6 Ways It Pays to Get Organized
Its hard to get organized or lose weight or do anything for that matter unless youre motivated. What if I told you that you could save hundreds of dollars a year by getting organized? Would that motivate you? Heck, what if you could actually make money by getting organized? Yes, it pays to get organized!
Never Again Pay a Late Fee.
Have you ever had to pay a late fee on a bill because you misplaced it? Join the club. Nearly a quarter of adults say they pay late fees because they cant find the bills.
The solution? Set up a simple bill paying system. As bills arrive, file them in a folder labeled Bills to Pay. If you get paperless statements, mark the due dates for each on your calendar. Or schedule to pay upcoming bills every time you get paid.
Use Gift Cards Before They Expire.
Have you ever discovered that your gift cards have expired before youve had a chance to use them? Almost $1 billion in gift card value wasnt spent in 2015, according to the latest data from the market research firm CEB. And some (not all) major credit card gift cards are charged a monthly fee if not used within a set time a fee that eats into your balance until theres nothing left!
The solution is to use gift cards right away. Dont put them in a drawer where youre likely to forget about them. Keep them in your wallet, so theyre handy for purchases. If you dont think youll use them, sell or trade them for gift cards you will use.
Plan Ahead and Eat Out Less.
Do you often eat out or order in because you dont have ingredients on hand to make dinner? It pays to get organized. Schedule time each week to plan meals and create a shopping list for the ingredients you need. Then rotate your familys favorite meals to cut down on your weekly planning time.
Another smart way to save time and money is to make large batches that you can portion out and freeze for future meals. And dont let food go to waste. If you have fresh ingredients that need to be used up, search for recipes using those ingredients at a recipe site like All Recipes. And be sure youre storing your food properly.
Dont Pay to Store Your Stuff.
Are you paying for storage of items that you arent using? According to AARP,Americanswill fork over $37.5 billion this year onstorage, at an average cost of about $90 a month.
Add up how much youre spending each month for off-site storage. Is it worth it? Imagine being able to put that money into your savings each month. Plus, if you decide to let it go of your storage unit, you can make some cash immediately by having a storage shed sale or selling items online.
Cancel Unused Subscriptions & Memberships.
Do you subscribe to magazines that arent getting read? Most people can keep up with no more than three subscriptions a month. If you arent regularly reading the ones you currently receive, cancel your subscription did you know that you can get a refund for the unused portion?
What other subscriptions or memberships are you not using? Most are renewed automatically. If youre not ready to cancel just yet, change the auto-renewal to a manual renewal so you can make that decision when the time comes.
Buy and Sell in the Secondhand Market.
I remember reading the results of an eBay survey stating that the average American household has $3,000 of re-saleable items in their home. Many people think its too hard to sell items so they continue to hold on to them as their value continues to go down.
Its actually quite easy to sell items online through Craigslist or through one of the smartphone apps like OfferUp or LetGo. All you need to do is set up an account, take photos of the items, describe them, and post them to find interested buyers in your local market. If you have gently used clothing purchased in the last 2-4 years, take it to a consignment shop or sell on Poshmark.
In addition to selling, consider buying from the secondhand market. I often find very high-quality items in excellent condition for a fraction of the original retail price. Seven years ago, we had an estate sale and put the money into a savings account. I vowed then and there that when we decide to trade our full-time travel life for a bricks-and-sticks home someday, I will not deplete my savings to buy new furnishings. Ill scour my local secondhand market. Like my parents used to say, money doesnt grow on trees!
Yes, indeed. It pays to get organized. Whats been your experience?