Feature Request: "Max Spend By Date" Goal

It would be helpful to have a new goal feature where you can set a max goal amount by a goal date, but any purchases made before the goal date automatically alters the final max goal amount.


For example, with vacation, we might set a goal for $2,000 by May 2020. Five months into our savings, we might purchase our plane tickets for $250. So, then, we would expect the end goal amount to change to $1,750 which would effectively mean our monthly budget goal amount wouldn't change.


Currently, with the "category balance by date" feature, we have to manually delete the initial goal amount, and make a new goal by deducting what we spent in the category from the initial goal amount. We have to repeat this process every time we make a purchase before the goal date.  This new feature would streamline that process.


Another example would be building a PC by, say, June 2020. You might set a $1,500 max spending goal for all the different parts needed. You don't want to spend more than that amount and you are willing to wait a few months to keep an eye on deals. Say you purchase a new graphics card for $300 before June. The new goal amount with this new feature would be $1,200 to be saved; whereas with the "category balance by date" goal, the monthly budget amount will be adjusted to reach the $1,500 goal amount.


You can get similar functionality with the "monthly funding" goal; however, it doesn't give the notion of a larger saving goal. Having a "max spend by date" goal weds the idea of "category balance by date" and the "monthly funding" to help give an idea of a bigger picture for a category.  You get the benefit of YNAB calculating how much you need to save to reach the goal (if, say, you can't allocate any funds to that category in a month), as well as YNAB helping you to keep from dedicating too much of your hard earned money towards one category.


We think this new feature will help people with expensive hobbies, or those who like to make "general" categories vs. a multitude of sub-categories that might not be reusable. It will also help frame spending toward a particular goal and help people refrain from spending too much in one category. 



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  • Hi Mark Ross ! Thanks for all of those amazing details on your proposed "Max Spend By Date" Goal. It sounds like an interesting concept. Those thoughtful examples really help our team dig in! 😄 

    When you have a moment, would you mind submitting a Feature Request? That form goes directly to our development team so you can let them know what you’d like to see going forward. We can’t make any promises, but that puts it on our list of possibilities!

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  • This goal has been requested/suggested more than several times in the 3 years since online YNAB was launched.

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