Apr 26, 2008

Simplifying our finances

This post was inspired by Gather Little by Little's post on the same subject.

What's funny about it was to find out how similar we are in managing our finances. I'm in the IT industry myself and there is really something about analyzing a given scenario and thinking of simple ways to improve or solve something.

Here are the similarities GLBL guy and I share:
  • Online Bill Pay - This is the most common way of paying bills here in NZ. I don't set up automatic payments because it costs money, like $2 each set up, and also because I know when our bills are due. I take pride in paying off our bills all the time.
  • Debit Cards - We use a zero-fee-on-electronic-transactions EFTPOS card. It's easy to track our spending with this, and while I'm at it I also update our spreadsheet to reflect transactions as soon as they are made. I'm pretty good about doing this. I'm a maniac for organization!
  • Budget meetings - J and I talk regularly about our finances. I initiate the discussion because J is not about the nitty gritty of things, and mainly because he trusts me. :)
  • Don't receive paper statements - We stopped our checking accounts paper statements because that was an additional $3.50 per month. I wish we could do the same for our credit cards but I suppose that has its purpose. We recently found out that we could sign up for paperless bills for our electric bill as well. Awesome!
  • De-clutter - I guess you could say that when I started having strong interest in PF, it triggered the de-cluttering much needed in our lives. It was not because we lived a disorganized life but it just got us sorted, you know? Now I have a better idea of what we'll financially be in a week, a month, a year, and that is good. No second guessing, or hoping, or wishing.
What about you? What's your strategy for simplifying your finances?

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