Now that we’re mid-month, and given that there were a handful of readers who also expressed interest in trying the free 30-day trial of YNAB, I wanted to give a little review.
Only problem is…..(CONFESSION)…..I haven’t been doing it.
I don’t know what my problem is. I think I just found it to be a bit overwhelming since its so different from what I’m used to. I honestly think it would work much better for me when I’ve already got my full 1 month’s salary saved up.
I’ve also found it difficult to keep up with since I still have a desire to keep using my regular Excel spreadsheet. This was just a one-month trial, so I didn’t want to just dump my usual Excel file and pretend like the month of July never happened (or at least, have no record of it). But it proved to be too much to try to keep up with both. Too bulky, confusing, and time-consuming.
So, yeah. I haven’t even opened it up since the first week of the month.
Part of me is considering whether I could reach out to customer service and ask for another free trial after I have my one month’s salary saved up. I don’t know why I feel like this will make such a difference, but I really do think it would help (perhaps because I’ll know exactly how much money I’m working with, given our variable and uncertain income). No idea if they would make an exception like this but it could be worth a chance to ask.
Another thing I’ve thought of doing (really I should say, another suggestion a reader had given), is to simply add my usual Excel file to dropbox (which I already have for work related things). Then I would have instant access to my budget and categories anytime I’m out, so it would function essentially the same as YNAB in terms of accessibility. Plus I get to use the software I know and am comfortable with.
I think another reason why YNAB has failed me this month is because I’ve simply been overwhelmed. The first week was spent traveling and then we come home and BAM, BAM – we have two huge and
unexpected unbudgeted expenses back-to-back (many readers pointed out that these expenses shouldn’t have been fully unexpected…yet another way that I’m learning the importance of a good, solid budget). Oh, and I don’t get paid until the end of the month so right now it looks like we’re WAAAAAAY in the red (though I’m hoping husband will get another couple big checks and my check will come in, and then things will end in the black). Being in the red is a problem with YNAB (another reason why I think it’d be more beneficial if I start it once we have 1 month’s salary already saved up).
Sorry, I feel like I’m babbling. I have a stack a mile-high of work related tasks demanding my attention in addition to other “life” happenings, so I need to get going. Be sure to check back on Friday though. I’m finally going to spill the beans about a couple issues that are going to directly impact our budget (in addition to these so-called “unexpected” expenses I’ve been discussing, too). Lots of changes in the air.
If you were using YNAB’s free 30-day trial this month, tell me what you think! Has it been working for you? If not, what did you feel wasn’t working for you? I’m curious about everyone’s experiences!!!