YNAB (You Need a Budget)

I do not like to advertise — I do not like to tell people that they should try something unless I REALLY believe in it.  There are some things that I am very open about — for example my faith.  I love telling people about my faith, about how it has made a positive impact in my life.  I don’t mind telling people about Shaklee — the nutritional company that I have been a part of my whole life!  I know that I would be in a different place; health wise – if it was not for Shaklee.


There is something new that I have been a part of recently that I want to share.  I have included a link in my sidebar that you can click on to find out more information.  The program is called You Need a Budget.  It is a budgeting software program for Windows (the Mac version is coming – but there is an excel document for Mac users).  But it is more than just a program……there is a Methodology behind the whole system.  It has changed the way that I view money and budgeting and I know it has worked for many, many people.

The mythology is quite simple – there are “four rules” that you keep in mind when thinking about your money.  If you abide by these four rules then you will be doing well when it comes to finances.  Some of you reading this might already be doing this, but for those of us who have not been doing this it is a real eye opener.

Rule number One: Live on last months income – this is the hardest one to start with but the most important.  If you live on last month’s income then you do not have to worry about what your current month’s income will be!  For those of us who live on a variable income you never know what to budget for because you do not know what your current month’s income will be!  That is a hard way to live.  But if you live off of your lasts month’s income then you know exactly what you have to spend.  The challenging part is to get to a place where you can live like that — this is called the Buffer — and you have to save your buffer until you have that money in the bank.  There is no more timing bills – there is no more worries about having enough money in the bank, because the money is there!!  We are currently saving for our buffer and I will share in later blog posts things we are doing to get to the full buffer point.

Rule number two: Give every dollar a job — For those of you who already live on a budget you might do this — but the difference is that we now only budget the money we have in the bank.  We give those dollars a job.  In the past we have budgeted for the whole month – not knowing what is going to come up and how that is going to change.  When things did change our budget and spirits were out of whack — but now we are taking things one day at a time…..one week at a time. Sure there are things that still come up but we have a better handle on those things and it is easier to adjust when you know what your plan is.

Rule number three: Prepare for a Rainy Day –  On top of the buffer, one needs to think about the future.  With the YNAB program this is easy.  If you know that you can get a discount on your car insurance if you pay the full 6 months at once — you can stick that into your budget and YNAB will calculate that for you!  Recently we had the engine go on our car.  In YNAB we have a car replacement category and a car repair category.  If we had more than $40.00 in either category we would be okay but we are just starting…..so we were not prepared for a rainy day — but soon hope to be!

Rule number Four: Roll with the punches —  Recently we have had some problems that can only be cured by money.  Our car died, my cell phone died and the holiday’s are coming up.  Some stuff we can expect and others we can’t.  Things are not perfect — they may never be perfect– that’s why this rule is so important.  It is easy to give up and just go into things blindly.  But that will help no one and that will make things worse.

That’s YNAB in a nutshell.  I know it has helped us out and I know it will help you out.  Feel free to leave comments if you have questions.  I have to admit I am a newbie at this program but I feel like I have a good handle on the rules and what to do and how to get started.  I make frequent use of the forum for help with questions that I have.  I know that Jesse is always working on improving the program and I am excited to see how things progress.

So please click here and give it a try– you can try it for 60 days for free!!!

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