I have been posting every other month about the amount of money I spend or save every day in an effort to track my finances. I had the accounts in Microsoft Money set up but I realized that they are very complicated. For instance, I have Food broken down into categories like seafood, frozen dinners, eating out, bread, and drinks(and there are more categories than this). I have Personal broken down into categories like eyes, fragrance, clothing, mouth and body.
This makes it very easy to say at a glance that I spent X amount on my eyes in any one month. I can see therefore that I increased or decreased spending on contact lens cleaners or eye drops at a glance.
On the other hand I do not really use this information at all so it is not really necessary for me to have such a detailed breakdown as to where all my money goes. I am going to remove all the detailed descriptions and simply have major categories such as Food, Personal, Fees etc. When it comes to Credit Cards I will still have subcategories like Interest Charges, Finance Charges, Balance Transfer Fees and Monthly Payments. I would like to keep track of how much I get charged each month in interest on the cards. I will also keep those subcategories on my loans as well because I think that is information that I would like to keep track of.
In June I will be keeping a running total of all income and expenditure just like I did in February and April so look out for that set of posts coming up soon.
I’m glad I’m not the only one who has gone crazy with subcategories on MS Money. I’ve been thinking about leaving MS Money and just using an excel spreadsheet. It’s bare bones, so I won’t have the temptation of spending hours using all the high falutin tools that Money has.
Hee hee. I was considering that myself too Brett. I really like the graphs and other stuff in Money so I will keep using it but I need to cut waaaaaay back on my categorizing or that will consume my life.