Are you fed up with paperwork in your home and you just want a system that will make it easy to keep organized and under control? Paper comes in all shapes and sizes and including some important documents that you need to keep safe follow these simple tips to organize paperwork and bills at home.
But how do you create a system that is going to work for you? It’s about understand what is coming in and what you need to keep and what you don’t need. For those important papers you do need to keep you just need a system that’s going to work for you and your family so you can find things when you need to.
You don’t need to follow anyone elses systems, just do what works for you. If that means that you have a box that important papers are thrown in randamly then go for it, at least they are in one place and not scattered all over your home.
Getting Rid Of Paper Clutter
Paper can easily become a problem in your home and it is surprising how difficult it can be to ensure that it it something you want and need and not something that needs to go.
First you need to identify what is clutter to you and your family and what needs to happen to those items before the go into recycling. You will need to ask each family member that the paper belongs too, don’t throw away items that might be important to someone else.
Have a place for paper that needs recycling and let other family members know how to use it and who’s responsible for making sure that it goes to the recycling place on a regualar basis.
Making Sure To Remove Details
One thing you really must do before recycling any paperwork is to make sure that all personal details are removed, you don’t want someone else going through your recycling and taking your details and using them for fraudulent purposes.
There are some documents that you need to keep safe and secure and the old way to do this was to store these items in your filing cabinet along with the rest of your paperwork you had for your home. However, things are changing and we don’t use as much paper as we used to, so having a filing cabinet is not on most people’s radar any longer.
These means those important documents need to be stored where they are safe but usable in the modern home. The best way to do this is to obtain a mini portable safe and use that as a way to store important paperwork like birth certificates, medical records and even your social security cards.
This will keep the small amount of paperwork that you need to keep at home safe and secure and easily accessable if you need something quickly.
Related article: How To Organize Your Legal Paperwork At Home
Going Paperless At Home
We just don’t need to have so much paper at home to run our homes any longer, sometimes even in a home office you can reduce the paperwork that you produce. You can get most of your bills on line including your bank statements and you don’t need to print them off either.
I even do my tax returns online, it’s that easy and it’s a good idea because I don’t have to have a pile of paperwork or a separate folder full of piles of paper I can do all the things I need to do online and this means that I don’t have a home office that’s bursting at the seams with different pieces of paper.
So, all my utility bills, credit cards statements and insurance policies are all done online and through email, this means I don’t need to print our this sensitive information, it can all be stored and organized on the software of my choice.
Check out Abby Lawson’s Ultimate Guide To Going Paperless
Clutter Hot Spots
There are places that will act as hot spots, these are where you typically put things down. There are some really common places if you don’t think you have one check these spaces:
- Kitchen table
- Kitchen counter tops
- Dining room table
- Home office
The typical type of items that land there are:
- Permission slips
- Incoming paper
- Incoming mail
- Travel documents
- Kids’ school papers
- Gift cards
- Stuff for the recycle bin
The idea is to reduce this clutter and find homes for these items so they don’t just get dumped in your hot spot and forgotten about.
Related article: Simple And Easy Tips To Organize Your Paperwork
Creating Spaces For Paperwork
When it comes to organizing and sorting your paperwork, you need somewhere to put the different items that you are keeping. Remember if you have paperwork with personal information that you don’t need remember to dispose of this paperwork carefully.
For those important papers that you need to keep at home, think about the ways that you could store them so they are safe. You might like the idea of a file cabinet and hanging files to separate out the different categories of paper.
With the digital age in full swing we don’t need to keep so much paperwork and this means the need for a filing system isn’t always required. You might just need a small portable safe or even just a special box for the paper that you need to keep.
But what about other paperwork like drawings from your children or invites what do you do with those kinds of things?
What’s important to understand with this type of paperwork is that if the party has passed, you don’t need to keep it any longer. As for children’s art work, create a box where you can only store a limited amount so the favourite pieces are kept. Perhaps you can give other pieces of art to family and friends.
It’s about having a file system that works for you and your family.
Related article: Where To Start Decluttering: 3 Day Free Decluttering Kickstart
How To Make It Work Long Term
When it comes to long term paper organizing systems it’s important to remember that each time paper comes into your home you have to take action. You have to put it somewhere where it will be found again if it’s needed. Any household papers need a place to go, a system that you follow.
You might think it like a flow chart or a check list that you follow with each item so that it ends up at the right place without getting lost along the way.
Have a system in place that you can follow to ensure that paperwork ends up in the right place, so any sensitive documents aren’t muddled with any other papers and thrown away.
It’s about creating a system that is easy to follow and ensures that the only paperwork that you have are the important things that you need for your home.
When you have a system having labels that you can use to ensure that other people know where to find items is a great tool. I love my label maker and wouldn’t be without it.
Have a space for all those different types of paperwork that come into your home. Separate tax documents from childrens artwork, don’t just have a pile of paper that has no where to go.
Paper organization is so important, it’s one of those items that if you let it, it will quickly get out of control and start to take over your home.
It might mean scheduling time in your day to organize your paper files and getting them into great shape and continuing on with the process long-term.