Money at 30: My Financial Spring Cleaning To-Do List

Despite the crazy up and down weather my city has been experiencing in recent week, spring is officially here… and actually has been for some time now. In fact, given my extensive history in the movie exhibition industry, I’m inclined to say that summer is nearly here at this point. But before that happens, I have some spring cleaning items to take care of. From catching up on tasks I’ve been neglecting, to setting new financial goals, here’s what on my to-do list for the next few weeks:

Actual spring cleaning

One thing I was really good about doing in California was going through my closets and other storage areas every six months to a year and getting rid of anything I hadn’t used or thought about since the last time I did such an exercise. After moving to and getting settled in Springfield, this habit has fallen by the wayside a bit. That’s why now seems like the perfect time to scour my closets and empty out some of these boxes that have been sitting in our apartment for the last two years.

Given my collection of Disney items, there is always the chance I could come across some good eBay material and maybe cash in on my cleaning, but really I’m expecting to just throw a lot of stuff away. Yes it sometimes hurts me to think about how much money I’ve wasted on stuff I’m tossing, but it’s best not to think too much about that. Instead of focusing on the past, I like to think about what I can do with the newfound space or how much easier moving will be one day if I continuously pare down my possessions. 

Catch up on business transactions and organizing

While my investment in Quickbooks Self-Employed paid off big time when doing my taxes last month, I must admit I haven’t bothered logging into the app since. If I let this laziness last, I’ll be creating a massive headache for myself down the road. So I suppose it’s time to shake off my tax time hangover and get back to business.

Furthermore, in keeping with the spring cleaning theme, my office is in need of a massive makeover. After all, perhaps having a general pile of important papers isn’t the most efficient way to do things if I want to be organized. Additionally, while digital calendars and reminders are great, I’ve recently discovered how nice having a wall calendar near my desk can be. With that, now it’s time to actually fill in important dates — like when my quarterly taxes are due — on said wall calendar so I can be truly organized and ready to work.

Review and create new budgets

Speaking of business, even though I just got back from one trip, I’m suddenly reminded that I have at least two more coming up in the next few months. Unfortunately I am dreadfully behind on planning for these business excursions, having not even set my budgets yet. With the prime flight booking window quickly approaching, it’s really time to get my act together and start mapping everything out. 

Beyond trip-specific budgets, it’s also about time my wife and I gave our overall budget a polish as well. With her recent raise and me taking on some new ventures, there’s definitely some room for adjustment. In the past I’ve regularly said that, when it comes to budgeting, there’s always room for improvement — now it’s time to put my money where my mouth is.

With no more cold weather to blame my eternal laziness on, there’s a growing to-do list awaiting me as spring rolls on (mmm… spring rolls). In my case, that means getting back on track with cleaning, organizing, downsizing, and budgeting. So now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some work to do.


Kyle Burbank

Kyle is a freelance writer and author whose first book, "The E-Ticket Life" is now available on Amazon. In addition to his weekly "Money at 30" column on Dyer News, he is also the editorial director and a writer for the Disney fan site and has recently starting publsihing his own personal finance blog at

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