Tag Archives: Found Money

Found Money Project – January 2015 Update

It’s hard to believe we launched our Found Money Project almost two years ago!Coins in High Contrast by MoneyBlogNewz You can find the background story HERE.

In a nutshell, the idea for this project came from my high school Latin teacher Sister Olivia who would find amazing amounts of money on her daily walks between the high school and the convent. She often told us “You kids don’t pay attention to your money so God gives it to me!”

The original plan was to figure out a way to put the money to good use near the end of each year, but then I started to think… could this money do more good if allowed to grow over a long period?

Then… I decided to THINK BIG!

I’d like to introduce the 100 Year Found Money Project.

With a little luck (and a lot of patience) the goal is to take money found by an average family and grow it to $10 million in 100 years. Kinda crazy, right… or is it?

None of us will be around to see the results, but how much fun is it to think about what this project could achieve?


In December, 2014 I deposited the accumulated balance from our found money jar ($75.61) into a Sharebuilder account and purchased 7.8948 shares of Prospect Capital Corp. (PSEC) stock.  I chose this stock because it has paid a monthly cash dividend since 2010. (The current monthly cash dividend is .08333 cents per share for a current yield of 11.6%).

As a result, the  7.8948 shares will generate a monthly dividend of .6578 cents that will be re-invested to purchase additional shares of PSEC… and the growth will begin!

In addition, over the past 23 months we have found an average of $3.42 per month. This money will also be deposited into the Sharebuilder account and be used to purchase additional shares of PSEC… more growth!


Our plan as entered into the Bankrate.com Simple Savings Calculator assumes the following…

Initial Investment – $70.00 (initial PSEC stock purchase)

Monthly Deposit – $3.42

Annual Interest Compounded Monthly – 10%

Number of Years – 100

The resulting balance after 100 years is $10,151,601.57.

Obviously there are a multitude of factors that will affect this plan over the long haul (taxes, inflation, rate of return, etc.). However… how close can this plan come to hitting the goal? Can we literally start with NOTHING and generate a huge amount of money that could change thousands of lives for the better?

Let’s find out!


Found Money Project – December Update

Coins in High Contrast by MoneyBlogNewzUpdated 12-1-13 = $35.25

See Found Money List here

Our project has been cruising along at a steady pace and our total has passed $35. We found our first paper money ($5 bill) in October. While I am amazed by the amount of money we have found, I’m even more amazed by the number of aluminum cans we come across. I see them everywhere! (It’s kind of like when you buy a black Ford and you start to see every black Ford in the city.) Understand I’m not talking about digging in trash bins… I’m talking about cans just laying in the park or by side of the street. While other people just see trash, we see two cents, and we’re proving money adds up fast.

One Saturday morning in November, I was on my way to get coffee when I came across an old beer cooler left by the dumpster. I loaded it up, got my coffee and headed to the recycle place where I collected $10.93. People may laugh at me… but it’s FREE MONEY!

  • Way back when we crossed the $10.00 mark, I began to consider ways of putting this money to work. Right now it is on vacation, lounging in a square tin box on my desk. Rather than adhere to the Sister Olivia model of turning the money into Christmas gifts for nursing home residents, is it possible to get this money a job so it can begin to multiply? How far can we take it? Can we somehow turn this $10.00 into our own mini version of One Red Paperclip? I’m beginning to believe we can.
  • For the sake of argument…. let’s say we start in January and risk approximately 25% of our Found Money Total to find quality items on Craigslist, yard sales, eBay, etc. and sell them at a 100% markup… i.e. double the money with every transaction. How would this play out over time (without factoring in risk?). Let’s have a look….
Month Item using 25% Purchase Price Sale Price 75% Project Balance End of Month Total
—– Beginning Balance —– —– $35.00
Jan 2014 Item A ($8.00) $16.00 $27.00 $43.00
Feb 2014 Item B ($10.00) $20.00 $33.00 $53.00
Mar 2014 Item C ($13.00) $26.00 $40.00 $66.00
Apr 2014 Item D ($16.00) $32.00 $50.00 $82.00
May 2014 Item E ($20.00) $40.00 $62.00 $102.00
Jun 2014 Item F ($25.00) $50.00 $77.00 $127.00
Jul  2014 Item G ($30.00) $60.00 $97.00 $157.00
Aug 2014 Item H ($40.00) $80.00 $117.00 $197.00
Sep 2014 Item I ($50.00) $100.00 $147.00 $247.00
Oct 2014 Item J ($60.00) $120.00 $187.00 $307.00
Nov 2014 Item K ($75.00) $150.00 $232.00 $382.00
Dec 2014 Item L ($95.00) $190.00 $287.00 $477.00

So readers, I ask you – will a plan like this work? Please comment and let me hear your thoughts….

