I have been on the quest to find the perfect way to store important papers and documents. We, or more specifically, I have tried all sorts of approaches. I have tried using Suze Orman’s Protection Portfolio, keeping documents in a filing cabinet, binder, and even box. It never seemed to work out because I don’t think we truly had a good system in place. It’s been especially important for me recently to make sure that just in case something happened to either me or Brian or both, our family would know where to go to get the necessary and important documents.
After about a week of organizing and gathering all our papers that were scattered everywhere, I think we finally have found an ideal solution.
We also managed to fill a box of recyclable papers. This does not include the huge bag of shredded documents either!
First was coming up with a system that would work for us. I finally decided that we would use our filing cabinets for more long-term storage for documents.
I took apart the first drawer of the cabinet to focus on mostly current paperwork that we might eventually need, or just something to reference.
I have main files like 2013 Medical, Finances, Finances-Kids, Timeshare, Personal. Then they are broken down to individual person files. For example, in our Personal file if you look in my folder you will see my last resume, school transcripts, and recommendation letters. So, maybe I will need it down the road, but maybe not, but at least it is all together and easy to find.The next drawer in the filing cabinet is really long term paperwork. I might only look at the drawer a couple of times a year. We store our previous tax returns and medical paperwork. Farther back in the row are manuals to items like the stove or stereo system. I’m really excited about how we store our vital records. I basically followed this amazing template from Simple Organized Living and applied it to our home. I have a few more categories that include our parents’ information and some of their documents. Then, I ordered the same binder Andrea uses. Okay, I ordered three.
The blue one is the one for our vital documents. I’m going to use pink one for a more everyday/home management binder and I have yet to determine what I will do with the green binder.I sorted everything into different categories, and used her free printable to post all important passwords, account numbers, and so on and put them in each applicable tab.
The larger items like copies of our wills, and our passports went into the folder section.Everything fit well in the binder and I love that everything is all in one spot.
Now that it is finished, we are going to put it in our large safety deposit box at the bank. It’s pretty funny because we have had the box since at least 2008, but we have never used it. Now that I have everything where it all needs to go, it will be easy to drop it off.