Did you know the first week of August is National Simplify Your Life Week? In honor of this weeklong celebration of ridding your life of pesky complications, we offer up these simple tips that will help you de-clutter your finances.
Clean Out Your Wallet
One of the easiest ways of organizing your financial life is to clean out your wallet! Studies have shown that clutter causes stress, so take this easy step toward financial sanity. When was the last time you cleaned out old receipts, IDs, credit cards and gift cards that hide in every nook and cranny of your wallet? Do yourself a favor today and determine what’s worth saving and what needs to be pitched.
Cut Back on the Cards
This is also a good time to put any credit cards with large balances on ice…literally! Put the card in water and store it in the freezer until the balance is in check. Or have someone you trust hide it in a safe place. Your wallet and your budget will thank you!
Automate Your Savings
When money is tight and temptations abound, don’t let savings fall to the wayside or occupy space on your to-do list. Make savings automatic by scheduling regular monthly transfers into your savings account or having a portion of each paycheck automatically entered into your savings or investment accounts. Your mind is free to focus on other to-dos, while your savings grow.
Assess Your Monthly Subscriptions
Chances are you have at least one monthly membership or subscription service automatically taking money from your account each month. Between gym memberships, online shopping subscriptions and streaming music or video services, these expenses can add up fast.
To get these monthly payments under control, gather all your monthly statements and identify all recurring monthly membership and subscription fees. Consider how much you are using and enjoying each of these services, and cancel any that no longer feel worth it. Be sure to check next month’s bank statements closely – sometimes cancellations can take a while to process and you don’t want to be charged after you’ve decided to quit.
Pay Bills Automatically or Immediately
If you’re one prone to missing bill payments or making payments late, simplify the process and set up automatic bill payments on key recurring expenses like rent, cable, internet and credit cards.
Not comfortable having your bills paid automatically without looking at it first? Commit to paying your bills as soon as they arrive in your inbox. Of course, paying bills as soon as they arrive is an easy way to ensure a simpler financial life as long as you have the available cash at that moment. Opening a bill, adding bill paying to your to-do list, and then hoping you remember to pay in time? That’s far from simple.
Rollover Your 401(k)
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average job tenure of US employees is 4.6 years, and that number is even lower for Millennials. Landing a new job is exciting, but don’t forget to move over your old 401(k) as part of the job move. Don’t worry if its been a while since you switched jobs, its never to late to transfer your 401(k). Check out our quick and handy refresher to 401(k) rollovers here.
Got other great financial simplification tips? Share them in the comments, or tweet them to @Mint.