Found Money Project – July Update

Updated 7-13-13 – $8.80

Collected cans from the road by RobotSkirtsAs I wrote about in February, we began keeping track of money that we find. Later, in a May update, I explained that we also started picking up any aluminum cans we come across during our walks and our runs. Last week, I turned in 6lbs of aluminum and added $3 to the project total. See the entire Found Money List here.

Lately I’ve been paying attention to the reactions we get from other people about our ‘project’.  I’ve also been thinking about why we are doing this and what it could lead to.

Reaction of other people: Several friends and family members have joined in the fun, picking up loose change & aluminum cans and adding it to the project. I think they get a kick out of hearing how the total is growing.

Others have shown amusement, saying things like “A penny isn’t worth anything – why bother with it?” and “Homeless people pick up aluminum – you look ridiculous!” I suppose there could be some truth to these opinions, but I prefer to think about the project in a different way.

Why we are doing this: I still remember Sister Olivia explaining how she felt about found money… “You kids don’t pay attention to your money, so God gives it to me!” I believe there is a tremendous amount of truth in that statement. In his book Think and Grow Rich, author Napoleon Hill writes about the energy put forth by one’s thoughts and how those thoughts can support and energize the law of attraction. I look at it this way – if money presents itself to me, I believe it is my responsibility to be grateful and accept it.

What it could lead to: Sister Olivia used to turn her money into Christmas gifts for nursing home residents. Lately, I’ve been considering a bigger, long term project. What could this project potentially teach us all about found money? We are doing something that literally anyone can do – young, old, rich, poor, etc. What is the potential to make found money grow? How will the law of attraction manifest itself in this project? I’d be interested in your comments.

Stay tuned for the next update…..

Found Money Project – May Update

Coins in High Contrast by MoneyBlogNewzBack in mid-February, I wrote about our “Found Money Project”. In a nutshell, our family keeps track of money that we find. We intend to do something good with the money near the end of the year.

We’ve been surprised at how often we find money. So far, in the 89 days we’ve been keeping track, we’ve found money 55 times. I expect that ratio to rise during the summer when we are outside more often. We’ve also noticed how found money comes in bunches. (Notice on the chart below how many times we’ve found several coins at once or found money more than once a day.)

Recently we’ve added a new twist to the Found Money project. After reading this article, I thought about how many times during our walks and runs we come across aluminum cans… so we started picking them up and tossing them into a plastic tub in the basement. Our friends probably think we’re a bit kooky, but each can is worth approximately 1.5¢. Plus we’re helping to keep our neighborhood clean. We haven’t turned in the cans yet, but I’ll post again when we do and I’ll add that money to the chart.

