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How Long Should I Keep Statements and Records? (The Second of a Two-Part Series)

In our prior blog post, we talked about the amount of time you should keep your tax preparations supportive documentation before throwing it away.  In this blog post article, we are going to be discussing other various needs of keeping records and the length of time you should have them in your possession.  

Taxes should NOT be the only reason for keeping records handy.  If you are looking to apply for a loan (such as a mortgage), insurance, and/or wanting to either create or maintain a financial wealth management portfolio, chances are that you will be required to produce records for the application or qualifying stage of the process.  Producing good records will allow you (and others) to exactly identify all sources of income and what your expenses are so you can create an accurate budget.              

Secure Planning Strategies has created a short list of common records that may be of interest to you at the bottom of this article.  Please keep in mind that the suggested timeframes are general and should be modified based on your individual situation.  As with anything in life, if something is still active, it is best to hold on to the documents.  This might include current contract, property records, and insurance and/or financial wealth portfolio documents.  Always remember that when in doubt, either call your tax preparer or wealth management advisor for help before throwing the records out.  If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with a great Certified Public Account or Wealth Management Advisor to help you take your  financial stability to the next step, please feel free to contact Secure Planning Strategies at: (248) 827-2580 or e-mail us at:   


One Year Record Keeping (In General)

  1. Paycheck stubs
  2. Banks statements and cancelled checks (most banks offer online review of checks and statements but make sure that you are enrolled in online banking FIRST)
  3. Credit card statements and receipts (most companies offer statements online for review but you need to make sure that you are enrolled in online accounts FIRST) and
  4. Utility statements

Three Year Record Keeping (In General)

  1. Records of either buying or selling real estate property such as a home
  2. Supportive proof that was included on the 3 prior income tax filing year (in the event the IRS questions your standing)
  3. Medical bills and policies cancelled with insurance companies and
  4. Buying and selling of an investment such as a stock

Seven Year Record Keeping (In General)

  1. Satisfied loans
  2. From the date of Bankruptcy (if applicable) List of creditors including the associated contact and account information covered under the Bankruptcy proceedings.