Do you ever feel like you’re drowning in paper?
Is your husband’s wallet is overflowing with receipts? Are your desk drawers crammed with wedding invitations and old Christmas cards? Or maybe you have piles of kids’ school artwork and math homework shoved in the far corner of your kitchen counter.
Let’s face it: Paper clutter is one of the worst offenders to make a messy home. It accumulates quickly and can be totally overwhelming if you don’t deal with it on a daily basis.
Here are some tips I got from a website called makespace to help banish paper clutter from your home.
1.Go Paperless – Bills and bank statements are common offenders for paper buildup. If you stop them from coming in the mail at all you are cutting the paper off at the helm. Most banks and utility companies now offer email statements. Cloud storage is free or cheap these days. You can even take it a step further and pay bills online too, skipping the need for checks, envelopes, and stamps.
2. Purge your paper – Gather it all up in one area such as your kitchen table. Then sort them – recycle, scan or save. Scan any important documents like tax returns, lease agreements, insurance information. You can also scan those Christmas Cards or sentimental papers and keep them on your computer or external hard drive for safekeeping. Recycle everything else.
3. Recycle Magazines and Newspapers – Let’s Be Honest – those magazines you kept because you were going to try that recipe or future craft project isn’t going to happen. If you really want to keep it. Scan the article and recycle the magazine. While your at it, cancel those subscriptions and save money too.
4. Designate a “Take Action” Spot – Put papers like RSVP cards or forms that need filled out in a high traffic area of your house. I use my refrigerator in the kitchen. Those papers are at eye level so I see them multiple times a day and it prompts me to complete the task and clear that space. It’s also useful to not let it grow too much, so make sure you take action on at least a weekly basis.
5. Shred personal documents – Anything that has your address, social security number, phone number, or bank account number should be shredded to protect yourself from identity theft. If the shred pile is too big to do yourself there are companies out there that offer paper shredding. If you are in the Kansas City area, I recommend Access Records Management. They are a locally owned family business that offer drop off paper shredding for a small fee.
6. Use Binders – Binders aren’t just for middle schoolers any more. Use binders to keep your receipts, coupons, or papers you still want to keep a hard copy of. You can use labels or tabs to organize them and make it easier to locate what you need faster.
For other useful tips and tricks head to abudgetselfstorage.com/blog