I've been tracking expenses for 5 years now in an excel spreadsheet. I track forward a year and budget in expenses that come up in the future...like kids back to school shopping trip, insurance, holidays etc. I make sure that debits in the account go red, so it stands out.
Every new year I do the budget for the entire year forward. It enables me to save for retirement, taxes, just about anything. You DO NOT need to spend money on fancy programs or books. A simple spreadsheet does it all. I have four columns and a net worth sheet. My columns are date, how much was it?, where did I spend it?, running balance. It's really like an old fashioned check book, with forward thinking.
On the net worth page, I track our retirement savings, home value, car loan, and any debt. Just by doing this simple spreadsheet,
I've been able to save $300 per paycheck (bi-weekly) to our retirement fund, and we've reduced our mortgage to 19 years (from 35).
If anyone wants more details, I'm more than happy to help.
Whether you think you can, or you think you can't...You're right!
Inside me lives a skinny woman...but I can usually shut the b*tch up with cookies! :o)
| current weight: 180.0