One of the best ways to save up is assessing your expenses. Through this, you will know how you spend your money, which will help you determine how you can save more money by eliminating unnecessary expenses. Who knows, you might even discover that you keep spending your money on something that you don’t really need.
Of course, you can always keep track of your expenses by taking note of them in your notebook. But why settle for pen and paper when you can have something better. This is the digital age after all. You can make a spreadsheet file to keep track of your expenses. When done the right way, this spreadsheet will automatically compute your overall expenses as well as take note of your current money.
Here’s how you can make that spreadsheet:
- Make a new spreadsheet. You can use MS Excel or any other spreadsheet software.
- Data. What data should you have in the spreadsheet? How will you track your expenses? You can classify these data by date, by receipt, or by every spending. It will however be easier and more organized for you to record your expenses by the date. Do not forget the details you will input such as the date of the expenditure, place of payment, to whom it was paid and how much is the payment. To do this, put a label on the spreadsheet in its first cell. You can put there, for instance, “Personal Expenses.” In the second row, you can put “Date,” “Payer,” “Expense Description,” and “Amount” on each of its column. “Date” will transpire when the expense occurred. “Payer” describes from where you get the payment such as cash, your credit card, or your debit card. “Expense Description” will keep the record of your expenses, for instance, grocery, gas, or food. “Amount” will cover how much you spent for it including the interest rate if you used credit card.
- Enter formula. You’ll have to compute how much you spent the whole day. You can enter the formula beneath the “Amount” column. If you are using MS Excel, you simply need to highlight about 10 cells under the “Amount” column. Start highlighting from top to bottom. The highlight should end up in the cell where you want to show up the total expenses. Click the “summation” button. This looks like a capital E. Do this while the cells are still highlighted. Put the word “Total” in the left cell of the summation cell. Test if the summation is working by entering numbers in the “Amount” column. The total amount should be shown in the summation cell. You can use the same method when computing the monthly expenses or yearly record of your expenses.
- Save file. Use any filename that will precisely describe the file like “personal expenses.”
- Enter data. Be patient in entering data in your spreadsheet. You need to keep it updated as much as possible. If not, you’ll never get an accurate computation of your expenses. Assessing how you spend your money will be inaccurate also if the data you entered are incomplete. Don’t forget to save file after updating it.
If making a spreadsheet seems like a tedious task, you can simply download spreadsheet files specially formulated to track expenses. You can get one from Use Excel.