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Forgotten Transaction Register

Today is the start of our Transaction Register series. Over the week we will be provide information on The Forgotten Transaction Register, What is a Transaction Register? and How to use a Transaction Register.

The Forgotten Transaction Register

Many Canadians today have fully embraced electronic payments and have retired their cheques. Canadians get paid by direct deposit; have pre-authorized payments for car, mortgage, and life insurance; cash withdrawals from ATM’s and make retail purchases with their Interac card.

These are numerous transactions that some of us may find a challenge to keep track of. Even though we have convenient access to on-line banking or telephone banking, some still find it difficult to record their transactions – how does one really know how much money is in their bank account and where it is going? Has that post-dated bill payment been deducted from the balance I see in my account?

If we reflect back to the cheque world we were provided with a “Transaction Register”. This was that little book where you recorded the balance of your account, you wrote down all the cheques and all the pre-authorized debits as well as any cash you withdrew from your account. Once upon a time we actually balanced our bank account to this register, a process that seems to have gone by the way side. The “Transaction Register” is actually still available today, but only if you use cheques – it is the best little budgeting tool available.

When we meet with clients to talk about where they spend their money we often times get this blank look on their face. It is very difficult for them to answer simple questions like how much they spend on food, gas or clothing. They simply keep spending until there are no funds left in their account. They could go on-line and review the transactions but they just don’t do it.

If a person were to record the incoming and outgoing funds in a “Transaction Register” they would easily be able to review the information. This old process as some people call it was a simplified budgeting process. In today’s world this budget process needs to be extended so that people understand exactly what they are spending money on. But even before you get into real budgeting I would suggest that you go back to using or start using the “Transaction Register”.

Click here to watch an introductory Transaction Register video — powered by eHow.com

Wednesday:  What is a Transaction Register?