Tuesday, June 05, 2007

H.E. Pennypacker move over

Some people make small budgets in their heads or on spreadsheets. I find that to be boring as the real advantages of keeping track of ones spending comes from the reports which will only be generated from a proper finance tool such as MS Money, Quicken or GnuCash(my fav. open source alternative) and as such I normally knock out expense reports on a monthly and quarterly basis. It doesn't take much to maintain, I just keep my receipts and sometime on the weekend I reconcile and update the books.

I started doing this in 2005 and now have a few years of data to work with. I must say I am pleased with the insight these reports provide, the chart above shows a quick overview of my income vs spending and I have highlighted the results from the 2nd quarter of 2005 2006 and 2007. There are a few more weeks left in this quarter but I don't expect the figures to change much, I also used conservative income estimates so if anything it should change for the better.

One thing that pops out at looking at that chart is that my expenses for 2007-q2 is the same as 2005-q2.. who said your expenses grows as your income grows? Well according to the reports my opex(utilities, car, food) spending has increased as expected, I have no control over inflation but since I started generating and reviewing my detailed quarterly expense reports I think I have clamped down on unnecessary capex.

These reports are always at the back of my mind I was drooling over some 44" plasma TVs the other day but decided to delay such purchases till the end of the year if there is any surplus in the budget. Last year I was drooling 26" LCD TVs but the car incident sopped up that surplus so hopefully nothing terrible happens between now and the end of the 4th quarter *knocks on wood* and there is also a surplus.

Do other people budget and plan like me or am I the only Pennypacker in blogsphere?

13 comments:

owen said...

usually I just plan towards one big thing which I use as an excuse to not spend money on anything else. But when I think about it I should start some kinda checklist cause little payments might be escaping my mind.

Tami said...

You can budget like this because you don't have a gf. If you do she must be a sugar mommy or not a digger.
Anywho, i think ur too anal but i guess it works for you. I just set out a budget each month and work from there. I only spend a lot when im depressed (need shoes/underwear) or its coming up to vacation time.

Adrian said...

DWL tami.. that comment made my day.

I don't have a gf and I stay away from diggers. Why do people view girls as an expense?

GC (God's Child) said...

you are one of a very few
I keep saying I'm going to do it but the task seems so daunting

Crankyputz said...

Frankly I think I'm a steal, cuz i am fabulous with my money! (Putting the word out there)

I absolutely loved the charts, I keep track of my expenses using a simple excel sheet, and more of a broad over view rather than inputting each item i spend.

Women love to shop and inputting every single item would be tedious, not to mention would kill the magic of shopping, sort of like diests have killed the magic of food...

Stunner said...

I do have a budget that I prepare every month when I get pay, but I don;'t have a quarterly chart like you! Man how I wish mi income could be so much more than my spending like yours, I need a pay increase!

Mad Bull said...

I concur with the Stunner. I don't tend to wait on my capex though. Life is short and we only deh yah once, I say. I buy now and then pay it off on my card. I do not have large credit card debt though. Can't afford it.

Adrian said...

lol stunner a pay increase could work or you could just spend less :p I used to plan on a monthly basis too but that scope is so limited.. it wasn't working out.

@mb: yep, thats the competing argument but given the choice of living for today vs tomorrow I choose tomorrow, I know I will survive today. Have we forgotten the fable of the ant and the Grasshopper?

Jdid said...

i plan on doing something like that but lately expenses outdoing income (de wife mess me up wid dis baby foolishness, you know how expensive pickey is?) so I would probably cry if I actually see what these reprts look like for my expenses

SimplEnigma said...

Methinks you need to get laid...let the words "spread" and "sheet" take on a whoooole new meaning. LOL.

I work in the securities & investment industry, so I spend entirely too much of my life already caught up in numbers. My philosophy is simple: max out my pre-tax contributions, then,
- 1/3 of my monthly after-tax earnings automatically goes into savings, whether I'm saving for something big or not;
- 1/3 goes into living expenses & bills (I don't have credit cards so that makes it easy)
- 1/3 is for me to do with as I wish; since I'm always travelling somewhere, most of it is usually spent on trips, but sometimes I put excess in savings or use it to take a class or if my bills run over, then I take from this third.

Tami said...

hahahaha, dah one deh haaad SE. Whoa, ROFL.

gela said...

My friends think I'm anal too. I create an elaborate budget spreadsheet which I update quite frequently. I do a future value calculation to see how much I need for retirement. They think I'm crazy.

alex said...

Simple google spreadsheet works for me!