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Spring clean your financial clutter

It's the time of the year when thoughts turn to spring cleaning
It's the time of the year when thoughts turn ... 02:49

It's the time of the year when thoughts turn to spring cleaning. For many, it's not just windows, blinds, curtains and carpets - 51 percent of Americans who "spring clean" pay special attention to their desk or home office.

In the latest Eye on Money segment, CBS News business analyst Jill Schlesinger shows us what to shred, what to save and how to get our finances in order.

'I think a lot of people are keeping way more than they need to," Schlesinger said Wednesday on "CBS This Morning."

Documents you can shred include credit card bills, pay stubs and utility bills.

"Keep that ATM transaction until you see it on your statement then just get rid of it and fire up a shredder because you don't want this stuff floating around," Schlesinger said.

Bank statements can go after a year, but Schlesinger pointed out one exception.

"If you think you're going to be applying to the Medicaid system, states usually require you hold on to those bank statements sometimes for up to five years," she said.

Documents to keep include house and mortgage documents, vehicle titles and insurance policies.

"The most important thing to save is around your tax documents because the IRS can go back and audit you up to three years but they can go beyond that; they can really go up to six years. So you want your tax documents [and] all of the supporting data," Schlesinger said.

Furthermore, while a preparer will have your tax return documents, there are others Schlesinger said to keep.

"What about all the receipts, what about all the statements that you saved? With your investment statements, you can shred them after a year, but anything that's tax related, a gain or a sale of a security, you want to keep that for as long as the tax event has occurred six years after," Schlesinger

Documents you should always keep include birth and death certificates, pension plan documents and marriage licenses and divorce decrees.

"Keep it in a fireproof safe, save [them] forever," Schlesinger said.

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