Whether you have a spare bedroom set up as your home office or you are using a smaller space, organizing a home office so that it serves both your personal and business needs can be tough. With the many aspects of a home office – bills, storage of legal and financial records, work files – you need to have a plan in place to keep your space organized and efficient. Here are home organizing tips from this Professional Organizer in NYC to help you create a productive home office.
Purge paper and create a system. Paperwork has a tendency to pile up, especially in a home office! You probably have everything from bills to junk mail to school paperwork to important client files. Schedule time weekly to sort through papers. Create a color-coded filing system. Color coding makes it easier to find files at a glance and is a great way to help keep home files separate from business files. Throw away or recycle junk mail, school announcements (make sure you put any important dates in your calendar, first!), and old notes you no longer need. Make sure you shred anything that includes identifying information, such as your name, credit card number, birthdate, etc.
Keep the clutter at bay. A home office can easily become a catch all for all sorts of clutter in your home. Don’t let things pile up! Every item needs to have a home. Keep things that don’t belong in the home office in their own spaces elsewhere in your home. A great rule to implement for an already stocked room is the one in/one out rule. What this means is that any time you bring in a new item, you need to get rid of an old item. If you bring in a new book, it’s time to donate an old book you no longer read. Another idea to reduce the clutter is to go through the room and get rid of everything you don’t need or use. Throw away anything broken. Donate items like office supplies to local schools. Recycle old electronics like the computer monitor you’ve been storing and haven’t used in years. You don’t need to keep everything!
Place like items together. This is key in a space that serves multiple purposes! Keep all of your books on a bookshelf together. If your home office is used to store movies and games, store those items together on a shelf or in a closet. Keep smaller items, such as crayons and markers, or crafting material, together in small bins organized neatly on shelves.
Label everything! Help keep your entire family in the loop by using labels when organizing bins and boxes. It will be easy for somebody to locate the storage bin of tax files or the box of extra school supplies if they are clearly labeled. Not only does this help in locating items, but it helps with keeping the clutter away, as well. Labels allow you to also locate where an item should be stored. It’s a win-win!
The final home office organizing tip is probably the most important – straighten up at the end of the day. Not just once a week, not every other day, but take time at the end of every single day to put items away, file papers, and make sure there is no clutter in your space. This doesn’t have to take very long, often just 5-10 minutes. But that little bit of effort will allow you to enter into your home office the next morning with a clear mind and a clutter free space! You’ll be able to get to work immediately and be productive and creative.
If you need more home organizing tips, reach out to your Professional Organizer in NYC!