Are You Spring Cleaning? Here's How Residential Shredding Services Can Help

As more people work from home these days and as the weather gets warmer, many individuals are taking out their cleaning supplies, clearing out their overflowing closets, and discarding unneeded items as part of their yearly “spring cleaning” rituals. According to the American Cleaning Institute (ACI), three in every four Americans engage in spring cleaning each year, many in order to reduce unneeded clutter in their homes or apartments.

In addition to being an optimal season for cleaning, spring and summer are also considered peak moving season in the U.S.  In fact, nearly 70 percent of all moves in the U.S. happen between May and September. The summer of 2022 is expected to be another busy period for moving in the U.S., as a projected 5.95 million homes will be sold by the end of the year.

Milestones and times of transition, such as moving, spring cleaning, starting a business, or finalizing an estate, present optimal opportunities to throw away unneeded paper documents. However, to help protect against identity theft and fraud, considerations should be made to determine whether any of those records contain sensitive information before they go in the trash or recycling bin.

Beware of “Dumpster Divers”

The threat of consumer identity theft grows greater every year. In 2021 alone, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission received 1.4 million reports of identity theft, which is 25% of all fraud reports—the equivalent of nearly $1.5 billion in losses. Moreover, identity theft reports involving a checking or savings bank account increased 64% from 2020.

Physical data theft through “dumpster diving,” when malicious actors steal personal information discarded in trash and recycling bins, remains a common method of identity theft. Rifling through an unsuspecting person’s trash can easily give criminals access to bank account numbers, heath information, tax records, and even social security information. In fact, just one improperly disposed sensitive document can lead to an identity theft. For example, a thief could use a discarded health bill to contact a victim by posing as a medical debt collector and asking for financial information or a social security number.

Individuals in the process of moving or spring cleaning their home can be especially strong targets for dumpster divers, as they are discarding larger volumes of information. Without taking proper data protection precautions, there is the potential risk for financial loss.

How to Protect Confidential Information and Documents 

Shredding is one the most secure ways to dispose of unneeded documents containing sensitive information. Consumers should shred any information that could easily be exploited for fraud, such as health information, bank account numbers, tax documents, and more.

Consumers can also protect sensitive data during times of transition by locking any documents or hard drives in a safe place. If storing sensitive information digitally, documents should be kept in a folder protected by a strong password.

Why Use a Residential Shredding Service

When looking for the quickest and most convenient options, many might opt to dispose their sensitive documents using a home shredder instead of a professional shredding service. But professional services like Mobile Record Shredders' residential shredding program have many benefits:

  1. Security: Professional shredding services can help keep access to sensitive documents secure from the moment they are discarded to the moment they are recycled. This can help prevent fraudsters from gaining access to confidential information even after shredding.
  2. Efficiency: At-home shredders can be slow and may break often. With a professional shredding service, you can simply drop off your documents for shredding, potentially saving hours of time and effort.
  3. A wide range of data services: At-home shredders can typically only destroy paper documents, but professional shredding services are equipped to handle many other types of data storage, including hard drives.
  4. Guaranteed recycling: Documents destroyed with an at-home shredder might accidentally end up in the trash bin. Some shredding programs, like Mobile Record Shredders' residential shredding program, help ensure that shredded documents are ultimately recycled.

How Mobile Record Shredders Residential Shredding Program Works 

If you’re looking to improve your work and personal data security, Mobile Record Shredders is here to help. Our trained information destruction professionals can pick up your confidential documents right from your home with our one-time shredding pick up service, or you can bring your documents to us with our easy-to-use document drop-off service. 

As a NAID AAA Certified information destruction company, Mobile Record Shredders can help you protect your documents during every step of the destruction process. Our team uses a state-of-the-art secure chain of custody system at every touchpoint and all shredded paper is recycled. Once finished, we share a Certificate of Destruction with our customers so they know that their material was destroyed.

Learn more about how we can help you protect your personal and business data with residential shredding.

Do-It-Yourself Shredding: Does It Save Money?

