Note: Here is the link to the video for this post
Part of adulting is taking care of your home systems so that the household flows as smoothly as possible. No matter if you rent or own, if it’s just you or a family of 10, running a household will require some basic paperwork and checklists. I started building this system when I had my first apartment at 23. Over the years it’s evolved and been simplified, but one thing that I know for sure is that a system that works for me enough to use it is essential in keeping things unnecessarily chaotic.
My binder system is basically made out of scrap office supplies that were heading for the recycling bin, ergo I spent $0 dollars making this thing. I’ve seen other systems that are way more colorful and expensive looking decked out with stickers and costly dividers, but that isn’t my thing. If you’re worried about cost and don’t have a bunch of binders in your office about to be scrapped, then definitely head to the dollar store and invest $5 to purchase the following:
- Page protectors
- A folder
- A notebook
Your home binder can be divided up in any way that you chose that makes sense for your current household. Some people add things like meal planning, home school curriculum and household budget. I personally have a separate system for household finances that is part of my Simplifying your Finances system. However, since I carry my finance binder with my monthly budgets it in my work bag, I don’t keep account numbers and log in’s in it for safety reasons. Therefore I keep this important information in my household binder where Michael also has access to it. I will do a future post on my finance binder soon.
I do have one more binder that is part of my household system, so you could really say that I have 3 household binders, but that one holds our Birth Certificates, Social Security Cards, copies of our health insurance cards and drivers licenses and our Marriage Certificate. It also holds all insurance binders; auto, home, title, health and life. These vital documents are in page protectors and the binder is locked in a safe spot. In the event of a major emergency, if we saved no other material item we can at least grab this and have at that peace of mind. A post will be forthcoming on that as well.
Simply for inspirational purposes, I’m going to take you through my binder system with the hopes that you can get ideas for your own management binder for your household. (Feel free to click on this link and it will bring you right to the video. While you are on my channel, check out my video about my binder from 3 years ago!)
- City trash and recycling pick up schedule
- Inspirational goal mapping prompts
- Finance section that lists all account numbers and online account info
- Cleaning schedule broken down by weekly through yearly
- Detailed cleaning list broken down by tasks per “zone” ( inspired by flylady.net)
- Meal planning
- Weekly menu
- Grocery list starting with basic staples I always purchase
- Price book & stock up list
- Dinner recipes
- Baking recipes
- Event planning
- Birthday card list
- Home Projects
- Blog Goals
- Tax divider to collect incoming receipts for the accountant
- Blank sheets of paper & stamps
Another great section to have would be one to keep manuals and warrantees in. A section per child to list sports schedules, conferences and field trips could also be handy. the possibilities are endless and unique to everyone.
I highly recommend making a “command center” for your household, no matter the number of members. It is so nice to have everything that you need in one place. If a portable binder isn’t something that you’d like, how about a drawer or a small plastic tote? The Dollar Tree has lovely accordion files that appear to be made of high quality plastic that should be durable for years to come. The main function of all of this is one simple and organized spot to keep all of your basic necessities!
Until the next post about simplicity,
What is one thing that you can do today to start your Household Binder?