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How to get financially organised
When I was asked to do this piece, I could not help but smile. I am passionate about organising things. No kidding! I cannot bear to see anything in my house in a mess.
Sure, I have learnt to tolerate other people's messiness and even ignore it. But when it comes to myself, I cut no slack.
Here are some tips to help you get organised with your financial paperwork.
Now, I understand that being financially organised may mean different things to different people. So, I will just show you how I put my stuff in order.
To being with, I have four huge files: Tax, Banking, Investments, Other documents.
As the name indicates, all the papers I have to hand over the income tax department find their way here.
All the pending and past stuff is clubbed together in this file. All my photocopied documents of previous years' filed returns will be here. Returns of 2003-'04 will be in one big envelope, returns of 2004-'05 will be in another big envelope. Every year's returns is put in one big envelope and filed here.
If I have claimed a refund, the correspondence will be kept here.
My salary statements too are kept here.
Since I deal with two banks, I have a file for each. I keep both files in this one. If you find this too much of a bother, just dump it all together.
Over here, I have all the details related to my savings account, internet banking and phone banking. My cheque books are kept here.
My monthly statements are kept here. However, I submit them every year for filing my returns. Once I do that, they go into one of the above envelopes.
All my correspondence with the banks too are kept here.
I also keep my credit card related information here. In a separate folder, you guessed right. But this is not much since I do not revolve on my card and pay all my bills on time.
This is by far my largest file. Over here, I have all the details regarding my online trading account.
It has all the details relating to my demat account and regular statements on the balance in my demat account.
The paperwork of all the bonds and company fixed deposits that I have invested in, my life insurance policy papers, my medical insurance papers, my Public Provident Fund passbook and my National Savings Certificate.
This is where I keep my marriage certificate, my birth certificate, school leaving certificate, and all other such related documents.
I also keep photocopies of my PAN card and passport here.
I do not have any loans, else I might have had a loan file. But my husband is servicing a home loan so he does keep such a file. This includes all the correspondence with the home loan company and a photocopy of all the documents lying with them.
And, yes, I have a file which has marked across it in huge letters 'TO DO'. Over here I keep all my current bills (newspaper, cell phone, society maintenance, electricity) that have to be paid. Or any urgent matter that has to be looked into.
Alright, I may sound really fastidious. But the truth is, being organised ensures I never lose anything. And if I really need it in a hurry, I get it easily.
Even if all the above was too much, maybe you can start with at least one file.
Go on, sooner or later you will have to.
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