How well do you know the YNAB web app features? Don’t worry, there’s no pop quiz. Yet.
Check out these six sneaky features to expand your knowledge and simplify the process of keeping up with your budget.
While I was making the video for 6 YNAB Mobile App Features You’ve Been Missing, I thought, “But what about the web app YNABers? What mind-blowing tips and tricks could I bestow upon them that would change their lives?”
(I take this all very seriously, people.)
After all, I couldn’t forget about my very favorite platform, which just happens to be the YNAB web app. So, here are the six sneakiest YNAB web app features that I think you should know:
1. Do Calculations on your Keyboard
Remember when your third grade teacher said you wouldn’t always have a calculator on you? Well, they were super duper wrong—it turns out you didn’t need to learn basic math after all! (Just kidding. Kind of.)
Anyway, you may have already used the built-in calculator on the mobile app, but did you know that you can also easily use the plus, minus, multiply, or divide symbols (+, -, x, /) on the desktop? Just click the symbol to open up the buttons or use your own keyboard! This trick makes it easy to shave 27 dollars off of a category without having to do the actual math.
Not only is this super handy for divvying up a new paycheck or moving cash around in the budget, but it also comes in handy in the account register, especially for things like sorting out the multiple outflows of a split transaction.
For instance, let’s say I spent $100 at Shoppers Plus. I need to put that in as the master outflow number for this transaction, however, I know I spent some of that on home maintenance, some for groceries, maybe just a little bit of it was make-up—don’t judge, your girl deserved a treat. Well, friends, I can just easily run down my receipt and literally add up each item one by one in the correct outflow box to determine my total.
So, during this trip, I spent $7, $12, and $8 on different make-up items (yes, that does too count as just a little bit of make-up), $25 and $18 for home maintenance items, and the rest were all groceries. Now my budget will run the numbers for me and let me know how much is left after it subtracts the totals for make-up and home maintenance, and I can plug that remaining number into my groceries outflow. I always semi-wing it and round up a little on each item for sales tax, or you can just split the tax three ways and add a little to each category. Either way, there’s way less top-of-your-head math and less guessing with the built-in calculator.
2. Collapse and Expand Categories
Do you have a boat load of categories in your budget? If so, I’m about to improve your view.
If you’re dealing with visual clutter, this keyboard shortcut will be your best friend: Just press CMD plus an arrow (up or down) to collapse or expand all categories. CMD plus the up arrow collapses all of your categories, so that you can find the category you’re searching for more easily. CMD plus down opens them all back up again. Toggle back and forth through both quickly for a budget dance party! (Look, I don’t get out much. Let me have this.)
3. Split Transactions without Using a Mouse
Do you have a need for speed? Well, get ready to quit clicking because splitting transactions is about to be a mouse-free event.
While entering a transaction, you can type “split” (or the first few letters, if you’re a turbo budgeter) in the category box, arrow down to highlight it, and press enter to select it and move it over to the memo box. Then just tab your way through the rest of the transaction.
Y’all, you can even tab your way through the “cancel”, “save”, and “save and add another” buttons and hit enter to select it when you’ve highlighted the one you want.
And while you’re at it, speed racer, you can use those keyboard arrows to select any day you could possibly want on the calendar. Seriously—your mouse can retire!
4. Move Transactions in Bulk
There are many forms of bulk movement and actions found in the edit menu, with three of the most missed being “categorize”, “move account”, and “enter now”.
With “categorize”, you can send as many selected transactions as you want to the same category with one swift kick. Nailed it! Same with “move account”—select all transactions sitting in the wrong account and ship ‘em off to where they belong. Last, but not least, did a bunch of your scheduled transactions just hit the bank early? Bump them into your budget all at once with the “enter now” button in the edit menu. Yep, it’s been right there the whole time.
5. Give the Month an Inspiring Name
You may have seen this feature but never taken advantage of it, but you should! It’s surprisingly handy.
Add a note to your month to remind you of your goals, like “34-Day Reset” or “No Spend November.” It’s like a cheerleader in phrase form to help keep you on track.
6. Add Emojis to Your Budget
To be fair, this tip was also listed in the mobile app video, but you all love emojis so much that it seemed prudent to repeat this one here. The big difference between adding emojis to your budget on the web app is figuring out the keyboard shortcut that activates the emoji keyboard. So here’s the secret:
- On a Mac, you can open up your emoji keyboard by holding down CTRL + CMD + SPACE.
- On a Windows computer, try the Windows Key + [period] or Windows Key + [semi-colon]. If neither of those work, it may mean that your computer was manufactured before the dawning of the emoji keyboard, and to be honest, I think that’s a thing of beauty. What a pure, unadulterated sight. Truly a wonder to behold. But no web app budget emojis for you, sorry.
Although emojis aren’t actually a feature of YNAB, they can serve a purpose in your budget. Adding an emoji provides an easy visual cue that signifies which categories are safe to borrow money from and which aren’t. The red, yellow, and green light emojis are perfect choices for this; green indicates that it’s good to borrow from that category, yellow means that it’s okay to borrow from if other categories have fun out, and red would be, “NO WAY, JOSE! Absolutely no borrowing!”
Ta da! Those are the six sneaky YNAB web app features that I think are most likely to help you budget more efficiently and effectively. I hope you learned at least one thing, but to be honest, I hope you learned six new things because that would mean I’m doing my job well.
And if you like these tips and tricks, check out the 5 Top YNAB YouTube Commenter Tips for some helpful hints that were crowdsourced from YNABers like you!
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