Talking about tax season in January may seem a bit early, but there’s never a better time to start organizing your receipts so next year’s tax season goes easier than this year’s.
Here are some simple tips to keep yourself organized whether you have a business of your own, or you just want things to go easier when April 15th rolls around. You will save more than your sanity, you may save some money
1) Get a shredder – put this near your mail station so you can get rid of what you don’t need. 50-60% of what you receive you probably don’t need, this will keep your space clean.
2) Get a pretty box/holder for receipts or download a Receipt Scanner App – every time you get a receipt, write down who you were with, and what it was for. Place it in the box. At the end of the month, staple all the receipts together and put them in a folder or envelope. This will make sure you don’t lose a receipt if something needs to be returned, you’ll always know where it is.
If you’d rather not deal with all the paper, download a receipt scanner app. Some are free or just cost a few bucks. You can scan the receipt with your phone and it helps you organize into categories.
3) Keep a diary in the car – if you have your own business, getting in the habit of writing down the mileage before you leave the car is an easy way to ensure you don’t forget. If you don’t have a business, consider writing down all the things you normally don’t get a receipt for. Seeing how much you’re spending on the little things, like $3 a day on a cup of coffee may make you think twice and save a little money.
When your taxes come back, put them in a folder that holds all your prior returns so you can easily find them.
Voila! You’re all ready for tax season… next year!