Money transferred to linked savings account still shows in my budget

I took my stimulus funds and transferred them to a linked savings account. Because it's a linked savings account, it wouldn't let me add a category to the transfer. So even though that money is no longer in my checking account, it still shows up in my Available to Budget.

Any suggestion for how to move it out of there?

Thank you!

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  • There's no category because that account is on budget. The account is simply a location. It has nothing to do with what you intend to do with that money -- the sole purpose of the budget. Make a plan for that new money. Transfer (change location) as needed/desired.

    Here's a good resource for more details:

    https://www.youneedabudget.com/the-relationship-between-your-budget-your-accounts-its-complicated/

    Like 4
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui I have the same problem as csteely - I have an automatic transfer set up to send money to my savings acct from my checking each payday.  And I have a goal in the budget for saving X dollars each month - but because you can't assign transferred money a category, it looks like the transferred money has not been budgeted, and I'm not meeting my savings goal. The article you shared makes sense, but it doesn't address the core problem - the automatic assignment of "category not needed" to transferred money.

      From what I'm reading, it seems like the only way to fix this problem is NOT to transfer the money to another account at all, and just assign it to savings within the budget? It just seems very strange that I can't assign transferred money to a category unless it is then spent. 

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 6 mths ago
      • 5
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki You assign it to a savings category whether you transfer it or not. That’s how you save in YNAB. The only reason you transfer it to a savings account, and it’s a good reason, is to make more interest on these savings than you would normally get in a checking account.

      Like 5
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Here’s another way to say it. All of your budget accounts add up to all of your available To Be Budgeted amount. Rule One, you categorize all of these funds until TBB is $0. Which budget account the funds are sitting in doesn’t matter to YNAB, they only matter to you if you can get a better interest rate on them. If the interest rates were the same, you’d just keep all your funds in one checking account.

      Like
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 6 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Money is saved -- reserved for a specific purpose -- when you budget it to a category. That category could be Vacation, Christmas, new bike, income Replacement, home repair, Amazon Prime yearly fee, whatever.

      Transferring to a higher-rate account doesn't change the fact that $X is for a new bike, $Y is for vacation, etc. Money is just in a different location. Since the intended purpose doesn't change, a transfer doesn't use a category.

      It's only when you spend money that a transaction would need a category. For example, when you buy that bike, you categorize that outflow against the Bike category. This simply updates that category to reflect that you used some of that reserved money by reducing the category balance or Available amount.

      Like 1
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui I comcompletely 100% understand the concept. That wasn't the issue. The problem is that if you move money from one acct to another and YNAB labels it transferred, you physically cannot assign it to ANY category. YNAB grays out the option.  See attached photo. That said, I figured out a way around it.

      Like
      • jenmas
      • jenmas
      • 6 mths ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Let's say I get a paycheck deposit on Monday for $2000. That gets categorized as Income To Be Budgeted. Then I go to my budget page and the TBB is $2000. I assign those funds to various categories until TBB is 0. The minute I assign $500 to my House Down Payment category, I have "saved" $500. So on Monday or Friday or Never, I can move $500 to my on budget savings account (I don't say linked because none of my accounts are linked; 100% manual entry since 2014) if I wish but there is no need to have a category, because it was assigned to one the day it entered my budget. Literally all I have done is move $500 from my left pocket to my right pocket - there is absolutely no impact on my budget.

      Like 2
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      jenmas So you don't have the same problem specifically because your accounts aren't linked. When you transfer between accts and YNAB labels it a transfer, it more longer gives you the option of using categories to assign the money anywhere.

      Like
      • jenmas
      • jenmas
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Exactly! Transferring money between 2 accounts that are on budget has ZERO impact on the budget. This has nothing to do with it being linked to a bank. When I transfer money from on budget accounts to accounts that are tracking accounts (every month I send money to my investment account which is a tracking account) there is a category: Investments. Every month I allocate funds to this category. A category is ONLY required when money enters or leaves your budget. Transferring funds between 2 on budget accounts does no have any money entering or leaving the budget.

      Like
  • This is how I figured out to work around it. You can manually change the payee so it is no longer labeled as a transfer. I made a "savings acct" payee. Once it is no longer called a transfer, the category box is available to use again, and the money will can register as being budgeted towards a savings goal. 

    Like
    • Hi sunnymicki !

      Changing that transaction so that it isn't a transfer will skew your account balances. If you have $100 in Checking and $100 in Saving, transferring $25 between them means that one will now be $125 while the other is $75. If you remove the transfer, the balance will only be updated on one end leaving your budget with an incorrect amount of funds (ie. $125 and $100 when in reality you only have $200).

      Here's an article that talks about how savings work in YNAB. Instead of categorizing that transaction to put funds in that category, enter the amount in the Budgeted column of your savings category - that will update your savings goals.

