How to not have money rollover each month

Hi here! 

Does anyone know how to not have money rollover each new month in categories where you did not spend the budgeted amount from the previous month? For some reason, this feature in YNAB confuses me, and I'd prefer to start each month fresh to track my spending in all of my categories. 

 

Thanks so much!

Ewelina 

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  • There's a Quick-Budget button to set the Available balance to $0. Consider grouping those categories to make this a 2-click endeavor.

    Like 2
  • Hi  EwelinaOlechowska !

    There isn't a way to automatically clear out those Available amounts when the month rolls over, but you can do so manually as dakinemaui mentioned.

    Are there certain categories causing confusion here? Letting funds roll over from month to month lets you build up funds in those categories and see how much you've saved.

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  • It's your budget, but how are you going to save up for anything if you don't let the available balance roll over? Like, you're saving up for an annual vacation and you've saved a total of 549.71 in November and now it's December and you have to remember that you already had $549.71 and now you have to also add another amount for the new money that you are saving.

    I sweep categories like groceries, dining out, and gas each month, but I let the other 65+ build up over time so that I can see the progress I am making on meeting my priorities and plans.

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      • Mamba
      • mamba
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      jenmas What do you mean by "sweep"?  Where do you put that money?

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      • jenmas
      • jenmas
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Mamba into other savings priorities. I have a formula that I use to reallocate swept funds to charitable giving, taxable investing, kitchen remodel, and a few other things.

      Like 1
      • Mamba
      • mamba
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      jenmas  Nice- I may look at doing similar!  Thanks!

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      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Mamba I used to "sweep" or zero out categories with remaining dollars and then allocate that to my debt snowball.  

      On the web app, you can select all categories by clicking the box at the top and then on the right the quick budget option to set available to zero. This takes all the available amounts and puts it to To Be Budgeted where you can decide what you want to do with it.  As jenmas said, there are some categories that you don't want to zero out as you are saving up for something. For example, Christmas.  Every month the amount rolls over and you add to it.  If you have those all grouped in on category group as suggested by dakinemaui then you can just unselect them before clicking the reset available.  Or pick the ones you DO want to zero out and put all those in one category group and then you just have to click the category group checkbox.

      But I would suggest you think about why you want to do this.  

      EwelinaOlechowska said:
      prefer to start each month fresh to track my spending in all of my categories. 
       

       Only the available budget rolls over. Each month's expenses are separate. As I mentioned above I used to zero them out but then I lost the ability to determine amount budgeted vs amount spent.  If you sweep, then budgeted will always match spent which eliminates a useful metric (which unfortunately is not available in the reports). 

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      • Mamba
      • mamba
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      MXMOM That is great, thank you.  Yes, some categories I like to keep a buffer so having additional funds in there is a good idea.  Thanks again!

      Like 1
  • MXMOM said:
    If you sweep, then budgeted will always match spent which eliminates a useful metric

    I keep the nominal amount in the category name for reference. Others have it in the Goal display. Either will let you sweep without losing that metric you mentioned.

    Like 2
  • The notion of manually "sweeping" a bunch of categories every month seems burdensome, and for those of us with a variety of categories regrouping everything to try to simplify a sweep process doesn't make sense either.  Why couldn't there be a way to do that automatically, maybe with a new type of budget goal?

    Let's say I have a cell phone bill with a monthly fee plus a variable amount based on usage.  I want to budget roughly what I think will be the total, and I don't want to roll an overfunded month into the next month and then pile the following months budget on top of that.  My cell phone budget is not for savings.  Groceries for some people fall into that same budgeting thought process.  

    So, back to the cell phone bill: this type of budget item wants the next month to either start from zero, OR for the previous months overbudget to count towards the current month. 

    Pretty sure YNAB was able to do something like that in an earlier version. Adding a budget target to the name sounds like "workaround," when in fact YNAB should have some solution to this available as a feature.  Kind of mystified this isn't already available. 

    Plus a feature to see how frequently I over/under budget so I can plan accordingly.  =)

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      • WordTenor
      • Can we agree that goals are dumb and immature? Sure.
      • WordTenor
      • 13 days ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Cornflower Blue Since this thread was started a goal type which does this was released. It's called "available for spending." The catch is that there's no way for it to know how much you'll spend in a category in month n until the end of the month, so it only works properly once you've reached day 1 of the next month.  

      So if you want to have $100 available for cellphone spending, you'll set a $100 goal. When you spend $88, on the first day of the following month, the "underfunded" for that category will add $88. If the next month, you spend $68, the month after *that* the underfunded will ad $68. 

      You also can always do this with "spent last month" as well. 

      Like 1
    • WordTenor I don't see a goal category called "available for spending" here: 

      https://docs.youneedabudget.com/article/128-goals

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      • Vibrant
      • No more counting dollars, we'll be counting stars
      • vibrant
      • 10 days ago
      • Reported - view

      Cornflower Blue "Needed for Spending"

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