Simplifying Your Life with Digital Files – Part 2 – Family Cash Flow

This is Part 2 in a series for Simplifying Your Life with Digital Files.
Last week I showed you how I handle the issue of the Ever-Changing Address Book.  Today, I’m tackling a much tougher issue:
Issue #2 – Family Budget Planner was non-existent
I am a planner by nature, but planning our family cash flow has always been a bit of a chore. Now, to be honest, I do Accounts Payable for a living.  While it isn’t my choice for a lifelong career, I have learned a few things that I have translated to my family budget.
One of my weekly tasks at work is to create a cash flow projection for our company.  I have adapted this to fit our family’s needs as well.  I have a beginning balance for each time period – for us I use the 1st and 15th of each month since that’s when I pay bills and when my husband gets paid.  (I get paid every two weeks, so it’s a little harder to plan around that schedule.)
Rather than keeping a paper check register, I simply track all of our spending here.  Everything is itemized so I can easily see where our money goes.  I have a formula at each “Balance” point that calculates our remaining balance after each expense.
*Side Note: We have two checking accounts – one for bills and the other for everything else.  You can see “Delta” on the left and “LGE” on the right.  I just track which expenses come out of which account and the total for each is at the bottom.
If you’ll also notice, I have tabs at the bottom of this spreadsheet as well.  The Monthly Breakdown is key to maintaining our budget.  Let me show you what that looks like:

This might be a little difficult to see, so below you’ll find smaller pieces of this to help explain. The Monthly Breakdown tab is where I have itemized our recurring income and expenses.  When I do our Cash Flow (as I showed you above), I use the Monthly Breakdown to plan our upcoming bills and other expenses.

I have a list of our bills and the due dates:

I have a list of our pay days (I get paid every 2 weeks, and my husband gets paid on the 1st and 15th, so it can be a bit difficult to keep up sometimes), and a list of the monthly car insurance and life insurance deductions that are automatically drafted from my account:

I also use this to track our debt payoff.  We only have one major debt, so I keep track of each payment and the remaining balance afterwards.  I know exactly when this will be paid off, and if I want to send more money one month, I can see how it affects our payoff:

Finally on the Monthly Breakdown, I have a snapshot of what our month should look like and how much we have remaining after each pay period:

If spreadsheets are completely foreign to you, and the thought of creating a budget using formulas scares your pants off, have no fear.  Google Drive seriously makes it so easy!  If you have any specific questions, please don’t hesitate to ask and I will do my best to help.  (Heck, it may even turn into another series!)

How do you handle your family’s financials?

Part 1 of this series, the Family Address & Date Book, can be viewed HERE.
Part 3 of this series will show you how I create forms for my website and other purposes.

2 Responses

  1. Thanks girl! It has saved me from such a huge headache. I love having everything at my fingertips.


I'm Kirsten & I'm happy you're here! Sweet Tea & Saving Grace supports women seeking to find balance in the busy, deepen their faith, and instill joy and love in their homes, lives, and blogs by providing encouraging and inspiring content and valuable resources. My prayer is for you to leave here better than when you came. Be blessed!