      Like 1
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 6 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Don't do this.

      Like 3
      • satcook
      • satcook
      • 6 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Please listen to the others.  You need to change the payee back to a transfer.

      These are the steps:

      Receive money, assign it to To Be Budgeted.

      Budget it wherever desired, savings, bills, spending, etc.

      Then if you desire transfer it to another account.  Transferring just changes its location, not its job.

      Like 1
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Faness I just experimented with this and changing the payee after money has been transferred to a different account doesn't cause either account balance or the amount available to budget to change. It just enables me to assign the money to a category. 

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki This is because the funds are already in your budget. You need to budget some of these funds into your Savings categories. If you change your transfer to a non-transfer, they you're telling YNAB that you just deposited more funds outside of your savings account into this account.

      Like
    • sunnymicki If both sides of the transfer are in your budget (the inflow in one account and outflow in the other account), categorizing them both to your savings category would cancel them out. The transactions should be left as a transfer. Those funds are already in your budget, and you can move money from your other categories to show how much you want to budget towards savings.

      Like
  • sunnymicki said:
    I comcompletely 100% understand the concept

    I honestly don't think you do. You're deliberately making things harder, and there are undesirable consequences, as well. It's like this BY DESIGN. 

    Did you read the linked blog article?

    Like 3
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui Of course I read it. Don't be condescending.  

      Like
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki    csteely     hi, when the cheque came into the first bank account it showed up as To Be Budgeted. What did you do with that (what budget category did you assign to it)?

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      MXMOM The transaction comes through as a transfer (ie how it is labelled in the picture that I attached a few replies ago). It is an automatic transfer between accts and YNAB seems to recognize that.

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      MXMOM And so that was my whole problem - once it is labelled a transfer, you are unable to use the category box.  For my husband's acct transfer it isn't an issue, because he spends that money and those transactions are then assigned categories. But for the savings acct, the money was just sitting there and couldn't be categorized - making it look like I wasnt meeting my savings goal or budgeting all of my money.

      Like
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki ok, before it was transferred to the savings account, what account was it deposited into originally. It somehow got into the first account.

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 6 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki 

      sunnymicki said:
      But for the savings acct, the money was just sitting there and couldn't be categorized - making it look like I wasnt meeting my savings goal or budgeting all of my money.

       You don't save the money when you move it to a savings account. You save the money when it comes in as income and you budget it to a category that you don't spend from. Moving it to a savings account won't change the original job you assigned to that money.

      Like 1
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 6 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      nolesrule I am trying to get sunnymicki to give us the whole trail of the money to figure out how it was originally categorized. I think that is where the disconnect is happening.

      sunnymicki see my question above.  But I will repeat it here.

      before it was transferred to the savings account, what account was the money deposited into originally. It somehow got into the first account.

      Like
  • sunnymicki said:
    So you don't have the same problem specifically because your accounts aren't linked

    Linked has nothing to do with it. Linking just enters transactions for you. Jenmas enters the same transaction by hand -- without a category.

    Like 2
  • sunnymicki Your issue is that you've already budgeted these funds elsewhere. Moving it from checking to savings isn't how you budget in YNAB. You budget by moving funds from To Be Budgeted into Categories.

    If your To Be Budgeted is $0 and you want to budget $200 to Savings, then you will have to move $200 worth of funds from another budget category (or categories) into your Savings category.

    Like 1
  • sunnymicki said:
    So you don't have the same problem specifically because your accounts aren't linked. When you transfer between accts and YNAB labels it a transfer, it more longer gives you the option of using categories to assign the money anywhere.

     My accounts are all linked. That is unrelated to the issue you are having. Transfers between accounts in your budget are not supposed to be categorized because they've already been categorized.

    Like
  • sunnymicki said:
    This is how I figured out to work around it. You can manually change the payee so it is no longer labeled as a transfer. I made a "savings acct" payee. Once it is no longer called a transfer, the category box is available to use again, and the money will can register as being budgeted towards a savings goal. 

    No, that is not what you want. That will add additional funds that you don't have to your budget. This is like an additional deposit but that's not what you did. You just transferred already existing funds. 

    Like 1
  • sunnymicki Here's the budgeting process:

    1. Money enters your budget.
    2. You assign it to To Be Budgeted.
    3. You then assign all the funds in To Be Budgeted to your budget categories until TBB is $0.
    4. You can move funds between your various budget categories as needed to match your priorities.
    5. No new funds can be budgeted until you receive more income at which point you start again at 1. above.

    When you first set up your budget, all accounts including your Savings account appears in To Be Budgeted. You can only budget these funds once. Transferring between budget accounts has no effect on To Be Budgeted as these funds have already been added to TBB.

