Home Improvement Papers: What to Toss?

By: Allison Millar, Contributing Writer
In: Uncategorized
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Getting rid of clutter is an ongoing project in many households. While it’s easy to say “Toss it all out!!” it gets a little tricky with home improvement paperwork.

Which Home Improvement Papers to Keep

Do you keep the old utility bills or the estimates for the addition you will probably never do? How about the warranty on the 10-year-old dishwasher?

If you’re battling with which home improvement related papers to keep, think of your major household projects. If the contractor provided a warranty on workmanship, you want to keep that paperwork. Also hold onto any journal of phone calls and correspondence with the contractor, says the Duffin law firm.

Manufacturers’ warranties and owner’s manuals also are in that “keep” pile if they are less than five years old. Otherwise, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What’s the worst thing that can happen if I throw this away?
  • Does this affect my ability to get something replaced or repaired? Does the contractor need to see it to provide service?
  • Will I ever need this for a lawsuit or claim about a defective product?
  • Would I repair this product (the 10-year-old dishwasher) or buy new? If not, toss aside that owner’s manual!

Home Improvement Tax Credits

Also keep paperwork that can boost your financial position. If you had energy efficient products, such as windows, installed in the past few years, you need to keep that paperwork to file with next year’s taxes. Check out this Energy Star link for more.

Other financial papers, such as your three-year-old credit card receipts, are not as valuable. Here’s a primer on what to keep from Gardenweb.com.

In the end, it’s always better to toss than to keep all the clutter. When in doubt…..

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