Do you have more month than money? Are you confused about where all your money goes? Then here is your solution – you need to control your spending with a spending diary! This simple sheet of paper will revolutionise your spending. It will show you exactly where your money is going and will enable you to make changes and get saving. Sign up to receive your free spending diary sheet and then read on to find out how to control your spending with a spending diary.
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 cash or card, you jot down a few details like the date, the amount and a description of what you have purchased.
How to control your spending with a spending diary?
Record your purchases
You can choose to track your spending daily, weekly or monthly, whichever suits you best. If you have weekly spending money then keeping a spending diary each week may be the best way 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, you write this down.
Review your Spending
At the end of the week or month, you can look back and see exactly where your money has gone. You will clearly see which are your ‘danger’ spends - those purchases that you don't realise you are making.
Take Action on the Results
Use the information to create a more realistic budget that you can stick to. Make changes to prevent spending like preparing a packed lunch to take to work and save on your daily lunch spend.
See your Savings Grow
To keep yourself motivated, transfer the money you save to a separate bank account or savings jar and watch your savings grow.
How can a spending diary help?
Keeping a spending diary will reveal 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 you 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
How Do I Start a Spending Diary?
To get you started, sign up below for your FREE Spending Diary sheet. This is a PDF file which you can download and use as many times as you like. Just print out the file and begin tracking your spending.