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How to Make a Home Information Binder for Critical House-Related Paperwork

Updated on November 28, 2021
Laura Schneider profile image

Laura is a technical writer. She enjoys playing the piano, traveling, fine art, and making jewelry.


Help Yourself and the Next Owner of Your House

When you buy a house, be sure to ask the prior homeowners (if any) if they have information about the house's appliances, repairs, etc. When the dishwasher breaks the night before Thanksgiving you'll be happy that the previous owners have the instruction manual for the dishwasher—with information about who to call to get it repaired or, better yet, how to fix it yourself—in a 3-ring binder with all of the other major appliance information.

Things to Put in Your Home Information Binder

Your home information binder should include manuals, receipts, specialty tools for adjustments, maintenance, and warranty information for all of the following that are applicable to your house:


Also Include This Information

  • Information about any improvements you've made to the house, such as replacing windows and doors, adding a deck, or major construction.
  • Routine maintenance schedules
  • The plot of your land, including where underground infrastructure (electricity, gas, etc.) lines run.
  • The landscaping blueprints, if the yard was professionally landscaped.
  • Any home inspection reports done by a professional inspector.
  • Names of the companies or individuals who have done work on your house.
  • A map of your immediate neighborhood and the names and phone numbers of your neighbors are also quite helpful.

Do you have a binder or folder with all or most of this type of information about your house?

See results

It's Never Too Late!

Even if you don't currently have a binder, and don't particularly want to hunt down all of this information, it's not too late. Start a large (3 inch D-ring is best) binder. Then, any time you run across information, you can quickly 3-hole punch it and place it in the binder. Also, any time you have work done on your house you can include originals (keep copies) of the work orders, lien waivers, etc.

Cans of extra paint? Take clear photos of the paint cans. Print them out and put them in the binder with a description of where you used that paint in the house.

Wallpaper? Same thing. Information about the wallpaper is usually printed on the back side of the wallpaper for your reference. Photograph both sides and keep the photos together.

This speedy trick can be used with many of your appliances, too. Instruction manuals can often be found online (Google the appliance name).

With a smartphone camera, computer, and printer, in 15-30 minutes you can have a fairly well-populated home information binder.

Then, as things change, remember to add all of the information that you'd really want in there in case of a breakdown in that appliance or major scrape to the middle of your living room wall, the name of the repair contractor, etc.

A small amount of work on your part may save you, or some future owner of your house, time and money.

Keep it Current

Once you have a binder, remember to keep it updated as things change. Rule of thumb: add all of the information that you'd really want in there in case of a breakdown in an appliance or major crack in the middle of your living room wall, the name of the repair contractor who fixed your deck or door, a good locksmith, and so on.

About the Author

Information about the author, a list of her complete works on HubPages, and a means of contacting her are available over on Laura Schneider's profile page.

© 2009 Laura Schneider


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