How To Organize Your Debts

October 23, 2017 Off By Jess

How To Organize Your Debt

This post may contain affiliate links.

I recently posted about taking my first step in tackling my scary debt folder, which was acknowledging that it exists and making a commitment to tackling it head on. When I talk about that first step, it sounds like it would be the easiest. To be completely honest, it was actually really hard! Moving on to my next step was much easier.

Sort & Purge

After acknowledging my scary debt folder, I felt like I needed to organize it before I could do anything else. Like I mentioned in my last post, I would open a bill, shove it into a folder, and then pretend like it didn’t exist. This system ended up in a complete unorganized disaster.

My first step in organizing my debt was opening all of the bills, unfolding them, stacking them in a neat pile, and shredding the envelopes. As I did this, I realized that there was actually a lot of duplicates. Apparently, places will send you the same bill eight times??? Good to know for future adulting.

Once I got rid of all of the duplicates, I organized them by the total amount due. This made the most sense to me because I’ll work on paying off the smallest bills first. When you’re organizing all of your debts, consider what approach you want to take for your own organization so that it makes sense to you. If you’re considering putting all of your debts on payment plans (or if they already are) you may want to sort them by what your monthly payment is or by when each one will be paid off. If you want to pay off the oldest ones first, you may want to sort them by the date you received them. It doesn’t matter how you sort them, as long as it makes sense to you.

My Scary Debt Binder

I decided to turn my scary debt folder into an organized scary debt binder. A binder, dividers, lined posties, and a lined notebook took my organization to the next level. I hole punched all of my debts and put them into the binder sorted by the total amount due.

UPDATE: I made my binder more fun with washi tape and sticker letters! It makes me more excited to get it out!

I decided that my tabs would be for Unpaid, Currently Paying, and Paid in Full.


Debts that I haven’t made any payments on

Currently Paying

Debts that I’ve made at least one payment on

Paid in Full

Debts that are completely paid off with no remaining balance

Paid In Full

I considered getting rid of the bills once they were completely paid, but I decided to keep them in their own section. Having them in their own section lets me visually see my progress in paying them off. Plus, I love the satisfaction of moving a bill to a new tab. These three tabs create a full progression that feels complete to me. Also, I think it will be much more exciting to throw out the ENTIRE scary debt binder at one time! This whole process made me feel so much more organized. It also made my scary debt binder feel a lot less scary.

Do you have any tips for organizing debts? Comment them below!

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How To Organize Your Debt
How To Organize Your Debts