Moving Overbudgeted Money, Changing Target Types

I have a category for Medical Expenses. I believe I set target type to be 'Needed for Spending' by a date, because I expected some large medical bills for a procedure, but I also have prescriptions/visits along the way.  I contributed monthly and hit the target, but the bills I was expecting turned out to be significantly lower.  This is what I mean when I say I "overbudgeted" or perhaps "conservatively budgeted" this category.

I  changed the Target Type to 'Monthly Savings Builder' at the start of this month, because I will continue to have irregular medical expenses.  I assigned the new target amount.

I'd now like to move the "overbudgeted" money to other categories.  I moved, say, $3000 out of the medical expenses to another category (with 'move' function via website). 

But now my Medica Expenses category still lists a very high 'Total Needed', and even though I've assigned the new monthly target amount to this category already, it's prompting me to still assign thousands to make up for what I moved out.


I see the options to 'Reset Assigned Amount' and 'Reset Available Amount' in the category, but neither seem to give me great results because they do not change the 'Total Needed.'

So I suppose I'll say first... how do you expect 'Total Needed' to function after a target type is changed?  I think I expected this to now only ever ask for my monthly contribution...  Why is it holding on to the previous amount? 

Is there a way to fix and continue using the existing category (I have great history captured here regarding medical expenses)?  

In hindsight, a separate category for these occasionally large bill might have been cleaner; but they are sometimes unexpected and it's hard to justify separating them from other expenses.

Any tips are much appreciated!

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  • If it were me, I would move that overbudgeted money back to the medical category, go back a month, and then move the overbudgeted wherever it was initially. then move forward to the current month and see what the category prompts you to fund. Unsure if that will fix it or not, but worth a shot!

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    • Emma Catherine this should work. Another trick with the same end result is remaking the "monthly savings builder" goal next month and leaving this month be. 

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  • If it gets too sticky, you can always hit the ? in the bottom right corner of the budget and get help directly from support. Sometimes when things don't behave exactly as I think they should that's the best option because support can go in and look at your budget and figure out exactly what is going on.

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    • Vibrant
    • No more counting dollars, we'll be counting stars
    • vibrant
    • 9 days ago
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    • Reported - view

    The monthly savings builder target looks only at the budgeted box in the current month. If you tell YNAB you want to add $100 to the category this month, but instead take out $3000, all YNAB knows is that you haven't met the target. You can fidget with your budget to make the prompt go away, or you can just ignore it; it will resolve itself and function as expected starting next month. 

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    • Vibrant said:
      The monthly savings builder target looks only at the budgeted box in the current month.

       Just want to second everything that Vibrant said. Since you're moving money out this month, that goal will be unmet. The most straightforward thing to do would be to ignore the unmet goal this month, knowing in your heart that you have what you need there. 

      I always hesitate to recommend time travel in a budget, but you can go to last month, move the extra out of the category there, and then this month's goal would behave as expected. Just be sure that you don't end up with any overspending in the current month after you make changes in a past month.

      Like 1
    • Of course, do reach out to us if you need any help with the specific numbers you're seeing! 

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    • Marisa and Vibrant - I will take your suggestion!  I normally am on auto-pilot looking for the colors to correct, but this suggestion makes most sense for me.  

      I could go back to last month as well, to see this month looking good - but in truth the reality of these bills wasn't clear to me until November (and we're almost at month end) so it makes most sense to me to leave this activity in Nov (knowing in my heart, I like that :) )

      Thanks all!

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