For someone who always considered herself very organized, I really have no excuse for the fact that my most important family and financial documents were scattered all over the house. I kept filed taxes from past years in a cabinet, insurance documents in a drawer, bills, car and home paperwork on random shelves and in various folders.
It was a bit of a disaster. And hard to find when I needed something. And embarrassing. And a time waster. So I knew I had to do something about it. I decided to create a Home Management binder, to put all my family’s most important financial documents in one place, neatly organized and accessible when needed. Now, when I need to find my son’s birth certificate, my passport, the title to the car, or a old tax return, I just open up my Home Management Binder and voila, it’s all there.
How to create your Home Management Binder
Creating your own Home Management Binder is a great idea for all the reasons mentioned above, as well as the fact that buying one ready-made can cost hundreds of dollars and still not suit your particular needs, so I recommend making your own.
What you need to make your DIY Home Management Binder:
A 2″ or larger binder (you’ll be surprised how fast it fills up; mine is 3″)
Dividers with tabs (and pockets are a plus)
Several dozen clear plastic page protectors with binder holes
Zippered binder pockets
Business card holder
Pen and marker
Before you start tearing apart your home for everything, organize the sections of your binder with the pocket dividers and label each section. Once this is done, find your important documents and insert them into the page protectors, then file them into the right section. In the back, I added a pocket for our passports and immunization records. The binder I use has a clear plastic lining that lets me add photos and a title page along the front, back, and binding.
Suggested categories for your Home Management Binder:
- Home House title, mortgage information, renovations paperwork, homeowner insurance
- Auto Car titles, insurance, auto maintenance, accident/tickets records
- Medical Important medical information for each family members, insurance claims, medical records and x-rays, ID cards for devices and implants, etc
- Financial Bank, savings accounts and check book account numbers, copies of credit cards and phone numbers to cancel in case of lost wallet, jewelry appraisals, information about bank boxes
- Family Documents Birth certificates, baptismal certificates, marriage certificate, etc
- Education Graduation certificates, licenses and certifications, continuing education records
- Retirement and Wills Copy of wills, information about 401k, pension,etc
- Contacts Keep your collection of business cards here in clear pocket card protector pages
- Other categories as suits your family and life
Some great printables for your Home Management Binder that you may find useful to get you started:
Lost Wallet Helper
Basic Medical Information
Car Maintenance Tracker
Finally, store your home management binder in a tote with handles and safely out of sight, so in case you ever need to evacuate your home, you can just grab it and go. I’d love to find a fireproof, zippered tote bag (not sure if those are made, but that is what I’m on the hunt for).
The end result? We are organized, and every important document is in one easy to find place, saving space and time. It’s fabulous! Every family should have a family and home management binder.
For more tips on saving spacing and organization, visit HouseLogic, the best go-to source for home owners who want to increase the value of and get more enjoyment from their home. I love their home storage solutions and tips for saving space in a small home.
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Compensation was provided by HouseLogic via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of HouseLogic.