Age of Money 2019

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  • Moohouse said:
    I see now that if my next paycheck is delayed by even one day, then I would have to pay some CC interest for a day or two. This has so far never happened for me, but just in case, I did a transfer from savings.

     Huh? Why would you ever pay interest on a CC when your AOM is 388 days? You should have them set up to auto-pay the statement balance each month. Your paycheck timing should have nothing to do with it.

    Reply Like
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone 

      I read that as Moohouse keeping the chequing account a little too low, and not as overspent credit card.

      If I'm right, I can see how that would happen regardless of the AoM or liquidity in the accounts. I had that problem as well.  All my credit card spending was backed by real dollars in my accounts and budgeted for, but I liked to keep chequing (which earns zero interest) really low and put every dollar I can into an interest-paying savings account.  That meant I got into the habit of letting my new income be the cashflow that paid the credit card.  It dawned on me that if the salary arrived late for some reason, I would have to move funds back from savings or not pay the entire statement balance.  The only time I actually considered this an option was for a large not-budgeted-for medical expense made in anticipation of a 100% insurance reimbursement. The insurance arrived with 2 days to spare.

      Reply Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 9 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      HappyDance If that's the case, that's a cash management issue that one shouldn't have in that situation. There is not a good reason to keep the payment account that close to the bone (no pun intended.) I also get 0 interest in my checking account. However, I keep a healthy enough amount in there so that I will never have an issue paying my bills unless I have a large RDF bill coming up in which case I'll transfer money into checking in preparation. But for day-to-day budgeted spending, I never have to transfer funds back into my account. If one finds themselves doing this very often at all, they're not keeping enough in their payment account.

      If you added up all the interest you made on that margin difference over your lifetime, I don't think it would be worth the hassle of having to monitor your checking account balance like a hawk. At least it wouldn't for me. To each their own, I guess.

      Reply Like 1
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 9 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Superbone 

      Agreed.  I also came to that same conclusion.  I increased the base minimum I keep in my chequing account at all times.  I think that may have been the last stubborn remnant of budgeting by account, this business of keeping my chequing account at a bare minimum was a way of controlling or pacing my spending prior to YNAB.

      Reply Like 2
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone I woudn't pay interest by choice as I have plenty of money to pay. I usually keep about 2x average monthly expenses in my checking account, which gets about 0.1% interest. CC balance is currently about 6x the usual amount, so I did a preliminary transfer of funds which usually takes a couple of days to clear. The checking account balance would according to YNAB be too low in two weeks if my paycheck for some reason is delayed - which could happen.

      Edit: I don't monitor the balance like a hawk, YNAB does that for me. 😉

      Reply Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moohouse I get it but you have a full month from the time your statement balance posts to when it's due. You easily have enough time to transfer enough money to not have to rely on your paycheck timing. There is no excuse to pay a couple days of interest is all I'm saying.

      Reply Like
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone I am sorry if my cash flow has offended you.

      Reply Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 9 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Moohouse I just don't want you to pay any interest is all. You have no reason to. I wish nobody had to pay interest to the greedy credit card companies.

      Reply Like 3
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone I would lose more money by constantly keeping as much money in checking as I currently do due to this upcoming bill than I would lose by paying interest for a (theoretical) day or two. And I would only have to pay in the unlikely event of the paycheck being late coinciding with me not taking any precautionary action.

      But since I stated: "This has so far never happened for me, but just in case, I did a transfer from savings" which means this very unlikely event can't occur. And I still have two weeks to pay the bill which just arrived today.

      Reply Like
  • Reply Like 4
  • Cool! We just came back to YNAB mid-Jan 2019. Our AOM was 0 at that time and we went ahead and installed the toolkit... days of buffering at a Neg number due to large cash purchases that are unusual for us (plane tickets for 4 to military graduation, college housing deposit, and a rather expensive piece of exercise equipment). Upside was we didn't charge anything like we would have in the past. Downside is... it looks like we have a very high average monthly expense amount that really isn't normal. I wonder how long it will take to come out of this scenario? We are in debt pay-down mode at the moment while also committing about $500/mth to savings + $200 more to investing for the hub's retirement. 

    All that to say... end of Feb AOM 13, Buffering -35.4 😕I'm line 48 on the spreadsheet.

