People are reorganizing closets, reclaiming shoe boxes, filled with receipts and statements that are being dropped off at their accountant’s office.  All too often, with a commitment to end this cycle of disorganization and unnecessary stress.  Always check with your accountant to verify what type of paper documentation they may want from you in the case of an audit.  The IRS has accepted scanned documents since as far back as 1997. The priority is to be sure all documents are organized in a specific folder on your computer and you are maintaining a backup. A hard drive crash is not an adequate excuse to not produce documentation.  While it’s too late to reduce the clutter from 2016, we can begin 2017 with a commitment to implement 12 strategies to keep it simple in 2017.

  1. Implement a naming convention when saving all documents Vendor.Property.CategoryAmount.Date.YYYY.MM.DD
  2. A naming convention allows you to quickly locate documents by vendor and date
  3. Request all paper invoices from utilities to be sent via email so you download and save as PDF
  4. Request all bank statements to be sent via email and save PDF
  5. Add a receipt application to your phone that allows you to scan receipt and enter the category
  6. Scan all W2 or 1099 documents and use appropriate naming convention
  7. Add a free cam scanner app to allow you a “No Excuses/ No Delays” system to managing vendor invoices without adding them to the “to be scanned” shoe box
  8. Remember that documentation on items that depreciate must be kept for the life of the depreciation.
  9. De Clutter your basement and garage of household items and tools and donate to a local charity.  Scan the receipt.
  10. Request email copies of all closing documents from sales or purchases sent so no additional scanning is needed
  11. Scan all notes or paperwork from tenants and add to your property management software and shred the original once verified.
  12. Make it a daily habit to scan documents, verify clarity on the scan and shred unneeded paper
Categories | Article | Operations
Tags | Taxes
  • Linda Liberatore

    Linda Liberatore is the founder and president of My Landlord-Helper-SecurePayOne, a unique virtual assistant solution for DIY real estate investors, and the author of Daily Inspirations to Achieve Your Real Estate Investment Goals. Contact her at

Related Posts


Submit a Comment