Negative amount in "Budgeted This month" ???

Trying to maximize use of left over money to pay down Credit cards. As I move down my budget for the new month. It shows money left over in the Available column. I move the left over money to the credit card of choice for use as payment. Now the line item that I moved money from shows the former available amount that I moved as negative in the budgeted column.

Example: I had $10.42 since left over for January (available) after my life insurance payments for December cleared my bank account. I moved the $10.42 to Discover. Now, on the Life Insurance line, the available amount display $0.00 and the Budgeted displays  -$10.42.

I see a reset budgeted amount amount.  If I click it, it clears the budgeted amount to zero, but now available show that positive amount.

I'm not exactly sure what this all means? Can someone please explain?

I don't understand why moving available money doesn't just zero the the available on the "from" line and add to available on the "move to" line. ???

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  • The budgeted column shows the cumulative total of money budgeted to or removed (not spent) from the category in the current month. It will start at zero each month until you add or remove money regardless of the category balance.

    The activity column shows the cumulative transaction total in the current month.

    The Available column = Last month's remaining Available +/- This month Budgeted +/- This month Activity

    Like 2
    • Ben
    • Toolkit for YNAB Designer & Developer
    • furiousfalcon
    • 1 yr ago
    • 2
    • Reported - view

    The negative in the budgeted column isn't a "bad" thing. That simply shows that you have removed 10.42 so you can use it elsewhere. You want that number as a reminder that you adjusted your budgeted amount -- you don't want the system to move money without any way to show how that money was moved.

    I usually do an end-of-the-month sweep of all my categories and adjust my budget numbers if I budgeted more than I needed to in certain categories. If the negative budgeted in January bothers you, perhaps consider switching back to December's budget and adjusting your budgeted numbers there instead?

    Like 2
    • Ben this helps! The negative for some reason was really bugging me, so I went back and adjusted last months budget for that category and it fixed it! Thank [email protected] 

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  • Appreciate the response Nolesrule, but that wasn't what I was really trying to understand.

    Ben, thank you, that's closer,  but I'm thinking maybe this is an API issue now.
    The negative number in Budgeted messes with my monthly goal.  Now it is forcing me to budget MORE than my goal amount. As if the money I moved is causing a negative impact on my checking. My monthly goal is $146, but YNAB is now telling me I need to budget 156.42 more to meet my goal, when the 10.42 was inconsequential (extra money) to the category to begin with. Moving available money (extra) from one category to another should have no impact on monthly goal amount (budgeted). I should only have to budget the goal amount or less, if I have all ready partially budgeted for a category.

    I don't get YNABs math in this instance. 

    I tried adjusted the numbers by moving back to December first. It still had the same effect on January.

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    • Hi Radar DG !

      Are you using a Monthly Funding goal? Monthly Funding goals are based on the Budgeted amount in a category, not the Available amount. So, no matter how much is Available in that category, the goal is based on the amount entered in the Budgeted column. If you have -$10.42 Budgeted, you have to budget that $10.42 to get the Budgeted amount back to zero and then add your goal amount on top of that.

      If that bothers you, you can go back to December and remove the $10.42 in that month to prevent the negative amount being budgeted in the current month.

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      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 1 yr ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Radar DG You need to use the right type of goal for what you are trying to accomplish. Unfortunately there aren't enough goal-type mechanics available to cover every use case.

      Like 1
      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      nolesrule That's what exactly what seems like. The goal mechanic I chose, apparently isn't working the way I think it should. I'll just have to fiddle with my rules.

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      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      Faness I'll have to change my goal setup, I suppose. But, I still don't understand why moving available money from one category to another should cause that same amount to show up as a negative in budgeted on the original category. It's essentially forcing me to over budget to compensate the moved money that was just left over in the first place.

      I'll play with my setup, but it is something for YNAB to consider. If you have a set monthly goal that you know is sufficient to cover the expense, why should you HAVE to budget more than that?

      I tried rolling back to December with the available column showing "green" leftover funds to make the intended move. It still came rolled over to January as a negative in budgeted.


      I'll figure something out.

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    • Radar DG There has to be a record of those funds being moved. Let's say in December you budgeted $50 and spent $40, so there's $10 left. In December, you can change that $50 to $40 and the $10 will go back to To Be Budgeted instead. However, if you don't make that change, then when the month rolls over to January there will be $0 and $10 Available. In order to show that $10 being taken out of that category, that -$10 is entered in the Budgeted column.

      If you go back to December, take $10.42 out of the category (you can use the move money feature and send it back to To Be Budgeted). Then, in January, that excess should no longer be there.

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      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      Faness I tried rolling back to December. I tried moving the available funds to "TBB" and also tried moving to the category I wanted. No change. January still shows a the amount as negative in Budgeted. I also tried decreasing the Budgeted amount while in December by the available amount displayed and that just made January worse. Now it not only shows negative in the budgeted plus showing overspent (red) in the Available by the same amount I tried to move. ???? 

      I have no idea what is happening. I don't know why this started, but have not had this problem prior. I don't know how else to explain what is happening.

      I just changed everything from "Monthly goal" to "Target Category Balance" and reset my current budget to zero for now. We'll, see if that works out. 

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      • Ben
      • Toolkit for YNAB Designer & Developer
      • furiousfalcon
      • 1 yr ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Radar DG - Changing December's budget is only one step in the process -- changing Dec's budget won't automatically change any budgeted numbers for January. You'd need to change December's budget, and revert your changes you made in January for it to all even out.

      Like 2
      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      Ben I'll take another look at it. Thank you.

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  • And this is yet another use case for the “available balance is x” quick budget that users have been asking for since the software launched.

    Like 2
      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      WordTenor Thank you. That is a very useful function. I have used it. But that also still doesn't really address my concern.

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      • WordTenor
      • I have the honor to be your obedient servant
      • WordTenor
      • 1 yr ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Radar DG That function doesn't exist, so you can't have used it. I'm pointing out that it still does not exist three years on despite many obvious use cases for it. 

      Like 1
      • Radar DG
      • Retired Navy/Security Officer
      • Land_locked_squid
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      WordTenor  I thought you were referring to the quick budget menu options in general. I believe I saw the thread you are talking about. YNAB folks stated it was in beta with a few users but not yet officially released. So, my issue may very well all ready be addressed then and in the works.

      I set my goals to "Target Category Balance" for now. 

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