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You Need a Budget

The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle, Getting out of Debt, and Living the Life You Want
Written by: Jesse Mecham
Narrated by: Jesse Mecham
Length: 4 hrs and 54 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (43 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

For most people, budgeting conjures up the same feelings as, say, prison and dieting. But your initial instinct couldn't be further from the truth. You just haven't budgeted the right way.

You Need a Budget will teach you four simple rules to completely revolutionize the way you think about managing your money. With a budget, you'll break the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle, get out of debt, and save more money. A liberating, enabling, empowering budget will actually make you feel more free, not more restricted. The YNAB philosophy is centered around these four rules:

  • Give every dollar a job. Take your cash, checking, and saving accounts and assign jobs to that money. Begin now with what you have on hand. Then follow your plan. Pick your priorities, and make sure your dollars are helping you move closer to the things you care about most.
  • Embrace your true expenses. Look ahead and identify the larger, less frequent expenses that tend to sneak up on you. Break those expenses into manageable monthly amounts. Consider insurance premiums, birthdays, holidays, charitable giving, car repairs, etc. This practice evens out your cash outflows, decreases your stress, and helps you make better decisions.
  • Roll with the punches. Accept the fact that life always changes and you'll likely always go over budget somewhere. If an unexpected expense comes up and you need to change your budget, just change it. The YNAB philosophy not only tolerates changing your budget but encourages it.
  • Age your money. The goal of this rule is to increase the time between the moment you earn money and the moment you spend that money. In other words, if you're going to break the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle, you need to learn to live on money you earned a month or two months or even three months ago.

YNAB's four rules are the pillars of a tried-and-true system that gets you to engage with your money every day. It helps you change your behavior so that you're proactive and in control of your finances. It's not about stressing over last month's statement; instead, you're looking ahead and actively deciding how you want and need to build a life of meaning, not stress.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 YNAB Licensing LLC (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

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  • Ae
  • 2018-01-04

just stories and the 4 rules

after the intro chapter, only 3 chapters are original. others are just the four rules.

3 people found this helpful

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Amazing!

I started using the budgeting software and it really is way better then anything else I have used in the past. working towards financial freedom! Thank you.

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Bad

I want my money back , struggle to finish it. don't buy this book. waste of time

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  • Carmelo
  • 2018-12-26

Some Good Pointers but...

There is good advice to get started on budgeting and he’ll describe his four rules throughout the book with examples of people who have used his software in the past. I felt this book could have been made shorter or would have been better as a blog post.

In addition, this book felt like a marketing scheme to get people to buy his software (which I might do), rather than a stand-alone book because he doesn't really go into details about how to budget using available everyday tools such as Excel, other computer programs, or even plain old school paper to learn to budget. Instead, there were many times he referred to his software.

With that said, if you are completely new to budgeting there are some good pointers you'll take away, especially if you are a couple/married couple budgeting as two or three chapters are dedicated to sharing a budget with your partner.

21 people found this helpful

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  • Brant
  • 2017-12-29

Beginning Budgeter

Great book and concept. I’ve never budgeted before, but have now started. Amazing how you can quickly change your priorities once you see where you money is currently going and where you want it to go

49 people found this helpful

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  • GG
  • 2019-06-13

there are better books to learn managing finances

The book was only an advertisement for the author's budgeting software app YNAB. There's no learning about how to go about budgeting. Not even breaking it up in terms of categories where budgeting would fall into.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Jonathan
  • 2018-01-02

Worth the preorder

As a long time fan of the method I purchased a copy on audible, kindle, and two hardcover to give away. It was well worth the read as Jesse continues to effectively extol the flexibility and possibility of the four rules to budgeting. My wife and I enjoyed listening to this on a trip and especially appreciated that it is read by the author who is a fairly well spoken narrator. I strongly recommend this to both long time fans and newbies alike. It gave us new inspiration and even explained an excellent alternative to the traditional emergency fund which my wife and found especially useful.

57 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer DePaoli
  • 2018-07-12

Making my husband read or listen to this book

This is so helpful and practical - I have been married for 13 years and we have never had a budget. We do not live paycheck to paycheck but I know we spend money that we do not need to simply because we never had a good system to keep track of it. I also love the part of the book where it talks about how to train your kids on managing money. I am going to get the software and check out all the free resources they talk about at the end of the book.

10 people found this helpful

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  • knittymama
  • 2018-04-13

Encouraging, focuses on goals and dreams

I'm in a stage of my life when I'm needing to assess my short and long term goals. I had a sense that money comes into this but wow, this book made me realize that by really embracing my budget, I can pursue my goals more effectively. I feel so much more hopeful!

And no guilt in the book... he talks about people who choose travel over college savings or to increase their grocery budget rather than cut their spending. It all comes down to making conscious decisions about your money rather than blindly wandering through life.

20 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-01-10

Best book about how to tackel your finances

Such a great book about your finances with motivating storey and proven rules.

Its done in such a non scary way too.

Made me so motivated

19 people found this helpful

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  • Donni
  • 2018-02-11

This book is awesome!

If your parents never taught you how to budget your money and/or you are living paycheck to paycheck, you need to read this book. Jesse explains how to set up a budget & what it really means to budget; it's not what you think.

This book should be core curriculum in every school to teach children & young adults how to handle finances, debt, and plan for future expenses and retirement.

I am sharing this book with all my kids and grandkids.

17 people found this helpful

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  • Vincent Williams
  • 2018-06-23

Great Book! Great Principles! Highly recommend!

So many great principles. Narrator was excellent. I recommend this book for veteran and rookie budgeters alike.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Happy Mom
  • 2018-02-15

We ALL Need A Budget!!

This is a great way to look at spending our money. It not only teaches you (& spouse) how to budget... but how to teach your children! Invaluable!!!

8 people found this helpful