How to Control Your Spending with a Spending Diary
Do you have more month than money? Confused about where all your money goes? Then I have the solution – you need a spending diary! This simple sheet of paper can revolutionise your spending. It will show you exactly where your money is going and will enable you to make changes and get saving.
What is a spending diary?
A spending diary is simply a list of all the miscellaneous spending you would do within a particular time frame. Each time you spend, using your cash or card, you jot down a few details like the date, the amount and a description of what you have purchased.
How do you use a spending diary?
You can have a weekly spending diary or a monthly spending diary. If you have weekly spending money then keeping a spending diary each week is for you. However, if you have monthly spending money, you may prefer to keep a tally of what you spend for the whole month.
Whenever you make a purchase, whether that be for your cup of coffee on the way to work, your daily newspaper for your commute, or that bar of chocolate to get you through the day, you write this down.
At the end of the week or month, whichever method you choose, you can look back and see exactly where your money has gone and which are your ‘danger’ categories.
How can a spending diary help?
A spending diary reveals exactly what you are spending money on. For example, my Husband and I enjoy a coffee at our local Costa each week. Over the month, that cup of coffee (and the extras we may have alongside it) comes to a total of around £40! Over a year that is £480 – which could be put towards a holiday or Christmas.
Once you can see where your money is going you can act on this information and use it to see if you can make changes. Some changes can be quite simple to make. I have listed a few examples below but there are many more that may be able to think of.
- Over spending on lunch - try making your own lunch to take with you
- If coffee is pushing you into the red - buy coffee sachets to make your own lattes or cappuccinos instead of buying them
- Breaking news - Read the news online rather than buying a newspaper
- Consider a different method of transport for your commute, or see if you can save money by getting on or off at an alternative stop
It is useful to assign your miscellaneous spending to various categories. You will easily see at a glance in which category the majority of your spending occurs.
How Do I Start a Spending Diary?
The easy way is to get your very own Spending Diary Sheet from my sister site CREATIVES AND MEDIA. The Spending Diary Sheet is available is 15 colour ways, is an instant download to an A4 PDF document, allowing you to print it as many times as you like. Buy once – use forever.
- Visit Creatives and Media to get your Spending Diary Sheet
- Starting logging all your miscellaneous purchases
- At the end of each week or month, review your spending
- See the results
Why not pin this for later?