Keeping track of your expenses is one of the most important (and basic) steps to leading a responsible financial life.
It might be tempting to “eyeball” your expenses and somehow get by without a plan, but in almost all cases, such carelessness will spell financial disaster.
Budgeting your money for specific categories of expenses and carefully documenting the actual spending is critical. You should add up amounts spent on monthly mortgage and car payments, rent, groceries, clothing, entertainment, utilities, transportation, and other miscellaneous expenses, and try to get as close to possible to a monthly budget.
If you’re able to keep track of your cash flow in and out of your pocket, you’ll be able to determine which of the categories you’ve been overspending in, and which ones more funds can be allocated to (like savings!)
Once again, setting priorities, budgeting, and careful monitoring of your expenses is absolutely essential. There is plenty of software available to help you with tracking and categorizing both your income and your expenses.
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