I'm so excited about budgeting I don't know where to begin!

I wish I had this app 25 years ago...I'd be a millionaire by now! Lol  Still, anyone can start getting their finances in "real" order at any age with YNAB. I won't call it easy as I've been a little obsessed with my YNAB almost daily moving money around and realizing there are more categories and expenditures than I/we have thought all these years. (Another lol or cry moment) There were a few days I even shook my fist at my month's outgoing! Now that I am nearing the end of my first month, I'm trying to get a grasp of how things will look going in to my next 2 month. Just so you know, we are still trying to play catch-up from the holiday overspending and it stinks. But, at least with YNAB, I now have a "real" plan to work with that will help us reach savings goals for retirement. February goals are done (I think) and, let's just say, if we can stay on track, I can't wait to see what March brings!! Good luck and God bless all!

11replies Oldest first
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Active threads
  • Popular
  • I didn’t find YNAB and learn to budget properly until I was in my mid 40s. But oh, what a difference it has made! The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now!

    Like 6
    • Superbone St

      Im in my mid forties just trying to figure out where to start with YNAB! Any advice its a little overwhelming?

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 1 mth ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Superbone I hate that phrase because it's a false choice. Truly if the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, then the second best time should logically be 19 years 364 days ago or 20 years 1 day ago.... unless weather on those days would have been a problem, in which case you just wait for a suitable day.

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

      nolesrule Take it up with ancient China. That would be a long saying until you get to today. 😂

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

      The River Jumper It’s been a long time since I started but the getting started materials are much better these days. There’s even live webinars you can attend. When I started, I read what they had at the time over and over until it sunk in. Really make sure you understand the 4 rules. (The first 3 rules being the most important.) Then just dive in and ask a lot of questions. I didn’t find the forum until a couple years after I started and then I still learned a ton more from them.

      Once you’re following the 3 rules, my best advice is to sub-categorize your savings and don’t try to match account balances to category balances. Think of all your on-budget funds as one giant pot of money. Also, don’t worry too much about goals until you’ve got down the basics. But like I said, the most important thing is to dive in and then ask questions as they come up. Good luck!

      Like
    • The River Jumper To add to the excellent advice of Superbone just remember the late Douglas Adams: "Don't Panic".

      Rule 3: "Roll With the Punches" is key to this. We all have unexpected expenses, things we forgot to budget for and life throws curveballs.

      You'll get out of YNAB as much as you put into it, and when it gets confusing, just pop on here and ask for advice.

      Best of luck!

      Like 1
  • Welcome to You Need A Budget, and the forum Tomato Admiral . 🎉 It's never too late to start a budget, and use it to inform decisions moving forward.  I'm glad to hear you're embracing this new venture!

    Like
  • It's amazing how much progress I've made with YNAB and Dave Ramsey since May.  I got myself out of the credit card float, have a month of my income saved, paid off >$19k of debt and even started contributing to my Roth IRA again.   And now that I've modified my plan (see you journal) I'm a lot more relaxed about it and I'm enjoying the process rather than stressing until it's done.  This is going to be a lifelong process of having a higher level of financial responsibility so I don't want to burn out and give up once my debt is paid!

    By the way, for awhile I actually used cash envelopes for the major categories that I might overspend on (groceries, eating out, fun $) and that really helped me to establish a strong mentality of checking my budget (envelope) before I made a purchase.  I think it's a pretty good idea for beginners if you've got a big hole you're trying to dig out of and you want to make big changes right away.  YNAB is more about making smaller changes, but I wanted to sacrifice a lot so I could make big progress on the nasty divorce debt and the actually cash envelopes helped me achieve that, although I stopped using them once I started using credit cards again, the YNAB way.

     

    Good luck!!!!!  And welcome to the YNAB community!

    Like 3
    • PhysicsGal I love the concept of cash envelopes but not the cash hassle. YNAB's categories are amazing for letting you do that! Just remember to check them... :)

      Like
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 1 mth ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Purple Foal I actually found it pretty awesome to have cash when I was dealing with eating out with friends, although it wasn't that often because of the tight budget I was one.  I also found a really nice wallet that has separate sections for doing cash envelope budgeting without envelopes that made that part easy, rather than shuffling around with actual envelopes.  I get paid monthly, so I would take out my whole month's budget for the categories I was doing cash with, so it was just one trip to the ATM a month.

      The trick with cash is when it's the end of the month, your budget is super tight like mine was, and you go to the grocery store you need to keep a running total of what you're putting into your cart or you might end up embarrassed at the checkout.  I never messed that up because I was careful at the end of the month, when I knew I was running low, but I was scared of it...

      Like 1
  • I've had that remorse too of finding YNAB in my 40's but sometimes you just have to be in the right mindset. Hindsight is an amazing thing. But with age, usually comes wisdom. Just think about what you will do now, in the present and for your future. :)

    Like 2
Like9 Follow
  • 9 Likes
  • 1 mth agoLast active
  • 11Replies
  • 220Views
  • 8 Following