6 reasons spring cleaning can save you money.

Last month several dozen personal finance bloggers collaborated in a Valentine-themed giveaway sponsored by Rather-Be-Shopping.com, a site specializing in online coupon codes. The contest generated so much response  that site founder Kyle James decided to do it again.

This time the theme is “spring and saving money.” The prize remains the same: $500 cash via PayPal.

Enter via the Rafflecopter widget at the end of this post. The deadline is March 31. You have the option of multiple entries if you’re willing to subscribe to the other bloggers and/or follow them on social media.

The $500 prize could be used toward a discount getaway (hint: search for travel discount coupons at Rather-Be-Shopping), a rapid debt repayment plan or to build/bolster an emergency fund. Or just to buy cleaning supplies – come on, haven’t you always wanted your own carpet steamer?

Incidentally: If you enter, check your doggoned e-mail! The first winner of the previous contest did not respond within the 48-hour time frame and kissed $500 cash goodbye.

Financial reasons for a clean-up

1. Dirt is unhealthy. Just ask anybody with asthma or a dust mite allergy, or someone who’s sensitive to mold/mildew. Poor air quality can trigger more sick days and/or more use of rescue inhalers and allergy meds. Ideally you’d vacuum/sweep and dust regularly all year round. If you fell behind this winter, now’s the time to catch up. This is particularly true if you live in a place where they put gravel on icy roads – a whole lot of dust is being tracked in. Cleaning = a breath of fresh air.

2. Clutter can camouflage. Where’s the iPod charger? Your transit pass? Those documents you need to file your taxes? They could be anywhere – and if you give up searching because you’re in a hurry, the replacements are going to cost you. Cleaning = rediscovery.

3. Messes mess with your head. Ever look around your dump of a domicile and get so depressed that you go out? Or have you avoided coming home because the place is dingy and smells like really old laundry? Being away from home usually means spending money, unless you have really understanding friends who let you hang out night after night. More to the point: Why are you paying rent/a mortgage on a place you can’t stand to be in? Cleaning = serenity.

4. Hostess with the most mess? If your friends seem to resist coming over for game night or movie night, it’s probably because they don’t like that really-old-laundry scent but are too embarrassed to say so. Revamp your crib and start hosting inexpensive entertainments once more. Cleaning = frugal fraternization.

5. Money may be lurking. Ever find coins under the couch cushions, or crumpled bills in the pockets of clothes you finally got around to washing/dry-cleaning? No? Well, start looking! Cleaning = treasure hunt.

6. Dump junk, earn bucks. Stuff you no longer use – college textbooks, the designer purse that you stopped caring about once you finally got it – could garner some money via a consignment store, eBay or Craigslist. Put it out there! I earned $1,200 (yes, twelve hundred dollars) a little plastic statue of a baseball player that I got as part of the community property split. Hope you’re that lucky. Cleaning = extra cash.

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  1. Wow, who knew Bob Feller would be worth so much dinero!

    Great tips, thanks for participating again Donna.

  2. Sandra Gonzales

    Crossing my fingers. Thanks Donna!

  3. Keeping my place clean and clutter free also does wonders for my morale.

  4. I’m all about de-cluttering when you can sell the junk to make some extra money. I’ve been doing that for the last few months and need to step it up a bit now that spring is here.

  5. I’ve started the great Spring Clean-out. Just a little bit at a time, but boy, does it start to show results quickly!!

    And on a side note, I own a carpet steamer. I HIGHLY recommend it – I thought I was going to have to replace the carpets before I moved into my townhome, but decided to try cleaning them first. What a huge money saver!!

    • Donna Freedman

      We have wood floors, but I’ve heard that carpet steamers are great to have.
      Frugal gift idea: Offer to steam-clean a room or two of your relative’s/friend’s choosing.

      • Heather Hickey

        I share a carpet cleaner with my mom and sister. We each take turns using it. We usually exchange after meeting for lunch, dinner or the holidays.

