Newbie help - is there a benefit to importing the last 6 weeks of transactions and trying to reconcile them?

I ask because I have, and there are 350 odd to deal with, also I think I'm getting confused with budgeting because of it.

However, it is very handy to see where I have spent what in the past, but, of course, I need to set really large budgets to deal with the over spending

All advice gratefully received thank you

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  • Hey mate, You don't have to do that. Don't worry about the past. Start budgeting from now on. If you know all the transactions in the last 3 months, it can give you a clear picture of what you are spending on. But I doubt you remember all the transactions. It will be a challenge if you really wanna do that.

    Reply Like 2
  • Hi Tetsugaku !

    A good budget is a forward looking budget, so we suggest starting today and not looking back! Importing past transactions can require a lot of effort and usually it's not very helpful.

    Instead, import your starting balances as of today and budget for the expenses those funds need to cover before you're paid again. :)

    Reply Like 1
  • I wouldn't recommend it. I've tried it and it really wasn't worth the hassle and I didn't gain the information from it that I thought I would. And in fact, it's a real eye-opener when you first set up your budget and have to estimate what you should put in each category. I was stunned to learn how much my 2-person family spent on groceries, and it led to a positive behavior modification of checking all local grocery store sales and planning our shopping around them instead of only going to the closest store all the time.  And because it's so easy to adjust your budget at any time,  it helps you keep on top of things and make changes where needed. 

    If a lot of your spending is on credit cards, see if your CC company has a spending analyzer. Almost all credit card websites have some kind of tool like that. They assign your spending to broad categories such as grocery stores, retail stores, gas stations, services, etc. Plus you can search for specific vendors which is helpful if you do a lot of shopping for a particular category of goods from one or a few companies. For example, if you buy most of your gas from Shell stations, you can search for Shell and get a reasonably good estimate of your monthly spending on gas. Then you can plug those estimates into YNAB. I'd try this before downloading and reconciling a ton of old transactions.  

    Good luck!

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    • Ben Khaki Storm
    • YNAB book topics online: https://support.youneedabudget.com/r/q5w48j
    • Khaki_Storm.1
    • 2 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    I'd not recommend it. I tried 4 weeks worth and it wasn't worth it looking back after 2 months. 

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    • WordTenor
    • Your lieutenant, when there's reckoning to be reckoned.
    • WordTenor
    • 2 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Nope! Move on. 

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  • Thanks all - have decided to pull all the transactions out and start with a clean slate for February - it did help to be able to see them for forward planning of my regular recurring payments however. thanks!

    Reply Like 2
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