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Do you all write down everything you spend?

in Debt-free wannabe
39 replies 1.8K views
I don't at the moment, but am thinking that maybe I should? I have a friend who does and she says it stops her forgetting the little things she has brought.

I don't tend to buy it if I don't need it, althought sometimes go off the rails but maybe it would give me a shock to see what I do spend in black and white! :eek:


  • Queen.BessQueen.Bess Forumite
    1.1K Posts
    HI Loopyloulou! I've thought about this too and tried to start last month, I carried a small notebook in my handbag and wrote all cash and card purchases. But Igot to about the 10th April before I forgot! However it's now at the beginning of a new month again and I'm sure I could try again, expecially as it's the 2nd of the month and I've not spent anything this month!

    So I will, if you will!
    Official DFW Nerd Club #20 :cool: Proud To Be Dealing With My Debts :D DFW Long Hauler #109 :o

    Slowly, Slowly = Oct '09: £30693, Aug '15: £14820. Could Be Debt Free April 2020, but hoping for sooner!
  • loopyloulou_3loopyloulou_3 Forumite
    1.3K Posts
    sounds like a plan - i have got a little notebook and will start from today!! (although today has been a rather expensive one so far!)
  • rlm_3rlm_3 Forumite
    157 Posts
    Same here! I tried this a couple of moths ago but forgot to do it towards the end of the month...I've drawn out in cash all the money for this month (leaving enough in for DDs and the likes). I'm making a note of each purchase and working out how much I have left for the month. We'll see how it goes. Yesterday I forgot was doing this and put £15 for petrol on my card. It was a good job I'd left a bit in my account for emergencies!:doh:
  • EmmziEmmzi Forumite
    8.7K Posts
    Obsessively, and then it goes into the spreadsheet.

    Once you see a pie chart showing you that almost half of your earnings are going on debt....
    Debt free 4th April 2007.
    New house. Bigger mortgage. MFWB after I have my buffer cash in place.
  • Heth_2Heth_2 Forumite
    472 Posts
    I'm not in debt (aprat from the mortgage) but my husband and I do this anyway so we can keep track of how much we spend. We have a budget for each month, with a load od columns on an excel spreadsheet for stuff like food, car insurance, bills, etc... and each time we spend money on the card or take out cash (rare as we usually use the card) we make a note of it. It really helps to see where your money is going to.
  • jesster_2jesster_2 Forumite
    393 Posts
    Yes! I write everything down like a lunatic! But I think the reason why it works is I write it down BEFORE I spend it, i.e. I write down what my budget is and then subtract each spend from it.

    I have a little notebook, which has a page at the start of each month outlining what's coming in and what's going out that month. Then following that I have a page for each week in the month outlining how my weekly "food and fun" budget (£25) will be spent.

    Then I keep a running total of what I have left to see me through the week, which i usually keep in cash in my wallet.

    If I've allocated a set amount for, say, a weekend away or friends coming to visit, then I won't write down everything then, I just make sure I stay within the budget I've allowed.

    It IS anal, and people DO take the mick out of me... but I like too much being in control of it all!

    Dec 2005 £8,500

    April 2007 £0

    Paid Off Since Lightbulb Moment £8,500

    Debt Free Date: APRIL 16 2007
    :j :j :j :j :j :j :j :j
  • southernscousersouthernscouser Forumite
    33.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    I've noted down every single penny I've spent since 1st October last year! :o

    For example I can tell you since then I have spent £667.54 on petrol or £101.68 on toiletries. Sad I know but it helps me understand where my money goes! :D
  • moozie_2moozie_2 Forumite
    3.1K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Yes :) My spending diary is an excel spreadsheet where I record all spending by cash or card. It's very helpful to see a running total for the month.

    Especially now that I am starting to build a budget for the first time ever. I need the spending diary so I can see how well I am doing with my budget. It really helps to see it written down and at first I was very surprised to see how much I spend over a month. I didn't think it was anywhere near that amount but every little thing adds up to a big figure in the end :eek:
    Leason learnt :beer:
  • Bunnie1982Bunnie1982 Forumite
    1.7K Posts
    I'm like moozie and keep a spending diary on an excel spreadsheet, also keep receipts so I can see what I have brought
  • Dr.LouDr.Lou Forumite
    266 Posts
    I'm not doing it at the moment, but I've done it before for a couple of months. It s really useful!
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