YNAB in Excel
YNAB has been a great interface for my husband and I to communicate about money. We have also found that we needed a separate method to make the plan for the plan that we could refer back to and see changes. So, each month, we sat down with a sheet of paper and mapped out which categories would be funded by which paycheck, how much, and how to maximize our priorities.
Then, when paychecks came in, one of us could just go down the list and allocate as we had previously decided. The puzzle of playing with numbers was contained and never accidentally messed up the real budget. Plus, we were allowed to be busy on payday.
While we were getting into a rhythm, I absolutely needed to work that out on paper because I think spatially (screens don't facilitate that well), but my husband suggested making a spreadsheet now to automate the calculations and consistent entries.
I think it's funny because we now have a one faceted, YNABesque spreadsheet as a gatekeeper for our real YNAB. Makes life easier for us, and I'm sort of proud.
Well... Back to lesson planning. Now that's a different kind of puzzle.
Agree, YNAB us a good communication tool. That's what keeps me here. Also agree, you need the space to move things around (like goals in YNAB) before entering them. Good idea! Creating a separate sheet also gives you a real budget template. I know YNAB calls to the collection of goals a template, but it's a poor word choice. I can copy a template, save a template (to compare old to new), apply a template. I can only apply the goals, no saving or copying.