Monday, January 18, 2010

Money Monday - Back to Basics Part 1 - Organize A Space

Well, we’re on pace to save $300 less than I was hoping to save this month. If I can curb the medical spending maybe we can do a little better.

Since it’s the start of the new year, I just want to encourage you all to take some baby steps to get your finances in order. Only you know which areas need some organization. Over the next few weeks we'll talk about a few basic things to get you started on a healthy financial path without overwhelming you.

Today's first step is to clean up and organize a "bill space."

Maybe it's on your desk at home, or on a table when you walk in the door. I have two cheap-o black trays on my desk that say "needs paid" and "need filed." When I get the mail, I open up the bills, stick them inside the mailing envelope inside and stick it in the "needs paid" tray. I then toss the original envelope and inserts to eliminate clutter. These trays get messy and full quickly, but I know where to go when it's time to pay bills. I have a third try that has Hannah's school stuff in it.

Also in that space, have a drawer that has your checkbook, a calculator, deposit slips, stamps etc. I keep much of this stuff in an old makeup bag so I can grab it and go if I need it.

We also have our file cabinet right next to the desk where I file...well everything. I do try to go through them every so often so things don't get out of control. It's one of the most clutter-prone areas of the house, but things rarely get lost and bills aren't late or missing.

It's a small thing. Go clear a space and organize your bill area. You'll be glad to have a nice place to get your finances in order!

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