“Where did all my money go?”, a friend of mine shouted in an open space.
Let us face it! People usually do not realize how much they are spending. You may not have a lavish lifestyle but, you seem to run out of money. Why is this so?
If you want to uncover the answer, tracking your spending comes in handy! Reach clarity by understanding how you manage your money. This step will help you to fully take control of your finances.
DETERMINE YOUR SPENDING HABITS
With the complexities of finances, where do you begin? Consider starting with identifying your spending habits. Do you pay to get your hair professionally dyed or do you dye it at home? Do you buy coffee from Starbucks or take advantage of the free-flowing coffee? Shed a light to your daily expenses and match these with your financial goals.
When you have identified a mismatch between your spending habits and financial goals, you can immediately plan the necessary alterations. Tracking your spending is essential to making better financial choices.
CATEGORIZE YOUR EXPENSES
Looking at your spending habits under a microscope entails that you have the ability to categorize each one. Complete your task by writing your expenses on a notebook or a ledger. Much like us, these expenses exist in a variety of ways. Some expenses are exclusively for students, while others are exclusively for working adults.
Begin tracking your expenses by dividing a piece of paper into several columns. Assign an expense category on top of each column and highlight the allotted amount for it. For instance, the “entertainment” expense category can only consume S$100 of your monthly income.
TAKE SMALL STEPS
It goes without saying that you cannot force things. Forcing someone to love you reeks of desperation and displays no self-respect. Attraction comes naturally. Same with your finances. Taking control of your finances must not be a forceful act. Forcing success may lead to shutting down opportunities that you could have had. Try taking small steps first.
After categorizing each expense, commit yourself to recording your daily spending. Awareness of your daily spending helps you to keep track of how much you have left on each category. Simply deduct the amount that you spent today from the category’s “allotted budget”. A savvy shopper equips himself or herself with these information.
DOWNLOAD AN APP
Embrace modern technology by downloading an app or a software to keep track of your expenses. I, for one, use the free Spendee app. This user-friendly finance app allows me to categorize my expenses and to illustrate the entirety through graphs or charts. Entering a budget is as simple as pie!
Some apps or programs allow you to sync your device to the computer. This way, your partner can examine your spending habits too. As a team, you may prevent overspending and stay within your bounds.
Source: The Balance