Converting Paper Savings Bond to Electronic
Besides being safer, electronically saving your savings bond will also influence the amount of paper used for the environment which is better for us. We have a bunch of paper savings bonds from when I first started working. Payroll deduction made it easy and at the time I knew almost nothing about personal finance, so I enrolled. So over the course of several years we accumulated quite a few bonds, both EE and I.
I thought it might be a good idea to convert the bonds to electronic format, if possible. My thinking being that in the event of a fire or theft, it would be one less thing to worry about. The down side of doing so was that now they wouldn’t physically be anywhere, so they might also get forgotten. I figured the benefits outweighed the costs, so I went looking to see if it could be done.
Enter Treasury Direct
For those who don’t know, Treasury Direct is the government-run website where you can buy Treasure notes and bonds. Looking around, I found that you can in fact convert paper savings bonds into electronic form. Here’s the process:
- Sign up for a Treasury Direct Account. They actually have a pretty cool secure sign-on page that consists of entering your password on this “keyboard” on the screen where they jumble up all the letters. The idea being a keystroke logger can’t get your password.
- E-mail them and let them know you want your account set up for conversions.
- Once they email you back that your account is good to go, you create what they call a manifest. It involves painstakingly entering the date and serial number of each bond. Not particularly fun.
- After you complete the manifest, all you do is print it, sign it, and mail all the bonds with the manifest to them. (This is the step I’m on)
I’ll let you know how it goes after I drop my bonds in the mail. One thing to note about their site is that you can’t use your browser navigation buttons. If you do, you’ll have to log the whole way back in.