It’s springtime! As you enjoy the flowers blooming, the longer hours of sunshine, and warmer temperatures, it’s also time for some spring cleaning. And while you’re cleaning your home, don’t forget to give your finances a once over too!
Traditionally this is the appropriate time to clean out and reorganize your living space. But it’s also the best time to ensure you are setting yourself up for financial success. Here are some tips for cleaning up your financial house!
The first step in this project is to set a reasonable goal. The old saying “How do you eat an elephant?” “One bite at a time.” comes to mind. Practical and attainable goals will help you stay on track and not quit before finishing.
Cleaning off a desk, table, or office area of bills and financial papers.
Sorting through one or two boxes of papers or file cabinet drawers.
Filing essential papers in a file cabinet or box.
Making electronic copies of important documents.
Let’s break it down even more.
Once you’ve made your goal, make sure you keep the following:
Copies of your tax returns plus copies of supporting tax documents and receipts that correspond to those tax returns if you are ever audited.
Any documents that can support an insurance claim, be it home, rental, or auto. Hang onto any records that you might need to document a claim later.
What to throw out or shred:
Things like old newspapers and manuals for things you no longer own are prime to be tossed. Make sure you shred anything on these items that contain personal or sensitive information. These items can include bank statements, canceled checks, bills, receipts.
Throw away papers that you have stored electronically. Make sure you have proper backups with a separate hard drive or cloud storage.
Cut down on the number of papers you handle by setting up receiving your monthly bills electronically and making automatic payments.
Another important thing to do is to update your home or renter’s insurance inventory. Using your smartphone, take pictures of your possessions or take a video of these items as you describe them and their value. Scan your receipts for these items and store them electronically altogether.
Now that you’ve conquered the paper piles let’s take a look at your overall finances. If you are struggling with debt or student loan repayments and need help, call our office today for a free consultation. We’ve helped many clients gain financial freedom and breathe easier! Our dedicated and knowledgeable staff will carefully examine your situation to tell you if bankruptcy or student loan modification is the thing to help you with your financial spring cleaning!