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I’m always looking for new ways to simplify my financial life. Thankfully with technology on the rise, it’s easier than ever to save money and time by going digital.
Even small businesses and freelancers can use technology to their advantage, with social media, email correspondence and more.
Besides, who doesn’t want to simplify their life and spend more time doing things they actually like? Here are 7 strategies you can use to save both time and money by going digital.
1. Use mobile apps for investing
Since getting completely out of debt, I’ve focused the majority of my energy into building up a larger emergency fund and maxing out my Roth IRA. And with the help of online brokerage firms and mobile apps, investing is becoming increasingly easier – especially for a novice like me.
With apps like Betterment, you can easily put your investing strategy on auto-pilot while still checking the progress regularly. You can even use apps to check gold and silver prices on the go, and look at your investments online anytime.
2. Switch to online banking
The future of banking is rapidly heading towards instant access, digital accounts and exclusively banking online. And while using an online bank isn’t for everyone, for me it’s the perfect solution.
Not only can you take advantage of things like direct deposits and instant transfers to get your money right when you need it, you will streamline your life by not having to see a bank teller anymore.
When was the last time you went inside an actual bank? Exactly!
And if you did recently, you probably had to stand in line for awhile, waiting to speak to someone. Switching to an online bank will save you this hassle and increase your productivity.
3. Enroll in automatic payments
Many banks, loan companies and even some mobile apps, provide the option to pay your bills automatically directly from your bank account, debit or credit card. You can simplify your life by having your payment automatically deducted from your account on the same date of every month.
This ensures your bills are never paid late, saving you money on late fees and interest charges. Plus you can avoid the headache of getting paper bills, multiple payment dates and bill reminders.
4. Buy ebooks and digital products
One of my favorite tips for organizing my life is to purchase ebooks and digital products. It’s so easy and much more convenient to carry around books and information right on your iPad, ereader or laptop. Ecommerce is changing the way small businesses and online entrepreneurs can make money, and I am a big fan.
Not only will you have more room in your office or library, but you can essentially pack an unlimited supply of books any where you go. I even started subscribing to some of my favorite magazines digitally, which eliminates a lot of excess mail and stacks of paper lying around.
5. Consolidate your bank accounts
How many bank accounts do you have? If you’re anything like me, you probably have at least two checking accounts, multiple savings accounts and several investing accounts. All of which are probably at different banks.
Even for a bookkeeper like me, it can be difficult to properly keep track of all the incoming transactions for each account. So take a moment to evaluate your accounts and eliminate the ones that aren’t necessary. You want to keep everything as streamlined and as simple as possible and consolidating your bank accounts help achieve this.
6. Clean out your wallet
Along with spring cleaning your finances, it’s important to clean out your wallet regularly too. This will help you keep track of any coupons, rebates and other money saving things like surveys and discounts.
You’ll also be less likely to miss important rebates and sales – which means more money in your pocket to spend on other fun things.
You can even take it a step further and simplify your life even more by eliminating your wallet all together. With places like Starbucks accepting mobile payments and Google Wallet becoming widely accepted, physical wallets are needed less and less.
7. Eliminate paperwork
One of the most annoying things in life, are all the little white pieces of paper and receipts that end up everywhere. I don’t know where I’d be without all the apps available to help simplify our lives.
Whether it’s capturing photos of receipts, billing invoices to freelance clients or signing a document without having to print it out, there’s an app for just about every type of paperwork. Using apps and scanners to save your files and papers digitally, will save hours of time during tax season and help you get the maximum deductions you qualify for.
What’s one way you’ve gone digital to save time or money? How do you use technology to make your life easier?