Summer break is over and the kids are back in school. Believe it or not it’s already September and we are over halfway through 2018. As you get back into the habit of routine, Your NC Community Credit Union is here to give some guidance before the holiday chaos kicks in.This month we are bringing in the Financial Fall-Cleaning Checklist to help declutter and whip your financial household into shape. Here are some ways to tidy up your budgeting plan and organize your financial clutter:
Keeping up with your credit score.
Once a year you are entitled to a free credit report via annualcreditreport.com detailing your score from all three credit reporting bureaus ( Experian, TransUnion and Equifax). If you haven’t already claimed your credit report for the year, do so and store it on a flash drive or in a safe location. CreditKarma.com is also available for acquiring a free “look-a-like” score if you have already used your free credit report for the year. The goal is to know your score so you can make an effort to improve it, if necessary. If there are any errors on your report, make sure to file a dispute and hold on to any records that backup your claim.
Detach from old files.
If you’re the type that likes to hold on to old files for years, this one is for you. Take some time and go through all your files. Any bank statements, pay stubs, and bills that are over two years old can be thrown away. If your not sure about the importance of a file, start a digital folder on your computer and scan them in. This will help free up and declutter space in your home
Shred your way free.
Once you’ve figured out what files to get rid of, make sure you dispose of them properly. If you do not own a personal shredder, check around for free community shredding events, usually around tax season.
Going paperless can prevent the huge piles of bills and receipts you have to skim through later. Find out what bills can be sent to your email, opt for emailed receipts whenever possible, and set up a bill pay system with your financial institution. This will help eliminate the clutter later.
Updating the budget.
Last but not least, it is important to make sure your dollars are being used wisely. Write a list of all your monthly expenses and splurges on a piece of paper or if you’re all the way digital, open up your notepad app. Line by line see what you can adjust or remove completely. The goal is to come out with some savings. If you’re up for it, make some calls, see what expenses can be lowered. You may be surprised by newer services or the art of bundling.
For more information visit nccfcu.org or come see us on Ash Street.