One of the biggest headaches of downsizing is deciding what to do with all the paper that you have accumulated over the years. Whether you are downsizing, moving, or just decluttering and organizing your home, this can be an overwhelming task.
Most people keep much more paper than necessary. Research shows most of the paper we save is seldom looked at again. If you are careful and consult a trusted advisor, you shouldn’t be afraid to get rid of much of your paper.
Keep records of any improvements you’ve made to your home since you bought it. If in doubt on the difference between repairs and improvements, consult your financial advisor.
If you don’t have online access to your bank and financial statements, you can shred any that are more than two years old. If you really want to keep long-term records in paper form, just keep the year-end statements for each account.
In general, you only need to keep three to seven years’ worth of backup documents for tax purposes. Here’s guidance from the IRS that tells you specifically how long to keep your tax backup. Your tax advisor can also provide you with a list of their preferences. Keep in mind that all of these documents could be kept in a digital format.
Any document you think you might need in the future can be kept in a digital filing system. They can be scanned in or saved to the cloud or on your computer and backed up. (Potomac Concierge can scan all documents and help clients create a digital filing system.)
Signing up for online access with as many accounts as possible will leave you with less paper to pack and move, in addition to decreasing the amount of mail that you need to forward to your new address.
Use Paper Karma to reduce the amount of unwanted mail you receive.
Planning a move or just want to clean up your space? Potomac Concierge can help downsize or declutter and organize your home. Contact us online or call (240) 200-4824 to learn more about our move management services today!
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