Savings Goals and Recurring Goals

I've been trying to set recurring savings goals but the behaviour doesn't seem to work as expected.

For example, 2020 I set a Gift Goal of $1,000 by November. I reached that goal, but now in 2021 it recognizes I need to save $1,000 by November 2021 but that I've already reached it (in 2020, and consequently used those funds...)

Am I not understanding the purpose of these goals?

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  • There is an issue with when/how the goals reset. If you didn't spend the money until December, then it was there when the goal reset at the beginning of December, so look! You achieved your goal for the year!

    The solution is to either reset the goal each time manually (delete and recreate) or to make sure you spend the money in your target month.

    This is the case for monthly goals, too.

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  • Thanks, I guess that makes sense for a spending goal, but I think there should be an extra option to choose when the reset occurs. In all my use cases it would simply be on Jan 1 of each new year.

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      • Annieland
      • I was told there would be no math.
      • Annieland
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Slate Gray Violin It honestly confuses the heck out of me, too.  99% of the time I am deleting and re-adding a new goal.  If I want a record of what my old goal was I make a note.  Most of my yearly spending goals reset in Jan, but some are on other schedules, like auto insurance, car payments, and taxes, so I just put it in the category name when I am supposed to re-evaluate the goal and restart it.  

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    • Slate Gray Violin If you want the goal to reset in January, make it repeating annually with a target date in December. The goal always resets in the month after the target date, and it credits any money remaining in the category at the beginning of that month toward to goal target.

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    • Matthew 

      Matthew said:
      it credits any money remaining in the category at the beginning of that month toward to goal target.

       This is the part that causes issues. If I need to make a payment early January, I want to have the money saved up by end of December. So I set my goal for end of December. Jan 1 happens, the goal resets, and since the money didn't get taken out in December, YNAB counts the money I've saved through December as meeting the new goal. Then, even when I spend the money, it still says I've met the goal. 

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    • Fuzzball Meows Exactly the same issue for me. 

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      • DexterCat
      • DexterCat
      • 3 wk ago
      • Reported - view

      @Fuzzball Meows I get what you're saying here. I always used to set goals for a month early. Christmas shopping was set for November for example, but that just doesn't work with Needed for Spending targets and it is fine setting it for the month the spending occurs. YNAB will ask for the funds on the 1st of the month so just prioritise appropriately.  

      I may be mistaken, but I think you can set the target to be the 1st of January and it will be high priority for Auto-Assign (if you use it) but also won't reset until 1st Feb.

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    • DexterCat Debt Free Take 2 

      If you set the target date for January 1:
      1. You'll be prompted to make the final contribution to your Target in January.
      2. If this is the same month you'll be spending the total you've saved, you should have an Available balance of $0 by the end of the month.
      3. Your Target won't reset until February 1.

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  • @Matthew  Should we set the goal for January 1 to correct this (what I and others perceive to be an) error?

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