    Reply Like 2
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 9 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      rnjenren1 DoB will even out over time, don't worry about it. It only shows you that if you keep spending as much on average going forward, then you'll quickly become broke. But you already know that. 🙂

      My days of buffering with various history lookup (in toolkit settings, budget screen)

      • 1 month: 310
      • 3 months: 457
      • 6 months: 523
      • 1 year: 567
      • All: 503 (the one I use, has data since 2013)
      Reply Like
  • I would consider this a stable income/expense stream!

    Reply Like 4
  • Moohouse said:
    I would lose more money by constantly keeping as much money in checking as I currently do due to this upcoming bill than I would lose by paying interest for a (theoretical) day or two.

     Why would you constantly do it? It's a one time thing. 

    1. You have a big bill coming up.
    2. You transfer from savings enough to cover it, let's say a week before it's due to be safe.
    3. That's it. You're done. After paying the big bill, your checking balance is back to pre-big bill numbers.
    Reply Like 2
  • Newbie here. Started YNAB several months ago, went off track, and did a full reset a week ago. I'm reading this forum a bit everyday and talking to some of my friends about my YNAB journey in order to build in some accountability for myself. I just checked my age of money for the first time since the reset and it is at... 2 days. It is astounding to me that many of you are a year ahead of that, but at this point, I am going to strive to get to 30 days. At this point it's hard to imagine living on last month's income, but it seems like a reasonable goal that I am inspired that many of you have achieved! When you all were new to YNAB, how long did it take you to get to that magic 30 day figure?

    Reply Like 3
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 6
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Pilot There was no AOM when I started but it took me a couple years to get to where I was budgeting this month with last month's income. And then it took me another 7 years to get into the 300s. Just keep doing it one day at a time. I started with credit card debt and car loans living paycheck to paycheck with no savings to my name. I now have no debt other than a mortgage, tons of savings, and I bought my last car with cash. All this while helping put two kids through college. Keep at it!

      Reply Like 6
      • bevocat
      • Sometimes, It Just Sucks to Be You
      • bevocat
      • 8 mths ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Pilot You could get a job where they pay you on the last day of the month and then put all of your expenses onto a credit card that you pay in full when the statement arrives. That'll get you there really fast!

      Alternatively, quit your job, and just watch that AOM figure go up, up, up. Of course, you'll also run out of money, but that's the risk of using a basically meaningless metric.

      As far as the question behind the question, just make sure you budget for all of your obligations and make sure you're budgeting for your true expenses, and spend less than you earn. Eventually you'll be able to budget a month entirely on income earned the previous month. There's no magic; it's simple. But it sure ain't easy!

      Reply Like 4
    • Hi Slate Blue Pilot ! Welcome to You Need A Budget! This forum is a great source of inspiration. Let us know if we can do anything to help you along the way. 😄

      Reply Like
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Pilot 

      There was no AoM in YNAB4, but I was operating on the concept of being a month ahead before I found YNAB.  I got tired of timing my bill paying to my personal spending and the receipt of my salary, and getting it wrong (and paying NSF fees when I got it wrong).  It was just so much easier to start the month with all the funds needed for that month already in the bank account.  How I did it back then was to deliberately pay minimums on everything and go scorched-earth on discretionary spending. That got me a paycheque ahead in pretty short order, I'd say in about 6 weeks, and I was a full month ahead by mid month # 3.  I never allowed myself to slip back.

      When I transitioned to nYNAB, I brought my entire YNAB4 history with me, so I can go back and look at the AoM # that YNAB assigned to all my historical months.  I was at no number in my first partial month (that makes sense) and at 31 in my first full month, 60 in my second full month, and 75 in my 3rd month.  I then bounced all over the place for the next 2+ years as I bought a car, loaned money to a relative, and made paying off the car and a personal loan my entire focus.  During my debt smackdown (which took about 16 months), my AoM never exceeded 75, which I assume was due to keeping up with my true expenses categories and always being a month ahead.  Twice it dipped below 30, and those were both months were I helped out a relative in crisis just before the receipt of my month-end salary deposit.

      Post debt smackdown, my savings rate is a pretty steady 1/3 of my my monthly income, so my AoM increases by around 4 months per year or 120 days per year.  If I don't transfer funds to investment accounts, I expect to exceed the 365 mark this year.

      Reply Like 2
    • Reading this thread and others, I'm beginning to understand how the age of money figure itself isn't the end-all-be-all. I guess what I'm going for at this point is to be able to follow the old "live on last month's income" rule. Hoping that I can get there little by little, and that when my next three-paycheck month comes in August, that the "extra" check may help with getting there.

