Getting your home organized means more than having a calm, peaceful, clutter-free environment. Did you know being organized can actually save you money? It’s true! Here are five ways being organized can keep more money in your wallet.
1. Organize Your Clothes Closet and Pantry So Things Are Categorized and Visible
Have you ever had the experience some of my clients relate to me – going shopping, coming home to unpack your purchases, and discovering you already have two of the same item in your closet or pantry?
2. Set Up a Gift Closet
Buying gifts ahead of time, when they are on sale, both reduces your gift giving expenditures and also saves you time – no last minute running to the mall. But, only if you have a designated cabinet, shelf or closet in your home that only houses gifts to be given. If you can’t find the gift when the holiday, birthday, or occasion rolls around, you’ll actually spend more money, paying for the gift twice. You may want to post a note on the cabinet door that indicates the contents inside as well as the intended recipient. Putting a note on your calendar or phone on the event date, reminding you about your gift purchase, also ensures the gift will get given.
3. Set Up a System For Bill Paying
If you have an organized system, you won’t incur late fees and penalties. Designate a single holding place for bills to be paid: perhaps a file folder near your computer if you pay bills electronically, or a designated drawer or box near your checkbook, envelopes, and stamps if you manually write checks. Also, put a repeating event on your calendar to remind you to pay your bills; you may want to link the outflow of expenses to the inflow of your paycheck.
4. Know When Your Important Documents Expire and Record Those Dates In Your Calendar or Tickler System
Recently, several clients had to pay hefty fees to expedite a passport renewal to be sure they had a current passport in time for vacation. Another client recently incurred major fees when she was pulled over for a driving infraction and produced an expired driver’s license. Make a notation in your calendar/tickler well in advance of the expiration date so you have time to process the necessary paperwork.
5. Create a System for Keeping Track of Deductible Expenses, Charitable Donations, and Out of Pocket Medical Expenses
Essentially, you want to create a way to keep track of all your deductions to be sure they are captured on your tax return. Recently, while organizing paperwork for several clients, I came across deductions from 2011, 2013, and 2014 that had never been included on their tax forms for those years. Without an organized system to corral these expenses, you may be leaving money on the table.
These are just a few examples of how organizing your home and creating systems can save you money. If you need help implementing these, please give me a call at 973-334-3477.