Want to start over with budget, but don't want to lose historical data with Fresh Start Protocol

Please feel free to point me at another post if this is already addressed but I'm a complete newbie to these forums!!

I'm at a point where I've finally got all my accounts up to date with expenses spent and payments made after getting waylaid since the summer. I have debts to pay off and I run a business on the side so I really need to learn how to stick to the budget this year otherwise I won't achieve any of my goals.

In order to do this I need the clean slate to start but as I've not been budgeting since the summer my budget balances are all out of whack, and I have no idea how to "fix" this so that I have a clean slate for 1 Jan 2020.

I did consider the Fresh Start, but I love having my data all in one place when I want to look back at something so I don't want to do it that way and lose the historic transactions.

Is there another way I can achieve the Fresh Start, either by fixing my budget in the months from July to December, or doing something in December's so that my January is then working as it should?  TIA 

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  • Just ignore the past budget. You said your account balances are correct (as of today), which means the total money in the budget is also correct. January IS your clean slate, shift money as needed.

    If you want to nuke the category balances as well, use the Quick Budget in the Dec. budget area. Then January will be exactly as it would be with a Fresh Start (and transactions are, of course, retained).

  • This is what I have at the moment at the top of my Budget which I don't trust right now (Values are in UAE Dirham, which is AED3.6725 to USD1).  When you say to use the Quick budget in the Dec budget area, do you mean to use Quick Budget for Dec, and then do a proper budget for Jan?

      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 1 mth ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      ickleruth yes.

      Like 1
    • ickleruth Frankly, I would

      1. Zero out all categories in December (set available amounts to 0 with Quick Budget).

      2. Split up the money you have the way you want it in December. The budgeted column will look funny, but you're really looking at the available here. Just type a plus sign (+) before any number you want to put in a category, or use the Move Money tool by clicking on the TBB and typing what you want where.

      3. Then, January will be a clean slate. If you want to make yourself Buffered, reserve enough in step #2 in a category to be released and budgeted as the normal budget in January's view. 

      Good luck! I would want my transaction history as well.

      Like 1
    • MsTJ
    • YNAB has given me back my future
    • Believer_in_YNAb
    • 1 mth ago
    • 3
    • Reported - view

    I just did a fresh start as I want to have my budget in packets, one for the teens, one for the twenties and so forth.  Did some research on what my options were before doing that as I also hated to give up my 4 years of history in my current budget.

    There are the options I believe you know about:

    1.  New Budget    -    Start over from scratch

    2.  Fresh Start    -    All accounts, categories and category groups and scheduled transactions move over and all your funds go to "To Be Budgeted" where you get to reallocate them.  It appears that is what you have done since you have money in "To Be Budgeted" (TBB). An important first step in YNAB is give every dollar a job so the TBB amount should always be zero when you finish budgeting your funds.

    Those are both available on the top left of your budget under your budget name.  They create copies of your current budget and archives them.  

    3.  Another option I just found was "set available amounts to zero."  It's on the lower right side of your budget, in the inspector area.  This gives you the option to just continue on and do a soft Fresh Start.  This maintains your reports.  

    When you do a fresh start, it zero's out your category balances.  You can go back and check what things were like before doing a fresh start, by accessing the archived budget any time you want.

    When you use the "Reset Budgeted Amounts to zero", you can't go back once you log out or refresh.  The changes become locked into your new budget going forward.  

    I'm glad I went with the Fresh Start.  I completely reorganized my budget to reflect todays priorities, which are different from when I started.  I have added some and removed some categories, added some and removed some category groups, rearranged a lot of things, removed old bank accounts and payees.  I like having a snap shot of the old budget to go back to for reference.  I will build up my history again, with time. 

    So many options. You can pick the one that works best for you.  

    Like 3
  • Thanks a lot for the help! I went with setting available amounts to zero for Dec and  then did my budget for Jan. Fingers crossed I can stay on top of it this year!

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