      Reply Like 4
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      HappyDance Ooh. I never thought about going back in time and looking at AOM. My budget starts in 2011 and I just walked through the entire history. Interesting. I started at sub 30 and slowly worked my way to the 333 I'm at today.

      Reply Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Pilot Yes, AOM is pretty meaningless overall but it does show the way you're trending. At some point, it normally levels off as you should be sending excess money out of your budget to investment accounts. That being said, I started an experiment late last year where I keep my taxable investments in my budget which allows me to categorize its purposes. In order to do that, you need to be able to withstand and absorb wild swings due to the volatility of the stock market.

      Your goal to follow the old Rule 4 is a great one! Many of us old-timers do this and it makes it so easy when you can budget an entire month at once with funds that are already there ready to go. Other goals should be to pay off all debts and then to fill out your Rule 2 True Expenses including a full emergency fund.

      Reply Like 1
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 8 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Superbone I can look at my AOM trend and tell you exactly what caused any particular drop. New house, new car, vacations, charitable donation lumping due to the tax law change, etc.

      Reply Like 3
    • Slate Blue Pilot We were able to get to 1 month ahead in a couple months thanks to my hubby working a lot of OT at the end of last year and beginning of this year, plus my annual bonus from work, and our tax refund.  Can't tell you how much easier we sleep now that we're a month ahead - best of luck to you on your journey!

      Reply Like 1
    • I'm still a long way to 30.... but after starting off at 2, my AOM is now up to... 5. Small wins, I suppose!

      Reply Like 4
    • AOM is up to 8. My immediate goal: to get it up to about 14 or 15 by end of month. My paychecks are every other week, so this will allow me to at least be one paycheck ahead. 

      Reply Like 2
    • As of tonight, my AOM is up to 30! I'm second-guessing this, because I don't feel a full month ahead, but given I'm funding a bunch of discretionary categories that I don't plan on spending quite yet (e.g., clothing, end-of-year gifts, etc.) I definitely don't feel as strapped for cash as I did just a month and a half ago when starting YNAB. I'm paying the rent and my student loan payment in the next week, which together are a pretty big chunk of money, so I am thinking perhaps my AOM will drop a bit? We shall see. I still don't completely understand it, but I'm keeping my eyes on the goal of moving forward and getting to a point where I have the funds to sit down and budget an entire month in advance.

      Reply Like 5
    • Slate Blue Pilot  AOM is up to 68. And, I now have the YNAB Toolkit, which tells me that my DOB is 46. 

      Reply Like 1
  • When I started at the beginning of the month my AoM was 20 days. It went up to 25 days, and now it's at 24 days so I think I'm doing okay. Payday is on the 3rd.

    Reply Like 2
      • internettie
      • Writer
      • internettie
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

       My AoM is up to 28 days on the last day of the month!

      Reply Like 1
  • I probably won't remember to report in on Sunday (last day of the month), so I'm posting now. 

    Was at 18 days at the end of February and am now at 24 days!  Goal is 30. 

    I'm liking the progress!

    Reply Like 2
  • Boringboringboring (I   ❤️   it!)

    Reply Like 3
  • AoM -17 days,  DoB -6 days

    AoM 371 DoB 497

    My first negative month in a long while, maybe it's a new trend? DoB is surely down due to current home renovations, the AoM drop is due to something I did at the start of 2018?

    Reply Like 1
  •  

    AOM: +1, DOB: no change

    I went back to all-time DOB.

    Reply Like 2
  •  

    AoM:  +11     DoB: +6

    Still gnawing on last July's paycheque it would seem.  My March spending total came it at 90% of average spending.  It kind of helps if you are also on a reduce-the-grocery-spending kick, your mother is buried in tax papers, and your sisters are too busy to go shopping. 🙂 

    Reply Like 2
  • Well, I beat my initial goal of 30 days.  AoM: 49, and since I installed the toolkit, I now know my  DoB: 27.

    Reply Like 4
    • Bruce Nice!  I am at 16 right now.  I should be at 30 I hope by the end of this month.  What do you think of DoB?  Do you think that is a more accurate representation of your money?

      Reply Like
  • I have a question for everyone.

    I know this thread is about Age of Money

    What do you think of Days of Buffering (DoB) from the toolkit?  Do you think that is a more accurate representation of your money?

