The funny thing about your important documents is that you actually do not use them on a regular basis. But when you need them, that’s when they seemingly do not want to show themselves up. Well, this is a common problem of people who actually have not organized their important paperwork and documents. If you are one of them, maybe now is the time to change that mindset. Now is the time to go back to your old chest, unearth the old documents, and organize them accordingly. That way, you will spare yourself some headaches when the time you will need them actually comes.
There are some ways you can actually organize your important documents. This does not mean that it will have to be difficult and labor-intensive. Things may feel quite challenging initially, but if you have a plan, it will not be hard work. Below are some of the pointers you ought to keep in mind when organizing your paperwork.
Sort the files and documents
Now that you have opened the chest or cabinet where you keep your items, you should take them out one by one. But be careful not to disintegrate or throw things away easily—that will come later. For now, you will have to sort the items, from the most important to things that you can discard. If you are really determined to sort them, you may start segregating them using the following hierarchy: the category, year the document is created, and importance.
Get new storage
Once you have sorted all your files, that is when you need to store them in a new location. You may still store them in your old cabinet, but make sure that they will not be accessed by pests that feed on paper. For easy access, store some of them in clear envelopes or plastic containers that are waterproof to protect them in case of flooding. If you are taking this seriously, you may choose to buy a safe.
Create multiple copies
You are looking for protection, so besides your original copies of documents, you should make duplicates. You can photocopy your documents and store them in other locations. If you have a self-storage location, you can store them there. But if you are taking it one step further, you will have to digitize your items: scan them and save the images in a hard drive. Better yet, save them on the cloud. That way, you will be able to access your files anytime anywhere.
Know what to throw away
There are some things that you need to discard for good. That way, organizing the remaining is much easier. Items, such as utility bills, receipts, and bank slips, can be kept up to three months. Your old insurance records and receipts of major purchases can be kept up to a year.
Organizing your paperwork and important documents is one thing that you should not delay. There will be some happenings in your life that will require the immediate presentation of birth certificates and legal documents. When your files are organized, it should be easier for you to access what you need.