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Free Personal Financial Planning Templates

written by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•edited by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•updated: 2/24/2009

Free, downloadable templates for tracking personal finances are easily obtained on the Web. If you’re looking to keep yourself within a budget and on top of your financial goals, these free templates will help make it easier to keep you fiscally organized.

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    Free templates for spread sheets and other documents relative to personal financial management can be accessed, created, and customized via templates on the Web to at least keep you victorious on the organizational front of the battle to manage your money. Free software loaded with templates, is also available for the same purpose. With a template, the general outline and all the relevant titles and sub-headings are already on the printable document so all the user will have to do is customize a little the text, if necessary, and then insert your numbers. Templates can be downloaded quickly, worked with easily, and used repeatedly in order to eliminate the busy-work you would have to otherwise do when creating one of these detail-laden documents from scratch.

    These free templates which are mostly arranged in a spreadsheet format are especially handy because they simplify the process of accounting with built in means of creating formulas and running calculations on a line by line basis or what is known in Microsoft Excel talk as a “cell." I don’t particularly like the irony of that term since I’m naturally disinclined to manage my own finances and equate the task to being locked in a jail cell. Making it thru a few tight spots in a war or climbing mountains can lead a person to thinking that this is all just borrowed time so no need to waste any ticks off the clock fooling around with boring numbers when there are many adventures to be had. But that is just another in a long list of excuses keeping me from doing something I need to do which is to keep my checking account from behaving like a red rubber ball. Maybe the research gleaned in this article will spur me on to a little more fiscal responsibility.

    As for the excellent resources available for the aforementioned purposes, one such acclaimed free software for managing finances by Gnu Cash can be downloaded at http://www.gnucash.org/. This software has a quick learning curve and an extensive feature set which can also be a valuable asset to the small business owner (refer to my article Free Financial Planning Templates for Your Small Business to gain additional information on that subject).

    Another helpful source with a massive supply of shared financial planning documents is located at http://www.docstoc.com/documents/financial/personal-finance/. With 69 pages of downloadable templates, this site (Docstoc) is more than likely going to have what you need and will no doubt expand your knowledge about how to most efficiently manage your money and pecuniary minutia.

    Finally, go directly to Microsoft Office Online for Excel their renowned spread sheet templates. If you’re not familiar with Excel, take some time to learn the basic functions of this program by using the tutorials they offer online or better yet, use the informative Bright Hub tutorials found at http://www.brighthub.com/search/results.aspx?q=excel%20tutorials. Access Excel templates at http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/CT101527321033.aspx?av=ZXL.

    Utilize the templates listed above to commit to the hard work and diligence requisite of sound financial management. Also, refer to my extensive series on the copious amount of free templates available for all sorts of desktop publishing projects by clicking on the series link on this page.