tax returns

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Pre-2011 Tax Returns

The rule of thumb from most organizing experts—as well as the IRS—is to hold onto tax returns (as well as their supporting documentation) for three years. But there are exceptions: if you file a claim for a loss from worthless securities or bad debt deduction, you'll want to keep the documents for seven years. As for any pre-2011 returns, check with your tax professional to be sure, but you're probably okay to shred them, says organizing pro Sharon Lowenheim.