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Organize Your Household Paperwork

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Keeping track of all the papers in your life can become a losing battle without an organized system. It’s easy to forget little things you need to do (like paying a bill or sending birthday cards) without a plan to remind yourself.

This system has worked for me for years.  As you can see my folders in the picture have been well used – to the point I need to replace them.  I seldom forget a birthday or other important date and I NEVER pay late fees because I just forgot a bill.  No, my memory is not great.  My reminder and filing system works great for me!  Hopefully it will work for you also.

I hate the look of papers everywhere – on the kitchen counter, bedroom dresser, end tables.  I once visited someone who used the spare bedroom as a filing cabinet.  Papers were in piles everywhere – the bed and dressers were completely covered, and in no particular order.

I have other files for receipts, etc., which is a future blog.  These two files are my “need to do” files.

One expanding folder has months – January through December on the tabs.  (Available at any office supply store.)  In this folder I file paperwork or notes for things I need to do in the month tab when it needs to be done.  My property tax bill is filed in May and November; my Christmas card list is filed in December; every month has a list of birthdays for that month. I usually buy a box of cards at the beginning of the year and put the cards for the birthday people in the month of their birthday.  At the beginning of the month or a day or two before, I get out the month’s paperwork.  Some things then get put in the day of the month file (next paragraph).

The second expanding folder has days of the month – 1 through 31 on the tabs.  In that folder I file paperwork and notes of things that need to be done on a certain day of the month.  For example, the bill pictured below is due on the 26th so it is filed under the 21st to be mailed.  (If something needs to be mailed, be sure to put it under the day it needs to be mailed – not the due date or you will be late and pay a late fee.). Every day (or the night before), I get out what I need to do for the day.  It gets put somewhere convenient, but it is one neat little pile.

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