I don't understand the Budgeting

shanerice8's Avatar


06 Oct, 2017 05:28 PM

Often my deposit is made around the end of the month. I'm trying to figure out how to use the budget part of MD, but I'm having a tough time because of the timing. I really don't understand the budgeting part at all. I have read the Knowledge base for "Creating a Budget", "The 'Newer' Budget Format", "The 'Mixed Interval' Budget Format" (which is probably the one I need to use), but I can't seem to understand how to make it work.

I created a Mixed Interval Budget format (called 30Day). I set interval to "Monthly (not prorated)" Start date beginning of the Year and end date at the end of the year. Now when I display this in the Top Graph bar I must select "Last 30 Days" to have it display my expenses correctly (or it appears correct). However in the side bar, when I select that Budget (30Day) and set it to "This month" it seems to display correctly.

As you can see, I'm really quite perplexed by all the options, and it is quite confusing for me. I don't understand what "not prorated" means. I'm not exactly sure if I'm supposed to select past 30 days, or this month (which doesn't seem to show the correct numbers). I'm really struggling to wrap my head around this even after reading the Knowledge base. I need a good 'how to" explaining this a little more clearly for when your budget is not physically located in the month of October for example. When you get your money and spend some before the 1st of October... I want that to be displayed in this 'monthly budget'. I currently using a Budget Spreadsheet... but that is duplicate work, and would like to figure out how this works in MD since I have been using it for many years. Thanks for the help with this.

  1. 1 Posted by vweg on 07 Oct, 2017 09:30 AM

    vweg's Avatar

    Maybe this helps as I had similar problems:

    You said you already did, but be sure to read the Mixed Interval Budget and the New Budget explanations in the knowledge base.
    Then make a brand new budget with the Budget Manager, give it a name and do not choose 'Monthly' but Mixed Interval Budget (old format; the first option in the drop down menu I mean), then click OK.
    Close the dialogue window, go to the left of the screen and open your just created budget. Then choose Edit, a button located at the top right of the screen. A new window opens and you can start budgetting according the general rules of common sense.

    It took me an hour to understand that I didn't want the New Budget format, although my requirements fitted to that description. I still don't understand why starting a budget manually in the near future in this New Budget format, say January coming year, does not get copied towards February (and beyond) if I choose to copy January data to February (in the drop down menu of the column of February ). The manual clearly states this is possible but I experienced it is not.
    Maybe the manual is not that clear about which functionality fits to the old (mixed) format and which functionality to the new format.
    My second misunderstanding was to choose 'Monthly' when starting a new budget. The first option for me was the right one (mixed interval format).

    Good luck!

  2. 2 Posted by shanerice8 on 07 Oct, 2017 04:12 PM

    shanerice8's Avatar

    It is this part I get lost: "A new window opens and you can start budgeting according to the general rules of common sense." There are some many options in there, it is not simplistic, or common sensical. The Amount and Category may be the only common sense part of it.
    1. The interval... Monthly, or Monthly (not prorated)? I do want to do a monthly budget, I don't understand that option.

    2. Start date and end date? Should those just be set for the full year??

    3. At the bottom of the box again, there is an option of "This Month" or "Last 30 days"?

         So I'm a little confused by the options. This is all in the editing of the Mixed Interval Budget that I setup as new. In my situation, my deposit is made the last few days of the previous month, and even a few expenditures then take place before the 1st. That complicates things in this case.

    Thanks for the help!

  3. 3 Posted by Kevin Stembridg... on 08 Oct, 2017 11:19 AM

    Kevin Stembridge's Avatar

    Hi Shane,

    I'm the developer of the Money Foresight extension for Moneydance.

    I would like to get a better understanding of why and how people are using the budgeting features in Moneydance and how it might overlap with the forecasting features of Money Foresight.

    If you're interested in talking a bit about what you are trying to achieve with budgeting I would be very interested in hearing about it. The thing that caught my eye about your predicament is the problem you're having with the timing of transactions relative to a calendar month.

    You can email me at support at moneyforesight dot com or I'm happy to continue in this thread if you prefer.


  4. System closed this discussion on 07 Jan, 2018 11:20 AM.

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