2022-01-26 GnuCash IRC logs
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11:17:10 <kai> hello?
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11:34:03 <NoobAlice> kai: Hi. If you have a question, just ask. :)
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12:14:43 <kai> hah, sorry, I was thinking I needed to wait for a confirmation from NickServ. New to IRC
12:14:48 <kai> derp
12:16:35 <kai> here's a screencap: https://imgur.com/a/sjZMFwO
12:17:11 <kai> Let me say in advance that this software makes feel dumb, and that I possible am dumb :)
12:17:18 <kai> Let me say in advance that this software makes feel dumb, and that I possibly am dumb :)
12:18:20 <kai> What I am trying to do is enter the bills I am paying my wife, the bills she is paying me, and it should all come out to a 1.94 surplus deposited in my checking account.
12:18:53 <kai> my dumb ole brain can't figure out what the 3.88 imbalance is
12:35:04 <warlord> kai, debits and credits don't balance.
12:35:12 <warlord> 50+140+56.65+37.50+8.55+7.21+68.15 = 368.06
12:35:17 <warlord> 150+220 = 370
12:35:23 <warlord> That's the 3.88 difference
12:38:09 <kai> I'm sure that makes sense to someone trained as an accountant, but to me, 370-368.06 = 1.94, which is the ammount my wife Zelled me.
12:40:00 <kai> So we have 370 in debits, which in this case are bills I've paid. And we have 368.06 in credits, which are bills my wife has paid. The difference is 1.94, and that's shown in my bank statement.
12:41:44 <kai> What is the 3.88, other than (370-368.06)*2 ?
12:42:02 <kai> I'm sure I'm missing something fundamental here, but I can't see what that thing is, because of my ignorance
12:46:11 <warlord> Hmm, good point. Didn't finish the analysis.
12:46:45 <warlord> Are you using multiple currencies?
12:47:26 <kai> I don't think so
12:48:31 <warlord> Oh, I missed the 1.94 on the left.. That's the difference there. It's 1.94+150+220. THAT is the 3.88 difference.
12:48:42 <warlord> (all the way on the top)
12:49:22 <warlord> So... Double-Entry 101: Your Debits == Credits. That means the total on the left needs to equal the total on the right in each transaction.
12:49:59 <kai> OK, with you so far
12:50:14 <kai> For clarity, I removed that top line
12:50:38 <warlord> THat should change the imblance to 1.94.
12:50:45 <kai> We now have 370 in debits, 368.06 in credits.
12:50:53 <warlord> I suspect that that 1.94 really should be your "wife:bills" split.
12:53:29 <kai> I'm not sure what it would mean in that case. I have this 1.94 credit. That deducts from the balance of my checking account. But in reality, I have paid 370 worth of bills, and my wife 368.04, and she owes me (and has paid me, 1.94)
12:53:44 <kai> Have I got the debits and credits reversed?
12:54:01 <warlord> What account is open that we're looking at? (i.e., what is the current account view)?
12:55:37 <warlord> you might. Without knowing the view.. Now sure why you have expenses on both left and right.
12:57:42 <kai> When I reversed the debits and credits, it works out.
12:59:32 <kai> I think I get confused with the "expense" ledger
13:08:41 <warlord> Not surprising.
13:09:16 <warlord> I suggest you work from an Asset or Liability account and not an Expense register. It's easier to understand what's going on that way. Working from an Expense account is more confusing.
13:09:43 <kai> That is what I do, yet somehow I have still gotten mixed up
13:11:00 <kai> Within the split, where I am entering the items, I would think that the "depost, withdrawl" column headings would still apply
13:11:05 <warlord> Think about it in terms of how the value flows in the real world.
13:11:32 <kai> but I think what is happening is that is is shifted over into "expense mode", where the columns are expense and rebate
13:11:49 <warlord> The column headings change based on the account type opened.
13:14:53 <kai> Right. So an "expense/debit" from an expense account is on the left side of the ledger.
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13:15:22 <kai> and I guess when I change the account to "expense: whatever" that ledger reflects this in the split, but not in the column headings?
13:23:23 <warlord> The column headings are based on the register's account view, not the account in the transfer column
13:24:52 <kai> https://imgur.com/6xADsyA
13:24:57 <kai> So that's the fixed version
13:26:39 <kai> It's counter-intutive for me, because I would think, for example, that my wife paying me 220 for health insurance would show up on the deposit vs the withdrawl side of the ledger
13:27:22 <warlord> That transaction makes no sense to me... Some items labeled as an expense probably shouldn't be an expense.
13:27:55 <kai> Switching, however, to the formal column labels, I think that makes more sense. The 220 is a credit to the account, from my wife, whereas the bills I paid her are in the debit column
13:28:01 <warlord> This reads like you are withdrawing month from your 529 contribution (and getting a payment from your Insurance Company) and using that to may property tax, home insurance, etc..
13:28:12 <kai> I'm basically just "rubber ducking" at this point :)
13:28:37 <warlord> How about you use plain english to explain what this transaction actually represents? Where are funds coming from, where are funds going to?
13:31:09 <kai> Have I not done that? At the end of the day, there is an entry in my checking account for 1.94 that my wife has paid me, and it represents the difference between the bills I paid and the bills she paid
13:31:38 <kai> I paid 370 dollars in bills. Those payments came from "expense" accounts that I may or may not have set up correctly or understand
13:31:57 <kai> But I want to have some way of tracking my expenses, and as far as I can tell, this is the best way to do it.
