The idea of creating a paperless personal finance system has always appealed to me. Try as I might, I’m hopelessly behind on filing our mountains of paperwork, and I’d be hard-pressed to quickly lay my hands on a number of important documents.
While I realize that we won’t be able to go completely paper-free (e.g., what about things like official birth certificates?) I’ve been gradually working to create a (largely) paperless system in our household. We’ve transitioned to e-statements for as many of our accounts as possible, we rely heavily on our bank’s online billpay system, etc.
My efforts have also been helped along by the addition of a Fujitsu ScanSnap document scanner as well as my iPhone. When these tools are combined with services such as Qipit, Evernote, and DropBox, I can rapidly capture, archive, and synchronize all kinds of information.
Given the above, I was thrilled to read Gina Trapani’s “Complete Guide to Going Paperless.” It’s chock full of great tips and links on topics such as:
- Reducing unnecessary postal mail
- “Printing” and scanning to pdf
- Digitizing your signature for e-mailing documents
- Bypassing paper entirely with electronic information capture
- Organizing what little paper you have to keep
It’s definitely worth a read if you’re interested in this sort of thing. Beyond that, if you have any tips of your own for implementing a paperless personal finance system, please don’t hesitate to share them in the comments.