Sort through your receipts by date.

Before you enter them into your accounting or bookkeeping program or app or your spreadsheet, I would suggest that you sort through your receipts by date.  When I was going to enter three years of receipts, I sorted them by years before sorting them by months.  When I got behind again and had several months of receipts to sort through, I sorted by months and then by accounts (bank or credit card).

You may be asking a question:  Why do I sort receipts before I shred the ones before the cut-off date?  Sorting them beforehand will make locating and filing the receipts you need and shredding easier, at least in my opinion.

DISCLAIMER:  We’ll start shredding soon.  I will link you to A pack rat’s guide to shredding on the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Consumer Information pages in the meantime.  I would also like to point out that I do not classify as receipts any of the following:  pay stubs, receipts for home improvements, bank statements, credit card statements, utilities bills, and particularly anything to do with any kind of taxes including canceled checks or receipts from federal, state, or local taxing authorities, even if these are receipts.  We will organize all of these later!   If you’re wondering whether you should shred something, call your attorney or accountant.  I am neither.

Time required:  Hours, for me, for three years of receipts.


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