Should we Switch from Paper to Electronic Bank and other Statements – Yes

We’re all aware of the growing importance of being environmentally aware. We know that the Amazonian rain forests have been decimated and that we have been reckless in our consumption of the Earth’s natural resources. One small way that we can all help contribute to a better future is by switching off paper statements, whether they be bank statements or utility bill statements.

The first and main benefit of switching off statements is the obvious one of it being good for the environment. Many of us have several bank accounts so we may receive multiple bank statements every month. For the most part, these either get glanced at and shoved in a drawer or else are immediately binned or shredded.

A secondary benefit is improved security. I’ve already mentioned that many bank customers simply bin their statements. A fraudster could then get his hands on your statement and use the information contained in it to commit identity fraud and ultimately take your hard earned money.

There can also be cost savings. I signed up for broadband recently and received a paper statement. I was interested to see that there was a 1 monthly charge documented for receiving paper statements. I phoned the company, arranged to switch to electronic receipt and therefore, as well as helping the environment, I will be 1 better off per month. Quite a small saving but nevertheless lots of small cost savings can start to add up.

There’s also a benefit for the companies issuing the statements. It’s much cheaper to send out an e-mail telling you that your statement is ready to view on their website than it is to send out lots of paper statements. You might not care that the company makes a cost saving but think of it this way; the leaner an organisation becomes the easier it is for them to offer better prices.

In summary, there’s lots of reasons why switching to electronic statements makes sense and, increasingly, banks and other companies are presenting us with the opportunity to make this step. From my perspective, it doesn’t hinder my ability to keep track of the money I’m spending or updates budget spreadsheets. And it does mean that the paper file (which is now actually a big box) that I keep for my financial records can become that bit smaller. My other half will be happy at that as maybe now she can reclaim that part of the study!