The following post is from Christina of Northern Cheapskate:
There is something about spring that just makes you want to clean out your closets, scrub the house and tackle the garage mess. But it’s also a great time of year to spring clean your finances, too.
Take an afternoon or two to do a little financial housekeeping, and you’ll make sure your finances are in tip-top shape for the summer!
Here are few areas to begin spring cleaning your finances:
Clean out your file cabinet.
Spring is a great time to go through your file cabinet and shred old documents you no longer need. Recycle all those manuals for products you don’t own any more. Figure out what you need to file, and then recycle or shred the rest. Make sure you know which important documents to save and how long to keep them.
Clean out your purse and wallet.
If you can’t close your wallet because the receipts are spilling out of it, it’s time for a thorough cleaning. Purge expired coupons, file old receipts, get rid of credit cards and loyalty cards you don’t use. Empty that pile of loose change out of the bottom of your purse. You’ll be able to find what you need and your purse will weigh less, too.
Automate your finances.
Set up an automatic savings deposit or have funds automatically transferred to a retirement account. Set up online bill pay with some of your recurring payments (like your utilities). You’ll save on envelopes, stamps and trips to the bank when you automate. And you’ll be happy that you don’t have to worry about paying bills when you’re on summer vacation!
Double check your tax withholding.
If you got a big tax refund this year, you should adjust your tax withholding. You can use the IRS tax withholding calculator to help you figure out the right amount. You’ll get less of a refund next year, but you’ll see more money in every paycheck – where it will be the most useful!
Assess your insurance coverage.
Don’t wait until something bad happens to discover you don’t have enough insurance. This is a good time of year to take a close look at your home or rental insurance, car insurance and life insurance policies, and make sure you have adequate coverage. You can compare rates to see if you can get a better deal, or raise your deductibles to lower your rates.
Set some financial goals.
Are you looking to pay down debt? Saving up for a family vacation? Sit down with your family and set some goals. When everyone is on the same page, it is much easier to reach those goals.
Give your finances a fresh start this spring by clearing out old paperwork, making some small tweaks, and setting some goals, and you’ll be on your way to a financially healthy summer.
What spring cleaning projects do you have to do for your finances?
|Christina Brown is the creator of Northern Cheapskate, a blog dedicated to frugal living through coupons, freebies, and money-saving ideas. She lives in the rural north woods of Minnesota where she clips coupons, pinches pennies, and chases her three boys (a 7-year-old and twin 5-year olds) as a stay-at-home mom.|