Do you have any tips for managing the mail so that it does not pile up?
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The most important way to manage the mail is to reduce the amount that comes in first. There are ways to get off the junk-mail lists, stop receiving catalogs, and opt for paperless billing.
The next step is to have a designated place for mail once it comes in, even if it is on a hall table or an office desk, just as long as it is visible.
The best choice is to open all mail as soon as it comes in. Recycle unneeded paper and envelopes, file bills to be paid and important papers to save, and take a note of any unwanted mail or catalogs to get off that list ASAP!
Get on those no-junkmail lists, google it. I don't get junk mail anymore, but my husband does (who hasn't taken himself off), so it really works.
I put all my mail in one spot, and the bills in the front. I only have three bills to pay every month, so it's not much to keep track off. If you have a lot of bills, but the due date on the outside of the envelope to keep track of what needs to be paid first. Set aside one day a week as the "mail" day.
Having a comfortable, organized spot to do your mail makes a difference! Here is a link to great home office ideas: http://dagmarbleasdale.com/2011/02/my-dream-home-12-creative-home-office-ideas/
When it comes to managing mail it really is a constant battle. I wish I had the nerve to put one of those "no flyers please" signs on my mailbox, because really most of my mail is junk. How we handle it is by sorting it out as soon as I take it out of the mailbox. If it's junk, it goes right into the recycling bin. If it is a bill, it is opened and placed in a pile in our desk. Our desk is in the living room and it houses all of our bills, etc. Everything is nicely hidden inside and out of sight. That's about it, we really just try and stay on top of it.
We manage all our bills online, which greatly limits the amount of mail we have coming into the house. Our mailbox is by the entrance to the trailer park where we live, with all the others, and there is a trash can right there, so the initial mail sort is right there. All junk immediately gets deposited there, so only things that need further dealing with come into the house. If the kids get mail, it goes directly to them. My husband deals with his mail right away, and I deal with mine. If there is something that can't be dealt with right away, like when we were accumulating the year's tax paperwork, it gets filed in the appropriate section of my family planner, affectionately referred to as "my brain". If it is the notification of an upcoming event or something, the pertinent information is written in the planner and the flyer is disposed of. No paper is safe after an extremely short time--if it is left unattended, it will be disposed of as well. ;-)
I have a standing file with folders
- to pay
- to read
- to decide
- for partner/husband/other person
- coupons & specials
I try to look at the mail right away, and then file what goes where and recycle all inserts, envelopes, etc immediately. About once a week I go through the files and deal with everything i couldn't deal with when it first came in.
Managing the mail was one of our household trouble spots but not anymore. We tackle the mail as soon as it comes into the house. It is first separated into a few piles: My mail, hubby's mail, magazines & news/sale papers, junk mail. My husband's mail immediately goes into his home office inbox. I open my mail right away and take action by deciding if I should toss it or file it.
We have developed a filing system that even accommodates sale papers, newspapers, and magazines to be read later. So, the pile on the kitchen counter is no longer a problem. Yay! Last month we also opted out of receiving junk mail by signing up here: https://www.optoutprescreen.com
Life is so much easier now.
To keep mail from piling up, I have to go straight from the mailbox to the trashcan! This may not prevent all piles, but at least I know that my piles are only of the important stuff!