Through some combination of being lazy, complacent and burnt out, I did a horrible job of tracking both my personal expenditure and our joint expenses for the household last year.
Typically I update our expenditure on Sundays, but there were periods throughout the year where I would find myself updating 4 to 6 weeks of expenses at once because I skipped the previous weeks. This meant missing out a few items here and there.
Of course, even when I do update this weekly, there's usually some slippage, you know the random $3 hot dog you buy with cash and forget to key into your phone because both hands are dripping with mustard? No? Just me?
Anyway, the slippage in 2021 amounted to more than a few hot dogs. I was looking at my bank account expecting to see fully funded sinking funds and savings, but it was showing roughly $2,000 less than what should be there. The lack of tracking consistency led to money flowing out that I had not accounted for.
Soooooo I bit the bullet and took it out of my travel fund, which really hurt! I spent the whole of 2021 setting aside money to be used when borders open up, but now it’s like taking two steps backwards and I’m gonna have to replenish that $2,000.
This was the driving force behind my 2022 goal to track my expenditure weekly - it’s hard to make good financial decisions if you don’t have a clear idea of what you have and where it’s going. In my case, if I hadn’t happened to check this number and spent that travel fund, I’d be spending money I didn’t really have, which is the definition of a bad financial decision.
Learn from my expensive lesson - don't get complacent and track. those. dollars!