When it comes to managing money well, most people feel less than adequate. Listening to the ‘experts’ isn’t helping, it actually makes us feel even more confused. On this episode of Getting Money Right, we share a simple yet powerful step to help you succeed in your finances.
Why people don’t track their spending
Don’t know they should.
Track their budget in their heads.
The 3 things in your budget that will help you make good financial decisions
The amount you set aside for each category each month.
A running total of what you’ve spent so far.
The balance of each category letting you know how much you have left to spend.
Cost of not tracking your spending
Not reaching your financial goals.
Lost opportunities - saving for cars, college, retirement.
The One Step to Successful Budgeting
Always ask for a receipt
At the grocery store, the movie theatre, or at the pump say, “Yes, I’d love a receipt with that, thank you.”
If you purchase something online, then track it right then and there.
Tracking is typically done electronically (although we recommend you start with paper for a month), if you’re buying something while you’re on your computer, just pull up your tracking and write it down.
Hold on to all your receipts
Put them in your pocket, wallet, or purse so that when you get home you can take them out and record them.
Record every receipt daily
When you get home, take those receipts out and put them in the same place every single time, then before bed track them into your budget tool.
4 Benefits to Tracking Every Expense
New levels of communication in your family about finances
If you’re married, you both track to the same place, so there is a higher level of accountability and communication.
Knowing that you’re going to have to write down a purchase will cause you to think twice about buying unnecessary items. You will actually put somethings back on the shelf when you remember that you’re going to have to write down that you spent that money.
Real time knowledge of how much is left in a category of the budget
When you know the money is there and it’s already been budgeted, you can enjoy the categories more fully.
Helps you create realistic goals and timelines
Dream about things you want, but then take action.
Writing your goals down and track your progress gives you a sense of accomplishment and enforces your belief that you can do it!
Every goal you write down and take action on you can achieve.