10 Favorites From the YNAB Vault
Does talking about budgeting ever get old? We wouldn’t know. It’s still just as fresh and rosy as the day we started.
We’ve pulled together a highlight reel—a curated list of our most-viewed articles from 2019. Some of them are oldies but goodies that just keep popping up (here’s looking at you, Wish Farm!) and some are rookie newbies now gracing the interwebs with their presence. Take a gander around—have a click wherever you fancy.
1. How to Create a Budget Template
When you’re starting a new budget, it’s tempting to use the paychecks that are yet to come (I can see Friday from here!). But a tried-and-true budgeting mantra is to only budget money you have right now.
When you’re looking at empty pockets, that might seem laughable. But here’s a little secret that gives you the future view you crave without sidestepping the current reality (i.e. you might only have $200 dollars right now).
So how do you do it? By creating a budget template…
2. Our $298 Grocery Budget for a Family of 5
Ben’s family has always lived on a pretty tight budget for groceries. With their lofty financial goals, it made sense to cut back where they could. So when he told some of his coworkers that they spend $298 a month on groceries for a family of five, he realized his situation wasn’t quite as normal as he thought.
3. Welcome To The Wish Farm!
This post is a perennial favorite—and it tends to lead to immediate action once you read it.
After budgeting for upcoming bills and saving for those non-monthly expenses, it’s all about the Wish List. Budgeting becomes a Wish Farm and the harvest is rich! In this post, Dave explains how he handles saving for the fun stuff—how to make your hopes, dreams, wants, and wishes come to fruition.
4. Four Rules for Winning Financially
Sure, the You Need a Budget apps are great, but the secret sauce is combining them with our four simple but life-changing rules. We’re going back to the basics to see exactly where the magic happens.
When you follow The Four Rules, you stop spending money on things that don’t matter. Instead, you send your dollars out into the world to serve and protect the things you hold dear. And, the results speak for themselves (see the endless success stories!).
5. How to Pay off $26,000 of Debt in 18 Months on a $35,000 per Year Income
The YNAB podcast features stories of all stripes, including one from a couple who were struggling to get out from under a load of debt. Our CEO Jesse covers the exact numbers this couple needs to be debt-free in 18 months using a debt snowball, work bonuses, and tax refunds.
There’s no shortage of nitty-gritty numbers here, and it’s heavy on actionable next steps.
6. Your Budget is Your Savings Category
If you’ve been a YNABer for any amount of time, you probably know that we think about money a little differently around here. We’ve got a proven method, and the reason that it works so well is because it helps change the way you think about your money, which leads to real behavior change.
But one of the more confusing issues for new YNABers is how to handle savings. They worry about including their savings account(s) in their budget for fear that they’ll accidentally—or not so accidentally—spend it. But nothing could be further from the truth.
7. 4 Lessons From My Zero Percent Nightmare
When Lindsey woke up on January 1, 2018, she took a deep breath. She’d been preparing as much as one can—this was going to be a big year. Two months earlier she had filed for divorce. And although she had been living on her own with two kids for more than a year, it seemed like maybe their limbo was finally coming to an end. 2018 was going to be one for the books.
And she was right. About that one thing...
8. How to Do Credit Cards in YNAB
You might think that using a credit card and following your budget are mutually exclusive endeavors. You’re either charging stuff, or you’re following your plan, right? Wrong. It’s totally possible to use your credit card within the parameters of your budget—a confusing possibility if you’ve never considered it before.
If you’re ready to be (or remain) debt-free, keep reading for an explanation of how to use your card without going into debt, plus how to enter credit card transactions, payments, interest, and fees into YNAB.
9. What Is the Ideal Age of Money?
Money—like violins and fine wine—does better with age. But what is prime time when it comes to the age of your money? Well, you know Day 30 is feelin’ flirty in your budget because it means you’re a month ahead! A bill hits, and no problem! You’re covered.
But, once you’ve hit 30 days, should you continue to age your cash?
10. 20 Money Resolutions for the New Year
So you want to make 2020 the year you get better with money? We’ve got 20 ideas to get you saving more, paying off debt, and getting into tip-top financial shape. Whether you’re a new budgeter ready to break the paycheck to paycheck cycle for the first time, or a seasoned YNABer ready for the next financial challenge, we’ve got a grab bag of options for budgeters of all shapes and sizes.
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