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Starting from where the previous post in this series ended (What is a Home File?), I wanted to go through today exactly what should (and shouldn’t) be added to a Home File so that it really works hard for your house and family.

What do you put in a home file / home management binder?



Information in it should be specific to you and your family – it’s a guide to running your specific home after all – and everyone’s will be slightly different, depending on what is done in your home and by the people in it.

I did a lot of thinking around what should and shouldn’t go into this file, and I suggest you do the same. If there is too much then it just becomes an unwieldy mess that you don’t really want to keep getting out and trawling through, and if it hasn’t got enough information in it then it’s simply not that useful!

You have to find the happy medium.

The key to a successful Home File is to only have things in there that you need to access quickly and easily on a weekly if not daily basis – and things that allow someone else to run your home should the situation arise.

Therefore you will create a collection of pages, all with information applicable to you and your home – probably separated by tabs so that they are easy and quick to find.

There are so many scenarios that the Home File really comes into its own for you – here’s a few that may well help you to get in the right mindset for working out what yours should contain:-

  • Your power / water / utilities fail – can you quickly find the contact details of your supplier and your reference number?
  • Now – where did you get that cake from for that party last year?
  • A friend gives you a name of a great decorator – where can you put it so you can find it when you need it?
  • People are coming over for dinner – now – do any of them have preferences or even allergies?
  • You have a babysitter and need to leave the house asap – do they know what to do?
  • You have an accident and end up having to stay in hospital for a few days – can someone help you easily?
  • What’s for dinner tonight?
  • When do you need to clean x?
  • What do the grandparents need if they are having the kids for the weekend?

I have tabs to separate each section, and have created my Home File planner to give you copies to use for your own file to make it as easy as possible. Of course – feel free to create them yourself if you prefer!

Home File - Home management Binder Header Image


Here’s a list of possible categories for your Home File to get you started:-

1. Chores

  • Cleaning Schedule (including monthly, seasonal and annual tasks)
  • Chores checklists (daily, weekly, seasonally etc…)
  • Laundry schedule
  • Quick clean checklist
  • Checklist for others / for the cleaner
  • How to clean items

2. Family and Friends info

  • Personal Information including clothes, shoes sizes, medicines, medical history
  • Pet info
  • Goals & Family meetings
  • Info for the babysitter
  • Address book
  • Party and events info
  • If the worst happens (who to contact etc…)

3. Food

  • Meal planners incl. whats peoples favourites. Have a 4 week rolling plan to make things easy
  • Shopping List(s)
  • Master meals list (what everyone loves)
  • Allergies and food preference info
  • Entertaining ideas
  • Fridge / Freezer / Pantry inventory sheets

4. House Maintenance

  • Maintenance calendar
  • TO DO list
  • TO BUY list
  • Household Decorating information by room (plans, paint, wallpaper, carpet etc…. and where purchased)
  • Home Inventory List (in case of theft)
  • Suppliers Details (gas, water, electricity etc…)
  • List of recommended or previously used tradespeople
  • Car maintenance and breakdown information
  • Tech info
  • What to do in a home emergency

5. Finances

  • Household Budget Information
  • Debt tracker
  • Savings tracker
  • Gift & card budget
  • Spending tracker
  • Bill tracker
  • Wish List
  • In case purse stolen – list of what is in there
  • Account cheatsheet (quick reference info)

6. Holidays

  • Holiday ideas
  • Holiday planner
  • Packing lists
  • What to do when away
  • Holiday year tracker
  • Staycation ideas
  • Pre holiday checklist – countdown what TO DO
  • Shopping list
  • Looking after the kids info
  • Looking after the pets info
  • Looking after the home info



Just as important as knowing what you need in something, is what you DON’T need.

Any paperwork that’s got more longevity and is only required very occasionally such as birth certificate, insurance certificates, passports etc…. are not what you want in your Home File.

These are best kept in a fireproof cabinet/box in a more hidden away place in your home.

The Home File should purely be a reference for the family and therefore should have checklists and reference to places that the main paperwork is kept.

You shouldn’t be having to leaf through several pages of bills before you find a reference number for example – it should be in a simple and easy to read list ready for when you need it.

TIP I like to think of filing in 2 parts – Deep filing for items that are important to keep but are not needed often, and your home file, which can be accessed easily and has more frequently used paperwork.


Home management binder / home file / home filing / what to put in home file / contents of home file / home paperwork / home information system


Are you tempted to create a Home File for yourself? why not take a look at my post on HOW TO CREATE A HOME FILE for more help on this – and I look forward to hearing how you get on!

{ and don’t forget to get your very own copy of the Home File printables by clicking HERE }



** This post may contain affiliate links - to find out more please see my disclosure policy



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