Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Big Receipts

No, I don't mean the dollar amount. I mean the actual physical size. Receipts have grown in recent years. Especially grocery store receipts. Good gawd! There are several linear feet of extras in those stupid things. Coupons, surveys, and all manner of unwanted crap.

I save all receipts, at least temporarily. I enter them into Quicken, and keep 'em until statements arrive and everything matches. Durable goods receipts get put into a file, in case we need to take things back or prove when we purchased an item. Everything else gets binned for eventual shredding in a month or two. The smaller receipts are the easiest the deal with. Size, not dollar value. Just give me the basics. Gas station receipts are the best. Tiny size. No extras. Grocery stores are the worst. Way too much stuff, nothing terribly important. *sigh*

And why is it so hard to find the DATE and TOTAL? Those two bits of data are the only things I care about on most receipts. Would it kill companies to make them bold, or larger font? It takes far too long to find these amidst all the clutter. Inefficient! FAIL.

12 comments:

dr sardonicus said...

Quicken? I do mine the old-fashioned way - I pile 'em up on the kitchen table!

Jeni said...

I recently downloaded Microsoft Office Accounting because I read it was somewhat like Quicken and if my son-in-law's garage business does manage to make it (survive, ya know) he and Mandy will need some type of accounting program. I figured I could use it for myself too for any paid blogging stuff I do too. Only problem is, I have no clue as to how to set the darned thing up. ARRGH! Guess I'll have to get my neighbor two doors over who had said she would show us how to work with Quicken to see how close this program is to that and if she can show me how to set it up. I haven't done any type of accounting stuff in over 36 years now -long before programs like this were in existence. You know -those "dark ages!"

fermicat said...

dr s - I sort mine on the kitchen island, but after that they and I go to the computer.

jeni - I've been using Quicken for more than a decade, so I don't remember how easy or hard the initial setup was. The worst I have to deal with now is occasionally setting up a new account, and archiving the older stuff into a separate file once a year.

Dianne said...

my Stop N' Shop receipts could wallpaper the world!

Hey - maybe there's a niche business opp in that

My favorite is how the computer knows what I buys and coughs up coupons for stuff that is related but not really.

I still do all my books by hand or with a bit of Excel.

How is Silvio doing? I've been thinking of him.

ctheokas said...

Wait wait wait... keeping receipts? Who does that?

I should start, but I'm moving soon, so I'll do it at my new place. And I'll use Mint.com.

Dave said...

My solution to your grocery problem: I agree, if you bought a bunch of stuff the length gets in too foot rather than inch length.

When I get to the car, I rip out the middle part that records the cost, date and credit or debit info and put in my wallet. The rest I scan to check the items and costs. Seeing no errors, it goes into the plastic bag hanging from the sidewall of the passenger seat footwell.

The receipt in my wallet with it's friends, sits in my wallet until there are too many friends, at which point they are moved to the left side upper drawer of my desk and wrapped with a rubber band. For the most part, unless there is a problem when I look at the credit card or bank statement, they stay there for a year or so until there are way too many friends at which point, they go into a box that sits in the walk in closet.

I hope this was helpful.

fermicat said...

dianne - think of all the wasted paper! Silvio is doing well -- update to follow as new post.

ctheokas - I'm anal like that. Keeping receipts, entering them into Quicken, and I actually reconcile credit card statements (we use credit cards to avoid having to carry wads of cash, but pay off the entire balance each month).

dave - it isn't the itemized list that I object to. It is the steam of utter crap at the bottom of the receipt. I've been tearing that part off and recycling it with my newspapers.

JennyLu said...

the rec'pt at murphys oil (gas stations in front of the super wallyworlds) are growing to, you can now do the surveys there too. But the surveys pay off. We have gotten two $ 20 gift cards at the gas station by doing the surveys. Seee... a little light. :Egrin:

as for keeping them... um... they are gathered around my e-brake (I drive a standard) and on the floor behind the drivers seat... about twice a month I throw them away and pray there is no audit.

fermicat said...

jennylu - I have never found a mistake or had an issue, but cannot seem to stop auditing every damn thing. Good thing this type of quality comes in handy on my job. At least it does some good.

NYPinTA said...

I'm a little freaked out about how organized you are. And inspired. I keep planning on doing something similar but end up with all my reciepts stuffed in this under-shelf basket thing in my kitchen.

BC said...

I hate the ones that you get and then a week later all the info has rubbed off them or they turn color.

fermicat said...

bc - yeah, that's annoying, too.