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5 Tips for Organizing Your Home Office


(Family Features) When temperatures begin creeping up again, it signals time for an annual tradition: spring cleaning. While big projects like windows are hard to overlook, don’t forget smaller areas that need attention, too, such as your home office.

Making sense of a year’s worth of paperwork and clutter can take some serious time, but getting organized will let you tackle your home management tasks, such as paying bills, more efficiently. Make the office a priority before the annual tax deadline, and you can save yourself hours of frustration when it comes time to complete those pesky forms.

These five tips will get you on your way:

  1. Start by making sure you have furniture that can adequately store your stuff, including plenty of space for files, reference books and computer equipment. Pieces need not be costly to be functional, and there are plenty of attractive options available at major retailers.

  2. Arrange the space with its intended use and your own work style in mind. Do you need ample space to spread out over a large flat workspace? If not, eliminate that space – it’s simply an invitation for piles of clutter.

  3. Place items you rely on frequently, such as a calculator or ruler, within arm’s reach so they can easily be put away between uses. Capture these items in containers and bins to keep the space looking neat and free of clutter.

  4. Establish a filing system that lets you keep track of important papers you need to keep, and have a shredder handy to help you discard any sensitive documents. Whether you alphabetize, color code or use some other method, group paperwork into segments for categories such as bills, banking, healthcare, auto, insurance and so on for easy access in the future.

  5. Tangled cords can make even the most organized space look messy, and they may even pose a fire or tripping hazard. Get control of your cords by storing devices you don’t use regularly and securing the remaining cords with twist ties or clips. Remember to use a surge-protected power strip to minimize the chance of future damage.

Making your work space tidy and organized is the first step toward a productive new season.

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