YNAB 4 has powerful reports to help you gain insight into your Budget. You can generate three types of reports:
To access Reports, click on the Reports tab in the sidebar, decide which report you want to look at, and click the appropriate tab at the top of the main window.
Along with presenting your information to you on the screen, you can export your data easily in CSV format. This allows you to open it in a spreadsheet program like Excel.
Spending reports in YNAB are designed to provide you with information about your spending, either by Category or by Payee. This information can be part of your budgeting by helping you improve your awareness about your spending habits and patterns.
Click on the Reports tab in the sidebar. Then click Spending by Category or by Spending by Payee at the top of the main window, depending on which one you want to view.
By default, YNAB will first generate a report that includes information from all dates, all categories, all payees, and all accounts (both Off-Budget Accounts and Budget Accounts).
YNAB will generate a donut graph showing your spending by Payee or category depending on what you have selected.
If you’re looking at spending by category, the report is generated based on Master Categories. To see the spending for Categories within a given Master Category, just click on the Master Category on the wheel graph. To return to the full graph of Master Categories, click Master Categories on the top left or anywhere on the wheel graph.
If you’re looking at spending by payee, on the other hand, the total of spending is presented right there in the graph.
In both reports, a scrollable list of spending, by Category or Payee, is also presented on the right. Clicking on the name of a Category or Payee will give you a pop-up where you can see the individual transactions that make up that total.
Clicking on a transaction will bring you to that transaction in the register.
The Spending Reports are fully customizable by Timeframe, Categories, Payees, and Accounts included. Simply click on any of those menu items above the main graph and a pop-up box will appear. There you can select or deselect how you want to filter your information.
YNAB 4 has a new, full-featured Income and Expense Report, which also includes net income information.
Click the Income v. Expense tab in the top of the report window. Like the Spending Reports, the Income and Expense Report by default loads data from all dates, Categories, payees, and accounts - but they are all customizable.
The report is divided into three sections:
The top section, highlighted in green, lists the total of all your income sources, organized by Payee. The report first loads with categories collapsed, but you can click on the caret next to All Income Sources to see the detail.
The next section, highlighted in pink, lists the totals for your spending, organized by Category. Initially, the Master Categories are collapsed, but you can see detail down to the Category by clicking on the caret next to any Master Category name.
The final section is at the bottom of the report, and is your Net Income figure. This reflects the difference between your total income and your recorded expenses for each month.
You’ll notice that the vertical columns display the data for each month in the date range you have selected at the top of the report. This is useful information for you about your historical spending and can be very useful for generating end of quarter or end of year reports for your personal financial life or small-business.
For building your awareness about your spending habits, the report also contains information about average and total income and spending for each category These two columns are on the far-right side of the report - if you’re loading more than a few months, you may need to scroll to the right to see them.
Keep in mind that these averages are based on every month that you have filtered in when you selected the dates - even if those months have zero income or expense. If you are looking at average income or spending, you will want to select only past months.
Your average expenses can be a huge help towards working towards budgeting your true expenses and using Rule Two!
The Net Worth report will help you keep track of your net worth by comparing the balances of your asset accounts and your debt accounts. Of course, the Net Worth report will only use the information from the accounts you have actually set up in YNAB - the net worth of your whole financial life may be different.
Like other reports, by default YNAB will first generate a report that includes information from all dates, all categories, all payees, and all accounts (including all off-budget, on-budget, and closed accounts). To change any of these parameters, simply click on any of those menu items above the main graph and a pop-up box will appear. There you can select or deselect how you want to filter your information.
You’ll notice that your report has two sections - a graph showing your assets, debt, and net worth, and a list of the months on the right-hand side showing your net worth as of the end of that given month.
To look at specific data from a point in time, mouse over the graph. The bars in the graph will highlight and you’ll notice that the numbers listing your total assets, debt, and net worth will change to reflect the month you are selecting (in the example above, April is the selected month).
The Spending Trends report allows you to see how your spending has been tracking over time. This is a great report to check if you are trying to see if expenses are increasing or decreasing in certain categories.
Click on the Reports tab in the sidebar, and then Spending Trends from the top of the reports window.
YNAB will first generate a report that includes information from all dates, categories, payees, and budget accounts (and closed budget accounts). To change these parameters, simply click on any of the menu items above the main graph and a pop-up box will appear. You can select or deselect how you want to filter your information.
YNAB will present a bar graph of master categories organized by month left to right:
This will give you the overall picture of whether or not your spending is going up or down. If you hover over a specific point on the chart, a popup will appear providing more information:
The popup tells us three things. Looking at the example above:
You can drill down even further, but clicking on a master category. Let’s look at household expenses, in depth.
In this example, the household master category has four categories--Rent, Gifts, Entertainment, and Clothing.
Again, hover over a specific point to get more information. Let’s look at March again:
Rent is unchanged from the previous month. It made up 87% of the household master category which was down 2% from April.
You can drill down to a specific category from here, as well. Let’s look at Entertainment:
Entertainment spending has gone up steadily since March. If I hover over any of these points, I can see the spending for that month and the change from the previous month.