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Last week when I wrote about two ways to be rich I mentioned that getting a firm grasp on your current financial situation is crucial if you are at all serious about trying to better it.  Someone once said that after you get out of school, your financial sheet is your report card.  I think it was Robert Kioysaki.  This might be a little materialistic, but basically it is true.  You NEED to know what the hell is going on in your financial world if you want to make it better.

Also as you develop more passive income things do get more complicated.  I wish this was not true.  I love simplicity and I try and simplify in every way I can.  But as you own more real estate and more business and generally become financially independent you will need to have a a pretty good grasp of finances.  So just get over it and start learning.

Anywho, I had a few requests for a copy of the financial sheet I made to track my finances.  So I took my sheet and tweaked it a bit to make it useable, and took all my data out obviously, and here it is….

Example Financial Workbook

Now if you have no experience with Excel this might be complicated and frustrating, so you should just get out the pencil and paper.  You can see what the general categories are and you can just write them down.

If you are comfortable with excel then this can be a great starting point for you.  You will have to fill in your info and maybe remove sections that do not apply to you, but it should get you going.

The first page is the overview and you do not need to do anything to this page except when you add a new year.

The next page is labeled as “1-1-2010″ and on that page I highlighted in green the places that you need to fill in.  All the rest will be calculated automatically.

The way I use the workbook is I just update the “YTD” or Year to Date page when ever something happens in my financial life.  Then on Jan 1, or around there, I make sure everything is accurate and turn the “YTD” page into a static page that I do not change again and I start a new YTD page.   Over the years I am able to see the trends my financial life.

I have found that this tool is extremely valuable in being able to “see” the big picture and make informed financial decisions.  Not to mention when you apply for a loan I never fill out those financial sheets they try to get you to do.  I just email them a copy of my financial sheet and I’m done.

I hope it can help you to.

Let me know if you have any questions and if this is helpful, feel free to share it with others.

 

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