Every month for your entire adult life, you have reviewed bank statements, paid bills, and made the necessary phone calls. Once you retire, you might be feeling a bit tired of that monthly chore. You’re ready to relax and fill your life with the things that make you happy, so it can be easy to allow those account statements pile up in a kitchen drawer.
But you can’t afford to set aside your vigilance now! If anything, it’s more important than ever to stay on top of your financial matters, for these important reasons.
Hidden fees. Your bank can change their fee structure at any time, and are only required to notify you once. If you miss that notification, you could be paying hidden fees for months or even years before you notice them. Monitor your mail for these notices, and check your checking, credit, and even retirement account statements for fee deductions.
Set yourself up for tax success. Each spring, millions of Americans embark upon an epic quest for financial documents. Proof is required in order to claim many income tax deductions and credits, and we often find ourselves scrambling to gather everything we need by mid-April. If you set aside a few moments for monthly accounting, you can keep up with everything you need throughout the year. Filing your taxes next spring can be a breeze, at least by comparison with previous years.
Protect against fraud and theft. Retirees are often the target of con artists and thieves, and sometimes they’re even smart enough not to drain your bank account all at once. Monitor your monthly account statements for signs of a problem, and you can stop a steady “leak” before it becomes a flood.
Protect your purchases. Proof of purchase is often required before you can receive a refund for faulty goods or services. If you set aside a few minutes to review your financial accounts each month, you’ll know just where to find a copy of that canceled check.
These are just some of the reasons you should stay on top of your finances. Schedule the time to review all account statements and credit card bills each month, and you can save yourself a much bigger hassle (and financial loss) in the future.