Organize Your Finances in 3 Easy Steps
Let’s be honest, no one really enjoys going through mountains of paperwork and deciphering what’s what, but the sense of accomplishment alone is enough to make you set aside a few hours to organize your retirement statements, health insurance paperwork and the rest of your financial statements.
Keeping your financial records organized has a number of other benefits besides reducing clutter. When you’re in a jam and need to access your last credit card statement or settle a medical bill quickly, having easy access to these documents can help you resolve the issue faster. Knowing where you stand can help you stay motivated to work toward your goals and correct weaknesses that may be holding you back financially.
So when it comes to organizing your finances, follow a few easy steps to get started.
1. Divide your paperwork by categories
Your financial paperwork relates to your overall well-being. This includes financial accounts, retirement earnings, insurance, property deeds, student loans and investments. In addition, you should also include personal documents you may need to access these accounts, such as your Social Security card, passport and birth certificate. Purchase a fire-proof safe or tiny file cabinet that can be locked and divide up your paperwork by these categories.
2. Are your accounts helping or hurting you
Now that you have organized access to all your accounts, sit down and determine how they are working for you. Are your health insurance premiums too high? Are you struggling to pay your credit card bills due to a high interest rate? Are losing more money than you’re gaining in your stock portfolio? Review the condition of all your accounts and start making calls to seek out other options if you find you’re paying too much or not receiving adequate services.
3. Make the necessary changes
If you find certain accounts are not working in your favor, don’t be afraid to contact your service providers and inquire into other options. For example, if you have made every credit card payment on time and are still paying a 25 percent interest rate, it’s time to contact your lender and negotiate. It can be intimidating to contact your insurance company because your premiums are too high and no one enjoys conversations with their student loan lenders, but there are a variety of options out there that may help you manage your payments and improve your financial standing. It’s important to take control of the reins when it comes to your future.