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Here's a source of money you might not have realized that you had.

You probably have a couple hundred dollars lying around your house and don't even know it. No, I'm not talking about some secret stash the previous owners might have hidden under the floorboards or a buried treasure in the backyard. I'm talking about unused gift cards.

"The average household has about $300 in unspent gift cards in their house," says Gary Briggs, chief executive of Plastic Jungle, a Web site that lets you buy, sell, exchange or donate gift cards. With sites such as Plastic Jungle, and Gift Card Granny you can turn those cards into cash. "Consumers don't realize they have as much money in their sock drawers as they do," Briggs says.

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Cameron Huddleston
Former Online Editor,

Award-winning journalist, speaker, family finance expert, and author of Mom and Dad, We Need to Talk.

Cameron Huddleston wrote the daily "Kip Tips" column for She joined Kiplinger in 2001 after graduating from American University with an MA in economic journalism.