A very large number of our clients struggle with paperwork and mail. Many of them end up with a dozen or so boxes of mail that they’ve never even opened. Paper piles and paper management is one of my ultimate favorite things to organize and to help coach people on.
A big part of why I love it is that we almost always find money in the paper piles either in check form, cash, gift cards or overpaid bills. I also love teaching people that most of the time, the paperwork they’re holding on to for dear life doesn’t have any value and can go away. I love seeing the light bulb go on for people during this process and I love finding money for them!
One of the things that I’ve seen over and over again since starting this business almost 5 years ago, is that although people tend to keep tons of paperwork, they generally don’t really look over it, checking for discrepancies. And they normally don’t reconcile their bank statements, checkbooks and credit card statements.
Because I always find little errors here or there when I reconcile my statements, I realize how much money people are losing by not doing it. They may be paying bounced check fees, overdraft fees, etc. I also realize how much money Corporate America is making off of the people that don’t check their statements.
Just this week I experienced another BIG REASON to reconcile your bank statements, checkbooks and credit card statements. While reconciling my company credit card statement this month, there was an almost $200 charge for a steakhouse in Texas. I live in St Louis! It seems that someone got a hold of my credit card information, created a duplicate card and were running up charges on my account!
It’s all been taken care of through my credit card company now and the charges have been removed BUT this is just another reminder to me of the importance of encouraging people to take the 15-20 minutes it takes to reconcile your statements each month. It can cost you time, money and energy if you don’t. What’s keeping you from doing it?