    Like 1
  • I'm having the same issue, i transfer money from my Chase checking(linked account) to my Chase savings and for some reason that money is still available in TBB. In the past, when I transferred money between my chase accounts, I'd get two transactions and that essentially clears each other out and the money would be in my saving and no longer in TBB, but this did not happen this time. In my Chase Checking(linked)I created and cleared a negative transaction for the amount I transferred to my Chase Savings and it's still showing the amount I transferred as available in TBB.

    Like
    • J. K. L Transfers don't put your money in a YNAB category for you. Make a savings category, and budget the money into it.

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      J. K. L You need to budget the money to a category. TBB is money that you have that has not currently assigned to any category.

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      J. K. L FYI, linking has nothing to do with this. It doesn't matter if it's linked or not. What matters is if the accounts are in the budget or are tracking accounts. Transfers between two budgeted account have no affect on TBB.

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      I appreciate all of the efforts to help. Unfortunately, after having read all these replies, and the articles cited, all that I can figure out is that if you have money transferred to a savings acct from your checking acct, it cannot be credited towards a savings goal.  It just gets to sit there.

      So I cannot have a goal, for example, to save X dollars by X date, and designate the money in that savings account towards the goal.

      I set up a goal to increase my emergency fund by X dollars, but the transfer transactions are not being credited towards that goal.  In fact, they aren't being credited ANYWHERE, because to use money towards a goal you must assign it a category. 

      This is my current picture, for those trying to trace the money:

      1. Paycheck is direct deposited into my bank checking acct.

      2. That same day bank transfers X dollars into my savings acct (this is an automatic recurring transaction).

      3. When I go to YNAB, the transaction is downloaded as a transfer between accts, and the option to assign that money to a category is grayed out.

      *****4. The savings acct money IS included in the available amount to be budgeted. On the left hand banner, it is listed in the budget money, so it clearly has NOT already been given a job just by being transferred to my savings account (as some here are claiming).*****

      5. So yes, the money is available to be given a job.  *I just cannot assign the money in that account to actually be credited for DOING the job.*

      6. In addition to it looking like I am not budgeting a significant portion of my money, if I want to fund the savings goal that I set up in my budget, I must use the money remaining in my checking acct, regardless of the fact that the amount of money in my savings acct has increased that week.  

      What is the solution that will allow me to actually credit my savings goal appropriately?

       Can anyone address how to fix that?

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone What is a tracking account?  I believe this is the first post that mentions a tracking account, and neither of the articles on savings accts that have been shared say anything about tracking vs budgeting accounts.  Perhaps this is the root of the issue?

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki If you look at the left side of the web app, you will see BUDGET followed by all your budget accounts and then below that is TRACKING, underneath which is all your tracking accounts.

      Like
  • sunnymicki said:
    The savings acct money IS included in the available amount to be budgeted.

     

    sunnymicki said:
    So yes, the money is available to be given a job. 

     

    sunnymicki said:
    In addition to it looking like I am not budgeting a significant portion of my money

     It sounds like you're saying you have the amount that has been transferred to your savings account sitting in your TBB. 

    This is how you accomplish your goal:

    1. On your budget screen: Make a savings CATEGORY (or group of categories - you can be as specific as you want). Actually, you might already have this. Sorry if I'm being redundant.

    2. Type the number that was automatically transferred to your savings ACCOUNT in the budgeted column. 

    Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life Yes, I have done this already.  The entire problem is that the "category" function that is used to actually designate where the money has gone (vs just budgeted/planned) is grayed out for a transfer transaction - so I am unable to put the money towards the savings goal.

      Is there a way to show that you have saved money towards a savings goal without using a "category" label?

      Like
    • sunnymicki Yes. Type the number you want in the budget column for that category.

      Edit: I assume you mean without assigning a category to a transaction. 

      You absolutely have to have a category to save anything in YNAB. All savings is done on the budget screen. Transactions just give you the money that you can assign to savings.

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life No "budgeted" just shows that is where you WANT the  available money to go.  Assigning transactions to categories is (as far as I can tell) how you tell YNAB where the money actually WENT.

      Like
    • sunnymicki Transactions are how you tell YNAB that the money is not yours anymore.

      If you're saving money, it's by definition still yours. 

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life To be clear, I have an entire budget set up with goals for all of my categories. And everything is working well, money getting budgeted when it comes in and then credited where it is supposed to be when it is spent, no problem, EXCEPT the transfer transaction to my savings acct.

      I have another linked acct - my husbands checking.  It also gets transfer money each payday, but no problem, because he then spends that money and the resulting transactions can be assigned categories. The savings  acct is different because nothing happens to the money after it is transferred, so it can never be given a category.

      Like
    • sunnymicki The budget screen doesn't care whether you place your money in your wallet, pocket, checking, savings, car, or on the moon (this is not an advisable money storage location). 

      The budget screen tells you what money is available for you to spend now AND what money you have set aside to save (shows as available for that savings category).

