Budgeting with Simplifi - My Method

Flopbot Superuser ✭✭✭✭✭
edited February 19 in How do you Simplifi?

Sharing in case this helps someone else…

One of the unique and distinguishing features of Simplifi is the Spending Plan and lots of users successfully use it to manage their finances. I too really like it although - full disclosure - I'm still wrapping my head around how the Spending Plan is supposed to keep my spending in check; how do I know how much I still have/or don't have to spend? Personally, I've spent more time in Simplifi setting up my physical Bank Accounts, figuring out Credit Cards, Savings Goals, Shared Spaces, my Category List, and an Envelope Budgeting system to meet our family's needs.

However, I know there is lots of discussion in this forum - especially from former Mint-ers - about the lack of a traditional category budget. While it isn't the functionality that many people are looking for, here's how I used Simplifi to create a more traditional 'budget' that works well for me with one (1) annoyance.

Step #1 - I created a series in Spending Plan > Planned Spending (6 series total).

Step #2 - I created a watchlist for each category I wanted to budget (6 watchlists total). This watchlist exactly mirrors the entry in my Spending Plan. Having it in both locations helps to better integrate the budget into the Spending Plan so that it can take it into account. That Watchlist is typically where I go to keep an eye on things.

Step #3 - At Settings > Notifications, I turned OFF the notifications from my Spending Plan's Planned Spending.

I left the notifications for my Watchlist ON.

Result - Fast forward a bit and now I've had some real world transactions and I'm getting close to my target amount. When I come within 10% (note you can change this % to your liking), I receive JUST one (1) notification to my phone. If you leave the Spending Plan's Planned Spending notification on, then you would get hit up with two (2) notifications.

Now, for the one (1) annoyance…

Simplifi Desktop lets you adjust the sort order of your Watchlists.

However, mobile doesn't follow this sort order and instead orders them in the order that they were created. This means that if you have lots of Watchlists, you might have to scroll for awhile to find the right one. If mobile respected the sort order set on the desktop, then since each Watchlist starts with "Budget: ___", they would always show up towards the front of the list and all the Budget watchlists would get grouped together.

Here is the corresponding Idea Post…

Quicken Desktop user since 2014.
New to Simplifi in 2021.


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