Correlation between budgets and goals

Hi all, I set up a goal to pay off my student loans but also included a budget for the monthly loan payments. The result is that under the You've budgeted... area I'm being double billed, both for the student loan budget and goal. Is this a bug in the software? It's just annoying I have to delete my student loan budget in order to have the correct left over amount listed...

Thanks.

Answer

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Hey Mint Jessie,

The Budget/Goal issue might not be a 'functional' bug, but it's designed poorly and causes more confusion than it does provide an awesome user experience. 

You said about Budgets and Goals: "Since you have one of each that are basically tracking the same transactions in different ways, that's why it's being double-counted"

Having 'one of each that are basically tracking the same transactions' is not a choice being made by Mint users, it's how the system is doing things by default. 

Every transaction in a given month falls into an existing budget category, or else it will default into the 'Everything Else' category. If that same transaction is also being 'watched' by a Goal, it inevitably ends up being double counted, which affects the 'You've Budgeted' Sidebar - The sidebar tallies the transaction once for it's existence in a Budget, and also once for its existence in a Goal. 

Although there are some hacky workarounds to hide transactions from Budgets, the default state is that all transactions will fall into a Budget, and if they are also in a Goal, they will be double-counted by the Sidebar. This is the scenario that the majority of Mint users experience, and the 'You've Budgeted' sidebar is a Mint user's easiest and most friendly pulse check on their monthly cash flow, so it's essential that it's doing what they expect it to (not double counting transactions.) 

There are two things Mint could do to fix it: 

1) For any transaction that is applied toward a 'Goal,' make a distinction in the 'You've Budgeted' Sidebar that prevents those transactions from being counted as both a Budget and Goal transaction. Don't let transactions live in both Goal and Budget buckets. 

2) Give 'Goals' the same functionality and UX as a budget - ability to click through and see transactions that have been tallied, a progress indicator for the month, etc. - plus, the added features of long term progress measurement, calculators, account linking, etc. 

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