Making a Forecast (Updating Budget Midyear)

I am looking to hear how the community has been able to update your budget midyear, but not lose the original budget you setup at the beginning of the year. In business budgeting, this would be known as a budget forecast. I’m trying to come up with how to do this when there are known changes that need to be made. Typically it is not best practice to just overwrite your budget items, because this history helps you see how close your planning was at year-end. But the absence of updating categories with a forecast number leaves something to be desired when it comes to planning in the current year.

Here’s an example scenario to add some context:
At the beginning of the year, our family planed $100 per month for dining out. We no longer want to plan to dine out for the next six months, so we would like to reduce this in our forecast to $0 for those months. During this same time, we would like to increase our groceries forecasted budget by $50 per month.

Thank you very much for your help, time & input.

1 Like

Hi @john.s,
One simple way to achieve this would be to make a copy of your Categories sheet (that has the original budget estimates) and name the copy Initial Categories (or really any name you want just as long as its not Categories.)

Then you can make budget changes in the main Categories sheet to reflect the changes during the year. But you will still have a copy of the original estimates.

Tiller formulas look for the numbers in the Categories sheet, so those numbers would be used for calculations on other sheets. If you temporarily wanted to see how things looked using the original budget, just rename it back to Categories. You would first need to rename the existing Categories sheet to something else.

There are other ways to achieve what you want, but I think this would be easiest.

I used to think that my initial budget, made at the start of the year, shouldn’t be changed. But now, for my purposes, I view the budget as a working, changing document, that should adjust to changing conditions. The original budget plan doesn’t have much relevance any more. But I do like having it around, to see how it compares to the actuals and updated budget.

Let us know if that works.
Jon

Hi @john.s,

I also recently put together a post on this with a video demo of how to do it in the Foundation template.