Scan & Shred: Save Time, Money, and the Environment!

I am a huge fan of keeping a digital copy of all of your important documents, statements, etc. It makes them a lost easier to find. It is also a lot faster than digging through folders. Another added bonus is that you lose some clutter and can recycle the shredded paper.

I have a PDF filing system on my computer for all of my important documents. I understand that some of them you must keep the originals for. They go in the safe or safe deposit box. All others get shredded after scanning and backup. If you ever need another hard copy just print one.

This also saves money as most times you can email the document to whoever needs it. You don't spend money on more paper, more ink, more envelopes (or long distance fax), or postage. They also get it instantly and can use their own supplies (and money) to print a hard copy if they need too.

I also make sure that all credit card statements and utilities come in paperless format online. I reduces paper consumption by the companies, prevents lost mail, and keeps your information out of the hands of people who may go through your mailbox looking for anything they can use to steal your identity. Bottom line it is safer AND cheaper!

The only investment needed is a multifunction (I prefer laser) print/copy/scan/fax device that you keep for scanning anything new. I try to do my scanning weekly so it does not pile up to become a big mundane task later. I typically scan about 3-5 documents a week (often times less) so it is not a lot to keep up with. You can also invest in a shredder or simply rip them up and put the pieces into at least 2 separate containers / bags.