I am the "money person" in this house. I pay the bills, collect the receipts, and manage the accounts. This year I have committed to consolidating some of these accounts. Although many of them APPEAR to be held at the same financial institutions you'd be AMAZED at the paperwork, phone calls, and appearances this feat requires.
In the last three weeks I've been desperately tackling a custodial account and my Teacher Retirement System account. The idea is to move the funds into Roth IRAs. Despite all of my efforts, the monies still have not been moved. (Ironically, however, I had to OPEN a NEW account in the process of said transfers.) Maybe, just maybe, if I work on it EVERY DAY by the end of 2010 I might finally have a reasonable number of accounts to manage.
The lesson is twofold. First of all, don't let your accounts multiply. Rather, when you need to change ownership make the time to go to the institution and make the changes in person. (Although that whole "in person" thing hasn't gotten me very far in the past few days.) Secondly, persistence is key. Put your banks' customer service lines on speed dial, and have a daily chat!