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3 Bookkeeping Tips to Help Mums Save Money

3 Bookkeeping Tips to Help Mums Save Money

Bookkeeping is for families as well as businesses. In the bustle of everyday family life, controlling money is often something we wish we could do, but never actually get round to.

If keeping simple household accounts has never figured in your family financials, here’s how to make it simple and why it’s such a good idea.

3 Bookkeeping Tips to Help Mums Save Money

Make it Easy

Bookkeeping needn’t be a scary project. There are ways to make it easy so it doesn’t feel overwhelming or too time consuming.

You need a system for tracking your income and expenses. All bookkeeping starts at this basic concept whether you’re running a business or staying in control of household expenses.

If you like working with the computer, set up your accounting system in Excel. This has the advantage of doing the addition or subtraction for you once you’ve set up the column formulas. If you don’t like computers, a notebook and pen will also do the job.

Two columns (in your notebook or spreadsheet) will get you started. One for income and one for outgoings. In income, list all the money that comes into the house each month, and where it comes from. In outgoings, first list regular direct debits, then add to it daily with the other expenses.

At the end of the month, tot up each column. The aim is to finish the month with more in the income column than you’ve recorded in the expenses column! At the very least, they should balance. Then you know you’re not spending more than you’re making, and could transfer what’s left into a savings account.

If you’re struggling to come up with a personal system you can understand and easily stay on top of, don’t be scared to ask for help. Professional bookkeepers do this sort of thing all day, every day, and can explain what’s needed without over-complicating things.

3 Bookkeeping Tips to Help Mums Save Money

Jot Down Daily Expenses

It’s important to keep track of daily spends because little regular outgoings can really add up. It might not seem a lot at the time to spend a pound or two each day on a little treat for yourself or the kids but at the end of the month, those small things can add up to between £30 and £60 a month, or more.

If you don’t want to carry around a small notebook to jot down spur of the moment spends, then save all your receipts (and ask for one if you’re not given one automatically). When you get home, a quick rummage through your bag and five minutes with your notebook or computer will bring everything up to date.

Use Your Records to Save Money

After keeping simple records like this for a couple of months, you’ll be surprised at the level of detail you can dig out of them. You can, for instance:

  • Figure out what percentage of your income is going on fuel or entertainment.
  • See how much you’re spending on takeaways or fast food.
  • Recognise when you’re overspending on top-up grocery shopping, and adjust the weekly shop accordingly.
  • Spot upcoming larger expenses and prepare for them.
  • See where you can cut back to save more without taking the joy out of life.

Bookkeeping for the family can give you a great sense of accomplishment. There’s a feeling of empowerment when you’re totally in control of your finances and know where every penny goes.

Far from being restrictive and preventing spontaneity, it’s actually the opposite. You’ll know, without thinking about it, if you can afford to indulge an unexpected opportunity, or how you can juggle your spending so you will be able afford it in the future.

 

3 Bookkeeping Tips to Help Mums Save Money

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