11 May 2011

File It or Fling It

The end of financial year is fast approaching and it's time to get organized for tax time. If you start now to get your paperwork in order now, come June 30 your tax will be a breeze (or at least less stressful). When it comes to paperwork we seem to have more than ever before to deal with. An easy way to decide whether to file or fling is to ask yourself what would happen if you didn't have that particular piece of paper. Would you be able to easily and quickly get a copy? Is the information it contains available online? If the answer to these questions is yes, then fling it. If it isn't file it. A great tip when filing is to put an X in the top right hand corner of every piece of paper you file. Then when you clean out your files you can see immediately how many times you have accessed that piece of paper. No 'X', it's a safe bet you can fling it. If space is short, scan each receipt, invoice, statement, important letter etc and create a file on a portable hard drive or flash drive kept just for filing paperwork.


  1. If you fling it remember to de-identify or shred documents containing your personal details or other sensitive information to avoid identity theft etc.

    1. Great advice Mary! These days we have a shredder and I spend 5 minutes once a week or so having fun shredding, then add the paper to either the compost or the worms. But my cousin, who doesn't have a shredder, saves any rubbish mail with identifying information on it, to wrap the wet rubbish. She simply damps the paper, adds the wet rubbish and then wraps in newspaper and puts it in the bin. Being already wet, and wrapped around wet rubbish, the inks dissolve and the paper falls apart as it starts to decompose in the rubbish bin.


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