[GNC-dev] Budgets (was Re: Training)

Adrien Monteleone adrien.monteleone at lusfiber.net
Tue Aug 14 01:26:14 EDT 2018

{from gnucash-devel since this is more user stuff than dev related}


After creating a budget, have you not tried the Budget Report?

That can show you actual vs. budgeted by period with variance and include yearly totals. The report also now lets you choose what periods you want to show detail for or report on at all. (vs. the old 12 periods and that’s it) You can choose for example to only show August, or you can show Jan-June as consolidated, with July, August, and September broken out, and then Q4 consolidated. (or any combination of periods you like or not at all) Just play with the settings to get a feel for it.

You can use the estimating feature when first setting up a budget to set the initial budget figures as averages based on prior transaction history. This is a nice starting point to use to populate your budget based on your actual spending habits.

The transfer line is for money into and out of assets and liabilities rather than income and expenses.

So if you budget to put say $100 in savings and $400 towards a mortgage, those will show up in the transfer line. (neither are income or expense)

Note, there is a bug (sorry, no bug number handy) concerning at least income totals for the actual column. If your invoice is dated on the first of the month, it will likely be counted in the prior month. I think it’s time-stamp/time-zone related but I have to investigate more. Other than that, it works reasonably well.

Note too, parts of the budget module (not all) do NOT honor the ‘reverse balanced accounts’ settings. So some accounts you normally may not be used to seeing as negative, will be negative. (I think the budget itself shows credit accounts as negative, but the budget report shows them as positive)

I find the budget module and report to be much more useful when used in combination with the transaction comparison report. If you’re trying to get a handle on a particular spending area discipline wise, the comparison report can show you the ‘direction’ you are headed, not just a variance from budgets.



> On Aug 13, 2018, at 10:52 PM, Christopher Lam <christopher.lck at gmail.com> wrote:
> It's customary here to keep discussions public. I don't use the budgets
> feature at all and cannot help sorry.
> My preference is to implement envelope budgeting, and the inbuilt budget is
> not envelope budgeting at all.
> On Tue, 14 Aug 2018, 00:08 David Tinoco <davetinoco at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi Christopher,
>> Thanks for getting back to me. Yes, I know the basics. I have been using
>> it for about 2 years now.
>> I have really wanted to get into the budget feature but I simply cannot
>> figure it out.
>> I am trying to figure out a way to create a budget and then report on the
>> categories to show how much I have spent on an expense account compared to
>> my budget.
>> Currently, the only thing I can figure out is making a budget and then
>> separately running an expenses report.
>> But if there was a way to calculate the expenses automatically for that
>> budget it would be great. Can this be done?
>> Also, I don't understand the transfer row in the budget window and how
>> that works with accounts.
>> There are so many great features to this program--wish I could work with a
>> guru and make a bunch of videos for you guys.
>> Thanks,
>> David
>> On Mon, Aug 13, 2018 at 2:28 AM Christopher Lam <christopher.lck at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>> Hi David
>>> There is definitely a gap in this space. The old video
>>> https://youtu.be/aqAaScYVeRQ is still covering the basics. Perhaps you
>>> can focus on more more modern aspects?
>>> On Thu, 9 Aug 2018, 22:18 David Tinoco <davetinoco at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> I am very interested in learning the ins and outs of GnuCash.
>>>> I am also a professional videographer/animator and web developer.
>>>> I was wondering if there is an interest in creating video tutorials for
>>>> the
>>>> various aspects of GnuCash. I think this would be very useful; even if
>>>> the
>>>> basics were covered (accounts setup, transaction entry, budget feature,
>>>> reports, etc.)
>>>> I would be willing to undertake the videos if I could have another person
>>>> on the team that got me through the ropes on this.
>>>> Is there a need for/interest in this?
>>>> _______________________________________________
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>>>> gnucash-devel at gnucash.org
>>>> https://lists.gnucash.org/mailman/listinfo/gnucash-devel
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