Good money habits are essential if you want to become debt free AND stay debt free.
When I was struggling financially, staring down at an enormous amount of debt, I can honestly say I had really, terrible money habits.
I never opened my bank statements and didn’t even know how to balance my checkbook. I paid my bills in a random, chaotic fashion with little regard to when they were actually due. And, to make matters worse, I often couldn’t even find my bills, (hence why I didn’t pay them with any regularity).
It was a mess.
A funny thing happened – when I started to get organized, my financial situation began to improve.
It was a miracle! Well, not really because as you’re about to learn, good money habits have everything to do with reducing chaos and disorganization and replacing it with systems that ensure your money is paid the attention it deserves.
Being disorganized, almost without exception, goes hand in hand with bad money habits. When you’re disorganized it’s hard to find things. Bills and notices typically get lost in the clutter.
If you’re finding yourself looking all over your home, office or car for bills, then this one simple strategy is going to help.
Carve out some time and search high and low for all your bills. Search the house, under the sofa, in your car – where ever you think you might have left your bills.
Once you have them gathered up, I want you to put them in a folder and mark the outside of the envelope with the word “BILLS.” Put the folder somewhere it won’t get lost and is readily seen by all members of your household who would be looking for or paying bills.
Every time a bill comes into your home you’re going to put it into that folder marked “BILLS”. Simple, easy, and if you are consistent (and I know you will be!) your bills will always be in one place.
You can have fun and be super creative with this first habit. You can creatively decorate the folder, or you can create another type of storage system for your bills. Maybe an “inbox” is more to your liking or a vertical file folder.
Whatever you decide, remember the main point is to put all bills that come into your home in the same spot each and every time. Do this consistently and you’ll never search for bills again.
**If you’re paying your bills via online banking and all or some of your bills are delivered electronically, you’ll want to make sure you get email notification when a bill arrives. Use the above method for those bills that are still delivered via snail mail.
**For those bill reminders coming via electronic mail, set up a special folder, so all reminders land in one place. Once the bills have been filed you can either delete tits contents or save them – your choice.