Haven't been reconciling, do I need to have each transaction given a category?

Hi there,


New YNABer here. I signed up but didn't reconcile for about 3 months (hoping to build up the habit) but I have quite a few transactions over ~200 that I don't want to individually categorize.


How do I leave them uncategorized? Is it wise to just create a new category for "Uncategorized" and put them there? I'm just looking for a solution to "catch up".

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  • Fresh start Is the option you want. 

  • I'm confused. You're saying that you haven't reconciled, but then you say that you haven't been categorizing your transactions. Those are two completely different things. Reconcile is making sure that the balance on your YNAB account is the same as the balance on your actual bank account. 

    That has nothing to do with what categories your transactions are assigned to. YNAB is useless to you if you don't provide your transactions with categories (jobs) that you have budgeted into. The way you can tell if you have enough money to cover an expense is by checking what is left in the category. But if you haven't been assigning your expenses to categories, then you don't know how much is left. 

    I agree with satcook , if you haven't been assigning categories for 3 months then just start fresh and begin a new habit now. 

  • Alright, may either bite the bullet and do all the categorization or do a fresh start -- but to be extra clear, does every transaction then need a category?


    To clarify, I know reconciling is making sure the YNAB balance is the same as bank acct but I'm seeing a yellow "i" with a circle around it and a message that says "This needs a category" and I don't see a way to make that disappear 



      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 3 wk ago
      • Reported - view

      Green Battery Yes, every transaction needs a category.

    • Green Battery You can make a Missing category (and bulk-recategorize) if you don't want to Fresh Start. This will get rid of the yellow "i" warning. Don't bother fixing overspending in the past budgets, just deal with things in the current month's budget after reconciling to get the accounts correct.

      Regardless of whether you Fresh Start or use a Missing category, the priority is to get a plan (budget) in place with today's funds to allow you to move forward.

      Like 1
      • sh
      • Green_Battery.10
      • 3 wk ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui nolesrule


      thank you!! very helpful -- just categorized everything and wow i am spending a lot more than i thought i was.

      Like 3
    • Green Battery lol, join the club. 😉 You know what say, awareness is the first step to change...

  • In your particular case I would probably opt for a fresh start after you get acquainted with the YNAB method.  When you do a fresh start your old budget will still be hosted on the YNAB site so you can view your old transactions.  After you use YNAB for a while your categories and priorities will likely settle out and that would be a good time to start fresh.

    A lot of people do a fresh start periodically anyway to reduce their transaction load.

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