It is wise to periodically review your important papers. Take a fresh look at the types of records and papers you should be keeping at the beginning of each new stage or change in your life. The household should be considered as a mini-business since many of the functions of planning, purchasing and record keeping are the same as they are for any other type of business.

Record keeping is also important due to legal and safety factors. Many records and papers can be kept in a home file for ready access, while others should be left with your attorney, placed in a safe-deposit box, or put in a fireproof, waterproof, and burglar-proof home safe. Some documents should also be placed in the glove compartment of your car.

A good rule to follow is to keep the item at home unless it is a legal document or is difficult to replace or duplicate. Then it should be kept in a safe-deposit box or possible left with your attorney. Following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, many people have explored the idea of sending copies of very important documents to a trusted relative in another state, and also having copies in a fireproof &waterproof case that could be lifted at a moment’s notice.

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