Got the Money Monkey on your back? Sure he’s cute, but you should see him when he’s angry.
Personal finance can be is daunting, but that’s no reason to ignore it. When I was in 3rd grade, I decided to hide all of my bad grades in my cubby; if my parents didn’t know about them, they didn’t exist, no problemo. Things went great, well, at least until they came in for parent-teacher confrences. Busted. I know plenty of people who take this approach with their finances. Friends have flat out told me, I paraphrase here, “We are already in debt, we’ll never get out of it anyways, so why not just keep on digging?” Then there are the ever popular excuses for financial neglect: my spouse takes care of the money, or I’m young, so I’ll deal with it later.
I hate to break it to everyone, but you’re not that young, and it’s only going to get more complicated from here. To those of you who think that their spouse has everything under control, I say: 1. Two heads are always better than one 2. Life happens, there may come a time where you are forced to deal with your finances and you need to be prepared.
A great way to start figuring out your financial picture is to track your net worth.
My husband and I have been tracking this figure for the past year as we’ve been saving and paying off debt. Watching the chart flip from the bad to the good side of debt has been a great motivator for us to stay on track.
Here is the basic spreadsheet so that you too can start trackin’:
Download Net Worth – Example – Excel 97-2003
Download Net Worth – Example – Excel 2007
Photo Credit: lightmatter