For a while, I kept my business check card and my personal check card in my wallet. Makes sense, right? I mean, where else would I keep my cards?
The problem I was having was occasionally I would grab the wrong card and use it to buy something. These cards sat next to each other in my wallet so if I wasn’t REALLY paying attention, it was super easy to grab and use the wrong card. I’d accidentally use my personal check card for a business expense (or vice versa which is extra bad). It’s easy to do when things are crazy busy at the checkout with kids and loading bags into the cart. Both of those mistakes cause bookkeeping adjustments in your business books that no one likes doing.
So I decided that I’d just be more careful next time and it wouldn’t happen again, right? <<Snicker giggle, okay. Sure>> Here’s the thing, when you’re at Walmart buying paper and staples but also buying bread and bananas, the chances of this happening again are REALLY good. I decided “being careful” wasn’t enough.
My simple solution? I picked up an inexpensive wallet (and actually used the correct card to pay for it :-)). This wallet is ONLY for my business checking and credit cards, so it’s much easier to quickly identify which card to use while out running errands on a busy day.
Additionally, before making this change, all my personal AND business receipts collected quickly in my wallet, and I HATED sorting out and separating personal from business receipts. You know how tiny those last four digits of a card number are on those receipts right? And that’s assuming it didn’t get left in the sun or have something spilled on it which suddenly makes ALL of the information disappear! What the heck are they using on those receipts? Is it magic ink?!? Ugh!
Keep your business and personal cards and receipts separated. Something as simple as a new wallet that you designate for your business purchases can seriously bring down your stress levels when bookkeeping time comes around.
To help with paper reduction (and “magic” disappearing ink), many vendors let you email the receipt to yourself. Opt for that whenever it’s available! Not only will you have less paper to deal with, but you’ll also have less of a chance of losing that paper receipt, which you need for proving business expenses. Having to get a duplicate receipt can be a time-consuming pain in the tushy (and I speak from experience).
So three excellent benefits came from this oh so simple idea: Benefit #1: I now have somewhere separate for all of my business cards and receipts. No more reading tiny print and having to separate business from personal receipts. Thank you wallet gods! Benefit #2) Your bookkeeper won’t yell at you for using the wrong card (they don’t like making adjustments). Benefit #3) If your bookkeeper is also your spouse, then benefit #2 will truly resonate with you. 😉