Today I made, or “found” two websites where my family unclaimed state money tops $1,000. I enjoy finding passive income opportunities, but thought that I would try something different today and find some hidden treasures. My family is attending a camp this week and the theme is The Veggie Tales Pirates. The kids are having fun learning new songs and making crafts and I am spending some time relaxing with other parents and dreaming of treasures. I first learned of these websites from Madison at Penny Wise, Dollar Short. I also utilized my State of California unclaimed property website, where you simply enter a last name. In one minute, I found $1,100 that my grandparents had left in two banks. One was from an old insurance policy and the other from an old savings and loan. $1,100 is pretty nice for one minute of hunting for treasure.
Now, the difficult part will probably be submitting death certificates and the necessary information to the banks and State of California. I would imagine that they follow a tight due diligence process and make sure that the claims are legitimate.
Here’s a way to make this process a little more interesting, and possible profitable. Now, I’m not suggesting you charge 20-50%, as some of the unclaimed property companies will. You can look up friends or family members and help them locate unclaimed state money too. If you are married, look up your wife’s maiden name. At www.missingmoney.org you can also search through a national registry for lost money or unclaimed cash. If you have a common name like Smith, Anderson, Jones, or White, you will spend more than a few hours going through all the results. If you have a unique name, you could be done in one or two minutes. Instead of asking your family for a piece of the missing money, ask them to contribute to your children’s 529 college account. Or, maybe a date night and a dinner on the town for you and your spouse. Check out the websites and grab a beverage and a snack, and have fun finding the missing millions.