Should You Always Keep Loose Change?

Posted by admin on June 22, 2020

What is loose change anyway?

Think about it. Inflation can creep up without you noticing. Would you bother to pick up 10p if you were in a hurry? What if that 10 pence piece was worth £1.66? That 20 pence piece £3.32? 

Because, according to that’s what a 10p or 20p coin from 1970 would be worth today. You’d be able to buy 2 loaves of bread - or a pint - if you picked up 20p back  then, whereas the list of things you can get for 20p nowadays could be written on the back of a postage stamp.

The point is - what loose change is varies from person to person and over time. Which brings us onto our next point.

How much loose change do we actually have?

Credit cards, debit cards. 

Cashless shops, cashless pubs. 

Tap to pay, tap to tip staff, tap to show appreciation to a busker. 

This is the new normal. And some banking apps have cottoned onto the lost art of collecting loose change - by allowing you to ‘round up your shop’, siphoning the difference between your total and the nearest integer into a savings pot. 

This is effortless and arguably very sensible. So perhaps when dealing with physical loose change it’s just a matter of free time...

The long way

If you’re old-school, you could opt to collect change as you go along and collect it in paper rolls: containers which hold specific amounts of coins, as long as they are the same denomination.

A quick search reveals these can be bought relatively cheaply. So if you have time on your hands you can take your hard-earned cash down to the bank. £10 of 1 pence pieces weighs 3.56kg though, so make sure you can carry it all!

The short(ish) way

The quick way, though not compared to the automated method mentioned above, is to dump your coins through a sorting machine. We’re not going to lie, this is fun, but if you use the most popular machine, CoinStar, they will take a 10.9% cut for their efforts. 

How much is your time worth?

Obviously, the quickest way to cash in loose change is to use a card or bank which rounds your purchases up to the nearest pound, but if you use cash then it’s a matter of the time you’re willing to spend.

In our opinion, it’s a matter of how much you value your time. If you collect and sort £50 worth of coins it might take you one hour, but dumping it into a CoinStar vat will take you two minutes at a cost of £5.45, the question is - is an hour of your time worth £5.45?

A quicker way

A quicker way to make cash without spending your valuable time is to consider pawning your unwanted items. 10p and 20p pieces take a while to add up to a substantial amount however, a piece of jewellery gathering dust which you know, deep down, you’re never going to wear again, could pay for your next month’s mortgage payment.

Here at Cuttings, the Kent Pawnbrokers, we are experts on valuing jewellery and watches, and you have our word that we will give you an honest, flexible loan which can be paid back in your own time, up to 6 months.

If collecting coppers isn’t for you, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly, knowledgeable Kent-based team by either calling 01843 584550 or completing the form below


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