10 ways to keep organized with your personal finance documents
We had a friend’s get-together recently and my friend was narrating a short story about his friend. His friend has earned well, invested in best investment options, but he never kept any summary of his investments and never updated to his family members about his investments and died in a road accident. Now, his family does not know where he saved money and even if they can try to trace it, they may be partially successful. How you have organized your personal finance? I thought of writing this article and provide some tips on the ways to keep organized in your personal finance.
10 ways to keep organized which would help your family when you are not there:
- Prepare your investments summary: Prepare a summary of the bank accounts, loan accounts, credit cards, mutual fund account nos., demat account etc.,
- Prepare complete details about your investments: This should contain the name and address of the bank/mutual fund company etc + the investment amount with a date stamp.
- Prepare all your life insurance details: Prepare a summary of all your life insurance policy details containing the policy no. Policy issuer, date of maturity and the maturity amount. Please check that the nominee details are updated properly including the age or date of birth of nominee.
- Prepare your medical insurance details? If you have taken a medical insurance or if you are employed and your employer has a medical insurance policy, have them noted down as part of your investment summary along with the dates of insurance, registration nos. and amount of insurance. This would be very useful when there is a medical emergency to you. Your family need not struggle to find out from your employer about your insurance details.
- Differentiate investments and life insurance: Differentiate investments summary from your insurance details. Investments can add month on month based on your monthly savings, but life insurance may remain same unless you increase your personal insurance. This is one of the good ways to keep organized.
- Have you done the nomination facility for your investments?
- Nominee for Bank accounts: I generally open online bank fixed deposits. When I heard the story from my friend, I called one of my bank account customer care where I am holding savings bank + fixed deposits and shocked to hear that there is no nominee specified for my bank fixed deposits. They said that I had nominee prescribed for bank savings account, but not for fixed deposits. When I opened online fixed deposit, it ever asked me to provide the nominee details. They said I need to make this request separately by visiting the branch. I was wondering what the hell was happening? What would have happened to my fixed deposits in my absence? Now I am in the process of completing this manual process.
- Nominee for mutual funds: Are you investing in mutual funds? Do you know that you need to separately specify the nominees for various mutual fund schemes? However if you are buying mutual fund schemes under one AMC (like HDFC Top 100 or HDFC equity fund MF etc.,), you can specify only one nomination for all accounts.
- Nominee for Stocks / ETF’s: If you have a demat account, you need to specify a nomination for your demat account which applies for all stocks purchased under this demat account. If you have multiple demat accounts, you need to provide nominees for all such multiple accounts separately.
- Nomination for post office schemes: You need to do separate nomination for each of the schemes you invested in post office like PPF, NSC, Post office MIS schemes etc.
- Limit your accounts: When you invest in investment options, try to limit the no. of accounts unless required. This is one of the good ways to keep organized. With few accounts, it would be easy to be up to date on the details.
- Update your investments once in a month: Keep updating this frequently once in a month at least and have a printed copy at your home in a safe place.
- Discuss with your spouse once in 3 months: You should discuss with your spouse about them at least once in 3 months so that any fresh investments made by you in the last 3 months can be known to them.
- Follow similar process if investments are in your spouse name: Follow similar process in case the investments or insurance plans are there in your spouse name.
Conclusion: It is important to keep the investments or insurance documents in safe place which is easily accessible to your family. Try these various ways to keep organized with your personal finance documents.
Readers, how are you organized with your personal finance documents? What are your opinions about these tips on ways to keep organized? Please give your comments
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