In my post “Achieving the Big Stuff” I mentioned one of my long-term goals is to be financially comfortable. I think the first thing I need to address is my existing finances, and try and see where my money goes and if there are any ways that I could be spending less.
A couple of weeks ago I created a financial tracker on excel where I can keep track of my incoming and outgoing money. So far it is going great, as well as being able to see where my money is going, it has also made me more mindful when spending. I have also been able to split my monthly and quarterly bills and expenses down so I am contributing to them on a weekly basis, which prevents hat end of month scenario where everything comes out at the same time and I am left with nothing that week. I have also set myself a grocery budget and a personal budget for extras to stick to each week.
I have felt less worried about money since starting this tracker as I feel more in control, and the possibility of any nasty surprises has been reduced.
It is just a simple tracker but if you would like a template, you can get a free copy by clicking the link below.
The first overall page is uneditable as it is filled with formulas and will automatically fill when you enter your information onto the other sheets. This sheet calculates all of the other totals to give you a remaining daily balance.
The second page is to record incoming money. You can change the headings to your own personal headings. As the sheet is linked, you will see the total values from here appear on your overall sheet.
This page is to record the bills. I have found this really useful as I can see when bills are expected to come out my account. I have also been able to break my monthly and quarterly bills down to weekly amounts and put the money aside into a separate bank account until the bill is due to come out. The headings here are also editable, and the totals will appear on the overall sheet.
These two pages are for expenses. The first one is a general expenses page to log what has been spent through the day on things like a cup of coffee or eating out etc. I have included an expense calculator to make things a bit easier, then the total can be added to the “Total Daily Expenses” column. The “Expenses Record” sheet isn’t linked to any other sheet. I added this on as I wanted to get an idea of where my money was going so this is to keep a detailed record of my day to day expenses. In the category column on my own sheet. I have used categories such as eating out, groceries, kids activities, petrol, coffee, treats, takeaways etc.. The sheet can be filtered by category to give an idea on how much is being spent on each one.