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I have found that I cant nickle and dime every expense but I have a pretty good sense of whats in my accounts and keep that total in my head with regards to spending each day. I balance my checkbook at least once a month and check my balances regularly.
I track everything. The nickel and dime purchases are the ones that really add up over the course of a month. I know when I first started tracking I was shocked to see how much we were spending in some areas. My guess is a lot of people do not realize how much they are overspending by (such as on Til Debt Do Us Part).
I'm working on my tracking. After stepping away from it for quite a while, it's hard to get back in the habit. It's especially hard to get my hubby back in the habit because when I ask him how much he spends on stuff he tends to get offended.
__________________ Joanna wife, mother, blogger, support group leader, perpetually behind on laundry
My husband would get offended when I asked about purchases I didn't recognize on our accounts but I don't think he ever will again--his debit card number was compromised late last week and the first fraudulent charge to show up was at a local grocery store that we rarely go to but I didn't ask him about it because he gets all upset that I am "checking up on him". Turns out it was the first of five fraudulent charges (the rest were in Queens and Chicago) and there is quite a bit of money missing from the account--we spent an oh-so-fun hour at the credit union this morning filling out paperwork to try and recover our funds from mastercard. So if I ever ask about an odd charge again, he will be more than happy to tell me what it is
We generally pay cash. When the money is gone we stop spending. For on line purchases I have to decide I am buying something and then go put the money in my account to pay for it. That keeps me from frittering away money.