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You Are Here: Home - Calendar - Annual Calendar of Events - Archive Your Files Month

NEW! - Keywords For This Page:   Document Destruction - Information Management - Archiving

Archive Your Files Month

It's the new year -- time to clean out all of that old PAPERWORK that is clogging up your filing system. Financial records, old correspondence, client files, magazine clippings, kid's school papers -- there is so much to contend with. Some of it can go straight into the trash, and some of it should be ARCHIVED and stored out of the way. But how do you know which items to stash away in your basement, attic, or storage closet? And how long do you keep them? Most people function according to a fear that they will "need it again someday". So this month, we will focus on recordsRETENTION guidelines and techniques for archiving your files.

Some Practical Organizing Tips...

For FINANCIAL documents-- keep tax returns forever, keep supporting items for 6 years, and keep non-tax paperwork for 3 years. Please note that these are general guidelines -- check with your accountant and attorney before tossing anything.
You should have 3 filing "ZONES". Fingertip files are stored at your desk or work area. Active files are used regularly, but not daily -- store in a file drawer nearby. Archive files are rarely referred to -- store far away from your active work area.
If you don't have room for your archive files, use an OFFSITE records storage facility. They will catalog and safely store your paper, retrieve a document any time you need it -- and can destroy your records once they have outlived their usefulness.

Do-It-Yourself Solutions...

Organizers Toolbox
Checklists, tip sheets, and more to help you know how long to keep paper

Before-And-After Photos
See how the paper in these actual offices was organized

What Is Your Time Worth?
Find out how much of your time is being wasted by unnecessary paper

Do You Need To Get Organized?
Take this quick quiz to see if your paper needs a little help

What Are You Doing To Get Organized?
Share your paper organizing strategies and techniques with others like you

The Latest Organizing Products
"Do-it-yourself" tools to help you take control of your paper (and more)

Get Organized Newsletter
Check out past issues for tips on paper management and archiving files

Organized For A Living Newsletter
Flip through back issues for entrepreneurial records retention guidelines

Clickable Office
Follow the links for tips on creating a meaningful filing system at work

Clickable Home
Follow the links for tips on managing your personal files at home

Useful Website Links...

Archives Advice
Information about how to handle and protect archive files of all kinds

Association Of Records Managers And Administrators
Offering everything you need to know about filing and records retention

Bankers Box
Offers free guidebooks to personal and business records retention

Family Records
Guidelines for archiving family and home business documents

Imaging Gets A Second Look
Discusses the requirements for moving toward an electronic archiving solution

National Association For Information Destruction
Maintains a list of affiliated document "shredding" companies around the country

Preserving Your Family's Papers
Protect papers and memorabilia that may be sensitive to age and damage

Professional Records And Information Services Management
Organization that can help you locate an information management professional

Proper And Prudent Document Destruction
Learn how to handle sensitive papers that shouldn't be thrown in the trash

Protecting Historical Documents
Archive solutions for papers that can't just be shoved in a box or file drawer

Records Retention Guide For Businesses
Outlines legal retention periods for the most common small business records

Records Retention Rules
A CPA's advice on what papers to keep and how long to maintain them

Learn how to scan your documents correctly to reduce the paper you must store

Selecting An Offsite Commercial Record Center
Learn how to choose the right document storage company for your archive needs

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