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Understanding Where Your Money Goes

Whether you are stressed about your spending, or just need to manage your money more responsibly, the first step in getting your finances under control is by tracking them.

If you are ready to improve your money management, download our Budget Sheet and start tracking your income and spending today.

To begin, complete the budget sheet by estimating your monthly spending. By filling in the expense details, you can see where your money is going. The next step is to complete a budget sheet at the end of the month with the actual expenses and revenues. Then, compare the actual spending with your first Budget Sheet estimate.

With the comparison, ask yourself:
  • What was different between your estimate and the actual spending?

  • Why was it different?

  • Do I need to change my spending habits?

  • Continue to complete the budget sheet each month:

  • Do you have any money left over after your expenses?

  • If so, what happens to it?

  • Do you have a savings account where you can put the extra money?

You should start to consider your future and save money for future needs.

If your expenses are more than the money you receive, you are creating a problem that must be solved. Take a hard look at your expenses to see which are essential and which are not. Decide what can be reduced or eliminated. You may also need to find ways of increasing your revenue.

Budgeting helps you to understand where your money goes, and helps you to begin to control your expenses.


By controlling expenses or increasing your income, eventually you can begin to put money away to deal with financial emergencies, or pay for your future goals.


When expenses are under control, you will also help yourself by reducing the stress each month of not being able to pay your bills, or being prepared for emergency expenses. 


Relying on your credit card, or on borrowing money just to meet monthly expenses, will eventually have consequences. Begin managing your money now! 

Ready to give it a try?
  • Begin by downloading the budget sheet. Fill it in with your best estimate as to what your expenses and revenues are; this will give you an idea as to where you think your money is going.

  • Put the receipts in one place each day - perhaps in a drawer at home.

  • Add up the income and expenses and see what the difference is: do you have money left over, or are you going into debt just to pay for your monthly expenses?

  • Ask yourself if this spending is sustainable. If not, decide what must be done to ensure your financial future.

  • Keep track of receipts, or note each time you spend money.

  • At the end of each month, take the receipts, your bank statement and credit card statement and begin filling in the budget sheet with your actual expenses and income.

  • Next, compare the actual budget sheet with the first one that you had completed with your estimated expenses: are there differences, and why?

  • Continue tracking your expenses each month to see if you are making a difference.

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Last updated on: Sunday 14 August 2022

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