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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Personal Finance


Personal Finance is the application of the principles of finance into the monetary decisions of an individual or family (wikipedia).

Simply said, it is a system for us to manage our income, savings and expenses. I previously used excel to monitor my own and my family's finances. However, when my mother in law entrusted to my husband and I the management of the apartment rentals and all the expenses in the house, I got dizzy trying to budget everything.

First, I tried the manual system. I bought three Journals (also called Cash book) and recorded every money that comes in and out. It works fine but calculating is too time consuming and the probability errors arising in computation is fairly high.

Second, I tried using excel. The task is a bit easier and computing the balances is semi-automatic when the formula encoded are correct. The only problem is that, I had trouble categorizing the expenses to Utilities, Entertainment, etc. I have to manually look for all the Utility expense, Entertainment expense, Tuition fee, etc.

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Lastly, I downloaded the Personal Accounting Software online and it works great. Since, it worked for me, it might work for you too. Here's how to use the software.

2. Install it on your computer.

3. Create your account. The default account name is Cash you can use it, if you only have one record to manage.

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4. Add, Merge or Delete categories according to your needs.

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5. Input your transactions.

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The only problem on this software is that the Show me where my money is going tab shows all the accounts' expenses. So if you're managing several accounts, you'll see all the expenses of account 1, account 2, etc, merged into one Expenses Pie Chart.

The website also has a Personal Accounting Spreadsheet you can download that you can use on excel.

Nonetheless, the software works great for me.

Happy financing everyone!

Blessed be.


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