Your expenses

Last week we looked at your income and this week it’s time to focus on your expenses. So get out a pen and piece of paper, highlighters if you have them to hand and your bank statements.

Go through your bank statements slowly and carefully, noting down your expenses into categories. Take note of not only the amount of each expense but the date it is due. Below you will find a list of possible expenses. It is not a comprehensive list and may not include every expense you have. However it will hopefully trigger your memory and help you to compile a full list of your expenses.

Cash flow expenses

Sinking fund expenses

  • Food
  • Petrol or diesel
  • Rent, mortgage or household contribution
  • Esb
  • Home heating
  • Gas
  • Childcare
  • Children’s activities
  • Family fun
  • Personal spending money
  • Lunch money
  • Eating out
  • Hobbies
  • Tv license
  • Health, life, vehicle, home insurance
  • Car tax
  • Property tax
  • Date night
  • Personal care
  • Dental, optical and healthcare
  • Pet care and insurance
  • Internet
  • Phone bill
  • Loan repayments- credit card, car loan, student debt etc.
  • Subscriptions- Amazon Prime, Netflix, YouTube etc.
  • Special occasions- birthdays, weddings etc.
  • Beauty
  • Christmas, Easter, Hallowe’en etc.
  • Birthdays
  • Car maintenance
  • House maintenance
  • Personal care
  • Beauty
  • Emergency fund
  • Holiday
  • Phone/ technology
  • Car insurance
  • Car tax
  • Home heating
  • Clothes and shoes
  • Back to school
  • Kids activities

Track your spending

To be really accurate with your numbers you should track your spending. Write down every time you spend money. You’ll be surprised how much you will learn about your day to day spending doing this. Those few euros here and there add up quickly.

Cash flow or sinking fund?

You may have noticed that some of the sinking funds are a repeat of the cash flow expenses. This is because things like car insurance if paid monthly instead of up front have an additional fee. You might find that it is easier for you to pay for some expenses for the year in one lump sum. In order to do this it would be best to save up for them throughout the year. If you’d like to do some further reading on this topic I have a blog post.

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