What Receipts To Keep- Tips For Keeping Your Receipts Organized

what receipts to keep

Have you ever sworn you had a piece of paperwork only to find yourself knee-deep in random receipts and documents? We can all agree that having a desk or draw full of unorganized receipts can cause anxiety and stress, most of which are unnecessary. 

Having your important financial documents like insurance policies and taxes filed appropriately when you need them at the drop of a hat is important no matter who you are. Keep reading to find out what receipts you need to keep and how to keep your important documents organized.

What receipts to keep for taxes

Which type of receipts you need to keep for tax purposes is different depending on if you’re a W2 employee, freelancer, or business owner. But, there are some documents and recipients that everyone should keep no matter what. 

Some you should keep longer than others, but the best rule of thumb is to keep important documents up to 3 years due to a period of limitations. This is the time you have if you need to amend your tax returns and during which the IRS performs an audit on your tax returns. Here’s a peek at common receipts and documents that should be kept. 


  • Past tax returns 
  • Insurance policies
  • Credit card statements 
  • Checking and savings account statements
  • Large purchase receipts 
  • Donations
  • Warranties 
  • Contracts
  • Medical expenses
  • Mortgage/Rent payments
  • Utilities
  • Internet
  • Student loan paperwork
  • 1098-T
  • 1098-E

W2 employee 

  • Paystubs 
  • Tracked miles to and from work 
  • W2’s
  • Job search expenses
  • Child care expenses
  • Unreimbursed work-related expenses

Business owner

  • Materials 
  • Supplies
  • Marketing 
  • Office expenses
  • Insurance
  • Travel expenses for work trips
  • Meals during work trips
  • Mortgage/rent for office space
  • Gas
  • Utility bills
  • Internet
  • Work-related entertainment

Go to IRS.gov to find out more about specific tax documents you should keep.

How many years of receipts to keep for taxes

Although the IRS can audit you for deductions under $75, some items are short term and can be thrown away. For example, fast food receipts and toilet paper. Unless you plan to return either one of those, you can toss them.  

Long-term items consist of things you could return, need to reference, or have issues with like: large price purchases, warranties, important finances, or larger tax deductions. Keeping your receipts organized helps assess your spending accurately and makes filing your taxes easier.

Check out this list of a few vital documents to keep and for how long. 

Short term receipts to keep

  • Credit Card Receipts- 1 year
  • Pass taxes- 3 years 
  • Employment tax records- 4 years 
  • Property related deductions- 3 years 
  • Tire purchases- 4 years or max warranty years

Long term receipts to keep 

  • Omitted income from return- 6 years 
  • Mortgage documents-forever 
  • Warranties- forever or until expired 
  • Claim for a loss from worthless securities or bad debt deduction- 7 years
  • Keep records indefinitely if you do not file a return 

Get organized 

Organization is going to save you a ton of time and stress in the long run. Use these tips to store and systematize all your important paperwork. 

1. Accordion file with separate folders labeled with specific categories like warranties, appliances, co-pays, insurance policies, auto maintenance. 

2. Create a digital folder and subfolders on your computer with receipts from any bills you pay online.

3. Write a short description on paper receipts that are related to work, for example: dinner meeting with colleagues.

4. Do a weekly sweep of your purse, wallet, car, desk, and organize. This will help you from having an overflowing shoebox to go through at the end of the year.

5. Use RoarMoney Financial HeartBeart to organize and understand your insurance policies and overall finances. 

Receipt price protection with MoneyLion Debit Mastercard 

Keeping your receipts for bigger purchases comes in handy when you purchase with your MoneyLion Debit Card. If your purchase drops in price after you buy it, you can request a refund for the difference within 90 days of your eligible purchase. 

Keep track of your spending

Need help tracking your spending? Sign up for a RoarMoney account for $1/month and get instant access to the spend report tracker to manage your budget and track your spending. 

Skip the old school budget sheets and keep tabs on your daily expenses by category with the spend report tracker and Financial HeartBeat. This feature uses 5 areas to determine your overall financial health, ten being the perfect score.

The 5th is the strive icon that helps members stay motivated by giving badges and points to congratulate positive financial steps forward. Along the way, you’ll get expert advice on how to get closer to your financial goals.

Skip the paper

When you open a RoarMoney account or qualify for a low-cost Credit Builder loan or 0% APR Instacash, there’s no need for you to go into a local bank branch to fill out or sign paperwork. Everything is done virtually and can be viewed right from your mobile app

Easy financial organization using MoneyLion

Looking to purchases a few organizational supplies? Utilize our early payday feature to get your paycheck up to 2 days early. Now that you’re on your way to a more orderly life, when urgent moments happen you’ll know exactly where everything is. Get started on your financial journey with MoneyLion today!

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