Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Fall Cleaning: Decluttering Your Finances For A Fresh Start

 Your go-to guide for decluttering your finances this fall


Fall is finally here, and as the leaves start to change, it may be time for a change in your life, too. When we welcome a new season, it’s typical to do some cleaning and decluttering around the house. But, it’s during this time, too, that you should be paying attention to your finances. A bit of cleaning and decluttering will help you tackle fall with confidence in your finances. Let’s take a look at some ways you can clean and declutter your finances to give you a fresh start this season. 

Dust Off Your Budget

If you’re anything like me, your budget may have been a bit neglected during the summer months. Now that things are slowing down (and we prepare for the holidays!), it’s time to revisit your budget, see where you stand, and start adjusting. 

As you take some time to review your budget, here are some of the things you should be doing that will help you make the proper adjustments:

  • Set financial goals for the fall - Whether you’re saving for holiday gifts, an upcoming getaway, or even paying down some of your debt, set some financial goals for yourself to accomplish this fall. These goals will keep you on track and help you make better spending decisions.

  • Review your spending - Look at all of your bank and credit card statements from the past few months. See where you’ve been spending your money. You may realize you’re spending way too much money on certain things. You can better identify those areas when you review your statements

  • Adjust your budget - With your fall financial goals and spending habits in mind, you can adjust your budget categories. Decide if you need to allocate more to certain categories or reduce your spending in others to help you achieve your financial goals. 

Sort Through Financial Clutter

Let’s face it—no one wants clutter. Just as we declutter our homes, we can declutter our financial lives by tossing what we no longer need. Let’s talk about some ways you can declutter your financial life:

  • Shred your paperwork - If you still receive paper bills, go through your paperwork and shred any documents you no longer need. Digitally scan and store any documents you may need in the future. 

  • Organize your digital copies - Just like with your physical documents, your digital paperwork can pile up, too. Delete any old files or emails you no longer need. Organize the files that you need in a safe and secure drive. 

  • Consolidate your accounts - If you have multiple bank accounts you no longer use or need, consider consolidating them to simplify your financial life. Consider the impact on your credit score before closing any credit card accounts. 

  • Cancel your unused memberships - Memberships are extremely easy to subscribe to, and it can be even easier to overlook a subscription you don’t even use anymore. Check your bank statements to see which subscriptions you pay for, and cancel any that typically go unused. 

Organize Your Financial Nest

Just like birds prepare their nests for the winter, we can organize our financial nests to weather any financial storms. Here are a few steps you can take to keep you and your family feeling financially secure no matter what:

  • Build your emergency fund - You should have between 3-6 months' worth of living expenses set aside in case any financial emergency pops up. Ensure your emergency fund is well-padded and prepared for whatever life throws your way. 

  • Find a life insurance policy - The transition from summer to fall slows us down a bit. But, the holiday season comes around and speeds our lives right back up. A life insurance policy is a great addition to your financial nest to help protect your family, but the process of locking in a policy can be extremely time-consuming. Instant life insurance is a type of no-medical-exam insurance that allows you to skip over the traditional medical exam and get approved for a policy almost immediately—all without making the policy completely unaffordable. For those looking to get a life insurance policy quickly that fits into their budget, an instant life insurance policy may be the right option for you. 

  • Review your retirement savings - Take a look over your retirement accounts to see how much progress you have made. Consider increasing your contributions if you’re able. The more you can save now, the cozier your retirement nest egg will be. 

Plant Seeds For The Future

Fall is a season of harvesting. We can plant seeds for our financial future to harvest later down the road. Here are some ways you can invest in your future and your family:

  • Start long-term investments - Investing is a great way to make the most of your money. If you aren’t already investing, consider starting now

  • Focus on your education - Now is the perfect time to cozy up with a book, and you can take this time to start learning more—whether that be sharpening your skills for work or learning more about personal finance. Read books, listen to podcasts, or attend webinars to improve your financial literacy or job skills. 

  • Teach your kids money skills - Fall is a fantastic time to sit down with your kids and start teaching them about money. Involve them in budgeting for the upcoming holidays, teach them smart ways to spend and invest their money, and explain the importance of saving. Make it fun by turning it into a game or a family challenge. 

As we bid farewell to the long days of summer and embrace the vibrancy of fall, let’s also welcome a fresh start for our finances. Just as we declutter our homes to create a welcoming space, we can declutter our financial lives to create peace of mind, too. With a little bit of fall cleaning for your finances, you can set yourself up for a cozy and secure financial future. 


  1. We all need to dust off our budgets, give it a real good clean and sort it out from time to time



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