Checking account statements....

United States
June 16, 2007 11:32am CST
Do you get a checking account statement from your bank each month? If so, how long do you keep your statements? I tend to hang on to them for a long time. I probably have a couple years worth. I guess I feel that someday I might need them, although after a year, I can't really see why I would!
26 people like this
60 responses
• Canada
16 Jun 07
I am the same way LOL I probably have some from 2 yrs ago LOL I usually try to go through them every so often and get rid of the old ones. I don't know why I keep them. Maybe in case I have to prove have paid something??? LOL
2 people like this
• United States
16 Jun 07
Yep isn't it funny how we just hang on to some things even though we probably don't have to.
@Flight84 (3050)
• United States
17 Jun 07
I check my bank account online everyday. I also get statements in the mail, but I usually don't look at them. I have stacks of thoses things and I don't know why I keep them for so long.
2 people like this
@glra2222 (492)
• Australia
17 Jun 07
yes this is the exact problem that i always have. I always chuck my statements onto my shelf and i think i still might have statements from 4 years ago - but i have never had to really use any of these. I still always have a concern that if i throw them away i might regret it.
@Darkwing (21590)
17 Jun 07
Yes, I get statements. I get six a month... one for my account and one for each of my grandchildren's accounts which I opened for them, as babies. Instead of giving them pocket money, they get sweets or small gifts and money in the bank, for when they first leave school. I've got over five years of statements. I just weed the oldest out every so often, as I think it pays to keep five years in records.
• India
17 Jun 07
I haven't got any statements from my bank account, atleast not every month. Its a good practice to keep the records in a safe place which might be recovered during emergency. Sometimes they are of great help and who knows when you feel the need for the statements.
@derek_a (10903)
17 Jun 07
As a self-employed person, for taxation purposes I need to keep my statements for 7 years in case the tax inspector needs to do an audit on my accounts. I have them going back a lot further than that though. For people who work for an employer though, this is not required.
2 people like this
@KissThis (3008)
• United States
17 Jun 07
I get a monthly statement from my bank for my checking account. I am kinda embarrassed to admit that I have about eight years worth of statements. I don't throw anything away that I think I might need for something later. There really isn't a reason to keep these bank statements this long so I probably should shredded them up before I burn them.
2 people like this
@farazkh1 (1157)
• Pakistan
16 Jun 07
Yes i try my best to keep my statements on the certain place where i can have them ontime but as usual i lost them i mean used forgot the place where i have kept them the reason is i don't have choosen any specific place to keep important documents ...... but i never lost any of my bank statement .... my bank gives me 1 statement in 6 months for free of charge but i must check the transactions acuracy so i have taken the GSM banking facility in which the system automatically sends me sms for everydays closing ballence and if there is a transaction made by me or someone else the machine send me the SMS information so it keeps me updated every time .... i can say that i have my account is in my pocket ......
@Rozie37 (15505)
• Turkmenistan
18 Jun 07
Come to think of it, I don't know why I still get paper statements. I should have had them cut off two years ago, when I moved hear. When you bank online, you don't really need paper statements. Although, when I was looking for a new apartment they did want six months of statements and my bank wanted to charge me like $20.00 for them. Maybe that is why I have not stopped them from coming.
• United States
19 Jun 07
Wow $20 seems like alot.
1 person likes this
@Rozie37 (15505)
• Turkmenistan
19 Jun 07
Well, I am talking about Bank Of America. The last time I heard, they charged $6.00 for a money order. I have only bought one from them in all the time that I have been banking with them and this was an emergency.
@GardenGerty (90967)
• Marion, Kansas
16 Jun 07
I would check with a tax accountant, especially if you are running a daycare, which I guess by your name you might be. I think the rule is seven years. You would be best served, however, by asking an expert.
• United States
16 Jun 07
Yes I do have a home daycare. Which is why I seem to have so many papers to keep. I keep every receipt for everything I buy. Alot of the items are used for the daycare, so I'm able to write off some of that at tax time.
1 person likes this
@GardenGerty (90967)
• Marion, Kansas
16 Jun 07
Many years ago I had a home daycare. The best year I ever had, because of all the deductions, I lost $9000 on paper, with depreciation of the house and a portion of phone and utilities, ets. Good luck
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Jun 07
Yes I get mine every month too. I'm going to hold onto mine for at least seven years since that's supposed to be how long you hold your tax returns for. I figure if you're ever audited then that would be handy to have a round. I actually am keeping all my bills that long too.
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Jun 07
You wouldn't actually need all those monthly statements if you were audited, only the form the bank sends you at he end of the year (a 1099, I think) that states how much interest you earned on your accounts. That is the form that you use for your taxes, so that is the one the auditor would be interested in seeing and that you should save with the rest of your tax return. And you only need to keep bills if you claimed them for a reduction on your taxes.
