Whoever you are, wherever you live – nearly everyone has a daily amount of paperwork being put through their door.
This always seems to be an issue with a large amount of my clients.
Even if you have an amazing filing system, if you aren’t on top if it, it can soon start to mount up and take over your house!
A filing system is only really half the battle. I am a firm believer of sorting, recycling, shredding as soon as it comes into your house.
Im sure some of you really don’t believe this is achievable – but believe me – it truly is!
I’ve gone to some clients’ houses and there are rooms full of boxes and boxes of paperwork.
Old bills. Car details. Junk mail. Take away menus. Whatever it is – if you don’t tackle it then and then, it becomes clutter. Which can then start to stake over a side, then a drawer, then a box, then two boxes, until it just become too much and gets shoved into the spare room to collect dust and grow as clutter!
The system we have put into place in our home works for us, and as a busy family of 4 – it’s a must for us!
So, here are my simple rules to follow:
- If its junk mail, put it in the recycling bin straight away. If you can’t access your recycling then and there, have a specific box, bag (something small that fits into your decor/room) and make sure you empty that into your recycling bin EVERY SINGLE EVENING! (It’ll take you 30 seconds to do this – seriously!)
- Take Away Menus – we keep ours in a plastic wallet in our kitchen cupboard. Any that we know we can access their menus online (which in todays world is about 90%!) are recycled straight away. This is a great tip to keep clutter out of your cupboards.
- Bills – Any that need paying, if we can’t action the bill then and there, we have a pin board in our kitchen that they go. This is a constant reminder as it is there, the board is looming over our daily breakfast table to pay it! Once paid/actioned, they go straight into our filing trays, ready to be shredded or filed.
- In-tray – This is where we put any paperwork that we absolutely MUST keep. This will mainly consist of any items that we cannot access online, such as MOT certificates, Birth certificates, House deeds etc. This In-tray paperwork is then filed away in our small concertina file, which is clearly labelled for each area of our lives, for example – House, Car, Healthcare, Certificates etc. It lives in the top of one of our wardrobes, neat and out of the way, but easily accessible. (I was truly thanking my system a few weeks ago when we had a flood and I needed to access information ASAP, with 2 little ladies in the house and hubby at work!)
- Shredding – this is a tray kept underneath our In-tray. Any documents that have our address on, we shred. If it only has our address on, but nothing else personal, I usually just rip off the address part, put this in our shredding file and recycle the rest of the paper straight away. I’ll admit that our shredding isn’t done daily, but it is a weekly part of our system.
If you follow these basic rules, I absolutely promise you, your house will not become inundated with paperwork. It’s not rocket science, it’s a simple process to keep your home that little bit more clutter free.
Nowadays, nearly all bills, payslips, insurance details etc can be found online. As long as you are aware of who your suppliers are for your house, car etc (a simple excel spreadsheet can sort that one out!) then you really don’t need any of this paperwork.
You can live (just about anyway!) a paperwork free life!
I hope this has inspired you to go thorough your own paperwork now and input your own system for your home.
In my next blog I’ll be talking about another aspect of paperwork that seem stop be EVERYWHERE when you are a parent – the dreaded nursery and school artwork!
Please do comment on how you keep your home paperwork free. if you need any help to maintain a clutter free lifestyle, please do get in contact. I’m always happy to help out and have a great declutter session, whether that is in Leicestershire, The Midlands, Berkshire, London or beyond!
Have a great week!
The Declutter Darling