I use Quicken to keep track of our finances. Every few weeks I log into our bank accounts online and download all the transactions. It is always a shock to look at the final monthly spending numbers. We spent how much?
I have been working really hard (or so I like to believe) at bringing the numbers down. We have a very rough budget that we follow during the month, which amounts to try to spend as little on incidentals as possible. I guess it is not working as well as I had hoped. I have been hindsight budgeting, which involves looking at where the money went and shaking my head. One month I might ask the kids to videotape hindsight budget day and post it on YouTube. It is that entertaining.
I had a peek at our annual spending in 2013 and gasp… here it is:
That is a big number!
I need to reconcile the totals, but it looks accurate so far. I am going to review the categories over the next few weeks and look for opportunities.
I must warn that it could be a bit like driving past a train wreck. You know it is unpleasant, possibly tragic, but you can’t look away.
If we can reduce our monthly spending by 10% that is an extra $840 we can put towards debt or savings. That seems attainable.
Here is a sneak peek at the top 4 categories
Auto and Transport: 13,429
Food and Dining: $12,015
Bills, Utilities and Communications: $8,257
On with the train wreck….