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Where to Budget???

March 11th, 2008 at 04:35 am

So where do I start budgeting? Meaning, do I go out and buy Quicken? Or do I try going on-line to a Mint.com or a Yodlee type website? The problem with the second option is that if I'm not mistaken both of those websites are done predominately on-line and that makes me uncomfortable. If I can be frank……………….........and yes, you can still be you. ;-)

Any suggestions or ideas that can help with these reservations?

10 Responses to “Where to Budget???”

  1. reflectionite Says:

    you don't have to have a program to budget! i just use a notebook to track all my daily expenses (as in, a paper notebook) and then an excel spreadheet to track monthly and compare my expenses. i really have never been tempted to spend any money on a program to track my finances. basically i have spreadsheet for say, march, which has weekly columns and thenrows for each expense, then i have a total column at the end. its super easy and costs nothing. (and isnt online!)

  2. merch Says:

    I use Mvelopes.com. People here also like YNAB.com. I looked at it this way, I am lazy and I use check and credit cards. All the transactions hit Mvelopes and I just drop them into the right envelope.

    But you have to get comfortable with everything being on the web.

  3. Ima saver Says:

    I have a written budget and put everything into envelopes on a weekly basic. I have done this for 43 years and it works, but you can NOT borrow!!

  4. compulsive debtor Says:

    I just use Excel.

  5. Broken Arrow Says:

    I recommend to try absolutely everything and anything under the sun, but once you find a method that you KNOW you will stick with, just stick with it! Smile

    My method is one that I've yet to see anyone else use except for one! And yet, it works so well for me that I would never dream of doing anything else.

    And that would be my point, that budgeting is actually a very personal process I think. You have to find a method that, above all else, you know you will stick with.

  6. frugalhousewife Says:

    I tried using budgeting software, but I did not really like it. I use Excel and set up a monthly budget sheet. I do agree with Broken Arrow in that you have to find what works for you and what you will stick with in the long run.

  7. Aleta Says:

    Excel has different spreadsheets that you can download according to how you want you need for your budget. There are so many websites that will give you budgets to go by. Dave Ramsey has alot of these forms on his website. You might also consider going to the library and picking up some financial books. Dave Ramsey has one called THE TOTAL MONEY MAKEOVER. There are many on this forum that have used his materials with great success. It all depends upon what you are looking for.

  8. scfr Says:

    I use an old-fashioned columnar pad and just write things down.

    If you want software, I've read lots of good things about YNAB.

  9. HouseHopeful Says:

    I made my own budget in Excel. I have a page for tracking spending and one for my bimonthly paycheck budget. I played around a lot before coming up with one I liked, but the first step for me was tracking my spending. I will say though, a budget is an ever changing process. Good luck!

  10. ceejay74 Says:

    I made my own spreadsheets in Excel: one for a running "number crunch" that extrapolates out known and predicted income and expenses; one for an overall "bills and budget" list where I update my predictable, recurring sources of income and outgo and see how much I have left over; one for "fun-money savings" where I detail where all the money in my short-term savings account is allotted; and one for "total debt" that lists each debt and how much it is, how much, minimum, I pay off every month, and how many years it would take me if I kept paying the minimum amount!

    Then I saved my documents to Google documents, which is free to join. I feel comfortable using online here because I'm not disclosing names or account numbers of my various things.

    The "number crunch" worksheet I update almost daily. I monitor my checking/savings combo account online so I always know exactly where I am.

    The other worksheets I only update when I a.) have a permanent change in one of my regular monthly expenses or incomes, b.) manage to add more money to my short-term savings or c.) pay a bill and have my principal go down.

    You can see plain-text examples of some of my spreadsheets on my blog; I have separate pages for "Number Crunch," "Bills and Budget," and "Fun-Money Savings."

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