One thing I get asked all the time is how I organize bills and keep that household paperwork and such in order. I have a pretty good system in place that has worked wonderfully for our family, so in the spirit of sharing all things Organization for the new year I thought I would share what works for us, and the tips that help me!
First off is bills. This part is more advise than a system. I personally pay bills online, and my biggest piece of advice is to keep unpaid bills in the same place and in sight. If you’re a busy person (which if you’re not I want to be you haha), its easier to remember things that are out. For me that means that unpaid bills go inside the front of my planner that stays with my laptop. That means they will be seen DAILY. For you it could be in a spot on the counter or your laundry room. But keep them somewhere you will see them! The first and most important part of organizing bills is after all paying them!
Next is what to do with those bills, the mail, and all the other crap. I have a few tips to help. My paperwork goes through a cycle of locations:
- First when we receive mail or have paper work that I need to keep I put it in a small file folder like this that stays in an “office” cupboard in our kitchen. We have one drawer (the dreaded junk drawer) and cupboard in our kitchen that keeps batteries, office type items, and such. Those papers stay in there until that file folder is full.
- Then a couple times a year I take that folder to the basement and file all of those papers in labeled files in file cases like this.
- Once a year when preparing taxes those file folders are all cleaned out. Anything no longer needed is thrown out.
Following this system makes it easy to keep up with and maintain on a daily basis, but keeps things organized in the long run also.
Organizing Kid Paperwork
I organize our paperwork for the kids differently than the rest. they each have one of these file folders with their names in vinyl on them. Inside are files for each grade where I keep their school photos or projects. At the front are files labeled “immunizations” “school” “medical” and some small ones for each that are specific. I have found that having those items in front and filed alone makes it easy when they are needed. The school file holds things like class lists and directories. My hope is that when my kids are older I can give them these and they will have organized memories from school.
I hope this helps you when you are organizing bills and other paperwork, and helps you this new year!