How to use JustBudget

Many people are asking me how to use JustBudget. I must admit there are not a lot of documentations and it can't be confusing at first. But in fact, it is really easy. Here is some explanation.

To use JustBudget properly, you need to understand a few simple facts that lead to proper usage.

JustBudget has been built on the idea that people who can't keep money aside is because they don't know where it all goes.

Well, most people think they know. But fact is; it's very easy to lose track of where you spend how much. This is exactly where JustBudget is meant to be useful.

JustBudget is not following the "envelop" approach where you try to plan ahead and split up what you have in your buckets. JustBudget is asking you to input all of your spending. And after a few weeks of data, it will draw you out some congregated information. Add your incomes if you want to know how much you're saving or you are under. But spending is most important.

Category is meant to be like "Rent, Groceries, TV service, Games, Restaurant, etc". Note that I always split Groceries and Restaurant. Actually, I even split Fast Food from actual sit down restaurant. That helps me see how often I can eat in each of those for the same amount of money.

Location is where you spent the money or the company. Who you pay your rent to, the grocery store you are going, your TV cable service company, where you buy your games, which restaurant you went, etc. This is meant to split up your expenses into a second level of details.

Later, you will see which category and location are "popular" to you. Which one you go to the most and which one you spent the most. You don't have to change your habit too quick. JustBudget will show you a clear image of your situation. Then after a few weeks, you will start seeing what category might be taking too much of your budget than required. Then you will want to apply the changes that make sense to you.

After several months, your stat page will show you an evolution between months. I like this page very much. It shows you all your monthly totals per category and the difference between them. So if you spent more or less in a category than the previous months, you will easy know by a red/green color-coded number.

Inserting a proper date will give you more precise information. And the description can be helpful to you when looking back at your own stuff. I write why something cost more than usual, and gas price for a litre/galon for historical purposes.

Splitting your expenses into several “budgets” is meant as a high level separation. When using a separate money currency or when moving to a new city for example. But in most cases, it should not be necessary.

Remember to input your data as quickly as possible, daily is the best to not lose any precious information.

Hope this helps.

Mathieu

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Posted in , | Posted on 08 Feb 2011 08:48by somekool |

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