Backpacks and Chicken
If you have been following me on social media then you likely know that I am a BIG fan of tracking your expenses.
There are so many benefits and only one disadvantage.
- It takes time and if record-keeping is not your strong suit it can be a tad overwhelming.
- You know exactly where your money goes
- You are more in control of your finances
- You can make better decisions about your finances when you know how much you spend on the various expenses
- If you test out a strategy (ie. buying groceries in bulk) you have real data to support whether that strategy is saving you money
- You can ensure you were not overcharged for an item
I could go on, but I want to get to the benefit that this post is about. And that is…
- You catch errors such as being charged for an item more than once *gasp*
And that is exactly what happened to me …. twice in the last month.
Just before I was leaving on holidays, I was posting my cash receipts to MINT (the best tracking app/program I’ve found) when I noticed that I had been charged twice for a $10 package of chicken tenders. Oh no!!! And I was leaving that day for an out-of-country trip. Panic!! What to do!? I called the store, told them what happened, and explained that I would be away for a week. “No problem”, the customer service rep told me, just come in when you get back and let them know at the Customer Service Desk that you were talking to me and we will refund it to you.
So I did. $10 back in my pocket.
An then last week. I was reviewing my receipts to ensure they were posted properly on MINT (I will ‘split’ a transaction and post the different parts to different categories – for example, this receipt, from winners was for backpacks for the kids for back-to-school and a few items for me, because, well, I simply cannot go into winners and NOT but something. Their prices are so amazing and such great quality of clothing)…where was I? … oh yes…I was splitting the receipt between two categories – clothing and school supplies. I remember at the time of the purchase, when the cashier gave me my total, that I was surprised at how much I spent on clothes and thinking to myself ‘no more clothes shopping for awhile Mary Ann!’ but I didn’t scrutinize the sales slip. This time, because I was breaking down the totals, I saw the error. I had been charged twice for one of the backpacks. I overpaid by $29.99 plus tax! This time I didn’t panic, I called Winners and was told to come in and they would promptly refund me for the double-charged item. So I did. Easy peasy.
These two experiences left me wondering, “How many times have I been charged twice for something and never noticed!?”, and re-instilled in me the importance of looking at those pieces of paper they give you when you purchase something (it would have been way shorter to type ‘receipts”..lol) to ensure that you have been charged the right price and only once.
How about you?
Do you have a system for reviewing your receipts? I’d love to hear it and share it. Feel free to comment below.
A few more blogs on the subject:
- What is the Best Way to Track Your Expenses
- 5 Reasons Why You Should Track Your Expenses
- Track Your Expenses for Success
Helping you have happier, healthier finances,
Mary Ann Marriott
aka Dr Debt
(Mary Ann is a Licensed Insolvency Trustee with Allan Marshall & Associates. She has been working in the Insolvency Industry for more than 20 years and is passionate about helping others improve their finances)