@Woodpigeon (3710)
• Ireland
17 Jun 07
I get paper statements every month, and I have one account that I am also able to check on line in real time. I love that thing! I suppose if I wanted to I could also print that off on an as needed basis. I usually hang on to the statement for a year or maybe a little longer and then do a big clean up. I burn mine. How do you get rid of yours?
1 person likes this
• United States
17 Jun 07
Whenever I get rid of any important papers, I always shred them.
• Canada
17 Jun 07
I have to be honest--I have bank statements dating back to 1983! I am a pack rat and my philosophy is "Never throw anything out that looks like it may be needed someday." I did own a business and had to keep not only bank statements but also deposit books and cheque stubs, not to mention cash register duplicate rolls and point of sale machine tapes! I am running out of basement space! (It is my main storage area.) One of these days, I will start weeding stuff out, but I am absolutely paranoid about throwing stuff and finding out I need if a few weeks after! As you can probably tell, this has happened to me and I lived to regret it. :-0
• United States
17 Jun 07
The stuff you have from the '80s can probably be shredded. I would think that if you didn't need the stuff yet, you probably won't need it in the future. That stuff is 20 years old, so even in an audit, I don't think they would go back that far.
@lisado (1230)
• United States
16 Jun 07
We opted not to get statements mailed to us. I do a lot of my banking online, so there is no point in getting them. It's a waste of postage and paper for the bank. As for how long to keep them? I guess it depends on if you need them for taxes. Do you claim interest on your savings and such on your taxes? If so, I'd keep them since the IRS can go back either 7 or 10 years (I can't remember which). You could probably go back to your bank for copies if you were audited, but banks usually charge a pretty steep fee for that. If you changed banks at all, you'll have to chase them down, as well. It can be expensive and take some time you might not have. If you don't need them for tax purposes, then I don't think you'd need them longer than a year. I might look something that I paid up, but generally if someone says I owe them they don't wait more than a year down the road so I don't have to worry about showing proof of payment.
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Jun 07
Yes we have always claimed interest earned on our taxes. I suppose the IRS looks at it as income and wants their share.
@cwilson26 (2737)
• United States
16 Jun 07
I only keep my bank statements until the new one comes the following month. If I did ever need my past statements all I have to do is go to the bank and ask for a copy. They ask you how far back and then you get whatever you need. I have too much stuff in my purse now as it is without cluttering it up even more with more junk, lol. Goodness I really do need to clean my purse out. I tend to keep receipts for awhile. Especially credit card receipts and Wal Mart receipts. My husband is always telling me to get rid of some of the junk I have in my purse. Most of that stuff is important. Men just don't understand, lol. :)
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Jun 07
LOL I totally agree!! My husband does not understand why I need to carry a purse. Silly man!! Oh but if we are out and he asks for a piece of gum, he knows that I'll have some in my purse. So see the purse does come in handy.
@uiwwitch (892)
• United States
16 Jun 07
eversince my bank offered a paperless statement, I opted not to receive their monthly mailed statements anymore. I am always on the net anyways so I can just open my account and check on my transactions. I do this every 3 days or so and it makes me keep track of my expenses better. It's better too because you can access past statements. It's all there.
1 person likes this
@uiwwitch (892)
• United States
16 Jun 07
(sorry, trigger finger) You don't have to worry about filing your statements and keeping them for years, they're just fire hazards! But if you're still receiving paper statements, I think that you might just need the current ones, up to a year maybe.
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Jun 07
I usually go through and clean out the statement file once or twice a year. The only reason to hang onto them is to either dispute a mistake or for when you apply for a loan. When I clean out the file, I get rid of anything over 6 months old. After 6 months, I would have hopefully found any mistkes and fixd them, and you usually only need 3-4 months of your most recent statements when applying for a mortgage. I've also just switched over to paperless statements, which the bank will store for 18 months online, and I can print out when ever I want, if I need to.
1 person likes this
@shan_ab (377)
• India
19 Jun 07
I get my account statements via email and I store them all in a seperate folder. Account statements for the last six months proved useful to me sometimes. Also if we want to check as when we started paying for a particular cause, we can check our old statements. I think it is always better to keep it.
@jade1986 (567)
• India
19 Jun 07
I have not opted for automated bank statements, my mom has a savings account in one of those banks and she gets her bank statements every friday as sms on her cell. For my bank statement, i update my pass book only when i visit the bank. Otherwise, when i visit an ATM, i also check the account balance...But never have i bothered to keep them long enough..
1 person likes this
@mari_skye (1638)
• Philippines
18 Jun 07
I don't usually keep my bank statements. I figure I don't need them since I have a personal spreadsheet where all my cash out are listed. Also, I usually do my transactions online where these transactions are being referenced and sent via email. But experts say though that we should keep our statements for about a year before throwing them out.