    Reply Like
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      VoltaicShock More accurate in what regard? What time period are you using for the lookback on DOB?

      No matter what you do it will never be good enough because income changes over time and spending changes over time are not concurrent, resulting in inaccurate averages. I bought a car in September 2015. If I use the all-time average, that gets averaged in, which is great. But income has changed significantly since then, as well as expense patterns. If I shorten to the last year, then it doesn't include my car purchase. If I send money out of the budget without spending, it's treated like spending.

      Also, it seems a bug was discovered recently that inflows into categories were being ignored, resulting in a smaller gap between income and expenses than reality. Not sure if that has been fixed.

      Reply Like
    • nolesrule  Yeah not sure really I did notice what you are saying and yes I think there was a bug with the toolkit.  Not sure if it is fixed yet.  I might play around with it a bit and see how changing it around impacts my DoB.

      Reply Like
  • Finished March at 15 days AOM. More than double what I started the year with. 

    Reply Like 4
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Ruff16965 (05bd62cee897) 

      Go you. Keep moving forward and working your plan.

      Reply Like 2
  • Goal: 45 
    December 31st: 24 
    January 31st: 11 
    February 28th: 18
    March 31st: 18

    For a few days this month, our AOM was sitting around 26 - which was a bit exciting and disturbing and maddening. I know that it's because we've been using our credit card A LOT more for budgeted purchases, but I forgot how it can inflate your AOM.  I am actually relieved that it dropped back down to 18, because I feel that is a far more accurate representation of our current situation.  We are still working hard on paying down debt, but I've been trying to find a good balance between debt payoff AND building our buffer, because honestly, if I sent everything we had towards debt, I would be freaking out about not having money set aside for anything else.  So, this is ok. It's not progress, but we aren't going backwards either. I can live with it. 

    Reply Like 2
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Karen Harris My understanding is that an AOM of 60 days when primarily paying for your expenses on credit card equates to the 30 day AOM goal that YNAB espouses. However, the AOM metric is not an exact science. A better metric is the old YNAB Rule 4 of living on last month's income. When you can budget all of next month with this month's income, you're in a great place.

      Reply Like 3
    • Superbone Ah, good point about the 60 days... that makes a lot more sense when it comes to using your credit card regularly.  I think you are right about the old YNAB Rule... that is ultimately my goal.  I am tackling it category by category.  We have a couple of categories that are fully funded for May already (still haven't received an April paycheck).  Slowly and surely, we will get there. :D 

      Reply Like 3
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Karen Harris You're doing awesome! Keep at it. I was where you are back in the day and things were very tight at the time. I'm pretty sure it took me 2 years of diligence before getting a full month ahead. Things just continued to get better and better from there.

      Reply Like 2
  • So I have a question for those people on 100s of days AoM or DoB... are you keeping nearly a years salary in current (checking) account? 

    If yes... Why don’t you siphon off more towards investments?

    Hope you don’t think I’m prying but it seems a huge amount of cash to have on hand.

    Reply Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g No worries, I'll happily answer. No, I keep on average of 1 to 3 paychecks worth in my checking account. I just have to make sure I have enough in checking at any time to pay upcoming bills. I use the toolkit running balance along with scheduled transactions to facilitate this. I transfer out anything more than that to high interest money market and savings accounts.

      Also, I don't recommend this to most but I put my taxable investment account on budget last year as I love the ability to categorize my funds. For example, I transfer $400 a month to a Vanguard total market index fund for my next car that I will pay for in cash. I do that as it's outside a 5 year window as I just purchased my current car less than 2 years ago. Also, part of my Emergency Fund (aka income replacement) is in stocks in Vanguard as well. I also have freedom to transfer some of my money market funds into stock when I believe a good opportunity has presented itself as I did when I bought Apple stock when it was at $150 earlier this(?) year.

      I hope this helps.

      Reply Like 2
      • bevocat
      • Sometimes, It Just Sucks to Be You
      • bevocat
      • 8 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g No, of course not! Lots of my money is in Ally savings accounts or CDs.

