Toshl Finance Blog

Track family household expenses

The classic predicament of living together: gathering up all the common expenses. Food, lightbulbs, cleaning utensils, hookah tobacco molasses… Everyone buys things at different places, at different times and gathering and adding up all the receipts is a pain. There’s no need to resort to crude and complicated tools like a household expenses spreadsheet. With Toshl gathering up receipts and controlling spending is super easy and done in an instant.

In Toshl you note down your expenses, add tags and sync them to The cool thing is you can sync from multiple devices, even devices on different software platforms. Whether you or your household members have an iPhone, Android, Windows Phone 7, BlackBerry, Nokia Symbian^3 or Nokia Maemo, we’ve got you covered. There’s a Toshl app for every one of those platforms. That means every member of your family can use Toshl on their phone and note down the expense every time they buy items for the common household. It’s easy as pie. Mmmmm, pie.

How to: Collect family household food expenses

Buying food and household items can be quite a frequent chore. Sometimes you pick up the groceries together, but a lot of the times it’s just more efficient if one person buys food on their way from work. It would be great if you could automatically collect some more info on how much you spend on food, who buys it and where.

  1. 1. Install Toshl on the phones of your family members and log in to one account
  2. 2. Agree on a common tag for common expenses, let’s say you’ll all add the tag “family food” to all common expenses
  3. 3. Add a tag with the name person adding the expense, let’s say Matt, Joan, Ibrahim and Shaniqua
  4. 4. You can add additional info you’d want to have as tags, like the name of the store where you buy for example
  5. 5. See what everyone’s noting down

New Family Food Expense

You can then tell exactly how much you spend on food, how much members of your family have spent on it and where do you shop most. You can compare how the expenses grow or shrink through time, how your store preferences change and finally settle how’s the most diligent family shopper after all.

When you have all that information on your shopping, it’s much easier to save money. Especially if you find out that shopping at Candy, Candy & More Candy represents 64,9 % of your family’s food expenses. If that’s the case, your food spending savings might even be eclipsed by your medical bills savings.

Budget in
Don’t forget you can also make a family budget and add the “family food” tag right in there. It will make it easier to stick to your spending goals and warn you when you get dangerously close to your limits. You can even set budgets for specific family members based on their name tags. Another trip to Candy, Candy & More Candy might just have to wait for a week or two.

Family budget details

Quick tip: Because Toshl sync works almost instantly, it’s a good way to check if someone has already done the shopping. Just set Toshl to sync automatically on all the family phones. Then you can always check if another family member has already added an expense at your food shop today. If they have, you’re home free, no need for you to go shopping as well. Go home, relax and juggle as many vegetables as you can handle at once. If that’s your thing.

Control Family Spending - Tags

Seas of plenty ahead!
While this approach to gathering up your family expenses works, it could be even cooler and easier. We know and we’ve got you covered. Toshl is constantly evolving and we already have plans to make collecting and sharing of family expenses even simpler and more useful. How exactly? Well, you’ll just have to wait a little and see. It’s going to be good.

Posted in Family finance, Tips & Tricks, Tutorials