The Bane of My Existence

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receipt organization


They are the bane of my existence.

I am swimming in them and am drowning in a sea of crumpled little papers. My wallet, my purses, my car, my jewelry drawer, my junk drawer ~ they are everywhere and I am haunted by them. In my nightmares they grow legs and come running after me in a swarm. Kidding. But seriously, they drive me CRAZY.

So, this post is not a receipt organization tips post. I wish it was. This post is a mom-to-mom SOS post because that is what I desperately NEED from you – receipt organization tips.

Here is my problem, and I want to know how you handle it:

I am doing my shopping at warp speed. Either during the ridiculously short preschool time frame OR with kids that are not so thrilled to be shopping with me. Therefore, at check out I am usually in a rush and I take the receipt and stuff it in either my wallet or my purse.

The have it together mom would then, immediately upon returning home, take out the receipts, organize and file them in some civilized fashion. But I am not that mom.

But I know some of you are.

So, please share the secrets to your success at keeping receipts in an organized fashion?

What are your receipt organization tips?

How do you keep them organized?

I want to take all your tips, try them out, and then hopefully do another post with a real life receipt success story. Help a mama out?


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  1. 1
    Shanna says:

    Great post today! I feel the same way about them too. They’re everywhere in my house! Can’t wait to hear the suggestions. Thanks:)

  2. 2
    Jennifer says:

    I keep all receipts in my wallet and whenever I have a free moment I pull them all out, deduct from my check roster and organize in an accordion file folder sorted by month. Keeping the receipts in accordion folder makes for easy retrieval when filing taxes, returning an item to the store or balancing my checkbook.

  3. 3
    christy says:

    Ugh – me too!!! In theory, this is the system I have set up…when I can remember to do so! I bought one of those “home organizers” from Target, and then pretty folders with tabs. I label the tabs with my pertinent expenses (some of mine include: business expenses, kids’ activities, kid school expenses, medical expenses…etc. etc.).

    Once every couple of days, I take my stuffed, unorganized wallet out, filter through my receipts, and file them away. Now, if I actually DID this all of the time, I’d be set. But I suffer from the “stuffed wallet, little time, I don’t always remember,” syndrome 🙂

  4. 4
    Suzanne says:

    Great Post:
    Tips I do:
    1. Immidiately get rid of receipts you know you do not need.
    2. Buy from the container store 2 receipt/coupon organizers. One in clear and the other in color.
    3. Use one for receipts you know will be active (this one is for possible retuned etc. Keep it in your purse) and use the other for more long term for expensing etc.)
    4. If you don’t have the time to organize and alphabetize then put the active receipts in your purse pocket and the non active into a drawer somewhere in your bedroom.
    The point is make 3 categories:
    1. Trash
    2. Active
    3. Nonactive

    Hope that helps!


  5. 5
    Sarah says:

    Here’s my system. Always put the receipts in a pocket in my wallet. Then, once a week (usually at a doctor’a appointment or car wash) I go through and trash and keep those I need to file. When I get home, I alphabetize them in a cheap accordion file for the ones I will need. Having JUST had to dig through the trash with rubber gloves to find 3 gas receipts for expense purposes, I’m realizing I am slacking on my system! ;0

  6. 6

    My parents are accountants so I’ve ben trained since birth to keep every receipt. What I do, and have done for years, is have hanging files in my desk, one set for business and one for personal. Within each hanging file I have 12 tabs labeled with the months. So, for example, all business receipts for January go in one spot and can be easily located. At the end of the year I remove the month tabs (and reuse for the next year) & have 2 huge stacks, one with all my biz receipts and the other all my personal receipts and I can save them in huge manila envelopes that way for posterity.

  7. 7
    jen says:

    BEAUTIFUL tips ladies! Thank you! Thank you! I am picking up ideas. Wish me luck…

  8. 8
    Andrea says:

    I agree that you first need to NOT keep the receipts you won’t need 🙂 All other receipts go into a pocket in my purse and once or twice a week I go through them. I then use a Martha Stewart discbound binder from Staples (smaller size) and I keep all my coupons and receipts in there. Receipts are divided into envelopes, which is especially helpful at Christmas (I keep those separate).

  9. 9
    Michele says:

    In December, I buy an accordion file labelled with months for the next year. No way would I alphabetize! I just jam them into the month file and then they are nicely stored by year. There are usually extra pockets in the file and I label them: health (for insurance papers), home (for HOA and mortgage), auto (for car payments & service receipts), donations, credit cards (for statements), and then there are 2 pockets leftover. Menus! Kid stuff! This folder is tucked away on the kitchen counter for easy access – but I could just as easily put it on my desk.

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