      Reply Like 3
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 8 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g 

      My DoB is 150 right now, AoM is 86.  DoB will go down in the next week as 1/2 the mortgage and the car payment are siphoned off.  The money is mostly in a money market account, 15-20% is in checking.  The DoB is high because a lot of money is in sinking funds for very large purchases or repairs such as new roof, HVAC repair/replacement, new car fund, new windows, tech and backup hardware replacement (spouse is a computer person, we need terabyte hard drives, cloud this and new wifi that, and router I don't even know).  I don't put this money into investments because when it's not going to do me any good if my $12000 intended for roof replacement is only worth $9,000 when I need it, nor do I want to have to pay capital gains to use my money.  I have a month's worth of basic needs emergency fund on budget.  I'm almost done with my three month trial, I expect the AoM and DoB to continue to go up to some degree in the future because of all the money in sinking funds.  If and when I'll need to use the sinking funds, I expect both AoM and DoB to drop.  

      Our actual 'oh, crap' money is off budget, some of it is going into a 12 month CD ladder, some of it is in a high yield (2%) savings account.  We do have money in investments, we have 403bs and I'm putting about 6 months basic needs into a brokerage account on the advice of a financial advisor.  If the market doesn't tank I expect to use the brokerage account during my kids' college years to help with college expenses.  If it's not drained dry after, we'll use it to add to our 401k and 403b income in our retirement years.  

      Why?  Because that's the way we like it.  I'm not into risk for money that I might need to keep my head above water and for true needs.  I don't gamble with money I can't afford to lose.  I don't expect to need retirement funds for about 20-25 years so I'm ok with more risk for that pool of money.  If my entire roof needs to be ripped off and replaced then I need my funds for that to be liquid and for it to not have lost value when I need it.  Same with income replacement.  The specifics of CD ladder, high yield savings, and the brokerage account were chosen by our financial advisor.  

      Reply Like 2
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g 

      I actually do have the equivalent of 12-ish months income in my on-budget categories now, and I had barely half a month of liquidity when I started 4+ years ago:

      • 1 month's salary in in my true expenses (predictable annual stuff)
      • 1/2 month's salary in giving categories
      • 3+ month's salary in short- and medium-term savings categories (furnishings, electronics, next car purchase, vacations, retirement investing) 
      • 7+ month's salary in emergency-type categories (medical/dental/health, car repair, car insurance deductible, moving fund, family emergencies) 
      • 1-ish month in my frequent-spending categories (rent, utilities, groceries, gas, spending money, etc.)

      Approximately 1/4 of my on-budget "available" funds are in a tax-sheltered TFSA (Tax Free Savings Account, it's a Canadian thing) just to minimize some of the income tax I'd have to pay on all my interest income. I have another TFSA that is not on-budget, and it is a retirement account with investments in the stock market. And I have a liquid savings account that I do have to pay tax on the interest earned. This balances my need for liquidity with the desire to tax shelter, but ensures I don't invest my emergency funds or short-term funds into anything that might be down in value just when I need it.

      The amount I keep in my chequing account is a formula that works for my cash-flow needs. At the end of each month I make sure the balance in chequing is equal to:

      • one month's average spending [from the YNAB income/expense report for the last year (excluding the savings master category due to lump sum outflows that skew the average)], +
      • any big annual/irregular expenses scheduled to outflow in the next 4 to 6 weeks, +
      • $1,000
      Reply Like 1
      • Laura Coursen
      • Technical Writer
      • lecoursen
      • 7 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g I keep almost all my money in HYS account (2.45%)... our paychecks are direct deposited there, and once a month I transfer ONLY as much as I need to cover the coming month's outflows to my checking account. Since we do almost all our spending on rewards credit cards, I only have a handful of transactions in my checking account each month: utilities and credit card payments, mostly. Those are all known at least a month in advance, so it's easy to use the Toolkit's running balance to see how much I need to transfer... I aim to have my checking account balance at $500 at its lowest point during the month.

      I'm also slowing moving my 6 month Job Loss fund ($60k) from HYS to i-bonds (currently 2.83% but changes with inflation), but those are on budget too.

      I do currently have about 12 months of spending in cash, and I can understand thinking I should invest that instead. But here's the thing... YNAB tells me that money is NOT available for investment, because I plan to use it all within 5 years. The amount is actually irrelevant, it's the JOB that should determine where the money goes. Money with the job of Retirement or anything else 10+ years in the future should be invested. Money with the job of paying this year's property taxes, car maintenance, upcoming vacations, etc. should not. I also believe it's inappropriate to invest Job Loss funds... it's exactly when the market is down that you're most likely to need it, so investing that means my PLAN is to buy high and sell low.

