I’ll talk about how I handle my own papers, the filing categories I use at home to keep important papers in order, and the tools I think you should get to do the job yourself.
In as little as 15 minutes a day, you might be able to get rid of some of the clutter in your home, feel in charge of your things, be able to find what you need quickly, and develop habits that will last for the rest of your life.
A smart file system is also flexible, so you can change it to meet the needs of your family as they change. So, you should be able to add and remove files without having to change the system as a whole.
Paper documents are hard to keep in order, but a messy stack of papers makes life harder. So, today’s topic is how to make a filing system for your home that really works. Choose one that is easy to set up and run so that you can find the papers you need quickly and easily.
When it comes to owning a home and making changes to it, there are a lot of receipts, manuals, warranties, documents, maintenance reminders, and other things to keep track of! My middle name is “organized,” so you can bet I like keeping things in order. Here is what I do.
When mail and papers are stuffed into drawers or piled high on a desk, they can quickly take over and make it hard to work. We’re guessing that you don’t spend as much time and care on your bills and copies as you do on the rest of your house, which may be easier to keep clean. Even though it seems like a good idea to keep paperwork until you need it again, you shouldn’t wait another year to organize your paper piles. From the point of view of a professional organizer, here’s how to do it for good.
So, where to start? First, you need to figure out how much what you already have is worth. It’s possible that you don’t need or want to keep everything on your computer. You might even decide to save some of your files somewhere other than your computer. Read the section that comes after this one to learn how to make a good list of the files on your computer.
Most likely, there are two kinds of files on your computer: program files and personal files. When you install programs on your computer, they make program files. Software files are things like Adobe Illustrator and Microsoft Office. You can save pictures, documents, spreadsheets, and other kinds of data in your personal files. There is no CD for personal files that can be used to fix or reinstall data. If you don’t back up your personal files, you will lose them.
How long will it take to lower your utility bills and save money?
Bills for utilities shouldn’t be kept for more than a year. At least three years should pass before you get rid of your tax returns, receipts, and tax-related credit card bills. When you get new policies for your home and car, shred the old ones.
Should I keep my old bank statements?
How long you should keep your bank and credit card statements depends on a lot of different things. Most of the time, you should keep them until you’ve filed your taxes for the year and dealt with any fraud issues, but in the long run, it may be better to keep them for longer.
How long should old papers be kept?
If you file a claim for a credit or refund after filing your return, keep records for three years from the date you filed your first return or two years from the date you paid the tax, whichever comes first. Keep records for seven years if you want to get a tax break for bad debts or a loss from securities that are no longer worth anything.
What kind of file system is used the most?
The most common type of filing system is the alphabetical file. Each letter of the alphabet has its own alphabetically organized file guide. In a numerical file, the records are set up by number instead of by name.
Where should I keep the papers for my home?
Stack your papers in a vertical order. A hanging-file system is the best way to keep papers organized and easy to find. Put each set of papers in its own folder before putting them upright in a filing box on a shelf or in a filing cabinet. If you store your papers this way, it’s easy to see how many you have.
What should be done with bank statements that are no longer valid?
Shred or burn old bank statements before you throw them away to protect your privacy and keep your identity from being stolen.
What do old receipts have to do with anything?
Generally, you should throw away receipts that have personal information on them, especially account numbers, because thieves can take them. If a receipt doesn’t have any information about you that could be used to find you, you can usually throw it away or recycle it.
How long should you keep checks that have been cashed?
But you should usually keep check stubs for seven years if you need them to prove something on your tax return, like a donation to charity or a tax payment. Also, you may want to keep any canceled checks and receipts or papers related to the purchase or sale of a home, renovations, or other changes to a property you own for the rest of your life.
Does it matter to keep old tax returns?
By keeping these documents, you get two things. First, the amount your state deducted for contributions may have been lower. This means that the state won’t tax any of the money you get. Second, you may have given money to charity in some years when it wasn’t eligible for federal (or state) tax deductions.
When should I throw away my credit card bills?
The IRS says that it usually looks at tax returns from the last three years. But it only covers the last six years most of the time. In either case, you should keep credit card statements with proof of deductions for at least six years after you file your taxes.
How long do you have to keep a credit card receipt?
The receipt is also proof that you have the card or the card information you need to put into the merchant terminal. Signed credit card receipts should be kept for at least 18 months in case a chargeback is made. For tax purposes, stores should keep receipts that have been signed for at least three years.