Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Sorting the Bills

I have made it a routine to sort and pay the bills either by cheque or loading them on-line on a Tuesday. The main income is paid in on a Wednesday night so I can start posting etc on a Wednesday with everything sorted the day before.
I have spent about one and a half hours today sorting a large box of papers. For a month or so things have been so busy with a wedding and just getting over it all and demands, that all the mail seemed to get chucked in this box. You know, magazines, flyers, bills, statements, receipts, newsletters and things to be read or filed. It was getting so bad I was almost too scared to look in it in case there were over dues or something.

I have never been this bad with sorting and paying bills and being on top of the paper work.
It tends to fall on me to look after all "office work" so I knew there was no sense in asking anyone else to help.

I am so thankful I had a system in place before I started.
After sorting everything into piles (and thankfully nothing was behind!!)I was able to get through everything except some of the reading.
I have ring files for statements and after I have checked it all out I filed some receipts (in case you need to return something) in a file. The rest got biffed.
I file away tax papers in a tax folder.
Main item receipts eg rates, insurances, registrations and annual subscriptions are kept in a clear file and replaced each time they are paid.

For the weekly paying of bills and other smaller things I like to refer too, (donation envelopes, buisness letters and such) I have a box the size of a shoe box. Bills etc are all put together in a rubber band and kept in the box along with a little bag I call my "mobile office". This contains all the things needed to write letters, bills and post etc so I don't have to go hunting around the house for stationary, that maybe being borrowed on a long term basis by other members of our house!!! The bag is a plastic bag that pillowslips came in and it has a zip but you could use a pencil case or what ever.

My Mobile Office

Note paper
Note pads
Address labels
Glue stick
Rubber bands
Paper clips
Stapler with spare staples

The whole issue of being on time for bills etc is very important for us as we run a tight budget with main bills sorted to be paid at particular times through out the year, so in my mind I knew what was due but didn't like being behind. It felt so good to finish it all and not have the stress of not knowing what was overdue. With the system already in place it actually didn't take quite as long as I had thought.

Putting some kind of system in place over a period of time makes the process of getting a job done much calmer. It becomes a routine and a lot less like a chore.

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