Admittedly, keeping track of your monthly expenses can be daunting. It’s challenging especially when you’re not used to remembering and noting them down. However, tracking your expenses is a practical way to know where your money is going. The good thing is that you don’t need to go back and tally all of your expenses from day one to present.
Even if you are living in a condominium in Bacolod or any other condominium building in the metropolis, you cannot just do guestimates about your overall expenses. You’ve got to have a baseline wherein you can build your personal budget from.
Needlessly, tracking down your expenses shouldn’t be that difficult. For as long as you know what needs tracking, you are good to go. To give you some ideas, here are some tools you can use to keep track of your spending.
One of the easiest ways to track expenses is using spreadsheets. You do not need to be a computer savvy; you just need to know how to use the Microsoft Excel. You can list down your expenditures such as the groceries, laundry, and extra purchases.
In your first column, put the date when you bought a particular item. In your second column, list down all the things you bought or paid for on that day. You may put a remark whether the item is obtained at a discounted rate or not. In the third column, list down the costs for each. Color code the columns to determine which is which.
If you don’t like the idea of tracking down your expenses manually, you can use online finance trackers such as the Mint.com or BudgetTracker.com. These free tools will help you keep track of your finances easily.
Mint.com is a visual tool that can help you know where all of your money is going. It is easy to understand since it has color coded pie graphs that automatically split your money into categories. It can also track your credit and bank accounts, and factors the accounts into your spending. Importantly, it sends notifications if you are close to hitting your budget for the month. BudgetTracker.com is an excellent tracker tool too. It allows you manually to enter your account transactions and schedule bill payments with their calendar.
For some people, they can only track down their expenses if they have tangible documents such as receipts, bank statements, tax documents, and anything you may keep for your records.
Definitely, you need to provide a file box to make sure that all the documents are organized by date. Bear in mind that you should sort out receipts to avoid confusion if you’ll ever need it one day. You may also color code by using like blue folders for grocery receipts, green folders for bank statements, etc.
Although keeping track of your finances may require a little of your time and effort, it is essential when managing your money. It does not matter which tools you us—the important thing here is the actual tracking of the expenses. You will always be ahead of the game and leave you in a comfortable spot with your finances if you are in total control of your hard-earned money.