YNAB auto adjusting Renaming Rules (Questions / Feature Requests)

Hi YNAB! I'm using your app since 2020 and I'm impressed by the convenience YNAB brings on getting transactions imported and auto mapped.

Though, I have 2 concerns which I'm struggling with. Maybe I'm not using your system as designed, if so please enlighten me!

I noticed the "Edit Payees > In the Account Register" description https://docs.youneedabudget.com/article/611-manage-payees#edit

Undesired auto mapping of new Payees

Example: My banking CSV export simply prints the PayPal account number for my PayPal transactions. I manually go over them, by doing some amount lookup in my transactions. The same goes for "Debit Card Payments", I have to lookup the Payee manually in the Memo.

  1. I import my transactions by uploading a CSV file
  2. a new PayPal transaction comes in as "FR76XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX123" (this is the same number for every PayPal transaction) and a new Payee gets created
  3. I create a new Payee "Pizza Place" by changing the Payee field (when I map to an already existing Payee, the behavior is the same)
  4. suddenly all the upper transactions, that still have to be approved, also change into "Pizza Place"

For me this isn't desired behavior. To prevent this, I first need to approve all upper transactions. Once approved, they don't get auto mapped to the new Payee.

Is there a way to prevent this auto mapping by default? I find it very useful that once rules are created, transactions matching those rules get handled accordingly, but on manual adjustment of a new transaction, I don't want that action to reflect on all the other transactions that have the same new Payee.

Could some form of initial Payee approval help to prevent this?

Undesired adjustment of rules on already existing Payees

Along the lines of the scenario above, the auto adjustment of rules on existing Payees feels inconvenient to me.

Example: I go out for another Pizza.

  1. I import my transactions by uploading a CSV file
  2. new PayPal transaction comes in as "FR76XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX123" and a new Payee gets created (again, as the old "FR76XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX123" doesn't exist anymore)
  3. I change that Payee to "Pizza Place"
  4. suddenly the Renaming Rule: "Is FR76XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX123" get's added to my already existing "Pizza Place" payee

I sometimes find this auto creation of Renaming Rules a convenient feature, but when changing to already existing Payees I would prefer the Renaming Rules to not get altered anymore.

I currently have to verify each adjusted Payee and strip those Renaming Rules. Otherwise, on next import, new transactions would be falsely mapped.

Having the option to disable the auto creation of Renaming Rules, would already help me a lot! I wouldn't mind having to manually create them myself.

If anything is unclear, I'm willing to provide more feedback in the form of a screencapture.

I'm really looking forward to some feedback!

Thanks in advance!

Regards, Laurens

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  • Hi Laurens !

    Thanks for taking the time to map out how this feature would help you! When you have a moment, would you mind sending this over to our Product Team by submitting a Feature Request? I think the option to turn off the auto-creation of renaming rules would be a step in a more convenient direction.

    Also, is the true payee listed in the Memo section of the CSV? If so, there's an option to Swap the Payee and Memo sections when importing. You could give that a try to see if that better reports your Payees. :)

  • Hi  Faness

    Thanks for the quick reply.

    I will try to map this out in a Feature Request!

    Regarding you questions on the CSV.

    Payee states:


    Memo states something along the lines of:


    It's not possible to determine the real Payee/Vendor based on any of the CSV information. Everything simply states PayPal with some reference codes to the internal PayPal transaction. Even recurring transactions from the same Vendor have different IDs. So, I'd have to go over them one by one. Exactly in doing so, I don't want all the upcoming transactions to change as soon as I have taken care of the first one.

    In other types of transactions I do have use cases where I can extract information from the Memo. The Memo still contains too much information to simply swap Payee and Memo, but I would find it very useful to be able to set specific rules on the Payee field in combination with other specific rules on the Memo field. I feel this functionality is worth another Feature Request which I will provide as well!


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