On June 1st 1962 my dad began to keep a household ledger and its data is proving very interesting. It opens with a balance of £98.2.6p and shows dad’s monthly salary as being £75.19.9p
It was interesting looking through the records and one can see a life’s trajectory by focussing on particular things. For example, I could look at dad’s income by age or see when he bought his council house and saw his payments jump threefold to a princely sum of £76.37 per month from a rent of £22.24 at that time (1971). Once could also see his income over time.
The records show some key dates, like when he bought the house or paid off the mortgage.
Then there is the last entry is for January 3rd 2014 when dad was 86. Dad continued to keep a credit card ledger up until July 11th 2014 but then stopped all financial recording except for his savings. Mum would die just some 23 days later, so maybe his lost interest.
I’ve been continuing this role since dad’s death as his accounts need to go through probate and the house needs selling. I doubt many of us keep ledgers anymore as most transactions are carried out electronically with statements automatically generated. This might be useful but it’s nice to see things written in one’s parents’ own hand.