Virtual savings accounts for rainy day accounting

Andrew Sackville-West andrew at
Wed Nov 16 14:58:38 EST 2005

Jeff Smith wrote:
> But despite the fact that, from the perspective of the BANK account, it 
> looks like one big slush pile, I'd like to have my GnuCash view be a bit 
> more compartmentalized.
> What I am planning to do is create sub-accounts of the current account 
> called Emergency Fund and Special Projects Fund. Each month, a fixed 
> amount will be transfered into each of these sub-accounts so that I can 
> keep them separate in my view of the world, without incurring extra bank 
> fees from having additional bank accounts lying around.
<<more snippage>>
> The question is: is this a good way to set up these 'virtual savings 
> accounts', or is there a better way?

I do exactly this in my accounts. To accumulate funds for various 
purposes (mostly accruing liabilities for big items like payroll taxes 
and annual license fees (big)). I have a variety of subaccounts in my 
main savings account in gnucash. I make split transfers into these 
accounts as needed. Then I can see how much I have accumulated for 
various purposes as well as keep from mixing my money. Nothing worse 
than thinking you have tons of money because you forgot that it was held 
out for other stuff.  Also, I leave the master, top-level account as an 
actual account and not just a placeholder. That way any discrepancies, 
interest, etc just slush into here and I can keep track of that as well. 
YOu could also, i suppose just make a sub account for that too...

So, this works great for me, but there are three things to watch. 1) 
make sure you reconcile the "master" account or toplevel account and NOT 
the subaccounts; 2) make sure when you reconcile that you select the 
"include SubAccounts" check-box in the first reconcile window, this will 
include all the transactions from this whole part of the account tree; 
3) the deposits and splits show up as splits in the reconcile window, 
and this can be confusing at first, but if you click on any one of the 
items in a group, it'll grab them all automatically... works great.


More information about the gnucash-user mailing list