Wondering how long you keep your bills? Here are all the conversation timeouts to avoid problems!
Whether on a personal or professional basis, anyone is required to keep an invoice. It can be an energy bill (gas, electricity…), water, telephone… As for companies, they must keep their suppliers’ invoices. But what about the shelf life of these important papers? Discover all the deadlines to respect depending on the type of document. And also follow our advice to keep your other papers (marriage contract, family booklet, tax, employment contract, etc.).
How long to keep housing bills?
There are several types of house-related bills. Depending on their area of attachment, a retention period applies:
- energy bill (electricity, gas): 5 years because this is the maximum period for contesting a bill. And for its part, your energy supplier has 2 years to claim payment;
- water bill: 5 years because this is the maximum period for contesting a bill. Your supplier has 4 years to claim payment. If it is a private supplier, the period is reduced to 2 years;
- internet and landline or mobile phone bill: 1 year. As for the proof of return of equipment (box), respect a retention period of 2 years from the return;
- invoice related to the works: 10 years for the structural work and 2 years for minor works (e.g.: change of carpentry);
- sweeping bill (certificate): 1 year;
- annual maintenance bill for a boiler (certificate): 2 years;
- invoice for co-ownership charges (proof of payment): 5 years instead of 10 years before November 25, 2018;
- rent invoice (rent receipt): 3 years after the end of the rental. This is a recommended time frame whether it is an empty or furnished accommodation.
Advice : Be careful not to confuse invoice and subscription contract. The latter must be kept for the duration of the subscription.
How long should a supplier invoice be kept as a business?
A supplier invoice corresponds to a purchase invoice. It is a document that a company receives from its suppliers. The invoice therefore commits the company to pay the supplier before a certain date.
But as a business, how long should you keep a supplier invoice? Be aware that any document relating to the company must be kept by it. However, the retention period varies depending on the nature of the documents. Indeed, the rules regarding the archiving of a company’s documents are set by regulations in force or according to the periods during which the administrations are likely to carry out an inspection.
Thus, supplier invoices (in original version or copy) must be kept for at least 10 years from the sale or service provision. Retention may be in physical filing cabinets or electronically. If the company chooses to keep the invoice in a binder, it must demonstrate rigor and a sense of organization so as not to misplace the document.
To keep important paper in dematerialized form, there are many accounting platforms or high-performance CRM tools, with software for editing, storing and classifying supplier invoices.
To know : there is no particular sanction for the absence of conservation of company documents. However, depending on the circumstances, several penalties can be applied. A fine can reach up to 25,000 euros for non-conservation. To avoid having to pay a heavy fine, it is better to respect the deadline and file all your invoices correctly, whether physically or electronically.
Why do I have to keep a supplier invoice as a company?
Why do I need to keep an invoice? For several reasons. First, because the invoice is used from a legal point of view to justify the reality of goods sold or services provided. And the document also establishes the right of claim of the seller, in the context of a receipt, for example.
From a commercial point of view, the supplier invoice details the conditions of negotiation of the sale between the supplier and its customer, in particular the amount due. The invoice also serves as accounting evidence to establish the annual accounts. Indeed, an accounting entity must be able to present written proof of each financial movement reported in its accounts.
Finally, in terms of taxation, the supplier invoice is useful in order to exercise rights on VAT (collection and deduction) and to control tax.
Other papers to keep in addition to invoices
Family documents: marriage contract, divorce decree…
Aside from invoices and proof of purchase, there are other important papers to keep. Thus, acts relating to the family, for example, are generally preserved indefinitely. Among them, civil status documents, judgments of adoption, divorce, the act of recognition of a child, contracts and documents relating to marriage, family record book, will and inheritance. As regards the payment slips for family benefits, they are kept for a period of 3 years.
Banking papers: account statements, check remittances, stubs…
On the bank side, you must keep account statements, transfers, direct debits, check or cash remittances as well as check stubs for a period of 5 years. And your consumer or real estate loan contract will be kept for 2 years after the payment of the last installment.
Documents from Taxes
An income tax return is kept for 3 years from the year following the tax year. The period is reduced to 1 year for local taxes. And proof of payment of taxes will be kept for at least 4 years.
Finally, all documents relating to your career (payslips, salary contracts, work certificates, etc.) must be kept indefinitely, until the liquidation of the pension.
Energy comparator to take out the electricity contract that meets your budget
Saving energy and managing the electricity bill are of paramount importance for households. So why homeowners pay attention to the quality of insulation and tend to conform to the requirements of green homes.
It has several electricity and gas suppliers in France. Consumers can thus play on the competition to find the online electricity supplier offering offers that meet their expectations and their budget.
The use of an online electricity comparator is strongly recommended for find the electricity contract at a competitive price. A few minutes are enough to have the top 5, top 10 or top 15 suppliers with attractive offers and prices.
For the use of the energy comparison tool, you indicate the location of your accommodation. This allows you to have the list of electricity or gas suppliers who offer their services in your area.
You can then check the offers of each supplier. To do this, you indicate your type of meter, your estimated energy consumption in kWh, the power of your meter, the tariff option that suits you.
If you do not have an idea of your energy consumption, the tool prompts you to describe your home. This allows you to evaluate your energy consumption and thereby indicate the offers that may interest you.