13:33:00 <kai> My wife paid the bills, my half of which is 368.04. I want to enter those into my expense accounts a well, for tracking purposes.
13:33:42 <kai> All the tracking is taking place in the split, as it is the basis for the 1.94 cents my wife sent me.
13:33:44 <warlord> And where did your 368.04 come from?
13:34:08 <kai> It came from my paycheck.
13:34:37 <kai> And more directly, had I actually paid it, it would have come from my checking account
13:34:40 <warlord> I think you're trying to do too much in one transaction.
13:35:22 <kai> What is the better way to do it. I could, for the sake of "clarity", say that I paid my wife 368.04. But I haven't. the money never left my account
13:35:36 <kai> It just balenced out against the 370 she owed me.
13:36:18 <warlord> Sorry, I'm on a work call and have to pay attention.. should have time to reply in about 20 minutes.
13:36:25 <kai> OK, thanks!
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14:28:30 <warlord> kai, okay, I'm back (for a few minutes before I have to run again).
14:28:58 <kai> awesome
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14:29:33 <warlord> I am thinking that you need to better document the funds coming from your wife. In that transaction, you don't. You need to either have an Income:Wife or, more likely, Equity:Wife, for the source (and sink) of the funds she pays you (or you pay her).
14:30:23 <warlord> Those two splits on the right really should be on the left, and the right-hand split should be the 368.04 your wife paid in...
14:30:32 <warlord> but you also need to account for the funds you paid out, too..
14:30:57 <warlord> (even though she paid 1.94 more than you did, so it looks like a net 1.94 into your checking account)
14:31:45 <kai> Isn't that what is being done in the second screenshot?
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14:33:23 <kai> The wife:bills shows that 1.94 was debited to account. Everything thing below that is an expense entry, right? So for those entries, a item on the left of the ledger indicates an increase in the expense account, which is correct, because I use those accounts to track my expenses, and a positive balance indictes money I spent
14:33:40 <henglong> I have a question. Is it possible to restore missing information from the log files? I have a file that was edit Monday, yesterday and today and the auto-save feature only worked on Monday. My mistake for not making sure to save every time, but the logs show everything that I entered. So, I was just wondering.
14:34:00 <warlord> kai, no, not quite. where in there do you document the 368.04 that she paid?
14:34:47 <warlord> henglong, assuming you only have transaction entries, nothing in the business features, no new accounts, no SX fires, then yes, you can replay the most recent log file to recover.
14:35:13 <kai> I guess it depends on what you are trying to show. My wife's finances are not on my books. The only point of the expense entries is so that I can keep track of my expenses
14:35:43 <warlord> kai, but it sounds like you're keeping track of both of your expenses, not just yours.
14:35:57 <warlord> otherwise, why keep track of how much she paid in?
14:36:23 <warlord> henglong, please do not private message someone without asking first.
14:36:28 <kai> A debit to an expense account indicates an increase in my expense in that category, a credit to an expense account indicates money my wife paid toward an expense
14:36:59 <henglong> Sorry. warlord
14:37:44 <kai> I guess at the end of the day, I did not really pay the bills she paid, nor did she contribute to the 529 or health insureance. I paid them entirely
14:37:54 <kai> But I want to keep track of my expenses for budgeting
14:38:09 <kai> I fled YNAB and am trying to use GNUCash like a budgeting tool
14:38:11 <warlord> but that's not, really, what crediting an account means. For example, let's say your cable bill is $100. You pay it this month, so you credit your bank $100 and debit Expenses:Cable $100. Next month your wife pays it.. If you credit (something) and debit Ex:Cable $100, the total yearly cable bill is now $0.. which is not correct.
14:39:11 <henglong> warlord, how do I replay the log files? I am still learning gnucash.
14:39:38 <warlord> henglong, look in File -> Import
14:39:56 * henglong facepalms
14:40:00 <henglong> Thanks
14:41:27 <warlord> kai, you don't need to keep track of all her finances, but if you're going to account for shared expenses, or expenses that you want to budget for, then you should treat her contribution as another "Bank" account (although you probably just want to use an Equity account). In the end, that will let you properly keep track of total expenses, and how much she contributed.
14:42:36 <kai> But take the 529. I put 300 in a month. My wife waives 150 dollars in bills. So the expense account shows I spend 150, which is true
14:42:36 <warlord> So that last transaction would be to credit Equity:Wife the 368.04, debit ALL the expenses, and then credit your bank account with the remainder.
14:43:09 <kai> hmm, interesting
14:43:25 <warlord> And what do you mean "waives 150 in bills"?
14:44:27 <kai> 368 is I owe her for my half of the bills. 370 is what she owes me. She "
14:44:41 <kai> waives" 368 dollars and pays me 1.94.
14:47:48 <warlord> Instead of thinking about it that way, think about it as "she pays 370 towards bills, you pay 368 towards bills". So you would credit Equity:Wife 370. credit Bank 386. debit expense the 754 and debit your bank the remainder 1.94.
14:48:00 <warlord> Yes, there are two splits into your bank, but this better models what is actually happening.
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14:56:16 <kai> I need to do some research on the method you propose. Thanks for taking the time to look at it.
14:59:58 <warlord> you're welcome. Good luck and happy gnucashing.
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