Here are a few quick and easy ideas for organizing a home filing system. It seems like there is a never-ending pile of paper that sits on our desk, with more pages being added constantly. How do we keep it all organized, and find what we need when we need it? Having an effective home filing system is important, and can help you maintain your household records better. You’ll be able to find that receipt, bill, or statement quickly when you need it. Less stress is a good thing!
Use some standard home filing system categories as a guide to setting up your own:
- Insurance – home, auto, life, disability, medical, etc.
- Financial – bank accounts, credit card accounts, mortgage statements, investments, etc.
- Property – home improvement receipts, product manuals and receipts, repair receipts, auto purchases, etc.
- Taxes – the current year’s receipts, other tax documentation
- Medical records
- Veterinary records
I am sure you can probably come up with some of your own that fit your family and your needs. Check out my Paper Clutter post to see how to gather and sort your papers to get ready to file them.
Avoid labeling file and folders as “Miscellaneous.” If the information isn’t important enough to have it’s own label, then file it in another folder. Or decide if its important enough to keep at all.
Align hanging file tabs in the same position on every hanging folder. This is different than what I was taught! It’s actually easier to see the labels when they are in a line. Plus you can add and subtract folders from the drawer without messing up a zigzag pattern. What a time saver! It used to stress me out, trying to make sure that my pattern was intact.
Insert hanging-file tabs on the front of the folder so that they’re visible even when the folder is full. When you want to look at the folder, just pull the tab forward to open the file in the drawer.
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Color-coded hanging files/file tabs are a great organizer! They help to distinguish between different types of files, such as financial and insurance records. Also, use color coding to separate business and personal files or to differentiate project or client folders.
What are your best tips for organizing a home filing system?
Share them in the comments below. Maybe I will add them to an upcoming post, and I will be sure to include your contact information, etc.