Never Misplace Your Checkbook Register Again - How to Keep Your Finances at Your Fingertips

Example of register that comes with your checks
Example of register that comes with your checks

Checkbook registers are designed to help us keep track of our money.  What is you misplaced it or even completely lost it?  How would you remember every transaction you had listed inside?  Chances are very slim that you would be able to really every transaction from your memory.  You can find yourself deep in a financial mess by not having an accurate track of your checking account transactions.

Checkbook Register at Your Fingertips

 You can give yourself peace of mind by setting up a checkbook register on your computer.  You will never have to worry about misplacing or losing this valuable information again.  You can use a program such as Microsoft Office Excel easily to keep track of your checking account.  It can be set up in minutes and be ready to use immediately.

A checkbook register that is set up on your computer is perfect for couples who share a joint account.  It will give both persons easy access to the register any time of the day or night.  The easy accessiblity will help to lower the chances of information not being entered, meaning no more inaccurate checkbook balances.  It also lowers the risk of overdrafts due to missing information, which will save you money in bank charges.

Setting Up Your Checkbook Register

You can use Microsoft Office Excel or a similar program for you checkbook register. You will need to add titles in the tops of each column you will be using, and you will need to format the cells to configure to the type of numbers that will be inputted to the cells.

Example: If column A is going to be used for the date, you will want to format that columns sell to display the numbers in date format, monetary columns would need to be formated to display currency, and so on.

Here are the steps in starting your checkbook register:

  1. Open your computers Excel program
  2. Label the columns as follows: A - Date, B - Description, C - Check #, D - I use this column to make what has cleared the bank by placing an X in the cell,  E - Deposits, F - Withdrawls, G - Balance
  3. You will have to make some of the columns wider or more narrow to get the best fit for what will be entered in each. Ex. date column will be more narrow than description column
  4. Format each column for the type of numbers that will be entered in each. Ex. format column A to display numbers in date form, columns E, G, and F, to display currency

 

Analyzing your Finances

 The Microsoft Excel program will help you easily analyze your spending habits.  The best way to do this is to add up your deposits and withdrawls at the end of each month.  The autosum feature makes this easy, all you have to do is highlight the numbers in the column and click the autosum button on the toolbar.  By doing this at the end of each month you will be able to see if you spending habits are staying the same, or if they are changing.  The benefit of being able to track monthly totals is that you will be able to decide if you need to decrease your costs, increase you savings, or it will just be an excellent way to check if you are meeting the goals set in your budget.

 Here is an example of how the checkbook register will look in the Microsoft Excel program.  I was unable to show the last column G which would be for your running balance.  At the end of the month the total deposits and total withdrawls are shaded in blue, so that you would easily be able to track month to month changes.

Benefits

There are many benefits of using your computer for recording your checkbook register transactions. Some of the benefits are:

  • Easy access to track your money
  • More space for entering details about the transactions
  • Easily track your spending and saving habits - monthly and yearly
  • Helps you to be sure your finances are in tune with your budget
  • Allows you to identify areas where you can cut costs
  • Can be conveniently used by more than one person
  • You can add notes to cells if needed, which will let you leave a bigger description
  • Easily balance your checkbook, all transactions on bank statement will be marked with an X in column D
  • You can add a missed transaction where ever it belongs by adding a row where you want it to be placed.  (you can not do this with a paper register, unless you wish to erase)

There are many other benefits you will appreciate when compared to the paper booklet the banking institution gives to you. A paper register is not going to add columns for you, or give you monthly or yearly access to your savings and spending habits.

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