Thursday, January 3, 2013


As you probably know by now, John and I work hard to get out of debt and to live within our means.

"There are no normal months. Your expenses do not occur evenly throughout the year, and if you don’t plan for the high-expense months, you’ll be in a world of hurt."

A vital part of that is keeping up with a monthly budget.
We've tried a couple of different budgeting methods but the one that has worked the best for us is YNAB.

YNAB is short for You-Need-A-Budget
It isn't exactly a fun fact but, no matter who you are - you need a budget!

YNAB is really easy to use! It keeps all your information in one place and helps you to monitor your expenses and find ways to reduce unnecessary spending.

It's also not for the faint of heart. You can't be half-hearted about wanting to fix your finances or a spending problem and use YNAB. It takes dedication and work.

YNAB works with 4 basic principles -

1. Give every dollar a job
2. Save for a Rainy Day
3. Roll with the Punches
4. Live on Last Month's Income

You make a budget for each month, based on known expenses and what you've spent in previous months.

One of my favorite features of YNAB that I haven't found with another form of budgeting is the ability to see the average of past months amounts spent to help you make an educated decision on how much you should budget this month.

In full disclosure, there is one of the YNAB steps that we opted to change up a little.
As you may know, we also use Dave Ramsey principles for managing our money. According to Dave Ramsey, your first step towards Financial Freedom is to save $1,000 and then start plugging away at your debt snowball. With YNAB, you're supposed to save 3 months income and then start making extra payments toward paying off your debt. To be honest, I'm just not that patient, so we went the Dave Ramsey route. (Praise God) We haven't had an emergency that has set us back much more than our Dave Ramsey savings account so we haven't gotten off our financial track due to a set back.

The details:  You can get YNAB free for 34 days if you're interested in checking it out but aren't sure that you're reading to take the plunge.  The cost of the plunge you ask? $60.00
This is a one time purchase, and for us - it was worth it!
If you follow this link, you can get a discount on the purchase of YNAB software as a referal bonus.

Disclaimer: I was in no way compensated by You Need A Budget Inc. The views and opinions were entirely my own based on my experiences with their company and software. Also, for the record: I have changed some of the figures numbers and amounts you are seeing (a girls' gotta have some secrets ;)  )


  1. I definitely like that they keep track of the average you spend. It's easy to think "oh, we spend $200 a month on groceries" but even if you are off by $30, it makes a difference!! I'm definitely going to have to check out the free trial!

  2. Just stumbled across your blog and I TOTALLLLLLY need this software... But eek for the pricetag! :( I think I may need to check out the freetrial!


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