Receipts Everywhere

Have receipts taken over your surfaces, wallets, pockets, and or car cubbies? Do you jump into panic mode when you need to find a specific receipt to return an item?

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Source: Have you ever gone into panic mode looking for a receipt? Ripping the whole house apart and even searching through the recycling?

So, what about those receipts for everyday items? What do you do with them all?

I know receipts for everyday items seem overwhelming to control but they don’t have to be. Just follow these four simple steps:

First, stop keeping every receipt. Only keep receipts for the items you know you may need to return. When someone is handing you a receipt for an item you do not need to keep, tell the clerk you do not need it. For example: chocolate bar, pop, dry-cleaning or toilet paper. Do not wait till your purse or wallet fills up with these useless receipts and you can’t find a simple $20.00 bill.


Photo Source: This is such a great shot of human reactions when we open our wallets to this infestation of receipts taking over. I promise you most of those receipts in that wallet are unnecessary to keep.

Second, create a home for your receipts to be organized. A small accordion file or clear shoe box works great. The key is to categorize your receipts and store them together. The individual labeled sleeves allows you to categorize your receipts to your preference or you can create sections with thick paper and labels. Be as specific as possible with your labels so that it is both easy and time-saving when you file and retrieve your receipts. Here are some examples of ways to organize your receipts.

Organizing by item/store

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Source: Here is an example of organizing receipts by store. This will either work or not work for you. I find it only works if you’re always willing to make new heading for each store or you only create sections for the most visited and one for other. The other option is instead of using the stores as your headings use subcategories: groceries, clothing, garden, etc.. I find this works better for clients.

Organizing by Date of purchase


Source: Here’s an example of organizing your receipts by the month you purchased the item. Make sure each file folder has the year written on it. Another example similar is organizing your receipts by payment type: credit card, cash, debit, or cheque (this is handy when reconciling with statements but can sometimes be to vague).

Organizing Electronically


Source: many people are opting these days to go paperless. There are many different receipt scanners and apps to research if that’s the way you want to go and then you don’t have to worry about paper clutter at all.

Third, save time and stay organized by emptying the receipts from your wallet or pockets as soon as you get home and store them in their new home. Be true with who you are, if you purchase an item and know you will never take the time to return it or reconcile it, then throw the receipt out.

Fourth, sort through your receipt file every 60-90 days and throw out receipts that have an expired return date. If you’re self employed do not throw out any receipts that can be written off, these should be entered into your bookkeeping and be kept for seven years. Be sure to shred receipts that have your credit card number printed on them. If you always forget to do this last step, schedule it in your calendar or set it as a reminder on your phone.

contact Jen to get your receipts in order!

Keeping it Neat Jen

2 Responses to “Receipts Everywhere”

  1. Samantha says:

    Thank you for sharing my receipts system! As you said, this may not work for everyone…even my own system doesn’t look like this anymore as technology has changed and made it easier. Thank you again!

    • jennynelson says:

      sorry for the late reply I just noticed your comment. Yes I enjoyed reading your blog. Great information I believe if we all brainstorm and share ideas we can get the message out there. oh to paper clutter!