When it comes to all the “stuff” we’ve got in our homes, sometimes it gets tough trying to keep up with it all. Especially important documents, right? When was the last time you needed to find the warranty info for your stove and you tore through your entire office looking for it, only to come up empty-handed and paying for a repairman out of pocket? Sucks, huh? Here’s a few tips on how to keep your important home info organized, safe, and easily accessible.
Keep Them Safe
Above all else, this is by far your biggest priority. Your important info is, well, important! I like to keep original copies of birth certificates, titles and deeds, and irreplaceable family heirloom photographs in a waterproof, fireproof, locked-up-super-tight safe. If there were ever a fire, flood, or other natural disaster, this stuff is going to make it through just fine. You can also keep these things in a safety deposit box at the bank, but that does cost a monthly fee.
I have a post below about how you can DIY your own emergency kit, but if you prefer a ready-made option, I recommend Judy. They send a full box of emergency supplies personalized to your area, and each kit connects with a mobile app, so you can text any preparedness questions to an expert in real time. I saw the Judy kits on GMA recently and thought they were definitely worth mentioning.
Read More: Why You Need An Emergency Prep Box & How To Make One
Use A Filing Cabinet
You may think filing cabinets are only for grandparents and businesses, but trust me here, it’s a huge asset for your home. For most families, a two drawer filing cabinet is the perfect size and helps keep all your documents organized and easy to find.
Make Them Digital
Digital storage is taking over and you need to get #hiptothetimes by embracing it. There are so many cloud options available like Google Drive and Dropbox, and they’re all free to use, so there’s no excuses on jumping on the digital train. Don’t think you can’t store digital copies in clouds if you don’t have a scanner. As long as you have a smartphone, you can just snap a photo of the documents and upload them straight into your storage app. They’re nice and safe, so if something ever happened to the originals, you’ll have the copy stored online and you can access them from anywhere in the world.
Read More: How To Preserve Your Printed Photos In A Cloud
Use A Home Organization Binder
This is your go-to hub for everything in your home. It’s like the operator when you dial the 1-800 number and it directs you to the right extension. A home organization binder keeps anything and everything you need for your home, from mortgage information to warranties to even the paint colors you used in each room. It takes up a tiny amount of space on a shelf, so it’s a great alternative to a bulky filing cabinet.
I even created the ultimate home organization binder with lots of add-in expansion packs to keep your home and your life as organized as possible. You can grab your printable copy of the Organized-ish Essential Bundle right here and browse the collection.
Yeah, yeah, you were raised to keep every single manual from every single purchase you’ve ever made. I bet you’ve still got that manual from the cell phone you bought ten years ago stashed somewhere in that home office closet of yours. But here’s the thing. Manuals take up a lot of space. They’re bulky and made in all different shapes and sizes. But want to know a secret? They’re all available as PDFs online.
One rainy afternoon, go on an internet scavenger hunt and track down the digital versions of the manuals you need to keep for the appliances and electronics in your home. Save those PDFs to your cloud, then trash the physical copies. You’ll free up so much space and you’ll have a much easier time finding that info later.
Stay On Top Of Storage
A lot of times, we save every single document by stashing it in a filing cabinet or box, then never touching it again. Then when you go to grab your insurance info, you can’t even find it because your storage container is so jam packed that you can’t get anything in or out without twenty other papers coming with it. Truth time, you don’t have to save everything forever.
Filing systems should be consolidated and pared down twice a year to avoid overload. I like to do this once after tax season and once after Thanksgiving. It helps me make sure I’m only saving what’s needed and not wasting storage on garbage.
Ok lady, time to take action and stop procrastinating. Spend some time this weekend getting your important home info organized, filed, safe, and easily accessible for when you need it. Start by grabbing the Organized-ish Essential Bundle and building your home binder, then ease into tackling that filing cabinet (or over-stuffed shoe box) and digitizing your documents.
And let me know in the comments below how organizing your important home info can change the game for you personally. I’d love to know how finally getting organized in your home office can impact your home, and your sanity. 🙂
Jim Allen says
Thanks for the tips. I have been trying to get more organized heading into the new year. I’m guilty of holding on to documents/papers/bills too long, so your tips about consolidating paper and replacing with digital versions where possible is great.
Lela Burris says
Thanks Jim! You’re right, paper clutter is definitely to hardest to tackle. So glad the tips were helpful to you!