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To Keep or Not to Keep

October 25, 2019

What the files?!


If you’re a business owner or an independent contractor, odds are you have a lot of files...maybe..A..LOT...of files…and other items, such as equipment that take up valuable space in your office.


As a rule of thumb for businesses of any size and/or for independent contractors, a sufficient amount of time to hold onto or store files for potential tax audits, lawsuits and otherl claims is a whopping seven years.


SEVEN YEARS of lugging around all of those papers and trying to keep them well organized in a secure but accessible location.


Many articles produce some form of “file” that needs to be archived or stored until they reach that seven-year mark that many don't realize is actually important to hold on to. 


This list of items or files may include, but are not limited to:


  • Equipment Receipts

    • Printers

    • Fax Machines

    • Break room appliances

    • Office furnishing

      • Desks

      • Computers

      • Office chairs

      • Tables

      • Filing Cabinets

      • Hand Trucks or “Dollies”

    • Parts for a company trade

      • Tools

      • A/C Equipment etc.

  • Employment contracts

  • Tax Forms

  • Copies of Employee Identification Information

    • Drivers License

    • Passports

    • Social Security Card or Number

  • Company Purchases

    • Printer paper and other office supplies

    • Gas for company vehicles

    • Toilet paper for customer and employee restrooms

    • Office decor

  • Business Contracts 

    • Contracts between Business and Client

    • Contracts between Business and other businesses

      • Advertising

      • Marketing

      • Long term services enlisted by another company to assist in the running of the existing company 

  • Business Agreements

    • Typically used when two companies work together on a project

    • Prophet sharing

    • Co-Developers or contractors


Even smaller purchases for tax right offs such as:


  • Company luncheons or office lunch parties

    • Beverages

    • Food or snacks

    • Plates

    • Napkins

    • Cutlery

  • Company Dinners

    • Reward to employee

    • Company plan or action discussions

    • Humble attempts at landing a client

  • Employment incentives

    • Company raffles

    • Gift cards or bonuses

    • Holiday perks

      • Turkey to key employees or employees that hit certain achievements for Thanksgiving

      • Christmas gifts to employees and their families

      • Birthday cards or items


The list can go on and on...the fact that there are SO many things that can fall under the broad term of “files”, this makes your list of archives vastly exponential. So, building off of that, this must mean that with all of these files stacked together and packed into boxes, physically it must look like a paper form of Mt. Everest and have you wanting to pull your hair out.


At first, these files may be manageable, several businesses usually have a closet or room in their office dedicated to storing their files in or even choose to store them at their home for ease of access, especially if their office is far from their residence.


However, as time goes on, more money is spent, more contracts are signed, more employees are hired and so on and so forth. Meaning that these files will grow rapidly and still require that seven-year minimum of archiving. 


Which begs the question...WHERE DO I PUT ALL OF THESE PAPER FILES?!


The answer to this question is renting a storage unit!


Simply rent a storage unit in the size you require to store your files. The more files you have, the larger the unit you need, however, if you’re a smaller business with a smaller file load, then you need not waste money on the extra space! You can find comfort in the fact that the storage facility has many sizes to offer to fit your company needs!


The unit is easily accessed whenever you need to pull or view your files, is completely private and is only accessible by the individuals you choose to allow access to, and is entirely safe under lock and key, inside of a gated facility, watched by security guards and cameras at an affordable price!


Keep all of the files you need to obtain your seven-year archiving mark, free up space in your home or office, and have easy accessibility to any form, contract, receipt or agreement you may need!

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