Staying on top of the family finances does not have to be difficult. With a little planning and budgeting, your finances can be kept up to date with ease. Believe me, having a handle on your family finances goes a long way in creating family harmony.
It goes without saying that family is the priority. And you need to provide for your family. Not just the basic needs but also with funds for emergencies, education and of course on happiness. When your family is happy, it is so much relief knowing that you are doing just fine.
However, doing fine is not enough. You have to be systematic, realistic and ambitious at times. I wanted to have more for my family. I guess everyone in this world wants the same way too.
How To Keep Up With Your Family Finances
The first step is to set up a bookkeeping system. We have used excel for years. It has helped to keep track of our expenses, and we have been very happy with the program. It takes a little bit of time to set up initially.
The second part of your bookkeeping system involves setting up a place to save your receipts. We use an old shoe box with a special slot devoted to receipts that need to be posted.
The key idea here is to have a place where you store all receipts from expenses. So that they are readily available when you go to enter them into the excel file.
Once you have the format set up, then you simply enter your receipts. Whether income or expenses. As you enter each item, you select a category for it to go into. Reconciling your account is done online.
One of the greatest advantages in using an automated system like this is the ability to see your expenses by category. With the click of a button, you can find out what you spent on groceries, entertainment or any other category for any time period. Like last week, last month, or the last quarter.
Many other reports are available such as a cash flow report and an itemized categories report. Using this format has streamlined our ability to keep our account updated. Bills are easily paid on time.
Once you’ve established your budgeting format, then you must set aside time on a regular basis to update it.
Do routine updates
For our family, we have found that a weekly update works well. My partner and I alternate weekly turns on posting receipts and then reconciling our account. It never takes us more than 30 minutes at a time and our account is always balanced.
If you are behind in your family finances, start by doing just 15 minutes at a time. You will catch up eventually. Then, be sure to make time on a regular basis to keep up with your account. Having your family finances in order is a real stress reliever and can be attained by anyone!
Read the article on how to make a proper budget to learn the format. You can also download the excel file there.