Thursday, July 1, 2010

House Account (Month Two)

House Account Monthly is a Meme for Prudent Homemakers, which I host on the first of each month. Find out more about it and then come back to read my check-in.

1. Did you record all your spending this month?

 I wrote down every expense from my receipts, but forgot to write down the times I handed out cash to the children. 

2. What are your goals for keeping a ledger? 

I want a permanent record of our family's spending. I also want my children to learn how to manage money.

3. Do you have a success story to share?

This month, I let everything pile up for weeks because there was too much going on here at home. There was one crisis after another, including an injury I sustained.

Today, I decided to treat our income/expenses more seriously, like a business. I plan to sit down for a few minutes each evening, and work on the ledger. I want to start with income, or when I pull savings, then deduct expenses, so I am aware, at any moment, how much money I have and how much I have spent.

4. (Optional) How are your children doing with this? Any cute sayings from them, or progress in their financial education? 

  I taught John (12) how to record entries in our ledger book. For the first week, he sorted my receipts, check-book register, and wrote down all transactions. He asked a lot of questions and we took our time going through it all. After sorting all my receipts for the week, he said, "Mom, you spend way too much money. You have to stop!" (smiles)

5. Any helpful resources you've found? (such as a website, link to an article, or book)

Yes!! I was delighted to see that Frugal Dad is keeping a similar household ledger starting today!

6. Were you able to put aside some savings this month? 

None. (horrors!)  I did the same thing as last month - spent income and also some of our savings. I will get a grip on this!

7. Comments or Thoughts?

Very soon, I am going to share my personal method for budgeting.  My budget is detailed and written on a weekly basis. I use one notebook page for every single month. The budget is the plan. The Household Ledger is the execution of that plan.

How About You?

Are you keeping track of your finances in an old fashioned ledger book? I'd love to see how you did last month. Please share your link in the comments section.

Mrs. White
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Julie said...

I actually keep track of our spending on the computer with Quicken. For me it is quick and easy. This week we were able to pay off three large bills. Yippee . . . debt free, here we come!

Cindy said...

I am a "Dave Ramsey" fan. We have been debt free using his ideas for several years now.
I keep a monthly budget on quicken. I would like to do better and this may be the catalyst to get me motivated :)

Beth E. said...

This is a great idea...I've never seen it before. Thanks for sharing it!

alecat said...

Keeping track of everything is tiresome, but necessary.

I've written up spreadsheets into the computer using Excel and it's working really well. Prior to that, it was all in a book.

I have a page that is printed up to show all monies in and out of our account so that I can literally see what my bank statement should look like, and predict the mortgage interest (it's a variable where all income going in reduces the loan, but we can withdraw also ... a MUST NEED TO KEEP AN EYE ON account!!)

The children have their own account books, where they enter in allowances and gifts, then record expenses and balances. The older child understands it all better than the younger, but practice will help develop better understanding and accountability.

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