Organizing your business receipts doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming. You can record, organize, and store them with just a few steps, and they’ll be ready to use when you file your taxes in April. Here’s how to organize business receipts in 4 simple steps!
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Organize Business Receipts in 4 Simple Steps
Depending on the number of receipts you have to log for this year, this process may take you a chunk of time and energy. But once it’s set up and you develop a regular receipt logging routine, it will be a breeze!
#1 Round ‘Em Up, Order, and Number
The first step in this process is to round up all of your business receipts. Check your wallet, your computer bag, the counter, your desk, the kitchen table, your bathroom counter, your nightstand, and anywhere else you might have dropped them.
Now, put them in chronological order, oldest first.
The final piece of step #1 is to number your receipts. Start with the oldest receipt and write #1 at the top prominently, then continue through the stack, adding #2, #3, #4, and on and on until you make it through the entire stack.
I use a red felt tip marker for this step, but use what you like, just make sure you can see it easily.
#2 Create an Excel File
Create an Excel File (or something similar). Name it something you’ll remember like “Business Recipts 2016” or “Business Tax Receipts 2016.”
Save it in a location that you’ll remember, too. I have a file called “Business Financials,” and I keep all of my financial information in this file.
Set your Excel File up with the following columns (in order from left to right):
- Payment Type (Credit Card, Debit Card, Paypal, etc.)
I like to use Categories, because it makes tax time even easier.
All you have to do come April is sort your Excel Spreadsheet based on the Categories column. Then you’ll have all of your office supplies expenses in one area, all of your auto expenses in one area, and all of your client expenses in one area, etc.
If you use the SUM formula in the Total column, then Excel does all of the addition work for you. And that makes you even more efficient!
#3 Log Receipts
Start logging your receipts in the Excel Spreadsheet. Begin with #1 and progress through each receipt. This step may need to be completed in several different sessions, depending on the amount of receipts you have.
Speaking of logging things, I found a way to keep my home office organized by logging my progress. Learn more here!
#4 Store Your Receipts
Once you’ve logged your stack of receipts, place them in a large envelope labeled “2016 Tax Receipts” (or something similar). I try to keep them in numerical order, so that if I need to refer to one prior to tax season, I can find it easily.
Place your envelope in an assigned location, and your receipts will be safe and sound until you need them again in April for tax season!
I like to keep my envelope in a file sorter behind my desk.
If you don’t like the envelope idea, you could store your receipts in a photo storage box, like the one I created for my greeting cards.
Create a Regular Logging Routine
If you’ve been around Calyx and Corolla for any length of time, you know how crazy I am about routines!
Routines make your life easier. They save you time and energy, and they make you more efficient.
This chore is no different. You have to build a regular receipt logging time into your schedule or this system won’t work for you.
I log receipts on Friday afternoons, because that’s when I pay our household bills. It’s easy to open my Excel Spreadsheet, number, and log my most recent receipts when I’m all ready in the financial mind set.
Find a regular time that works best for you, whether it’s daily, weekly, or monthly.
And don’t forget to add it to your calendar, so that you’re reminded whenever you look at your calendar. Plus, if you use a digital calendar, you can set alarms to remind you to organize business receipts! Here’s more information on how we add hours to our day by using our calendar.
I use this same system for tracking my income, too!
Also, you can adapt this system if you prefer to store your receipts electronically. The scanning piece becomes step #5. Depending on your comfort level, you may want to keep a hard copy of your receipts as well. You can store them in a manila envelope like in the final step above.
And that’s how to organize business receipts in 4 simple steps. This system will make it quick and painless for you to organize your business receipts, and tax time will be a breeze!
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Thanks for being here today,