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How to build a budget using TrackIt

Posted on: December 04, 2014 | Author: ATB Financial

Managing your money is getting easier. Tools like ATB TrackIt™, which is built into ATB's online banking platform, might even make it fun to think about your finances.

One of the main features of TrackIt is its unique and easy-to-use budgeting tool. TrackIt has an advantage over, say, using a spreadsheet to create and track your budget. Once you add all your bank accounts, credit cards, and investment accounts to the platform, it starts automatically tracking your spending and income. Then when you sit down to create a budget, you’ll have a great starting point. TrackIt will tell you how much you've been spending in certain categories (like food, rent/mortgage, transportation, fitness). From there it's up to you to decide how much you want to spend on those categories.

For example, say you sign up to use TrackIt on January 1 and go about your business as usual until February 1. You might pay your rent or mortgage, do your grocery shopping, pay your utility bills, and fill up your gas tank.

When you look at TrackIt on February 1, it will have categorized your spending automatically so you can see how much you’re spending in different areas. Next step—set budgets for each of those categories that are either roughly aligned to your current spending patterns, or adjusted to match your goals. The tool can also auto-generate budgets based on your spending patterns.

By March 1, after another month of spending, TrackIt will tell you if you’re on par with the budgets you’ve set, or how much you might have saved if you stuck to those budgets. It can also indicate where you’ve over spent, so you can adjust your habits (or adjust your budget). This way, you’ll be able to control your money and begin to think about saving more of that money.

Your budget in TrackIt is displayed in a unique “bubble” view. You'll see larger bubbles for larger budgets. The first level in the budgeting tool displays larger categories. By clicking on a large category, you can see a new bubble view that breaks down that category. For example, a large category would be home, where you might spend $2000 per month. If you clicked on it, you could see how much you were spending for mortgage or rent, bills and utilities, or cleaning services.

Once you get started we think you'll agree it's time to ditch the spreadsheet and embrace the bubble!

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