Organize Household Paperwork

From the writing desk of Christine Mazurk

Organize your household paperwork! Wells Fargo Home Mortgage sent out this one page tool which I used last week to spring clean my office in this dreadfully cold winter. With snow on the ground, I cleansed my space! And it felt great!

I thought I'd share this information since tax time is upon us and many people may want to spring clean their household paperwork.

The following are guidelines from Suze Orman's website ( about what to keep and what to shred. I found this to be very helpful as I sorted through many old files.

KEEP UNTIL WARRANTY EXPIRES: Sales receipts on warranty items.


WHAT TO KEEP FOR ONE (1) YEAR: Paycheck stubs. Utility bills. Cancelled checks. Credit card statements. Bank statements. Quarterly investment statements.

WHAT TO KEEP FOR THREE (3) YEARS: Income tax returns. Medical bills and cancelled insurance policies. Records of selling a house. Records of selling stock. Receipts, cancelled checks and other documentation that support income or a deduction on your tax return. Annual investment statements.

WHAT TO KEEP FOR SEVEN (7) YEARS: Records of satisfied loans.

WHAT TO HOLD WHILE ACTIVE: Contracts. Insurance documents. Property records. Stock records. Records of pensions and retirement plans. Home improvement records.

KEEP FOREVER: Marriage licenses. Birth certificates. Wills. Adoption papers. Death certificates. Records of paid mortgages. NOTE: All of these documents should be kept in a safety deposit box or fire proof safe.

I shredded and shredded and after twenty-plus bags of trash hauled to the dumpster, my office feels uncluttered. The creative juices are flowing more freely in this newly organized space!! My muse is happy doing the Snoopy dance.

I hope this information is useful and you are able to clean out your file cabinets or storage bins. It's work, but it really does feel awesome when it's done.

Until next week. I'll leave you with a quote my husband shared with me from David Wolfe; "Working hard for something we don't care about is called STRESS. Working hard for something we love is called PASSION!"

Now back to my PASSION, writing the ending chapter in Passion's Spirit! Have a great hump day.

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