  6. Great points Donna. I intend to tidy my files and file a tax rebate over my Easter holidays(where are all of those papers and receipts?). I also have to make a claim for work related expenses(more forms and receipts in drawers).I will also tidy my kitchen cupboards, pantry and freezer and use up all those forgotten packets and tins lurking at the back. Great to see you so productive respecting your posts these days. I love each and every one. I have had some unexpected expenses recently(huge car repair amd medical expenses for my son). Thanks to your thrifty tips and adopting the frugal lifestyle you endorse, I had more than enough money in my emergency fund to cover these. What a difference from a couple of years ago when I would have gone scrambling for the credit card to pay for these things.

    • Donna Freedman

      Thanks for your kind words. It’s nice to know that my words have had an impact. Remember, though, that I only made the suggestions — you did all the work.

  7. Katherine

    We’ve been doing renos at the house and it’s been the perfect time to de-clutter. Just by keeping a running total of how much we either throw away, give away, reuse or donate has been astounding. We are currently up to over 600 items. Do we really need those extra 20 plastic adverstising tumblers in the cabinet? No. Do we really need the plastic ware with no lids or bowls? No. Do we really need 4 printers in the house? No. Our house looks better, we feel better and we’ve been able to help others. It’s a winning situation all around.

    We call it “ap-cray”. With essentially 4 adults in the house, personally, we have too much. By lightening the load, we have less to keep up with, maintain and clean. Making money may be some people’s incentive to clean, the peace of mind and satisfaction of a clean house with less clutter is priceless!

    Stay frugal, my friends.

  8. We would put the money towards our Alaska trip fund!

  9. Bethany

    We’d pay extra on one of our student loans. By working hard we’ve paid off one loan early, the smallest, but we still have two larger ones to go. We might actually be able to have the second loan paid off by next Christmas if we scrimp really hard! Ok, ok, we’d also set aside a little of it for a special date night; gotta live now too, right?

  10. honestly i’m just cleaning because my roommates and i all tend to get sick at the same time, and a clean house might help curb that, lol.

  11. I’d pay on our credit card balances.

  12. Honestly, I’ve had my eye on some easy-to-set-up storage shelving for my back room. Everything is in a bit of disarray now, and I would so love to get my stuff organized and on shelving where everyone can find what they need when they need it!

  13. I would put the $ in my emergency fund!

  14. vickie Jean

    It always help to do a good job spring cleaning when you have out of town company coming…. they just figure I always keep my house tidy. It’s just wrapping the Spring part around in your brain when there is snow outside.

  15. Gayle Erwin

    I have a bag at the door. It’s the “to go to GoodWill” bag. It makes it easy as I find things to have a place for them. Then when it’s full I drop it off. Easy.

  16. Gayle Erwin

    If I won the money I would buy myself a new window with it. I would love a energy efficiet one.

  17. alexandra martinez

    I’m unemployed and broke, could sure use this money!

  18. Wow, I could use that money to have an awesome spring garden….and pay a few bills.

  19. I can’t figure out how to comment on the Rafflecopter, but I would use the money to help buy a new camera for work.

  20. Beverley

    Hi Donna!

    Thanks for the opportunity. I would use the money to make an extra car payment.


  21. Jeannette

    Winning this would allow me to pay for college application fees for my daughter, at least a few anyway. Love all the advice that I receive from you!

  22. $500, $500, $500 …. A new camera!

  23. machele clark

    Spring cleaning is fun.

  24. Hi, Donna! I’m all about cleaning up, although that doesn’t mean I’m always very good about it. One of my projects this spring is organizing my massive book inventory. I love books so much and hoard them like crazy, but more than once I’ve found myself buying a book and then later finding that I already had that in my personal library. Argh! I think I have multiple copies of at least a dozen or so books.

    Thanks for the opportunity to participate!


  25. I would use the money pay off debt.

  26. I would get caught up on bills big time and buy some new clothes as I am losing weight.

  27. Debra K

    I’d put that $500 toward our debt repayment. We’re working hard on becoming debt free!

  28. Use it on our family vacation this year

  29. Heather Hickey

    Yes indeedy my pocket is needy

  30. groceries for 2 months!

