Motivation 2010 – Organizing Business or Household receipts

It is tax season again and if you are one of the many cursing your lack of organization over the past year, then this is your post.

Here is a quick and easy process for organizing your receipts.

  1.  Have two credit cards.  Once for business and one for personal expenses.
  2. Carry an envelope or sleeve with you for collecting receipts (or use your wallet).
  3. When you arrive home or to the office, empty your envelope, wallet or sleeve of receipts and clip them to a clipboard by your desk.  One clipboard for personal expenses and one clipboard for business expenses.
  4. When you receive your bank statement, match each receipt to the statement and then staple everything together and file.

Done.

At the end of the year if you need to produce a receipt for your expenses to your accountant, (or Uncle Sam) you’ll have them all filed by month. 

Here are some important notes that are necessary to make this process successful;

  • You must save your receipts and then frequently clip them to your clipboard.
  • You’ll need to set aside time to reconcile your receipts to your statement.
  • This process works best with a limited number of credit cards.  I really believe that it is not necessary to have multiple cards.  One for business and one for personal will work for most situations.  It is less paperwork, fewer due dates, cleaner reconciliation.

I take one more step after this and send my reconciled paperwork to a scanning service.  I then have everything in an electronic format with no excess papers.

Questions?  Comments?  Let’s get started!

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