Transcript of video:
Speaker 1: The most watched morning news in central Iowa, this is Iowa’s News Leader. This is KCCI 8 News This Morning Weekends.
Speaker 2: 2017 is just around the corner, not too far away, and it’s a good time to keep your financial record keeping in order, get a survey of what’s going on in your life. Kurt Pearson from Compass Financial is here with some tips to start the new year. First, Kurt, what types of financial records should we keep on hand and what can we get rid of?
Kurt Pearson: Obviously, anything related to taxes is very important to keep up with throughout the year so you don’t come down to a crunch time in the spring, but on top of that, we like to keep records that are related to investments per se, group benefit packages that we may have enrolled in, details related to our cash flow. We like to see a family having a good net worth statement that is done annually. Those are some of the basic record keeping that we think are important.
Speaker 2: Once you have them in the house, what’s the best way to organize them to make sure they’re accessible, make sure you can get to them, and just have them handy?
Kurt Pearson: There are obviously the old traditional paper files, but these days, of course, with digital storage, you can really consolidate and really keep things fairly well organized. When it comes to certain types of records, you not only want to have them digital, but you also want to be able to sort and to sift to come up with important data that you may want to manage and take a look at. For example, in investments, we find it quite amazing that a lot of people don’t know their exact investment returns for a 12-month period. You want to have the financial data not only organized, but you want to organize in a way so that you can glean data from it and you can get a true sense of really where you’re at.
Speaker 2: That’s what I was going to say. Just having it in the house is one thing, but using it to your benefit can be something else.
Kurt Pearson: I always like to say, people say, “Well, we keep good track of our cash flow,” for example. “Well, can you tell me plus or minus a margin of error what you spent on auto fuel so far year to date?” That’s when you know that you’re keeping good data on where your money is going when you can come up with those numbers fairly quickly and you have confidence that those numbers are fairly reliable.
Speaker 2: Then adjusting to the good and the bad parts of life, when gas prices go down or when you get a raise.
Kurt Pearson: Exactly. We tick along in life, things are going pretty well, but then that crisis inevitably hits. Life happens. That’s when it’s good to go back to that data and say, “Well, now with my new reality,” maybe I’m moving from full time to part time or whatever the reality is, “how can I tweak my cash flow data so that things will still work the way that I want them to work?”
Speaker 2: Sounds like some good New Year’s resolutions in there to just get your financial house in order.
Kurt Pearson: Absolutely.
Speaker 2: At the beginning of the year. Kurt Pearson is with Compass Financial. If you have any questions for him about this or anything else, you can find him out on Westown Parkway in West Des Moines. That number on the screen is 327-1020. Hopefully you can have your house in order financially by the end of the year.