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Tracking your expenses

You think you’ve got enough to see you through, and then it all seems to vanish in the space of a couple of weeks, leaving you with nothing to show for it. Where does it all go? Watching what you spend can be a simple way of making sure you don’t sleepwalk into unmanageable debt.

How to track your expenses

Download a Spending Diary sheet from the Quizzes and Tools section of our website. Make a note of every occasion where you spend money, from your morning coffee through to that chocolate bar from the vending machine. Record every purchase, large or small.

What next?

Once you have been tracking your expenses for a week or so, spend some time reviewing where your money is going. Try to distinguish between 'needs' (essential expenditure) and 'wants' (luxuries). Are there any expenses that you could stop altogether or perhaps get cheaper elsewhere? Use the Demotivator tool on the MoneySavingExpert website to see how much you might be able to save.