Where Did My Pay Cheque Go?

Financial Fixings with Marie-Pierre Castonguay, CGA - Where Did My Pay Cheque Go?

Before the invention of credit and debit cards, everyone would go to the bank to deposit their pay cheques, and withdraw cash to cover their expenses. When the cash ran out, the spending stopped.

Growing up, I remember asking my mother if I could have money to buy something. Most of the time, the response was “no, I don’t have any left, we have spent our budgeted amount for the month.” The term “budget” is a common term in the business world in reference to balancing income and expenses, but we consumers associate the term “budget” with the cheaper version of what we really want! Some people I know still stick to a budget, but they are most probably the minority now.

Most of us use debit and credit cards, and if we don’t have any cash in our wallets and feel like going out for lunch for the third time this week, instead of restraining ourselves, we pull out our “set of cards”.

So, this month I have a personal challenge for you individually or as a family. I’ve prepared a spreadsheet titled “Personal Cash Flow” which you will find on the Fernie Fix website (www.ferniefix.com). It is simple and I have tried to include as many types of expenses that I could think of, and it can be easily modified to suit your needs.

I don’t think many of you will work on it this month. It is still summer and we are all trying to enjoy it as much as we can. My goal is to bring this to your attention so that you can start thinking about it and work on it next month (maybe start saving for some new ski gear!).

It will be an eye-opener for some and a rude awakening for others. Upon completion, you may want to reward yourself with your favourite comfort food, activity, outing, etc.