Happy New Year, everyone!
I hope you all have had a wonderful start to 2013 and have thoroughly enjoyed your holiday. Whether you spent it with friends and family or even took an end of year vacation, I hope that you are as refreshed and ready for the opportunities of the new year as I am.
For those of you who have followed my blog since its November launch, you know that I’ve been softly prepping you for the new year with a binder series that I hope will add organization to your home life in 2013. If you haven’t read these posts, I urge you to do so before continuing to familiarize yourself with the 3 different binder options I introduced.
I wanted to begin with the finance binder because money is important. Although it is just the first week of the year, most of us have either spent money already or have plans to do so. There’s no better time to get that under control. See Binder Organization Binder Series and Giveaway” for the binder components.
So what you’ll basically do is use this binder to house bills, statements and receipts. Keep every single thing you can as the month is going along. Use the zipper insert to house the receipts as they will begin to pile up. Use your pockets to house bills and statements for banks, credit cards etc.
One of the major portions of the binder is the tracking templates. I have posted these Excel 2010 based templates on my other page, Binder Templates & Printables. You will need to both download a copy to your computer (just click and hit save) and print copies for the actual binder at the end of the month. If you are using an earlier version of Excel, you will experience small changes in the layout, but this will not alter the templates performance.
Microsoft Excel has been a useful tool in creating a wealth of sheets that aim at tracking spending. I like the Family Monthly template the best because it has literally thought of every way we spend and through pivot tables and formulas can track and forecast with ease.
In the “Monthly Budget Insert” spreadsheet, you are simply populating each field with both your projected or budgeted amount you intend to spend during the month (to be done at the beginning of each month) and at the end of the month as you add your receipts and bills, you populate the actual. You will see the difference in the Variance column and the totals add automatically. The items are generic so if any other bills aren’t listed, add those in by creating a new column or typing over the items that don’t apply to your household.
1. Open the “Family Budget (Monthly)” spreadsheet.
2. Click the Last worksheet entitled “Monthly Budget Report“. In the “Income 1” field (C8) enter your monthly net income. If there is a second income, enter that in the “Income 2” field. Enter any extra income in the next field if applicable. Your total Income will populate in the space below. (Total Income or D11)
3. Under the first worksheet entitled “Monthly Expenses” is where you will begin to add projected costs and actual costs on the money you spend. There are a list of basic descriptions in Column B, you can change those if necessary to fit your specific items. Under the Projected and Actual costs columns, enter dollar amounts of what you’ve spent for the month per category and afterwards, right-click on your mouse and select “refresh”.
What you will see is the charts on the Monthly Budget Report change as you refresh your information on the Monthly Expenses worksheet. The pivot tables or “drop boxes” on both screens help you to see specific items. If for instance you only want to view your Children expenses, you can click on the box and check only the field “children”. This will bring up all of the expenses you used for that category.
The second worksheet, “Additional Data” is protected and cannot be changed by the user. This is just a pivot table highlight in its own sheet to show you how much money you are spending per category. As you refresh populated information in the Monthly Expenses screen the sheet will refresh automatically.
Play around with this template to get comfortable with it. I promise you this will change the way you look at spending and will really put a spotlight on how you spend.
I am always available for questions on how to use these sheets and I am rooting for each one of you to do well with this binder. I am along for the journey with you, I have my binder ready and set to go.
As always, be sure to connect with me on my Twitter and Facebook pages and add me on Pinterest (Trishamari34), I love talking and interacting with you all.
OW Trisha Marie