      Reply Like 1
      • lindsay_g
      • Beige_Banjo.3
      • 7 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Laura Coursen  HappyDance bevocat Technicolor Cheetah Superbone Thank you all very much. That is very interesting. I tend to think that investments mean locking money away that I might need, but I see I have more research to do. Also the idea of actually locking it away because it’s a long-term save (car, say) is a good point which I hadn’t thought of. 

      Really, thank you. Plenty to ponder there for my own plans.

      Reply Like 2
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 7 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      lindsay_g 

      I'm pretty sure that financial people will tell you to keep emergency cash and income replacement fairly liquid and in low-risk vehicles.  So of course money market accounts, savings, and even short term CDs (if you have the cash to wait a month or two).  Same with repair and replacement funds.  You're going to need them when you need them, and not 6 months later nor at 3/4 of what the money was when you invested it.  That's also why when people get closer to retirement age, you're often advised to move your retirement funds into more stable and less risky investments.  

      Reply Like 1
  • HappyDance

    Wow, you're organized regarding the checking account balance at the end of the month.  I figure that in a month or two I will start pulling out some money every month or two since a good check is going into sinking funds and long term bills.  I'm not buffered yet, so it would make more sense for me to do so right around when payday is rather than end of the month.  

    Reply Like 1
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 8 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah 

      It took me a while to hit a formula that serves my cash flow and spending patterns. I initially tried a $250 minimum, then a $500 one, but the $1K min works best for me. Last year I had to transfer from savings to chequing only once.

      Reply Like 1
  • April check in:  AOM is 36 and 41 days of buffering.  Yay!  Hit my goal of 30, so I bumped it to 45.  🙂

    Reply Like 2
  • Reply Like 2
  • I started in January.  Age of money was 

    • 19 in January
    • 45 in February
    • 78 in March
    • 111 in April

    Days of buffering is currently 142.  Age of money has gone up so fast because I started off with a good chunk of money in savings, so it will continue going up quickly until I've actually spent as much as I had in savings, I think. 

    Reply Like 5
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 6 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah 

      Note to self, I'm #61 in the chart

      Reply Like 1
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 6 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah Tip: Use Control+F to find your username.

      Reply Like 1
  •  

    Whew!  What a big stinky spending month!  I'm so glad that April is over.  I spent more than double my monthly take-home (around 3 x my average monthly spending rate) and my AoM dropped by 15 from last month's 244.  The big spending was irregular:  family gifts, charitable giving, a bit of car maintenance, and $3,250 for dental work ($2,700 of that this morning for the dental surgery phase of my new dental implant).  I expect to get the entire $3,200 back from my various insurance plans, but that won't happen until next month. And then there will be another $2,500 (or so) in dental in another couple of months to finish the job.

    This is just gonna make another big dumb dip and bump in my reports.......oh, well.....such is life! 😉

    Reply Like 5
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 7 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      HappyDance 

      I read things like this and it reinforces my wish to save monthly for dental expenses once I no longer have braces to save and pay for.  

      Reply Like 1
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 7 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah 

      I began setting funds aside for medical/dental (and not touching that category except for medical/dental) when I began using YNAB 4+ years ago and built the category up with a steady $75 to $100 per month. All my health insurance reimbursements went straight back to that category.

      I was broke (newly employed after a very long unemployment) and couldn't afford the implant when I broke off my molar at the gum line 7 years ago, but the expense has been inching up my priority list for seven years. 

      Everything is possible with a plan.  Thanks, YNAB.

      Reply Like 3
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 7 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      HappyDance 

      Like you, I'm also having the reimbursements from our health care savings account added to a reimbursements category.   Hopefully I can use that to front load 2020's medical and dental expenses if any of the HCRA is left over at the end of this year; maybe next year I might be able to decrease what I am currently putting aside for health care each month.  The orthodontics/dental is a separate category and I'll leave that one alone next year because I have 3 kids who might need orthodontia (one will probably get an expander this fall) and my husband's got an off and on achy tooth...Maybe it's sinus pressure on the roots but the crown word has been mentioned.   

      Reply Like 2
  • Feb: AOM 2/DOB 56 (I had some savings, but only like $700 in checking)

    March: AOM 26/DOB 56

    April: AOM 34/DOB 56

    Guess I'm not making any headway on buffering, lol.

    Reply Like 3
      • xgirlmama
      • Purple_Griffin
      • 7 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

       I took a hit when getting paid and immediately sending $1500 to my wife for half of the mortgage lol. 

