Intro – YNAB Review – What Is YNAB

When you hear the word “budget,” does it scare you a little? Many people dislike the idea of a budget because they dislike the idea of financial restriction. These people haven’t heard of YouNeedABudget, also known as YNAB, which was created to show people an easier way to pay off debt and save money.

You may feel critical about a program that boasts these promises, but read below to learn more about getting started with YNAB and check out the YNAB reviews and YNAB free trial.


Image Source: What is YNAB?

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What Is YNAB? The New Way to Gain Control of Your Budget

YNAB is a budget software program designed to help people gain control of their finances. YNAB reviews have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Business Insider, Entrepreneur, Forbes, the Associated Press, and The Huffington Post, to name a few.

YouNeedABudget was created by CPA Jesse Micham and has found its way from an offline software package to an online app that syncs to your bank accounts.

 If you are not sure where all of your money goes or are living paycheck to paycheck, then YNAB says it can help you. The company has taken the paper budgets of yesteryear and reworked them into an interactive and user-friendly design. Once you set up YNAB, you can access your account from any mobile device or desktop PC or Mac as you learn how to use YNAB.

YNAB works to educate its customers about finances, budgeting, clearing debt, and aging your money to always stay ahead. The website offers lots of training and blog posts. You can access YNAB help by clicking on the question mark at the bottom right-hand corner of the screen and completing a form.

How to Use YNAB (YouNeedABudget)

When you join YNAB, you create an account and import your bank balances to the software program. Next, you assign categories to your account. These categories can include:

  • Rent/Mortgage
  • Utilities
  • Groceries
  • Gasoline
  • Credit card debt
  • Student loan debt
  • Car payments
  • Insurance payments
  • Clothing
  • Vacation
  • Holidays and gifts
  • Fun money
  • Restaurants

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YNAB stresses the importance of assigning every dollar a purpose when getting started with YNAB, and you see this as the basis of their program and the theme of this YNAB review. They call it the “Rule One: Give Every Dollar a Job.” By categorizing, you can visualize whichpriorities need to come first and make sure you budget for these. You can also create categories for a special event like a wedding, concert, or reunion.

Since you can use YNAB on any mobile device, you can easily update any transactions before leaving the parking lot. Simply mark which category the money came out of. If you run out of funds in one category, rethink whether or not you truly need the thing you want. If so, then you will need to take money out of another category to compensate. This may make consumers stop and think about whether or not that latte is worth it if they must give up part of their gift money.

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How to Use YNAB Continued – YNAB Review

Before you spend any money at all, YNAB allows you to check your category balances at any time. The goal is to induce wiser spending and saving. You may find you’re less spontaneous after using the mobile app for a while.

As you continue to use YNAB, you can schedule withdrawals from the categories to pay the bills, save for a vacation, or pay off debt. Any recurring expenses can be automatically taken out of the categories, and if you are saving for something in the future, like a vacation, divide the cost and withdraw the set amount each pay period. YNAB calls this “Rule Two: Embrace Your True Expenses.”

Moving your money from category to category while paying your high priorities is referred to as “Rule Three: Roll with the Punches.” A budget shouldn’t be so restrictive that you can’t take advantage of certain circumstances or special events that come along. Simply move the funds from one category to the other. The program allows you to make this switch with just the touch of a finger.

When you decide to make paying off debt or saving for a special event a goal, YNAB reviews where you stand inreaching your goal. Seeing your progress may motivateyou to continue budgeting.

If you want to stop living paycheck to paycheck, YNAB suggests “Rule Four: Aging Your Money.” When you budget and no longer spend money on extra items you do not need, the remaining begins to build. YNAB believes if you have money in the bank that is 30 days old, you will finally break the vicious cycle of living paycheck to paycheck.

If you become stuck, YNAB help is available is the form of guidebooks as well as the question form. The guidebooks are as follows:

  • Quick Start
  • User Guide
  • Transition Guide
  • Prioritize
  • Think Long, Act Now
  • Deal With Your Debt
  • Join Forces
  • Simplify
  • Age Your Money

These books give you ideas on how to use YNAB, work your financial plan, save money, get out of debt, and work with your spouse or partner to lead better financial lives.

Now that you know how to use YNAB to get out of debt and save money, is YNAB safe?

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Security Features, Access, and Infrastructure – YNAB Review

As a consumer, you should be aware of the security features for any app you use, especially if it is linked to your bank accounts. The creators of YNAB knew customers would ask “is YNAB safe?” before subscribing to the service.

The YNAB team does not access your data unless you request that they do for some reason or by law. The account password you use is “one-way salted and hashed using multiple iterations of a key derivation function for passwords,” according to the company’s website. This means that if someone would hack into YNAB’s system, the criminals would not be able to read your password.

If you decide to cancel your subscription and delete your account, all of your data is removed from the YNAB database. Your data stays encrypted the entire time.

YNAB states their infrastructure is built on Heroku. Heroku uses the Amazon Web Service Technology and continually monitors their security. YNAB depends on Finicity for all financial data from its customers as YNAB does not store bank credentials. With encrypted traffic, social engineering security, and security audits, your information is protected.

How Much Does YNAB Cost? – Getting Started with YNAB

You can access YNAB from a PC, Mac, or mobile platform like iOS or Android. There were older versions of the app with a different price point. The new version can be purchased in subscription form for 12 months billed annually or a monthly subscription. The yearly plan is $50. The monthly price is $5. By signing up for the yearly plan, you are saving $10; however, YNAB states that you can save an average of $200 during your first month of using the budgeting software program.

The YNAB Free Trial

The offer you may have read about in YNAB reviews is the YNAB free trial. Now that you know the answer to “how much does YNAB cost?” it’s time to explore the benefits of the YNAB free trial.

The YNAB free trial runs for 34 days. This is longer than many trials for budget software. The company does not require a credit card to start the trial, so you don’t have to worry about trying to cancel before the billing charge if it doesn’t work out for you.

YNAB Free for Students – YNAB 4 Free Program

You may have heard about YNAB free for students from YNAB reviews. Currently, the program is still free for college students, although the company is working on revising the college program. If YNAB free for students is something you are interested in, then contact the company with proof of your college enrollment.

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Making the Decision to Try YNAB – YNAB Review

Choosing a budget software program is really about that program meeting your needs. If you need a program that accounts for investments, YNAB isn’t capable of that yet.

YNAB is easily accessible through the web, iOS, and Android, which makes keeping track of your finances effortless. Now that the new version syncs with your accounts, the ledgers should remain accurate.

YNAB reviews its access and encryption processes continually to maintain security as well as your trust. If you are already a user of one of the older YNAB versions, you can still use that version, but you may want to upgrade to the new version in order to take advantage of emerging features.

Unlike other budget software programs, YNAB help is available through guidebooks, blog posts, and classes. The classes are live (webinar) or consist of a small group workshop (over the phone) and cover such topics as:

  • Getting Started with YNAB and Prioritizing
  • Credit Card Debt and Your Budget
  • Age Your Money
  • The New YNAB
  • Workshop: Simplify Your Finances
  • Workshop: Overspending
  • Workshop: Savings
  • Workshop: Your Pay Cycle

Some people may find the education and workshops worth the annual subscription cost.

Whether you are looking for a way to get a handle on your finances or want to figure out how to use YNAB, we hope this brief YNAB review helped you make a decision. Budgeting doesn’t need to be scary. With online tools like these, it can actually be fun.

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