Making Personal Finance Fun and Functional!
Hello, again! It’s Rachel and I am back to share my finance planner setup for March!
While there are many wonderful things couples share, one of the more challenging ones is money. Whether you have shared accounts or not, money is something that inevitably gets discussed, reviewed, and may cause a stressful moment or two with you and your significant other. Money can sometimes cause the most stress in a relationship, and this often comes from not having a shared plan when it comes to how and where money is spent and saved. When my husband and I were engaged, one of the first things we did was get on the same page about money. Right from the start, we learned each other’s spending personalities (John’s a saver and I’m a celebrator, haha!), made an aggressive plan to pay off student loan debt and save for the future. You could say we swapped pre-marital counseling for financial counseling!
For the first few years, it was a challenge that required regular tracking of our spending and lots of “no’s” when we wanted to say “yes”. In the end, paying off our student loans in 18 months and putting the loan amount towards savings has been one of the best decisions we have ever made.
Now I have to confess, with slightly higher incomes and no debt except our mortgage, we have gotten a little “relaxed” with our monthly expense tracking. But that’s no excuse! We have some exciting new changes coming up for us that require some big expenses and I am recommitting to tracking and planning our finances to make sure our money is working for us, and not against us.
To get me motivated, I have decided to setup a planner for all things finances, and what better what to make fun and functional than with the new, beautiful, Pink A5 planner! Planner friends, if ever there was a color that spoke to me, it is this one! Putting my finance planner inside this gorgeous planner will definitely increase the likelihood that I will actually use it.
For the setup, I decided to use the new A5 Dated 2019 Planner Printables. These inserts were downloaded, printed, cut, and punched in less than 10 minutes! While I will continue to swear by undated weekly and daily inserts, I absolutely LOVE a dated monthly insert. And for future planning, this is key.
On the monthly pages, I will track pay days, savings deposited, bills due and any future purchases I know I want to keep on my radar. The Home Sweet Home and Get It Done stamp sets are perfect for marking my known monthly expenses. March is my birthday month, so I know there will likely be some spending to celebrate. I mark it on the calendar and make sure to move some money over to savings to prepare for that.
I know some people are nervous about sharing their expenses with others, but you shouldn’t be. When I first started tracking my expenses, I thought it was really helpful to see a real expense breakdown in action!
To track weekly spending, I am using my horizontal weekly inserts with the boxes split up as an expense log. Each morning, I will sit down with my planner, log the expenses from the day before, and keep a running balance of how much was spent.
At the end of the week, I will write the total spent, the end of week balance, and the type of spending I did most frequently. The notes section also has room to jot down observations, small wins, and ways to improve next week.
In between the monthly and weekly inserts. I have also included a few basic pages for a running wishlist, big ticket items to plan for, a list of things to sell/giveaway, and other notes that I can reference throughout the month.
And lastly, no finance planner would be complete without a pocket to hold receipts and important information. I used paper from the Good Vibes 6x8 paper pad to make it punch it with the planner punch.
I hope you enjoyed a look inside my finance planner. I am excited to make finance planning a habit again. How do you keep track of your finances? Head over to my instagram post and let me know!