As much as you try to avoid it, paying bills, managing your finances, and dealing with all the information (whether paper or digital) from banks, brokerages, and vendors is just a part of life. You can avoid it, but suffer the negative consequences of piles of papers, overloaded email inboxes, lack of knowledge of your financial status, and more. In addition, If one person in the family is handling all the finances and something happens to them (whether incapacity or death) it can be even more difficult for those who care about them to piece together and manage family finances. Add the complexity of accessing online banking and e-statements without a user name and password and the difficulties grow immensely. In order to avoid the hassles of financial information chaos, you’ll want to organize your financial information.
– Put together a multi-column spreadsheet and include the following: Bank/Institution/Vendor name, account number, website or contact number, username and password. Share the spreadsheet with your spouse, significant other, family member, or paid professional. All your information is now in one place and easy to access should something happen. Remember to password protect it and update it every so often as your information changes.
Grab ‘N Go Binder
– You can find many DIY Examples on Pinterest or online. Or purchase a ready-made kit like LifeInCase. Either way, you’ll have a great resource for yourself or your loved ones in case of emergency. Might be worthwhile to have a duplicate in another location. With the recent devastation due to the Northern California wildfires, a resource like this, located off-site, would be very handy in making a smoother transition to recovery.
– If you’re more techy and are okay with storing information in the cloud, an online solution ensures ultimate preservation. You can go with traditional cloud based document storage or a specialized service like Jazmine or Fidsafe. Again, you’ll need to let those you care about know where this information is located and how to access it.
Dealing with financial information is a part of life. Financial organization just makes it less stressful.