Financial Organization

Where are you keeping your financial records? Do you know where all of your financial paperwork is right now? How would you rate your bill management (is everything getting paid on time)?

Congratulations if all is in order, but the truth is that many people do need a little help in the area of financial organization.

Financial Management Styles

Everyone needs to have their own “office.” It may be a regular desk or it may be no more than a drawer somewhere. Any way you choose to do it, if you haven’t done it already, now is the time to get organized.

The important thing is not how you organize your finances. The important thing is to just do it. And do it in a timely fashion.


At one point in my life I worked with a man, in fact shared a secretary with him, whose organizational habits were quite different than mine. While my office at least looked well organized, his looked anything but. There were books and papers stacked two feet high all over.

But in truth, as long as our secretary didn’t try to “straighten” things out for him, he could find what he needed when he needed it. He would walk right over to a stack of papers, reach down and pull out whatever was needed.

Mind you, I am not recommending his methods. I am just saying that people are different and can effectively use different methods, they just cannot fail to have a method of some sort that works for them.

Choose Your Own Organization

With that in mind, I will not try to determine the method of organization you should use for your financial records. However, I don’t think I would recommend my friend's method to you. If your office looks messy it is probably just messy and you won’t be able to find anything.

Choose the financial organization that will work best for you in your circumstances and in view of your bill management and financial paperwork needs.

If you do a lot of your work on your computer, keep your other work close by. In most cases you will want to use file folders or something of the sort to keep records like bank statements in order.

There are only a few essentials. You need some way to arrange and store your basic records. You need a flat surface to work on—if not a desk, a table or at least a lap board. But you need to be able to write checks, balance your check book, etc., in a reasonable way. Usually you will want to use a calculator.

Think Positively About Organization

The primary reason for poor financial organization is negative thinking about organization in general. Don’t say you do not have time for organization. Proper organization saves time. It is simple and effective.

Ask yourself questions that are constructive, aimed at finding the easiest way to keep track of your information and keeping it accessible.

It is not significantly more difficult to put papers into separate file folders in their order than it is to throw them unsorted into a drawer.

Never say you are not good at organization. It is a matter of choice, a decision, not a difficult thing to learn.


Don’t set things up once and forget about them forever. Occasionally take stock of your organizational practices to see if some improvements might be in order. As you move from stage to stage in your financial life, organizational practices need change.

Think about your financial organization practices and take whatever steps you need to take now to get your paperwork in order so that bill management and financial record keeping are quick easy.

This isn’t hard, but unless you make it easy to access your records it is hard to get around to doing the necessary maintenance required to keep on top of your money.