Well, the sad fact about robots is to build them, you will need money...
But there are some tricks to getting some nice components from stuff around your house.
Take for instance your VCR: it has at least one motor with gear sets (good). An old printer that nobody's using anymore has a motor two, and if it has a scanner, you might be able to hack the laser scanner into a laser obstacle avoidance sensor. Check yard sales, and keep a sharp eye out for anything electronic. An RC car someone's seller would give you at least two 2 servos. Visit surplus stores in your area, like the Goodwill (although they sell mostly clothes I'd imagine, but I hear they do sell electronics). Visit Radio Shack! They've got tons of electronic components which might cost just a few cents each.
One other thing that's really important: Read! Make sure you know how to build a robot before you go buying parts for. Pick up a good book about about electronics (A good one I started was PIG electronics (PIG stands for "Practical is good"). Another great book I'll recommend to any beginning roboteer is "Robot Builder's Bonanza 3rd Edition" This is a book you must buy and read. It's not only a helper book for absolute beginners, its also entertaining to read.
Hope this helps. And remember, patience is a virtue. Robotics is not for the faint at heart.