In the best of times, things can get hectic in a hurry. And the last few months haven’t exactly been the best of times. Which makes it that much more important to simplify your financial life.
The first week of August is Simplify Your Life Week, and on a personal level, one of the easiest things to do is to move away from paper checks, if you haven’t already done so, and use automatic, electronic payments. Most employers already offer Direct Deposit, which eliminates the need to pick up a paycheck, deposit it, and wait for the funds to be available. Instead, the money is in your bank account on payday. Simple.
Now that you have your pay, it’s time to take care of the bills. Most of those are probably recurring items; every month there’s going to be an electric bill, a mortgage payment, a cell phone bill. Many companies allow you to sign up for recurring automatic payments, where the funds are deducted from your bank account on a given day each month. Bills are always paid on time and there’s no worrying that you forgot one. Simple.
Making sure you have savings can be simplified, too. Ask your employer for Split Deposit, which takes either a percentage of your pay or a flat amount and uses Direct Deposit to put it in a savings or investment account. For example, you can have 2% of your pay automatically go to a savings account, with the other 98% to your primary deposit account. Or ask for $30 a pay period to go to savings. You’re saving automatically. Simple.
Finally, while there’s nothing definitive yet, if there is a second round of direct payments from the federal government, you will get that money a lot faster if you receive it by Direct Deposit, rather than waiting for a paper check in the mail. If you didn’t receive the first payment by Direct Deposit, visit the IRS website and provide the information needed to make it happen. Simple.