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Old 04-25-2013, 10:51 AM   #1
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Office space/ important papers

I am curious as to the different ways others organize and store their important papers, as well as if you have a dedicated office.

I've been bad lately about just tossing papers/pics, etc into a basket and not filing them away immediately like I should've. So today I finally broke out the accordion file folder thing I have and started sorting and tossing. We don't have a file cabinet, so as the file folder fills up I move things to a bankers box for long term storage (taxes, banking) Plus I figure if there's ever a fire, I can grab the folder easier. I have bc's and marriage lisc. in it too. Then I just store it on a bookcase shelf in our guest room/office/craft room.

How minimalist is your system??

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Old 04-25-2013, 11:13 AM   #2
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Re: Office space/ important papers

We have a fire safe locked box that we keep birth certificates, marriage lisence, ss cards, etc in. I also use file folders from IKEA and binders with lots of folders. Those more for financial stuff, warranties, ect, the binders for papers with information.
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Old 04-25-2013, 11:21 AM   #3
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Re: Office space/ important papers

I use a binder system. I don't know how "minimalist" it is, but I was able to toss our filing cabinets and folders and file everything on a shelf in the bookcase in our office. We also have a fireproof safe for the really important stuff.

We do have a separate office, but that wasn't really a consideration when I redid everything into binders.

This is the bookshelf in our office, the filing binders are on the very bottom and are divided into categories. One for manuals, warranties, and important receipts, one for our property (home, auto, camp), one for the kids, one for DH and myself, etc.

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Old 04-25-2013, 12:39 PM   #4
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Re: Office space/ important papers

I have a few different systems for papers.

Fire Proof File Box - sensitive materials/difficult to replace
- Birth Certificates
- Marriage License
- Tax Info
- Social Security Cards
- Medical Records

Desk Top File Box - this one
- Items that require action: checks to be cashed, paperwork that needs to be filled out, etc
- Netflix: our current dvd(s)
- Menus: take out menus
- Pet: a file for each of our dogs with their vet records
- To Be Filed: For papers that are ready to move to another area, usually a kid's file box

Home Management Binder - for documents I need to reference daily/often
- Housekeeping: to do lists, fall & spring cleaning schedule, etc
- Food: freezer inventory, food journal, recipe list & grocery list
- Reference Material: address book, car maintenance log, business cards, homemade cleaning recipes, dirty dozen/clean 15 reference list, stain removal guide
- Kids' Info: school schedules, school info, passwords for their online accounts
- Planner: my daily planner/calendar, important dates list, gift giving lists and family traditions
- Medical: immunization schedule, medical release form, medication info, pending insurance claims, symptoms and medication logs
- Finance: monthly budget, bill schedule, projected budget,
- Travel: travel checklist, copies of the kids' birth certificates and any confirmations for reservations (airline/hotel/ car rental)
Misc.: household labels and anything else I need to keep for reference that doesn't fit into the other catergories
Mail Center: address labels, stamps and holiday cards that need to be mailed

Finally, the kids have 2 filing systems:
1. A document box that has 2 file folders (action & info) for their school papers which also houses colored pencils, crayons, scissors, glue, ruler - basically anything typically needed to complete their homework.
2. A file box ( like this) that stores a few special paper, projects and pictures from each grade, one file folder per grade.
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:23 PM   #5
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Re: Office space/ important papers

With the exception of marriage docs, birth certificates, and SS cards, and a few legal docs, I digitize everything. I am not joking. That awaysome list by Afwife above? I digitize all that. Mechanic receipt: digitized. Vet records: digitized. My schoolwork: all digital. Passwords: digitized using KeePass. Housekeeping lists: also digital. I scan stuff in, and save in the appropriate folder. I literally got rid of a full two-drawer metal file cabinet, and am down to the most important papers in a small container. I'll link to something later.

As for an office, we do use one of the bedrooms as a home office, but both my dh and I are in school, and he Telecommutes half the week, so it's pretty important for us. In the office we each have a computer station, a printer, and a bookshelf with fiction books, and a bookshelf with reference books and school stuff.
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:28 PM   #6
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Re: Office space/ important papers

Here's a link to something similar to what I have for filing. http://m.target.com/p/room-essential...6/-/A-13863794 What I have is similar except mine has a flip-top and holes in the sides for easy transport. But it is small and compact.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:10 AM   #7
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Re: Office space/ important papers

We have a small fireproof box, a plastic basket that holds hanging files, and a small pencil basket where all bills get tossed for payment.

As for filing bills, etc. Except for the mortgage bill and medical bills, everything else is piled all together in a hanging file folder. In all reality, the time it would take to dig through a mixed pile of bills is still less than the time it would take to file everything separately. I've dug through the pile exactly once in the last 2 years.
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Old 04-26-2013, 02:46 PM   #8
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Re: Office space/ important papers

I need tobuy a fire box too. Just haven't had the money to get one yet.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:13 PM   #9
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Re: Office space/ important papers

Quote:
Originally Posted by leadmare View Post
Here's a link to something similar to what I have for filing. http://m.target.com/p/room-essential...6/-/A-13863794 What I have is similar except mine has a flip-top and holes in the sides for easy transport. But it is small and compact.
We have something similar in our kitchen, it's set up as a "command center" and it helps sort our mail and papers. One of the folders is a "to file" section, and anything in there eventually goes in the binders I posted about above. It really helps cut down on paper clutter, and we know where the bills are, what needs our attention, etc. Works great!
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Old 04-27-2013, 11:41 AM   #10
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Re: Office space/ important papers

I have a fire/water proof safe where we keep birth certificates, SS cards, etc.

On my counter I have this. It holds paper to be filed, bills to be paid and kids papers that need filled out or put into storage. (ETA: When company comes over I stick it in the empty cabinet below the counter.)


Kids papers from school are put into a small plastic tote and sorted several times a year. After kids forms are filled out, I put them in their backpacks. After bills are paid, I mail and/or file.

This is what I file papers into:
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