Time To Spring Clean Your Finances
Here are a few budgeting hacks that could refresh your outlook on your financial status and help you get organized -
Declutter your financial accounts. If you have piles of unopened credit card offers, receipts and bank statements, it's time to sort through them all. Examine which documents are important and file them away. Then, shred and recycle old papers, such as paid bills, old bank statements and tax documents more than 7 years old. Pro tip: to avoid this clutter in the future, opt to go paperless with all of your accounts.
Check on your financial standing. Take stock of your open accounts, including loans, credit cards, and your credit report. Pay special attention to your credit score and debt-to-income ratio, as these matter most when applying for loans, apartment applications, leasing a car, or other big financial situations.
Make this a time for saving. Instead of occasionally adding money into your savings account when you have extra cash, consider setting a specific savings goal and scheduling automatic transfers from your checking to your savings each payday or month. There are lots of financial apps that you can use to help keep you honest and on track.
Streamline your spending. Take a look at your purchases over the course of a month or two and look for areas where you can eliminate unnecessary spending.
Opt for a slimmer wallet. Toss receipts from small purchases and remove cards you don't reach for on a regular basis, such as rewards cards and insurance cards like dental and vision. Also consider designating purchases to specific cards that offer rewards. For example, make your meal-prep purchases on a credit card that offers cash-back rewards on grocery store purchases.