  31. I would use the money to get some new spring clothes

  32. Such a timely post for me, as I just spent part of the last two days in deep spring cleaning. Windows were washed inside and out, baseboards vacuumed, items posted on ebay. And I hadn’t even read all your excellent reasons for doing it yet!
    The $500 would go a long way toward an upcoming surgery.

  33. Buy tools! I own a small home based business and really need a few hand tools to be more productive. Thank you for the opportunity!

  34. I would use that money for groceries.

  35. As always, great article!

  36. I could use the $ for a camping trip late spring. Thanks for the opportunity.

  37. I’d probably blow it all on lattes. They make good lattes here.

  38. Would use it to replenish my savings — I just moved and had to use a lot of them.

  39. I would use the money to help make tuition payments for both of my daughters who are in college.

  40. Eric the K

    I’d use the $ for a Roth IRA contribution

  41. This would be a great prize to help pay off debt!

  42. Mary Happymommy

    I would use it towards new carpeting.

  43. Terri Stinnett

    The money would really come in handy at this time. I love spring cleaning! It makes everything so fresh.

  44. I’m helping my dad move right now. 60 years worth of stuff. Mom had 5 sets of dishes and one of the sets had 22 cups and saucers!

    I would use any money I won, not to buy stuff (ever again!!) but to take a trip to see my grand kids and do some fun things with them. Experiences – not stuff!

    • Donna Freedman

      22 cups…must have been from the days when ladies staged formal teas.

  45. Alexandra Martinez

    i would pay some bills!

  46. I’d probably use the money for traveling.

  47. Plants for the Spring!

  48. Perfect timing for this article… I got started and then stopped. Need to get back on track and any money won would be used to pay off debt!

  49. Thanks for publicizing the giveaway. Would use for one month of groceries, student loans, and a health insurance premium (have an individual policy so pay the whole thing myself). Thanks!

  50. cadence

    going to photograph some stuff and put it up for sale on craigslist

  51. Pay bills with the 500, unemployed after working 20 plus years.

  52. Sheryl Pattillo

    I would use the money with my family to visit museums and stuff like that.

  53. Pay off my last credit card with a balance!

  54. Vero A.

    LOVE your giveaways, and I could really us this one!

  55. Barbara

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  56. Christine

    I would use it toward debt.

  57. Christine

    I would put it toward my credit card balance

  58. Jessica

    I would pay down my student loans.

  59. Adrianna

    Would pay off my student debt! Oh yah!

  60. Kristan

    Wish I could say I would do something amazingly fun with the $500 cash like take my husband out to Alyeska for the weekend (we haven’t been on a date since my son was released from the NICU). Or that I would treat myself to a well deserved spa day (my husband’s been gone for 6 weeks and my son has done two stints in the hospital). But truth be told, we’d put the money towards debt. Boring now, fun later.

  61. Kathryn V.

    I must be slightly OCD because I love, love, LOVE having a clean house. Ha!

    • Donna Freedman

      Oh, I love having a clean house. I just don’t always feel like cleaning.

  62. Wow… definitely crossing my fingers for this one!

  63. Barb in Phx

    I would use it to spruce up the yard and patio. That’s spring cleaning, too–right?

  64. Spring cleaning my house spring cleans my mind too! I just went through my kitchen 2 weeks ago and cleared out gadgets and cookware I no longer use. Sold it all and made $170.
    By the way, if I’m lucky and win the $500, I’m putting it toward my daughter’s wedding.

  65. I’d put the money toward my mortgage, one step closer to debt free.

  66. I would take a much needed vacation to anywhere. I was diagnosed with cancer last July, so I’ve had no vacation time and too much hospital time.

    • Donna Freedman

      I’m sorry to hear of your illness, and wish you healing.

  67. Vernetta T. Mitchell

    The most important reason is spring cleaning (other than the obvious) makes cents :
    Less dust easier for systems (AC) to work efficiently
    Less dust and fewer visitis to doctor for hayfever/allegies
    Less dust animals have fewer reaction (sneezes)
    Less dust, just keep better in clean surroundings!


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