Expense Tracking and Categorization (ETAC) - by WAIM
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**PLEASE READ: Create a copy or download this spreadsheet so you can edit your own version**

To create a copy, head to File > "Make a copy"
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Step 1: Download the data from all your accounts and credit cards for the past three FULL months as CSVs. (CSVs might also be titled "comma delimited tabs" in your account download options)
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Step 2: Import your CSVs as individual sheets. (To do this, go to File > Import > Upload your CSV and select "Insert new sheet" under the import options)
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Step 3: Format your data so it’s all uniform. Three columns: Date, description, then amount. Be sure to format the date column as a date and format the amount column as a currency.

NOTE: I like to keep all expenses as negative numbers. Make sure it's consistently negative OR positive (some accounts display the data differently.)

Delete any transfers or credit card payments. We're just looking for how much money went out the door, not how much was moved around.
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Step 4: Once your data is all formatted the same, copy/paste each list of transactions into one sheet, the sheet in this spreadsheet labeled “All Transactions”
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Step 5: When every transaction has been pasted over to the All Transactions tab, sort by date and then fill out the appropriate "Month" column.

(This will make it easier to filter your data and see transactions by month.)
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Step 6: Once months have been applied, go through every transaction line by line and assign a category in the category column.

You can use the category names already listed out on the Monthly Comparison sheet OR you can create your own.
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Step 7: Filter by month, and then sort by category. (To do this, go to Data > Create a filter... then select the down arrow on the month column and check off which month you want to view at a given time. We recommend only viewing one month at a time when you're adding up your category totals. Once you have just one month's transactions in your view, then select the down arrow on the category column and hit Sort.)

This will show you transactions in the same month AND group transactions in the same category together. This will make it easier to sum your totals over on the monthly comparison sheet.
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Step 8: In the Monthly Comparison sheet, use formulas to sum the expense total for the month in each category (see video for details.)

This will start to adjust your monthly expense totals, your three month average and your category average.

You can add more categories, just be sure that you update the total formulas so they include those.
You can also add more months, but again be sure to check your formulas.
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To get detailed instructions on how to use this sheet, head here: http://wanderingaimfully.com/debt-free
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