. You can expect another update at the beginning of October and we should be on track at that point.
The found money updates are broken down into two main categories:
- The money that found us
- The money we went out and found
Each of those areas will include detail and sometimes commentary about where exactly the found money came from.
In addition, I’m tracking a third type: found money from business. That section can be found at the bottom of this post.
So, here is the found money breakdown for the months of March, April, May and June:
The Money That Found Us
The money that finds us is the money that simply finds it way into our wallets or checking account with no significant amount of effort on our part.
It’s the kind of money that you no doubt have coming into your life too. The key to making the most of these often small amounts is to decide on a job for this money and then start looking for it.
We’ve given our “money that finds us” the job of beefing up our emergency fund.
Here’s what it’s looked like since I last updated you at the end of Feburary.
- Rebate for changing cable companies $150
Although we didn’t change cable companies because of the rebate, this was so not worth it. A nightmare. But what’s done is done and at least we got a $150 Target gift card to dull the pain. (To turn gift cards into found money, I spend them on things I would have anyway – groceries, household supplies – and then transfer the money from checking to our emergency fund.)
Earning cash back from the way we pay for things is a regular source of money that finds us.
- Ticket reimbursement $16
- Health insurance reimbursement $100
- Postage reimbursement from bookkeeping work $39.90
- Mortgage escrow refund $199.08
This category ranged from the surprising (an escrow refund!) to the mundane (we bought my sister-in-law’s ticket for our church shrimp dinner and she reimbursed us).
Sometimes I need reimbursements to cover the original expense, so you won’t see it on this list. (Like the reimbursements for train tickets we bought for my daughter and three of her friends to travel from Prague to Krakow during their study abroad; I used the reimbursements from the other girls to pay the credit card bill.) But often I don’t need reimbursements for that reason, especially for small amounts, so they become found money and you’ll see them listed here.
Total added to our emergency fund from the money that found us = $676.41
The Money We Went Out and Found
Some money doesn’t find us; we have to go out and find it. And that money goes toward paying for our daughter’s college expenses and saving for our son’s college (he’ll be a senior in high school this year).
Here’s what that’s looked like since March:
- Samsung tablet on eBay $150
- Computer equipment on Craigstlist $25
These were some unused items we had around the house that I finally got around to listing online.
Total added to college fund #1 from selling stuff = $175.01
I mentioned my blogging income for the first time in February’s post, and I heard from many of you that you’d like to know more about this stream of income.
I haven’t forgotten…I promise! Part of my challenge is deciding exactly what to share with you, because the possibilities are many. So with this update I’m requesting that if you have any specific questions about blogging for money, you leave them in the comments below or email them to me through the link in the upper lefthand corner of this page.
I’d be happy to answer almost anything if I know what it is you want to know.
Total added to college fund #1 from blogging = $3615.92
Not a lot to say here. I keep the books for two small family businesses and the small income I earn from this goes into college savings.
Total added to college fund #2 from bookkeeping = $3127.60
Found Money for Business
Last November I started using the found money method for my husband’s business. It has worked just as well there as it has for us personally.
The amount we added this time wasn’t especially thrilling, but what was exciting was the fact that we made a $2000 investment in some extra marketing during these months and were able to withdraw $2000 from this account to pay for it.
Total added to business savings account = $164.63
These found money posts help keep me accountable. I’m often guilty of questioning whether – with all the money that flows into and out of our lives – tracking these small (sometimes very small) individual amounts is worth it. And then I do a tally like this one and realize that it is.
It’s only one of the Family CEO techniques that I use, but it’s a very powerful one.
Do you have small income streams that you’ve given jobs to? Do you have a specific question about blogging or earning money from blogging? Meet me in the comments to talk about it.
This post contains my affiliate links. See my disclosure policy for more details.
This post is part of Fabulously Frugal Thursday.Note: I'm no longer adding new posts to The Family CEO. I am, however, writing at Creating This Life, where we talk about home, books, travel, and other life stuff.
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