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Financial Health
August 6, 2021

It’s time to declutter your wallet

Wells Fargo teamed up with personal finance and organizational experts Marsha Barnes and Jen Robin to bring the joy of simplicity to your finances with a wallet edit.

A wallet overstuffed with money and receipts.
Financial Health
August 6, 2021

It’s time to declutter your wallet

Wells Fargo teamed up with personal finance and organizational experts Marsha Barnes and Jen Robin to bring the joy of simplicity to your finances with a wallet edit.

Have you ever been in the checkout line of a store, scrambling to locate your credit card? With mounting pressure from the growing line, you frantically comb your fingers through every compartment of your wallet only to find everything but the card you need — your son’s school photo from five years ago, that old Blockbuster movie card, the ice cream parlor punch card, the gift card with a $2 balance.

Marsha Barnes and Jen Robin
Marsha Barnes and Jen Robin, personal finance and organizational experts, offer tips for how to edit your wallet.

Your overstuffed wallet does not oblige. The cashier smiles politely. Finally, your card emerges from the clutter, you pay for your items, and vow to clean out your wallet when you get home. We’ve all been there. And now, there are experts to help you through the process, so you can get the most out of the items in your wallet, including your credit cards.

“Doing a wallet edit helps you to become a more conscious consumer. It allows you to get the most value out of everything in your wallet, and helps you find financial clarity by minimizing what options you have.” — Marsha Barnes, CEO of The Finance Bar

On the heels of the recent Active CashSM Card launch, Wells Fargo is inviting consumers to simplify their finances with a wallet edit. We’ve teamed up with two experts — Marsha Barnes, certified financial social worker, financial educator, personal finance commentator, and founder and CEO of The Finance Bar, and Jen Robin, a professional home organizer and founder and CEO of Life in Jeneral — to share how it’s done.

Barnes, who works with individuals and couples to help them move from financially existing to financially thriving, dove into the world of personal finance to help people become more organized, not only with their wallets, but with their finances in general. Similarly, Robin is a professional organizer who helps individuals simplify their lives by editing everything, including the content of their wallets. They recently hosted virtual Wallet Edit Workshops to introduce consumers to the wallet edit concept and share tips and guidance on the process.

Why you should do a wallet edit

In a recent Wells Fargo Active CashSM Card survey, two-thirds (63%) of credit cardholders said the COVID-19 pandemic prompted them to initiate “pandemic purges” in their lives. Of those, about a third (33%) reported simplifying and decluttering their finances, while another third (36%) said they are becoming more involved in money management. Even as Americans become more invested in their finances, the wallet is often overlooked as a cluttered, unorganized space. Yet according to Barnes, “Doing a wallet edit helps you to become a more conscious consumer. It allows you to get the most value out of everything in your wallet, and helps you find financial clarity by minimizing what options you have.”

Becoming more organized can also lead to less stress. “An organized wallet is the foundation for feeling better,” Robin added.

Editing your wallet also allows you to care for confidential contents that are best stored in a secure location, file contents not regularly used, and discard nonessentials.

And, according to Barnes, “The more you edit your wallet, the easier it becomes, and eventually it transitions to life well beyond your wallet.”

Top 10 tips for editing your wallet

Barnes and Robin shared their top 10 list for practically editing your wallet. We invite you to join in the challenge and simplify your wallet today.

An image of credit cards and bills with the text: Remove everything from your wallet. Spread out the contents of your wallet so you can see everything.
An open wallet, with text that says: Separate contents into 3 categories: Discard, File, or Save. Determine what items can be discarded, filed, and saved based on what is essential for everyday use. File any nonessential items in a safe place.
An image of a weight rack at a gym with text that says: Evaluate your memberships. Are you using your gym membership, discount club membership, or roadside assistance? Consider discontinuing them if not.
An image of a person paying for coffee and a muffin, with text that says: Assess your credit cards. Determine if your existing credit card matches your current lifestyle, or if you should apply for a new card that rewards you for the ways you spend.
An image of a gift card and text that says: Use your gift cards. Determine gift card balances and expiration dates, then find time to redeem them or regift them.
An image of a copy machine and text that says: Make copies. Store copies of the items in your wallet in a secure place so you know what and how to report any missing or stolen items.
An image of a wallet containing various cards, with text that says: Store confidential contents in a secure place. Items such as a Social Security card are hard to replace if lost or stolen. Store them in a secure, private place.
An image of someone taking $11 out of a wallet, next to text that says: Carry cash. Keep some cash in your wallet, just in case.
A person tucks a wallet into their back pocket. The text says: Assess your physical wallet for form and function. Does your wallet fit your current style and contents? If not, consider trying something new.
A person opens a clutch wallet, with text that reads: Reevaluate your wallet every 3 to 6 months. Regularly leverage the tips above to ensure your wallet is working for you.

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