Just a little over a year ago, I got the itch to create a household finance binder and start a budget. It took awhile for me to complete and stick to an actual budget, though.
Fortunately, January’s “no spend” month inspired me to actually follow through on last year’s promise to provide a household finance series.
We’re starting simple today by creating our Household Finance Binder. Since implementing the bill binder system last year, I’ve updated it to include some new sections as presented here. Next week we’ll Enter Financial Data & Pay Bills and the following week we’ll focus on Budgeting. Stick around by following on BlogLovin’ – I promise it’ll be worth it!
For Kate & Trudy readers only, use the discount code SEEGREEN17 for 25% off your Household Finance Kit purchase.
10/1/2016 UPDATE: The kit has been updated for 2017 and does not look exactly as shown in this blog series (very close, but slightly adjusted / improved). It’s been updated and 5 new pages were added! A new series showing great new ways to use the kit will be published soon. Thank you for ALL of your support! I’m thrilled to see so many users of this great budget planning method.
CREATE YOUR HOUSEHOLD FINANCE BINDER
>> Gather the pieces to make up your binder.
– a 2″ 3-ring binder,
– a package of 8 dividers with tabs,
– a 3-ring pocket folder, and
– a 3-ring zipper pocket for my supplies (pens, post-its, etc.).
>> Purchase and download the Household Finance Kit from my Etsy shop using the discount code above for 25% off.
>> Label your 8 tabs according to what makes the most intuitive sense based on your own household needs. If you prefer to follow along with my recommendations, label the tabs as follows:
– Check Register
>> Print the pages of your Finance Kit, then 3-hole punch and place into the following tabs.
– Budget: Pair a Household Budget page with a Notes page for each monthly or weekly budget. If budgeting on a monthly basis, include 12 Household Budget pages and 12 Notes pages in this section to cover 12 months.
– Income: Print and insert one or two Income Record pages depending on how many sources of income you track. If you’re tracking only bi-weekly paychecks and some miscellaneous sources of income, one page should be enough. There are 52 total lines in two columns. You can always print more later!
– Savings: For each savings goal you’re tracking, print one Savings Goal page.
– Investments: There’s no page to print in the Household Finance Kit for this section because investment options are plentiful. I recommend including any investment account information or summaries of value in this section.
– Check Register: Depending on how many checking account transactions you make, print enough Check Register pages to cover at least 3 months. There are 26 total entries if you track using two lines and 52 if single lined. Do away with that little checkbook in your purse and keep your finances all within this binder!
– Loans: For each outstanding loan, print one Loan Payoff page. Consider adding a sub-tab on this page and keeping bills for your loan behind this page vs. in the Receipts tab below.
– Bills: Print one Bill Schedule for this section and the Monthly Calendar. You might also store the Monthly Calendar in front of all tabs so it’s the first thing you see in this binder.
– Receipts: There’s no page to print in the Household Finance Kit for this section. All you need to do is 3-hole punch your bills and receipts to store here!
Feel free to add the Notes page to any or all of the tab sections. It’s a generic place for anything you need to track!
…and, just like that, your Household Finance Binder is ready to roll! Next week we’ll start entering our financial data and lock the bill payment process down. Two weeks from now, it’s budget time!