Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Organization : home

As you may remember, we have just move into a new country. That meant we had a perfect opportunity to go through all the paperwork we accumulated over the past few years, and to set up a new system.
I went for something super simple, so I'm not sure it's any interest for you guys, but since it's working so well for me I thought, even if it only helps one reader, it was still good to describe it :)
I first divided everything in different categories : home (which contains rent information, insurance, appliances instructions booklets,...), car, bank, work (contracts, pay slips...), electricity, phones, etc.
I created an 'archive' binder for each category, which contains past years of data that I still need to keep (check online, but in my country you're supposed to keep the past 5 years for almost everything).
All these binders, I'm lucky enough to be able to store them in our basement, which is perfect : easily reachable should I need them, but not in the middle distracting me from every day business. In the past, having to pick up a huge and heavy binder just to put in the last bank statement for instance, meant I would wait 3-4 months to do it...
For all the current business, the past 6 months of statements and such, I bought a file for each of my categories. I haven't talked about it yet, but you know me, everything is color-coded :) So my Home archive binder is yellow, and the smaller file I keep upstairs is yellow too. These files are easy to grab, to identify, they make it easy to check something or file away something you just received in the mail. It's also very easy to take whatever is old enough (usually the back of the file) and archive it in the binder.
For whatever I have that need action, I leave it out on the counter and do it ASAP. It's the only way it's ever going to get done anyway...

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