By Terry G.
I love free money. I thought that others would also love free money, but that doesn’t always seem to be the case. There is a lot of free money out there that almost anyone can claim with a bit of effort, but most people don’t.
Banks: I remember when I was growing up, my mom would change banks whenever she needed a new toaster because banks were always offering them to open a new banking account. The new toaster of today is cash. There are a lot of banks that will give you a cash bonus for opening up an account and even more if you agree to have your paycheck direct deposited.
On the streets: I’m astonished at the number of people that feel that coins no longer have value. That is the only reason I can imagine there are so many left on the ground to pick up. Picking up coins isn’t going to make me rich, but it can add up to a substantial amount over time.
401k plan: When I worked, my company offered to match up to 6% of my 401k contribution. That meant that for every dollar that I contributed to my 401k account, my company would put in another dollar for free. This is a common perk offered by 401k plans, but I was surprised by the number of my coworkers and friends that never took advantage of it.
Coupons: I must admit that I’m not a huge coupon guy, but that doesn’t mean that I will refuse free money when it’s staring right in front of me. If there is a coupon for something that I use, I will take the free money. I also have a habit of writing manufacturers about the good and bad aspects of their products and this often gives me a lot of coupons that I can use.
Credit card reward programs: My credit card pays me cash back for every purchase that I make. If I’m going to pay for it anyway, why not get some free money back in the process? This only works if you pay off your credit card in full each month which I do.
Community shopping sites: when I do a search for something to buy on the Internet, I will also check community shopping sites where they give a cash back reward for buying through them.
Scholarships: When I was going to school, I applied for every scholarship that I could find that I might even remotely qualify for. Many of them never panned out, but in the end I received several thousand dollars in free money that would have been debt had I not applied.
Lost money sites: I always thought that these sites were scams of some type, so you can imagine my surprise when I entered my name in one and it turned up an old account I had forgotten about that had several hundred dollars in it. Most states have forgotten asset sites where they try to connect money to their rightful owner.
Getting free money isn’t rocket science and it is out there for the taking if you are willing to do a bit of work. I know because when all added up, I’ve received over $50,000 in free money during my lifetime.
Do you have a story about saving money or earning money that you’d like to share? We’d love to hear about it.