Organizing Your Important Papers – Part 2

Continuing from last week’s post about organizing your important papers…
Ask yourself: what else comes to mind that’s vital or important to have stored in a safe place if a fire or flood occurs? This leads to the next question: do you have a fire-flood proof safe? If not, it’s a good idea to get one. If possible, position the safe on one of the lower floors of your home or business. 
I have a client who knew of a situation where a house burned down and the safe was positioned on the third floor. It fell to the ground and was destroyed – as were the contents.
Where are your important papers stored and are they safe? At the least, it’s a good idea to have a file cabinet that locks.
That concludes the “physical” part of organizing your important papers, now a bit about the mental/emotional aspects…
Organizing on this level is demanding not just because it takes time, it’s because you are psychologically facing some very uncomfortable truths – that you and your loved ones won’t be here one day. Most people don’t like to think about this reality, and that’s why taking time to organize papers doesn’t seem important when there are always more pressing matters.
A couple weeks ago I saw a car accident; one of the drivers was killed. The other day I learned that a friend of mine (age 52) suddenly died. Those events impressed upon me that it’s not just when we’re elderly that the paperwork needs to be in order.
However, with that said, engaging in this process does become a more pressing issue with age. If you are elderly, it’s a good idea to have copies of your Advanced Health Care Directive with you when you travel, as well as other important contact information.
Unfortunately there’s no magic wand that will get this done – schedule some time on your calendar and start the process….
See you next week!
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