Filing cabinets get overwhelmed quickly with the paper we stash there. Files from A-Z and tons of miscellaneous folders end up in home office filing.
Here are 10 ways to de-clutter and organize your home filing system.
1. Label your content
2. Color code your folders (example: yellow for home warranties, green for financial, blue for medical, orange for bill paying, red for items needing immediate attention, and so forth...)
3. Alphabetize your filing system. Within each color of folders you may have more than one folders. For example: Finances can be split into multiple folders for - loans, bills needing paid, bills paid, insurance, and taxes.
4. After a year has passed clean out all the receipts from your filing, if you stash them all year long and create a box for them that can be stored elsewhere. (IRS states you must keep receipts of expense and income for seven years in case of an audit.)
5. Make sure you are using an appropriate sized filing cabinet - small, medium, large. We tend to fill things when the appear empty only to take up the space.
6. Every file in your filing system needs to serve a purpose. Eliminate "Miscellaneous" files as much as possible. This will ease frustrations later when trying to find documents.
7. Have a stash box near your phone, computer, or anywhere you normally lay your mail. Take this box and sort weekly. File way the papers you need to keep and trash the rest.
8. Designate one area in your home for your home office and filing system. It's easier to accomplish household tasks, like paying bills if all the files are in one area.
9. Keep important documents such as, birth certificates, home and car titles, savings bonds, and wills in a fire proof - locked box rather than an ordinary filing cabinet for protection.
10. Review your filing system yearly, take out old files you no longer need, and create new ones for children or other life events to keep your household organized.