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When I started my budgeting journey I knew that I needed to get my expenses in check. The cash I made was not covering my cost of living. I knew I needed to start tracking my expenses.
Where was my money going? What was I spending it on? This is when I created an expense tracker template, so that I could get myself back on track.
You can find the expense tracker I use in my Etsy shop!
Let’s Start Using an Expense Tracker Template!
Using an expense tracker is a great way to start a budgeting journey.
- First, you will print out your bank statements.
- Second, you categorize your expenses.
- Finally, you put this information into your expense tracker.
This is a great way to see how you are spending money so that you can start improving your financial decisions!
After you have identified what your expense categories are, you can begin to budget for future expenses and then compare them to the actual amounts paid. Lastly, you can compile the information you build over the year to analyze your spending trends!
How are you Spending Money?
Do you spend more money on groceries in colder months and less in warmer months? Do you have expenses that occur every few months? What are your recurring expenses? From month to month you can compare these totals to see your trends.
Having this information is powerful. It sets you up to make better choices about your spending!
Once you start visualizing how you spend your money you can make decisions. Do you create a savings fund for expenses that occur quarterly or annually? Should I stop my recurring gym membership fee?
Setting Your Cash Free!
First, I started using cash envelopes to keep track of ever dollar spent. I then stopped all unnecessary monthly spending, such as my gym membership and cable subscription.
The cash I freed up from these recurring expenses was used to start an emergency fund and pay down debt.
Being able to track your spending over a period of time creates financial awareness.
To this day I track all of my expenses. I turned the basic expense tracker I first used into the monthly budget I still use today. Taking baby steps was the best way for me to not be overwhelmed and to stick to new money habits!
Once you have learned how your are spending your money with an expense tracker, I recommend using the budget I use to track not only your expenses, but also your income.
Are you ready to see how you are spending your money?
Start tracking your expenses today!