DEL FAMILY

How to Clean Up Your Financial House This Spring

When you think about “spring cleaning”, you probably think about getting rid of all that clutter in your closet, sweeping, dusting, and maybe holding a yard sale. While spring cleaning usually means getting your house clean and organized, it can also relate to your financial house as well. This spring, take some time to spring clean your finances so you can stay on track throughout the rest of the year.
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Get organized
There’s no way to have a firm grasp on your financial house if it’s all disorganized – papers here and papers there, important documents haphazardly shoved into drawers and boxes. You wouldn’t leave your closet full of junk during spring cleaning, so don’t leave your finances full of it either.
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The first step is to go through all of your paper documents and figure out what is important and what isn’t. Throw away bills and other documents you no longer need. All of your important documents should be stored in a simple-to-use filing system.
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Next, you should consider scanning your paper documents and creating digital backups. It helps to have your important documents available in both paper and paperless formats.
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Finally, you should go through your bills and determine which ones can be switched over to paperless. Most companies – from cable, internet, electric, gas, and even city water – offer paperless service. It’s much easier to know which paper documents are important when you don’t have a dozen useless paper bills coming through the mail slot every month.
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“Doing so quickly eliminates paperwork because you’ll no longer receive those bills in the mail, and it also guarantees you won’t forget to pay them … avoiding late payments also helps you improve your credit score over time,”notes US News & World Report.
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Reevaluate your budget
We’ll assume that you set up a household budget at some point. If not, that should be your first step. If you already have a budget, it’s highly likely that it needs some fine-tuning to account for new expenses and changes in income.
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Now is the time to take a look at everything – your student loans, credit card debt the cost of childcare, daily living expenses, etc. Look for ways to make cuts in bloated areas and focus on how you can budget more money for the paying down of debts and for savings.
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“Take a look at your current situation and your future goals and consider revamping your budget, tweaking your investments, ramping up retirement contributions, and adjusting your withholding,” suggests USA Today.

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If you’re having trouble budgeting enough money for savings, it may help to set up auto-deductions from your paycheck that will automatically go toward a savings account. Remember, without that emergency fund and nest egg for retirement savings, your financial house is standing on a shaky foundation.

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credit cards in wallet SMLXL
 
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Reduce the amount of plastic in your wallet
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If you’re like many Americans, your wallet may be bursting with different types of plastic. You may use multiple credit cards, or you may just use one or two but still have a half dozen sitting in the back reaches, gathering dust. Either way, it’s important to pare down your plastic reserves.
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If you have cards that have low balances that you barely ever use, pay them off and get rid of them. Reassess your interest rates on your existing cards and work on stocking your wallet with the best possible cards for your situation.
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“Once you have an accurate credit report, check the interest rates you pay on balances and compare the rates with other cards. You may be able to use that as leverage to improve your credit card terms,” notes Bankrate.com.
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In order to keep you and your family on track this year, it’s vital that you take some time this spring to clean out your financial house. Get organized, take a second look at your finances, and work to get your credit card debt under control. If you do those things, you’ll be well on your way to “cleaner living” this year.
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About the Author
Gloria started WomenLed.org to celebrate the advancements women have made and inspire women to become entrepreneurs and seek promotions in the workplace.

An award winning Blogger, Vlogger and Social Media Strategist. Podcast Host for AAU Global Production Media Group. Instructor of social media and blogging; Influencer and Brand Ambassador for several major companies.

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