This is my first month using YNAB and I'm still getting the hang of it. I really apologize if this has been asked somewhere else, maybe I just need to be directed towards a previous conversation.
My question is: if I know how much I'd like to spend in a certain category (ie, my yearly budget for clothes is $500), how do I reflect that in my budget?
I was trying to set a "Target category balance by date" goal, but I wasn't sure if that was right. If I spend $25 on a dress, I just want to know that I still have $425 of my yearly budget left to spend. I don't want my goal to now reflect that I need to put away an extra $25 to reach the $500 by the end of the year.
I might spend $300 of the $500 in February, if there is an event I'm going to, etc. How will that work, since it's more sporadic spending, but it's still within my yearly budget?
Please let me know if this makes any sense, or if I have terribly confused you all, and if you have any feedback for me.
Hi Colleen Cirocco !
That's a great question! :)
How you set that category up in your budget depends on how quickly you want or plan to have that money available. Do you have the whole $500 now? If so, you can budget $500 towards Clothing and you don't need to do anything except rationally spend throughout the coming months. If not, how quickly do you want that $500 set aside? You can set a monthly funding goal of $100, so in five month's you'll have set that $500 aside - you can then cancel the goal and focus on stretching that money the rest of the year. Or, you can budget $50 a month for ten months instead, or any variance of that savings approach.
When you have a moment, read our How To Create a Budget Template blog post or take a look at the Create a Budget Template Workshop. Both will teach you how to use scheduled transactions and goals to outline priorities and plan for those expenses! :)
I was planning on gradually putting money into this category, while having the option to spend against it as well. I'm looking for some visibility on how much I'm spending on clothing (and other categories as well) throughout the year. I'm still learning how things carry over from month to month with YNAB. I will take a look at this workshops! Thanks for your help :)Reply
I agree. YNAB seriously needs a way to account for items that you want to spend a specific amount on per year but then do a big portion of that yearly amount in random months. The months that are over the 12 month average of course can be covered by available TBB funds or by moving money from one "Envelope" to the other...but it should still let us know what we have left to spend in that yearly budget amount for the remainder of the year (taking the spent portions into account). PLEASE add this as an option at least for those who want/ need it! :)Reply