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life So then you are saying that I cannot fund savings goal if I am transferring money to a savings acct?

      Like
    • sunnymicki No, I am saying you cannot fund a savings goal BY using a transaction. 

      I'm confused. How does the money get in all your other categories that are going along so swimmingly? Do you not budget into them?

      Like
  • sunnymicki said:
    if you have money transferred to a savings acct from your checking acct, it cannot be credited towards a savings goal

    It was already credited toward a savings goal when you put it in the category. Transferring to a savings account is optional (and doesn't make it any more "saved").

    Like 1
    • dakinemaui I don't think they're actually budgeting anything. My guess is that sunnymicki lets income populate the TBB, then covers spending as/after it happens? Based on transactions?

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui No I'm telling you that it is NOT getting credited towards a savings goal because you cannot put it in the category.  The category spot is entirely grayed out/unavailable for transfer transactions. I attached a screenshot showing this before but it may be buried by now.

      Move Light Sound Life Yes, I am budgeting EVERYTHING.  And then assigning all of my transactions to categories as they come through my account, which are then credited towards all of the goals I have set up.

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki Is your To Be Budgeted equal to $0?

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Superbone No, that is the problem I've been trying to get help with.  The amount that is transferred to my savings acct is added in TBB (I manually added just to verify it was being included), but I cannot actually put that money towards the savings goal.  So it sits there as unbudgeted, while my savings goal looks unfunded...

      Like
    • sunnymicki I removed my last reply, since you said your TBB is not 0. 

      Type the number in your budget column for your savings category.

      Have you tried that? Please try that.

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life Yes, if I put my savings acct number in the budgeted column, it reduces my amount available to budget. 

      Like 1
    • sunnymicki Your TBB is supposed to be $0. Always. Unless you got paid 5 minutes ago and you're about to sit down at your budget meeting and proceed to allocate (reconcile first, always).

      That is YNAB's rule #1. Give every dollar a job, including savings dollars. 

      Typing into your budget column is how you reach savings goals. You can also use various quick budget buttons that do the typing for you.

      Like
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki I think you should work with support. It's hard to help you without being able to see your setup. Support can help you learn to use the software correctly. Have you put in a trouble ticket?

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      I am playing with it now and it looks like the goal is actually getting credited!!!!

      I don't know what changed but I think it is working...

      Like 3
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki I'm worried that you may be playing with some "funny" money. Funds that aren't actually available based on when you said this:

      The amount that is transferred to my savings acct is added in TBB (I manually added just to verify it was being included)

      Like
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Superbone Thank you for your help.  I'm not sure why or how but I think it is working.  I will see once my transactions for today download for sure. 

      Like 1
    • sunnymicki Great! Awesome! You'll just want to make sure you budget for that savings goal each month (on the budget screen). 

      It never hurts to ask support to help. They do a good job. 

      Superbone , I don't think it's likely that it's funny money, because sunnymicki said it was brought in to the checking account first, then transferred to savings, and then is left in TBB. 

      Hopefully, now they realize that the transfer had no bearing on the budget, and must be budgeted to the category on the budget screen. 

      Like 1
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Superbone Oh I didn't mean I manually added money in, just that I added up the accounts listed under Budgeted in the left banner.

      I've been using this excel spreadsheet I made for a budget for years, so I am pretty comfortable with where the money goes and how much of it goes there.  I thought I'd try something that might be easier to work with and available on my cell phone.  So far it remains to be seen if that is true lol.

      Like 1
    • sunnymicki 

      YNAB is great! Keep at it! It just so happens that the separation of budget and accounts is a trippy concept if you're used to budgeting by account.

      Think of the YNAB budget like an overlay of buckets (categories) over your entire money collection. 

      Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      sunnymicki OK, great. Good luck and feel free to ask questions!

      Like 1
      • sunnymicki
      • sunnymicki
      • 5 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life Re this part: "Hopefully, now they realize that the transfer had no bearing on the budget, and must be budgeted to the category on the budget screen. "

      I did realize that, and was doing it, but my savings goal wasn't getting updated, it was remaining yellow even though I had funded it in the budgeted column.  Anyhow I just went back to April and re-entered my numbers, and the saving goal turned green and said I was on track this time.  Trust me, I had tried it about a million times since replying to this thread, and it wasn't working.  I don't understand the difference this time, but I'll take it.

      Like 1
  • Thanks for the discussion. I've decided to change my savings account to just a tracking account, as I don't want that money to sit in my budget. I do have an emergency fund that's represented in my budget, and that's fine.

    The savings account is more a long-term investment, and the amount that I just transferred doesn't represent the total in that account, so it's just misleading. To me, the budget represents the money I have to spend or set aside (emergency fund) in my main checking account, and that's how I'd like to keep it.

    Like 1
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