I have been tracking everything I spend on a daily basis. To get a tool to help with that I did a quick search online which brought up an article on the top budgeting apps. There are lots of options but all I wanted was to simply track actual spending. The Spendee
App has a very simplistic interface which I like and can work without logging in to anything. There are additional features if you do log in though.
Once I had put a few days of spending in to it graphs started to appear. The different ways it presents the data is interesting (including graphs by spending category). It highlighted that my biggest costs each month relate to living costs and bills (combined as one in the January chart). I have always shopped around and negotiated for bills so there isn’t much scope to reduce these any further. So now I need to focus on the add-hoc, non essential spending. Speendee helps me to see quickly where I can potentially make reductions.
Here are my spending percentages for last three months taken from the Spendee app.
The three red categories have to be paid (home, bills and student loan). I paid my student load off in February so that doesn’t feature in march but with a lot of birthdays the amount was absorbed into eating out and gifts. Green categories are savings and pension contributions. This is at about 45% now but I am trying to get to a 50% rate.
For discretionary spending, which is what I need to reduce to get up to that 50% savings rate, transport, eating out and groceries is where I spend the most. You will notice there is no personal shopping category in these three months because I haven’t bought anything due to my almost shopping ban.
Transport is consistently the largest category from the incidental spending. I use pay as you go on the tube in London to get to work so I need to get on the bike more to start reducing that cost. If I can cycle to work consistently then that would have a big impact.
So I’ll be targeting reductions in travel, eating out and groceries for the next three months and will report back how I get on.