Dumb question - It's 5/8/18 & I want to start acct as 5/1/18...

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  •  How thoroughly do you understand the concept of cleared and pending transactions, and how easy is it for you to find the cleared balance on a given date on your banks website? 

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  • I'm 63 and have been doing YNAB for five years.  Fell off the wagon tho and don't know how much YNAB has changed since then.  I completely understand cleared and pending transactions.  I can find the balance in my checking on 5/1/18.  But it asks what the balance is "right now" but I want to put in what the balance was on 5/1/18.   That will work, right?  Cause I'll put in every transaction since....

  • Like I say, it's a dumb question  :-)   Being as I'm just about sure the answer is, "Yes, you fool.  If you want to start the whole Fresh Start from 5/1/18, start with the balance in your checking account on 5/1/18, not what it is today, 5/9/18."

    • Paula N Not a dumb question at all! Actually, I'd file this under trick question! :)

      You can enter your account balance as of 5/1/18. However, your starting balance will say 5/8/18 because that's the date you started. You'll then need to change the date of your Starting Balance to 5/1/18. 

      Note: If you're using direct import, it will automatically import transactions from 5/1/18 forward.

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      Paula N  as long as you understand how to put in cleared versus pending transactions, you can start your budget at any time.  I always tell people to start from today, because I have been astounded at how many people have never actually balanced a checkbook and  find the concept of having to budget for past transactions deeply confusing. But in truth, I also backdated my start by 10 days  to start on the first of the month 4 years ago. :)  So if you get it, by all means do it! 

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  • Hi Paula N , Hope you got the answer you wanted.  You can back date the start of your budget, and I like the idea of starting with a new month.  It simply takes time to go back and enter the transactions from the past and YNAB generally discourages it because those are choices you have already made.  YNAB wants you to focus on today and future choices.   

    I'm also in my 60's and look forward to your future posts.  Have you thought about starting a journal?  

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  • When I started I did this. For some acts it made sense to start at the beginning of the month. For others it made more sense to start with the last statement date. Both worked fine.

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  • Hey Paula N !


    Just wanted to add to what Faness said, and mention that it might be easier (at least the "Today's Balance" language won't be tripping you up) to just hit Save, and then change the starting balance transaction itself. You can change the date and amount, all at once. That should bring your account to the right date/balance! 😊 

  •  Also a sidenote for anyone who might read this thread in the future: if you backdate your start date, ( which again, not recommended if you don’t already have a thorough understanding of how your bank treats transactions) once you have finished bringing everything up to date you should reconcile immediately.  This will essentially start you from today with a correct balance,  and confirm that you’ve done everything correctly to bring it up-to-date.  And if you can’t reconcile, you should probably just delete the account and start over with today’s balance. 

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