Managing your budget

12 October 2018

Electronic documents vs paper documents

Paperwork takes up a lot of space in our lives. Every day documents sent by post and e-mail pile up. Yet you can reduce your paper consumption by digitalising your document!

Digital documents: the same legal value as paper
"Electronic documents now have the same legal equivalence as paper documents."

Tax returns, pay slips, invoices, guarantees, rental agreements… Year after year the files stack up. What can you do to cut such paper consumption?

For a start, you can choose digital documents wherever possible instead of paper documents. In the past everything needed to be stored in paper format. But these days, documents can be digitalised. Electronic documents now have the same legal equivalence as paper documents. 

Digitalisation: how does it work?

The form in which you keep your documents is no longer an issue. You can just as easily save your documents electronically on your computer, on an external hard drive, or on a cloud server. Start to save space straightaway by digitalising your documents. Plus, using less paper is also good for the environment!

The golden rule when saving documents is that you should save the original document. Store the electronic document as you received or downloaded it. As this electronic document is the original. If the document is attached to an email, save this e-mail too as proof of receipt. A digital document is also easier to send or forward by e-mail. You can still print out a paper version of the electronic document but any printed version will then no longer be considered as an original but as a copy.

Many companies now send their payslips digitally. You can receive your electricity, gas and water bills by e-mail or download them online. You can even fill in and submit your tax returns online via Tax-on-web. Some shops have already made the switch to electronic receipts. A number of retailers even offer the option to save your guarantee on your e-ID card. To familiarise yourself with digital documents, why not opt for electronic account statements too? 

Your account statements in electronic format: the benefits

Electronic account statements offer numerous advantages.

  • Save space

By law you are obliged to store account statements for five years. The tax authorities can even ask to go back seven years. If the statements relate to debt repayments, you must keep them for ten years. For this entire time, paper statements will be collecting dust and taking up space. But in digital form, these account statements take up no space at all! It is also much easier to find and manage your documents on your computer.

  • Save money

Electronic statements are also great for your wallet as you will not pay any postage.

  • Save time

You will also save considerable time as you no longer need to go to a branch and it is up to you to decide how you manage your account statements. Unlike statements sent by post, you will not risk losing them. 

How to switch to digital statements

The digital format means that we will not send you any more paper statements and you will not have to print out any statements at a branch. Using Home'Bank, simply select the accounts for which you would like to receive electronic statements. You can then manage, request, download and digitally archive your account statements 24/7.

You can download your account statements easily and securely via Home'Bank. Statements for the last 12 months are always available online and if you want to print a statement, you can. What if your computer crashes? We also store your statements in our systems. Older statements can always be obtained from a branch. Which means there are no risks for you!

What are you waiting for?

Make life easier by switching to electronic statements straightaway.