      AOM is now 32, DOB is now 47

      Reply Like 1
      • bevocat
      • Sometimes, It Just Sucks to Be You
      • bevocat
      • 7 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      xgirlmama That's why you pick one day of the month and stick to it, to avoid these kinds of inconsistencies.

      Reply Like
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      bevocat 

      Unfortunately, for those of us who have biweekly pay, our income doesn't fall in the same place within our monthly bills each month.  I have a lot of bills that are in the latter part of the month.  So paydays sometimes fall in the peaks and sometimes in the (relative) troughs of my cashflow.  I'm not sure what that does to my AOM but while picking a date limits some variables, comparing month to month is trickier because of the peak/trough.  Especially for those who are not buffered and/or don't have a large DOB, I suspect.  It would be more interesting to see how AOM moves within the month depending what bills are paid when but I don't know if the program tracks that information on a graphic somewhere.  

      Reply Like
      • bevocat
      • Sometimes, It Just Sucks to Be You
      • bevocat
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah That's not actually relevant; I suppose that since not all months are 30 days, you're already skewing the results. I mean if you really want to drive yourself crazy you can chart your AOM on a daily basis. I don't think anyone expects there to not be ebb and flow in your AOM. Over the course of a year though, it should be trending in the right direction.

      Maybe it would be useful to choose your biggest bill, e.g., for me, it'd be my car payment, and then choose the day that comes out, or the day before, or whatever. Just keep in mind that AOM is a pretty useless metric, in part for the reasons you explain.

      Reply Like
  • March AOM 371, DOB 497

    April AOM 346, DOB 506

    AOM -25, DOB +9

    Still some home maintenance left, and lots of other expenses on the horizon. Noticed I hadn't paid my new power company, so did this today, 5 days late. Not sure how I missed entering the bill into YNAB, I even star marked the email invoice from my phone, but I never look at those stars .... In the future I'll enter it into YNAB right away, even if I'm busy. *cough* 😅

    Reply Like 3
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 7 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Moohouse 

      You could put this bill in YNAB as a recurring transaction and then just modify the outflow to 0 in the scheduled transactions section.  It will pop up and ask you to approve the transaction.  Don't approve the transaction until you've actually paid the bill and you'll have a reminder more in your face.

      Reply Like 1
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 7 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah I seemed to recall that this didn't work on my phone, but it certainly seems to work. You're right, this is exactly what I should do, even when out and about on my phone.

      I normally flag variable scheduled expenses as green, so I remember to update the amount if I see one for approval. 🙂

      Reply Like
      • Technicolor Cheetah
      • Not sure when I became a cheetah...but I'll run with it
      • technicolor_cheetah
      • 7 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moohouse 

      Right, I should have specified this works on desktop/laptop.  I rarely use the app when I have a simple receipt to add when I'm out and about so I can't speak to how things work or don't on the phone.  Otherwise, I much prefer the computer version.  It puts a little dot next to unlinked accounts that have transactions that need to be approved.  I don't have any of mine linked so I don't know what linked accounts do.

      Reply Like
      • Moohouse
      • Software developer
      • Moohouse
      • 7 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Technicolor Cheetah Mine are also not linked, and I get a lot of small dots from scheduled transactions over a month. I use a two colors fairly regularly, and update on my phone more often than not these days. Searching and reconciling still don't work on the phone, but otherwise most things I need are there. Just this month one CC sent a bill for 0 so I reconciled the card to 0. Or actually to a small positive amount, since it's a cash back card. I just missed getting the cash back on in time for last month's bill.

      Green (adjust amount)  - Scheduled varying amount but automatically paid. If there's an amount there when it's up for approval, this should be the current amount. I usually double check, but it's usually correct. Once approved, I normally clear the amount in the scheduled transaction. The amount for the scheduled transaction I normally enter with the app, based on sms or email I receive.

      Red (wrong amount or manual payment) - Currency conversion or manual transaction (the few I must pay manually are marked MANUAL. Currently only one such payment on a regular basis). Things I pay in foreign currencies take a while to show the correct amount, as the bank also tacks on a tiny conversion fee. I usually pay these with CC so I update the amount based on the bill I receive, or if I spot it earlier.

      Reply Like 2
  • April AOM - 23 days. Not bad considering. 😉

    Reply Like 3
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