Newsletter – April 2017 – At a Glance – Receipts, Bills & Budget
At a Glance – Receipts, Bills & Budget
How are you going to prepare receipts, pay your bills on time and budget for 2017?
These tips will save you time, as well as a headache (or two) when April 15, 2017 rolls around.
1) Keep all receipts if you are a business owner.
2) Label each receipt or make notes about its business purpose.
3) Scan receipts and keep them at least six years. Or, take a picture with your smartphone and download it to your computer or cloud storage.
4) Keep a daily business journal, especially for mileage and other travel expenses.
5) Don’t rely on credit card statements and canceled checks; and stay away from cash.
On a weekly basis take all your receipts and place them in envelopes, folders or binders that are marked for each type of expense, such as ‘Office Equipment ,’ ‘Office Supplies’, ‘Education & Training,’ etc.
Heads Up: One thing about receipts. Those filing income taxes can take a standard deduction ($6,300 single; $9,300 head of household; $12,600 married or filing jointly). If you opt for the standard deduction, and are not in business for yourself, retaining all your receipts is not important. Find IRS Standard Deduction Information here.
1) Like junk mail, bills just keep piling up. But only toss the junk mail!
2) Set up a bill binder with pockets, or a folder on your computer just for bills. Create a bill payment schedule that lists the name of the payee and the due date, and place it on the outside or in the front of the binder. (You can also note bill payment dates/reminders on your electronic, desk or wall calendar). When a bill comes in, place it in front of the day (1 -31) that you will pay the bill to ensure it arrives on time.
- If you are paying electronically and your banking authority has to physically mail a check, set the date at least eight days earlier than it is due.
- You can set up automatic payments and check your bank balance three days prior to that due date to ensure proper funds are available.
- Best of all, work with your credit card company, lender, utility company, etc. and set up your bills to be paid around the 15th or near the end of the month. It’ll save you time on your bill paying.)
1) Either on paper or electronically, create a budget binder. On one side of the page place all your monthly bills, including credit card payments. On the other side, have spots for extras and savings.
2) If you live on a cash basis, create envelopes and, on each payday, put the appropriate amount of cash in designated envelopes. That way, at the end of the month, you will have enough money for that month’s bills. You can do this electronically by setting up different accounts within your banking system and then on payday making electronic transfers.
3) Search online before making a purchase to compare prices. That way, you’ll be able to spot a real bargain, and not just rely on those “Best Deal in Town” ads!
4) Set monthly savings goals one year at a time. If you are a business owner, remember, “Profit First.”