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Organize with Microsoft: How to Go Paperless

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With spring heading our way, I bet you're itching to do a little spring cleaning...Am I right? Well, why not start with your home office area! Do you have lots of papers cluttering up your office? It's time to kick all that paper to the curb and start using your home computer and Microsoft products, namely Excel, to add some more organization to your life!

I happen to be married to a finance guy and, thus, an Excel master. He's been trying to get me to embrace Excel for years. If you know me in real life, you know that I'm the worst about throwing things away. I'm afraid I'll forget about bills, for instance, unless I keep them piled up on my desk. That, however, is definitely the least organized way to approach bill paying. Thanks to my Excel loving hubs, and my finally breaking down, paper bills have basically been eradicated from our home office. Here are a few ways that have helped make our paperless life happen...

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1. Set up a spreadsheet with Excel that you can use to track your bills...I like to have columns for what the bill is (i.e. account), account number, when it's due, how much it is and when it's been paid. A couple simple Excel formulas and you can ensure that you will always know how many days left you have to pay the bill and you can create a yes/no drop down menu for your paid column too!

Tip: To make today's date auto populate, type the formula =today() into the cell.

Tip: To create a dropdown; in cells you aren't using type the words you want in your dropdown in column format (ex. yes/no), go to the data tab, click on data validation then go to settings in the allow box, click list, then go to the source box and click the box with the arrow, then highlight the words you're using for your dropdown (yes/no in our case) and click ok.

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2. Sign up for paperless bills. My bank offers the option to receive statements electronically and pay bills online.

3. Invest in a shredder. Once you've read that bill and entered it into your spreadsheet, shred that bad boy before it clutters up your newly organized space!

So, are you ready for a more paperless life? It's time to stand up and say goodbye to all that clutter! Setting up a simple Microsoft Excel spreadsheet can literally make life SO much easier! And if you really want to get fancy when you're playing around with Excel, check out how you can use it to create graphics with calculations. How cool is that? You'll forgive me if I just stick to my little simple spreadsheets right? Haha!

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