Now more than ever it is important to practice fearless money management.
With the New Year just around the corner most of us want to start 2022 off right.
Here are 12 tips to get organised and take back control of your finances.
1. Declutter your wallet
Once a week clean out your wallet and handbag. Spend a few minutes sorting through receipts, paper and general rubbish. Store what you want to keep and ditch the rest.
Carry a minimal amount in your wallet not too much cash…a minimum of $100 is enough for an emergency, but not too much if your wallet gets lost or stolen.
2. Cull the Credit Cards
Don’t carry too many credit cards. Most of us only need two – one primary credit card linked to our own money and a backup.
If you have additional cards make sure they are at home stored in a safe place.
3. Ground the Gift Cards
You wouldn’t leave a bunch of cash laying around the house so be sure to store your gift card in a safe place.
Gift cards are like cash, unless you are going shopping with a specific purpose, they don’t need to be in your wallet so leave them at home… once they are lost or stolen they are gone for good.
4. Copy the Cards
It is a good idea to take photocopies of your Driver’s Licence, Medicare Card, ATM & Credit Cards and store them away ‘just in case’.
In the even that your wallet is lost or stolen you will still be able to prove who you are and re-order necessary replacements.
5. Carry your License
It’s the only ID you really need unless you are applying for a loan.
Any documents with sensitive info, like your Social Security, passport or birth certificates should be kept in a safe place at home, or secure in a bank safe.
If you don’t carry a wallet you can view your license on your mySAGOV app.
6. Store your receipts
If you don’t want a bunch of paperwork lying around around your home office but need to keep your receipts in order, check out the Shoeboxed app it’s a great app for storing receipts.
Shoeboxed is one of many receipt-scanning apps online.
7. Firm up finances
It’s important to check your purchases against your monthly credit card/bank statements to make sure that you are living within your budget and to ensure that there are no strange purchases that you haven’t made.
8. Shred it Sista!
Invest in a paper shredder from Officeworks.
Instead of throwing receipts or personal documents out in the recycle bin, spend some time once week shredding all identifying paperwork, especially anything with personal information which includes bank details, credit card numbers, address and birthdate.
Don’t make it easy for your rubbish to be targeted by identity thieves.
9. Opt Out
Most pre-approved credit card offers aren’t a safety risk, but they can land you in hot water especially at this time of the year.
Opt out and shred the paperwork as soon as possible it’s a really easy way to get into financial ruin.
10. Tax Time
If you pay an accountant to lodge your yearly return its important to be organised at tax time.
It is a legal requirement to keep all relevant tax information together for five years from the date you lodged your tax return so keep it all together in a filing cabinet or archive box clearly marked with the year.
11. Go paperless.
Going paperless is a great idea for less clutter BUT it’s easy to miss electronic bills in an overcrowded inbox, so set up a separate email account for all your electronic bills….and you will never forget to pay a bill.
12. Set and forget.
In order to stick to your budget and live within your means it is important to spend 15 minutes once a month to schedule reminders on your phone or block out time in your diary to:
review bank and credit card statements on a monthly basis.
pay your bills as they are due
work out a monthly budget for entertainment, food and general expenses
revisit and update your annual budget twice a year