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Personal Finances / Credit Cards and Consumer Debt


Subject:  Re: Budgeting help, please? Date:  4/21/2009  3:21 PM
Author:  llambe Number:  287251 of 312189

In general, the more categories you have the more money it looks like you have to save up. In tension with this, having fewer categories runs the risk of letting you overlook things or double count savings, until Something Bad happens. Envelope budgeting is a dance between eating beans and rice because you don't have enough saved for everything on your wish list, and not having funds to pay for car repairs because you put all "repairs" together and needed to fix both the car and the barn.

I've chosen to lump all these categories together in a sinking fund and save a set amount each month for all of them. The one stipulation is that it does not include anything that I consider a "choice" only "have to's" such as car/house repair (and NOT car/house "fixups").

I think, in your position I would try very hard to NOT to carry over negatives. When I first started using YNAB I really wanted to carry over my negatives figuring I had budgeted X for the year I should be able to spend it now. But in fact I've found that having to deal with the negatives immediately is a real wake up call for what needs to be funded more and what can be cut.
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