Slipping Through My Fingers

in Debt free diaries
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teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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No, I'm not talking about the ABBA song that makes me cry every time I hear it, this is about my money:(

I'm the most technologically challenged person, so I'm going to post this and check it's working before I launch into a long winded waffle. :)
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  • chelseabluechelseablue Forumite
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    It worked :)

    Go ahead, we like waffle here
  • It's worked :) waffle away...
  • teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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    Haha I think you might regret saying that chelseablue, but hello and thank you for replying :)

    So, I'm in my early 50's, 2 children, one a teenager at home, the other a teenager at Uni. Oh, and 2 dogs which are the DC's but I think they both forgot that after a week!

    I was going to start this diary in the New Year but there's no time like the present, plus my money runs from 1st of every month so it seemed a good idea to get on with it.

    This will be about my personal money and cc debt. All household bills etc. are taken care of and there are no real problems in that area. There are no real problems with my money either apart from the fact that like the thread title, it just slips through my fingers and I have hardly any left over at the end of the month with very little to show for it having gone.

    I want to use this as a way of keeping track of what I spend. I have a sneaky suspicion it's on the kids and household items that aren't covered under the joint account but I could be deceiving myself and spending it all on me. I doubt it, but we'll see.

    I'll be back with more details in a little while.
  • teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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    Hello PrettyKittyKat, thanks for dropping in.

    OK, so facts and figures. After all the household bills etc are paid I have £240 left every month to spend as I wish. Truthfully, I have no idea if that's considered a lot, average or not much. Personally, I think it's a lot and definitely too much to not know where it's going, but I guess it depends on individual circumstances and lifestyle.

    My lifestyle tends to be a slow and steady plod which suits me fine. I don't drink, don't smoke, don't have expensive taste in clothes etc. In fact I wish I did because at least I'd have something to show for my empty bank account. I just can't understand where it goes. Anyway, no need to keep wondering about it, from now on, it'll be on here in black and white.

    I have a cc debt of £1,950 and every month I pay £80 off this which is more than the minimum by about £25, but this also comes from the joint account. I also pay more out of my money each month although it's not a set figure, so I guess I can account for some of the £240 already :T

    My 3 aims for the end of 2019 are
    1. To have a clear idea of what and who I spend my money on
    2. To build up some savings. I'm aiming for £500, I'd like £1,000 but until I can see where the money goes I'll keep it at the lower end of the scale. £500 is only 1/6th of my annual money though, so I really should be able to save more than that.
    3. To keep paying more than the minimum off the CC plus some extra from my own money

    Right, I think that's a good start for now. Looking forward to my money coming in on 1st December although with it being Christmas month I can see it getting spent quicker than usual, but hopefully I'll know what it's been spent on this year.
  • natsplatnatnatsplatnat Forumite
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    How about a weekly cash budget to pay for everything you buy? From sweets and coffees, to subbing children and haircuts etc... everything 'miscellaneous'? Maybe start with £50 in your purse and see how you go?
    start = Wed 19th Nov 2008 £21,225
    end = Mon 28th Sept 2015 DEBT FREE!
    I love a good plan - it may not work.... but I love a good plan!
  • teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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    Hi Natsplatnat. I need to get a grip of it somehow. I definitely don't want it to just keep disappearing. I've tried a weekly budget before but the basic problem is I spend the money without making a note of where it's gone.

    I could definitely give it another go and you're right at least I don't have to have categories if I put everything under Misc, so it's an easy enough task to do.

    I really want to get a grip of it and I'm hoping this diary will keep me on track in noting everything down. Hopefully I'll get a picture of what it goes on and then I can start making a few tweaks and start building some savings up.
  • What about using something like YNAB or Goodbudget to track your spending?
  • teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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    I'm not sure I need a budgeting tool GlendaSugarbean but I do need to be more disciplined about noting down what I've spent. I'm pretty useless with technology as well, give me a pen, paper and calculator any day - although I do use the calculator on my phone so I'm getting there :rotfl:

    Anyway, it's the last day of the month which means I have a count up and see what's left over to carry to the next month. There's never much to count so it doesn't take long. :o

    This month I have £68 left which sounds good but I was extra careful to keep this because the dogs need grooming in December. It costs £64 so I've got it covered with a grand total of £4 left over. I also have £15.17 in my purse but to make it easy for myself I'm rounding down. So altogether I have £19 to carry forward.

    This means that in November out of my £240 I saved £64 for the dogs, carried over £4, spent £65 on things I can account for and frittered away £107 on who knows what. It's this frittering away that I need to get a grip of.

    I'm not planning on spending anything today so the figures should stay the same.

    Plans today are to make butter with some out of date tomorrow cream mum gave me. I also have eggs that need using so I'll bake a cake and boil some for egg mayo sandwiches. It's steak pie for tea so I need to get that in the slow cooker soon.

    Hope everybody has a good day.
  • UncannyScotUncannyScot Forumite
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    Hi and welcome :D

    My GF has a great way of tracking her personal spending. She treats her personal expenditure as she does her works expenses... receipts for everything and therefore can account for everything. Something that I have actually started doing for myself and can really see a difference in accounting for things that were previously missed...

    I know you said you were technologically challenged so perhaps trying to use a excel spreadsheet would be difficult for you. However, I think you can find forms that can be downloaded / printed that can be used like good old pen n paper systems...

    I'm sure you'll find out where all the pennies are escaping from and where to eventually ;)
    BUGGRITMILLENIUMHANDANDSHRIMP I TOLD EM! - Foul Ole Ron
    It is important that we know where we come from, because if you do not know where you come from, then you do not know where you are, and if you don't know where you are, then you don't know where you are going. If you don't know where you're going, you're probably going wrong.
    R.I.P. T.P.
  • teafor2teafor2 Forumite
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    Hello there UncannyScot and thank you for the welcome :)

    I think keeping receipts is definitely something I need to do. Even the day after going shopping if I'm looking at a receipt I can think "oh yes, forgot about that". It must be an age thing!

    I could probably use something like Excel if I really put my mind to it, but honestly, none of this modern, magic, work of the devil, technology interests me. Even coming on here I passed the laptop to my long suffering husband and said right I want to set up a diary on MSE, make it happen so all I have to do is type.

    Back to the subject in hand though. I'll be joining you and your GF in receipt keeping from now on :) I just hope I don't have too many confessions to make over the next month.
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