‘Spring Clean’ your finances with these seven tips

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You've heard of spring cleaning your home, but what about tidying up your finances?

Now is the perfect time to look through your accounts and budgets to see how you're doing.

US News & World Report has these tips to help you save some money this year:

  1. Look at your budget. Take an afternoon to look at your spending over the past few months. Are there any problem areas or places you're over spending?
  2. Consolidate. Look at your bank account and credit cards, get rid of any unused accounts.
  3. Check your retirement accounts. Many people have at least one retirement account from an old employer that's sitting around. Consider rolling old accounts into your current 401K to streamline your savings.
  4. Shop around. If it's been awhile since you looked for better rates - do it now. You should shop around for lower rates on car insurance, cable, cell phone plans or other recurring items at least once a year to make sure you're not overpaying.
  5. Check your withholding. If you get a big return this year, it means you gave Uncle Sam an interest-free loan out of your paycheck all year, Your goal should be to achieve a balance between getting as much as you can out of your paycheck without owing the IRS at the end of the year.
  6. Sort out your paperwork. Take time to loo through your files and shred stuff you no longer need. It's recommended that you keep bank statements for a year and you can get rid of tax documents after seven years.
  7. Go paperless. Make it easier on yourself and move your banking needs online.
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