When information destruction laws were enacted to protect the private information organizations handle, many businesses were forced to practice shredding policies.

The main choice organizations were confronted with was: do we shred our records with an office shredder, or hire a professional shredding company to get our documents and shred them for us?

Usually, in most cases it came down to cost. What is the lowest we can pay to shred our records without compromising security?

On the surface, buying your own shredder and having internal employees shred their own documents might appear to be cheaper. You pay a one time expense for a shredder and have employees shred their documents every once in awhile. In addition the need to shred documents stay in control.

However, there are hidden expenses related to shredding your documents yourself which makes it a less competitive option.

Hidden Fees of Shredding Documents Yourself

The average office shredder will cost about $200 and have a life span of about 5 years if used properly. Doing the math this puts you at a low cost of $3.33 per month—but this isn’t the only price you will pay to shred your files yourself. These are other costs (financial and otherwise) that you should consider.

The Loss of Time

While the process of shredding doesn’t take too long, overtime the minutes add up. If you have 10 employees, each of whom spend on average of 2 minutes a day shredding documents, that is 100 minutes of shredding a week, or about 400 minutes (over 6.5 hours) per month dedicated to shredding records. This is time that could be spent working on regular job duties.

You also need to add time to this estimate due to jams that regularly occur, especially on the cheaper shredder machines, and also add in the time it takes to remove staples and clips if your shredder cannot handle those materials.

The Cost of Space

An adequate shredder takes up valuable office space that can be used otherwise. You pay a premium for office space—the average city charges around $1.80 per month per square foot. A conservative estimate might put an office shredder at about 2 square feet, meaning you pay $43.20 a year just to keep the shredder in your office.

The Cost of Labor


If you have 10 employees spending on average 2 minutes per day shredding, it adds up to about 6.5 hours of time per month. If you assume the average hourly wage for an office worker is around $14.50, you end up paying $94.25 per month to have your own employees shred their paperwork.

The Cost of Maintenance

Purchasing a shredder is not a one time cost. You have to consider maintenance and account for the fact that eventually the shredder will break down and you will have to invest in another machine. You will have to purchase oil for the blades ($10 for 12oz) and properly sized shredder bags ($7 for 25), and regularly cleaning dust and debris out of the teeth takes up employee time.

The cheaper the shredder you buy, the less it will be able to handle, if you force too many papers or send paperclips or staples through it on accident you may have to call in repair man or get ready to purchase a brand new shredder.

Cost of Shredding Your Documents Yourself
Est. Cost of Shredder per Month $3.33
Est. Cost of Space per Month $3.60
Est. Cost of Labor per Month $94.25
Est. Cost of Maintenance per Month $1.42
Total Est. Cost per Month $102.60

As these monthly costs add up, you eventually realize that shredding files yourself costs more than you might think at first glance. If you are a small business and don’t handle very much sensitive paperwork, we also have the option of just dropping off your documents yourself, for convenient shredding. See a list of our drop off locations and pricing. But if you need to shred more than 100 files a week, consider our mobile shredding services.

Professional Shredding Services


Professional shredding services keep you compliant with information security laws and perform the dirty work for you. They stop by your location, pick up your files, shred them for you, and deal with mess so you don’t have to. There are a variety of service options to choose from:

Offsite shredding: services pick up your papers and take them to a secure facility to be shredded with thousands of other documents.

Mobile shred trucks can visit your location and shred onsite while you watch.

Professional shredding services are secure. We are a NAID certified provider and we will provide you with a certificate of destruction for your records.

Another perk you get by partnering with us — we recycle the shredded paper for you. If you shred your own files you will notice that it’s difficult if not impossible to find a recycler who will take your shredded paper—it’s simply too messy. But our professional shredding services work with recyclers and bale the shredded paper bits making it easier on the recycling center.

Save Your Bottom Line, Hire a Professional Shredder

Mobile Record Shredders is a secure, certified shredding company. If you are looking for an alternative to your office shredder, give us a call at (719) 544-5460 or fill out this contact form. We will get you a quote for free so you can determine if shredding services are right for your business.