I've been doing some homework today... and I'm not really surprised. But maybe you are?
I don't know exactly how I came to it, but I did... Maybe it was that pile of account info that triggered it, but I did another income balance review. Yeah, I do these at least once a year, and while they are not really in depth, they do help me keep everything nice and tidy. Have you ever wondered how much you spend exactly last month? Do you ever wonder how much spend each year? I know that some of us may not need to do so, but I do... and I've found some nice ways to keep everything in control.
1. Create a spreadsheet that alows you to fill things in fast and easy. if it's gonna take too much of your time, you won't be doing it! It doesn't have to be very detailed, but you can go as far as you want. Some of the things I've included is Food, Animals (I got 4 ferrets, and they too need to be taken care of), Leisure and Fixed Costs. There are more ofcourse, but I think you get the idea.
2. Spend something? Book it! Find the most appropriate section to book it and do it right away. Don't throw that bill away before you booked it... At the end of the month you'll know what you've spend on what or where.
3. Make averagers... and that's easy in a spreadsheet... no difficult calculations to make, but you'll know what you'll need every month to make it. In the beginning the averages will suck bigtime, but if you're 6 months further, you'll see that the tops and bottoms are flattened out and project a more realistic cost per month.
OK, now all of this is nice... but does it help you to keep things under control? Yes it does... just the fact that you spend some time each day or each week will encourage you to be responsible with money. Let me ask you a question : How much money do you have in your pocket right now? No cheating! Write it down on a paper and check the wallet. You should be able to at least come within a 10% margin. I think I've got $20.10 in my pockets while writing this.... I've just checked and it's $20.74, and I haven't paid anything today, so it's not like I checked my wallet a few hours ago. How did you do?
Such a balance statement will also give you a chance to spot costs that are really huge... is there a way to lower them? Just a tip, but check the insurance you've been paying for the last 5 years! I'm not saying you gotta cancel it, not at all! Review it... ain't there a better deal by now? Are there better tariffs and propositions at other companies? You don't have to change it all at once, but you might be surprised what you can gain by reviewing all those things once a year. Last year I cut my internet connection costs by 50%, while I can stay online for a fixed fee now, and it's faster as well.
* Note * I know there is nice software to do all of this like Quicken etc... but it's better if you develop a spreadsheet yourself coz that way you won't let the time you spend on developing it go to waste. You'll actually use it :)
Some not really to the point stats :
|So far I have received 4.308 e-mails this year, and the end-of-year projection is 7.926.|
I've send 597 mails out, and probably end the year at 1.089 pieces.
Of all those messages, 745 contained an attachment (thanks to sircam etc) and 1.361 attachments will have passed by the end of the year.
Wow... ain't that impressive? I'm just a simple user... not a company or so!