Date Amount Comments Total
2-04-13 Nickel (DOD) Walking $ 0.05
2-08-13 Penny (DOD) Gas station $ 0.06
2-11-13 Dime (DOD) Running $ 0.16
2-14-13 Dime (DOD) Walking $ 0.26
2-16-13 Dime (DF) Alley $ 0.36
2-18-13 Penny (DF) Getting coffee $ 0.37
2-19-13 Dime (FF) Getting gas $ 0.47
2-21-13 Dime (FF) YMCA $ 0.57
2-23-13 Dime (FF) Grocery store $ 0.67
2-26-13 Penny (DOD) Gym $ 0.68
2-28-13 Penny (FF) Driveway $ 0.69
3-4-13 Penny (DOD) School $ 0.70
3-7-13 Two Pennies (DOD) School $ 0.72
3-9-13 Penny (DF) Running $ 0.73
3-10-13 Penny (DF) Coffee shop $ 0.74
3-13-13 Two Pennies, Quarter (DOD) ATL airport $ 1.01
3-14-13 Penny (DF) Walking $ 1.02
3-17-13 Quarter (DF) Lowe’s $ 1.27
3-26-13 Dime (Li’l D) Airplane floor $ 1.37
3-27-13 Penny (DF) Work $ 1.38
3-28-13 Quarter (DF) Union Station $ 1.63
3-29-13 Penny (DF) Gas station $ 1.64
3-29-13 Dime (DF & AW) Grocery store $ 1.74
3-30-13 Nickel, Three Pennies (DOD) Qdoba $ 1.82
3-30-13 Penny (DF) Wal-Mart $ 1.83
4-3-13 Penny (DF) Gas station $ 1.84
4-5-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 1.85
4-5-13 Nickel & Penny (DOD & DF) Bike Ride $ 1.91
4-7-13 Nickel (DF) Walking $ 1.96
4-7-13 Nickel, Penny (DF) Biking $ 2.02
4-7-13 Penny, Nickel (DF) Walking $ 2.08
4-9-13 Two Pennies (DF) Gas station $ 2.10
4-10-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.11
4-10-13 Dime (DF) Running $ 2.21
4-11-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.22
4-11-13 Dime (DOD) Work $ 2.32
4-12-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.33
4-13-13 Dime, Penny (DOD & DF) Walking $ 2.44
4-13-13 Penny (DF) Biking $ 2.45
4-17-13 Penny (DOD) Running $ 2.46
4-19-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.47
4-19-13 Penny (DF) Walking $ 2.48
4-20-13 Two Pennies (DOD & DF) Running $ 2.50
4-20-13 Penny (FF) Casino $ 2.51
4-21-13 Dime (DF) Running $ 2.61
4-22-13 Quarter, Three Pennies (DF & DOD) Qdoba $ 2.89
4-23-13 Nickel, Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.95
4-24-13 Two Pennies (DOD & Lil D) Qdoba $ 2.97
4-26-13 Penny (DOD) Work $ 2.98
4-27-13 Penny (FF) Grocery store $ 2.99
4-30-13 Two Pennies (DOD) Work $ 3.01
4-30-13 Penny (DOD) Running $ 3.02
5-1-13 Penny (DF) Work $ 3.03
5-1-13 Nickel, 22 Pennies!! (DF, DOD & KW) Running $ 3.30
5-1-13 Penny (HK) Wal-Mart $ 3.31

The Found Money Project

Several evenings ago, D.O.D. casually mentioned that she was having a good run of luck finding money. You see, it’s always been our ‘thing’ not to pass up free money. Even if we’re out for a run together and really hitting a good pace, we’ll slow down & backtrack to pick up loose change. After all… money is money.

Coins by Mary-Lynn

D.O.D.’s comment reminded me of Sister Olivia, a teacher & nun who lived in the convent not far from our high school. I would often see her walking home with her head down, seemingly searching for something. One day I asked her about this and she pulled a jar from her desk. It was filled with change and bills. “You kids don’t pay attention to your money” she said “so God gives it to me!”

Sister Olivia went on to explain that she found all the money in the jar just by paying attention when she walked back and forth from the high school to the convent. “Sometimes on a sunny Saturday, I’ll walk over to the school parking lot and find several dollars!” For many years on the Friday after Thanksgiving, she would take advantage of the holiday sales and use ‘God’s money’ to assemble gift packages. She would then distribute the gifts at nursing homes during the Christmas season. She smiled with pride as she told me “Last year I made 27 gift packets with money I found!”


So how much money can the average family find simply by paying attention? We intend to find out, and we’ll share the results here as the year goes on. Plus… to honor the spirit of Sister Olivia, we’re going to figure out some way to put the money to good use near the end of the year!

Date Amount Comments Total
2-04-13 Nickel (DOD) Walking next door $ 0.05
2-08-13 Penny (DOD) Getting gas $ 0.06
2-11-13 Dime (DOD) Running with KW $ 0.16
2-14-13 Dime (DOD) Walking to gym $ 0.26
2-16-13 Dime (DF) Alley, taking out trash $ 0.36
2-18-13 Penny (DF) Casey’s, getting coffee $ 0.37
2-19-13 Dime (FF) Casey’s, getting gas $ 0.47