Tackling Paper Clutter


Tools for Paper Organizing: Shredder
Recycle bin
2 “Keep” piles bins/baskets
Photo boxes

Steps to Organize Paper:

– Gather all loose paper in the house (leave files alone for later)

-Decide what space the “keep” pile is going in and how you will organize that space (use the wall with files or on counter up-right files or actual baskets/bins)

-Sit down and begin (don’t spend a lot of time reminiscing)

-Divide paper into:

  • Immediate Action Bin – bills, invite responses, school forms

  • Short-term Action Bin – receipts, school year info, monthly dues, deposits/ATM slips

  • Long-Term Action – File Cabinet 

    • Keep 1-3 years: paychecks, mortgage statements, charitable contributions, insurance records, Income related documents

    • Keep 7 years: state and federal taxes, W-2 and 1099, receipts used as tax deductions, cancelled checks, mileage reports, real estate records

Steps to Staying Organized:

  1. Create a Command Center:  Calendar,  Chalk board-message center,  Immediate action bins,  Short-term action bins,  Place for receipts

  2. Go through mail immediately-as you’re walking into the house and put in appropriate locations-discard junk mail

  3. Rip out articles from magazines and newspapers and discard the rest.

  4. Try going paperless.

  5. Scan important documents and photos into computer-remember to back-up computer