Easy Ways to Track Your Expenses
Posted on Wednesday, January 8th, 2014 at 8:00 am
When creating a family budget it’s essential to understand how much money you have in addition to how you plan on spending it. Keeping track of your expenses allows you to understand where your money is going and if you’re budgeting your finances in the most efficient ways possible. Now that we’ve covered how important it is to record and keep track of your expenses, the real question is how to go about doing that! We’ve come up with some easy ways to track your spending which anyone can adopt!
How to Track Your Spending
1. For the Tech Savvy – The Mint App
With Mint you can keep track of all your account balances, recent transactions, and see how well your investments are performing. Mint’s helpful tools also allow you to create financial goals, like saving for a luxurious trip to Hawaii, and keep track of your progress in an easy to read graphic. In addition to organizing and categorizing your spending, this app makes suggestions on where you could save money in easy and ways while also providing expert financial advice. If you don’t want to use Mint in app form you can always make an account online. To download this app for iPads, iPhones, Androids, or Tablets click here.
2. No Fuss No Muss – Excel Spreadsheets
If you’re looking for a quick, easy, and dirty way to keep track of your spending we recommend doing it with Excel spreadsheets. Customizing a spreadsheet to account for your unique spending habits can be a big advantage over apps and other budgeting resources. With spreadsheets you can track your expenses and spending, but you can also perform your own analysis. This means creating charts, graphs, etc. to analyze your spending over time plus understanding how each month’s spending varies. However, if you’re not experienced with Excel, don’t be intimidated! To get started check out this free budgeting template.
3. For the Forgetful Ones – A Notebook and Pen
If you tend to pay for items in cash and throw away your receipts it is definitely more difficult to track your expenses. A simple solution is to keep a notebook and pen on hand. We know this sounds too easy to be true, but it really can work. Every time you pay for something in cash just take out your notebook and write it down! At the end of the day, week, or month simply enter it onto your spreadsheet or onto your Mint.com profile to see how you spend your money!