7 Ways to Eliminate Paper Piles in your Home
Are the papers in your home taking on a life of their own? Papers such as bills, school work, and junk mail can quickly take over leaving you feel trapped and weighed down. Instead of letting paper piles have control over you, take a look below at 7 ways to eliminate paper piles in your home and enjoy a clutter free space instead. Here is how to get started.
1. Throw out junk mail before it even comes in the house.
Chances are you keep a trash bin outside of your house. When getting the mail, quickly sort through and eliminate the items you know to be junk mail. Don’t even allow it the chance to come into the house.
2. Use paper trays or file folders to organize bills.
As bills arrive, file them away to these designated spaces. It will make things easier when it comes time to pay these bills, and will keep bills from getting lost in the shuffle. A simple tray or filing folders in your home office or common meeting area will do the job.
3. Give each family member a paper bin or basket.
Give each family member a basket or bin for their important papers. When they get mail, have documents to look at, or other important papers, place the items in their bin. Each family member should check their bin daily and either file or discard the contents as they see fit.
4. Go paperless whenever possible.
With the magic of the internet, it has never been easier to go paperless. Ask your utility companies to send you an e-bill if possible, and see the amount of paper that comes into your home quickly decrease. Evernote is a FANTASTIC App and Web Based program that allows you to organize ideas and thoughts. I set this up when we were building a house to have all my ideas for each room in the house, it was AMAZING for keeping organized without piles and piles of paper! I would just take a photo and store it in my Evernote in the room where I wanted that idea, it really simplified the process and I always had all my ideas and information with me when I was meeting with contractors.
5. Scan artwork into photographs.
Do your children love drawing you pictures? Chances are, it is hard to hang onto every single one of them, yet you want to remember them. Instead, scan the artwork and create a photo album of the work. It can help you keep paper piles to a minimum. You can also take a Photo with your Phone and save it to a Folder for each kid. This is a really simple way to organize your Kids Stuff without having to save every piece.
6. Utilize a receipt jar.
If you are paranoid about throwing away, keep a receipts jar. A receipt jar is a large jar that receipts can easily be corralled in. If you need the receipt later, it will be in the jar. You can clean the jar every few months when it gets full, and eliminate ones you no longer need. We use Envelopes in a Money Bag from the bank. These envelopes are a great place to put receipts so you can quickly go back through them if you need to make a return. Also, remember most stores can look up purchases on your credit card now. Target doesn’t require a receipt when you return an item bought with your Red Card so it’s important to know which receipts you really need to keep and which ones are OK to toss.
7. Spend a few minutes each day decluttering papers.
Take a few minutes each day to tackle papers that are building up. File what needs to be kept, recycle what doesn’t. If you aren’t sure about the item, give yourself another 24 hours to decide and then make a choice. My goal is typically to clean off my Kitchen Counters each night. That tends to be where papers pile up so if I clean it off every night and put away anything I want to keep I have an easier time staying on top of my clutter.
These tips for eliminating paper piles in your home are the perfect way to get control of your space. Give them a try and see how much paper clutter you can eliminate.