YNAB, or You Need A Budget, is a personal budgeting app built around a set of four rules for getting control of your spending.

Important: At the moment, people who haven't already set up YNAB authentication may not be able to create a YNAB goal. We're on a limited version of YNAB's API, and need them to approve us for more access. We contacted them on July 10th, and hope to receive a reply within a week. That said, we don't have control over the timeline here, and it may be a couple of weeks before things are up and running again. Sorry about that!

What can I beemind with YNAB?

You can beemind adding money to a specific account that you track in YNAB over time.

There are other metrics I want to beemind; can they be added?

Maybe! We've started the integration off with the simplest possible implementation, and now we want to hear what people are interested in!

Ideally these would be fairly monotonic goals that are unlikely to fluctuate a lot, since non-monotonic metrics (metrics that can go in both directions) tend to be more complicated to understand and lead to unexpected derailments. Still, if you have a really great argument for a non-monotonic metric, we want to hear about that too! Let the support team know.

YNAB sample goal setup

  1. Head to create a new goal.
  2. Click the YNAB icon to start a new goal using YNAB data:The pale blue YNAB logo, showing a Y that looks like a tree
  3. The first step is to give us permisison to access your YNAB data. Click on the "Connect with YNAB" button to go ahead. You will be directed to YNAB to read about our requested permissions. Scroll to the bottom and click the authorize button to proceed!

    Screenshot of the "Authorize Beeminder" page on YNAB, giving an overview of the permission we request (budgets, accounts, categories, payees, payee locations, months and transactions)
    Once you click "Authorize", you'll be redirected back to Beeminder to create your goal.
  4. First, you need to choose which budget you're asking Beeminder to track, and then which account (for example, you might want to track a particular savings account). Then, choose how much you want to add per day. Remember, if you want to add a certain amount per week or per month, you can divide that amount by 7 or by 30 in order to do that. So for example, if I want to add 10 per week, I will put in a rate of 10/7.

    Finally, if you want to delay your goal's start a few days (maybe you're traveling this weekend), be sure to tick the Start this goal with extra leeway box. Enter the number of days you want to delay and press Continue.

    YNAB goal creation page: at the top, the Beeminder and YNAB logos, followed by the option to choose which budget you want to track and which account you want to track. Then you enter the number you want to do in the box just above it. There's a checkbox below for adding extra leeway if you don't want your graph to start right away.
  5. Give your goal a brief name. If you want, you can also write a short description with more information.

    Shows the "Give your goal a name" page, with "growsavings" entered in the first box, showing how it creates the goal's URL. Below there's a box with the description entered, saying "Add at least £100 per month"

  6. Finally, choose your initial pledge. This is the amount you will pay the first time you derail on the goal. After derailing, the pledge will increase by default — use the dropdown below to control how high it goes by selecting the cap. In the example below, I have chosen to start at a $5 pledge, which will increase each time I derail, until it reaches $270 — the pledge cap. (To read more about pledges and payments, check out some FAQs!)

    If you want to start out with a sort of trial period, you can choose to start the goal at $0. If you do that, the pledge will automatically increase to $5 after seven days. If you derail before that, it will also increase to $5.

    Screenshot of the "Starting Stakes" screen. The text says "Your pledge will increase each time you derail until you reach your pledge cap (which you can adjust below)", with a demonstration below showing the pledge progression: 5, 10, 30, 90... to the pledge cap, which currently shows $270. Below, a checkbox button allows you to choose to "Hold the pledge at $0 for 7 days while I get my feet wet"
  7. And that's it! I'll need to add £4 in the next 4 days to avoid paying Beeminder my first $5... Derailing would kinda undermine the whole savings plan, huh?

    An example YNAB graph, with +£4 due in 4 days

Keywords: autodata integrations, finance, saving money, budgeting
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