My country will be switching to a different currency in a few months. What is the preferred way to handle the switch correctly in order to keep all of the reports consistent?
That can be tricky, as there’s no currency conversion in GoodBudget per se. However, if ALL of your budgeting will switch from one currency to another, it is likely easiest to simply Edit the balances of your accounts to reflect the new value. That will create a line item that you can rename “currency conversion” or something similar.
Unfortunately your reports will likely reflect this change as an expenditure or deposit, and you will have to mentally make note of the change for that month. I’m not sure there’s a way for GB to manage that for you.
Hope that’s helpful
Out of curiosity, do you mind sharing which country and which currency it is changing from/to?
It’s Croatia switching from Croatian kuna (HRK) to Euro (EUR) on 1/1/2023.
So it looks like EUR is currently worth almost 8 HRK. Simply resetting your account balances to the EUR values will work from that point forward, but all your historical data will be significantly “inflated”. If you spend 800 on rent in December denominated in HRK, and 100 in January denominated in EUR, then you have spent the same value in both months but the data will show a dramatic change. Personally, I would consider exporting my transaction history on December 31 and doing a full reset of GB to start from a clean slate.
If you did export your history, you could possibly use a spreadsheet tool to mass convert all the amounts and then import them back into GB after a reset.
That’s actually a terrific idea! This way there would be no inconsistencies in reports. I plan to do a POC soon.
Edit: On the other hand, if bank doesn’t convert past transactions to euros then it would be harder to trace history. I’ll give it some more thought. Both approaches are legitimate.
Would it be worth adding a new “Account” to represent the current account, but in EUR values? I’m thinking you would adjust the HRK account to zero when you fund the EUR account. That way the two would be separate, which would allow a cleaner history if the bank doesn’t convert past transactions, but it admittedly wouldn’t solve the issue of an apples-to-apples comparison.
That’s definitely an option to consider. It would cause the reports to be consistent. All the reports prior to 1/1/2023 would show old accounts’ transactions and all the reports after 1/1/2023 would show new accounts’ transactions.
What happens to the envelope balances on 1/1/2023 in that case? They need to be converted also.
Assuming I’m following Tiffany’s suggestion, the full process would go something like this:
- Set the Current Balance of your old HRK Account to 0.
- Create the new EUR Account and set its Current Balance as your HRK Account’s old balance divided by 8 (or whatever it ends up being).
- Go to your Edit Envelopes page, and divide the budgeted amount for all of your Envelopes by 8.
- Create a new Envelope Fill from Unallocated, and use it to Set your Envelopes current balances to 1/8 of whatever they were before.
- This should have the total effect of “dividing your entire household by 8” and converting everything from HRK to EUR, while preserving all of your old transaction history.
So, if I understand correctly, setting the current balance of my old HRK account to 0 will also reset remaining amounts in all the envelopes? For example, I have 1000 HRK in my current account and 500HRK is assigned in Transportation, 500HRK in Groceries. Setting the current account to 0 will set Transportation and Groceries to 0HRK respectively?
Not quite—changing the available balance in your accounts will only change your Unallocated balance. You would then need to manually restructure your envelopes to match your new currency, based on the amount Unallocated.
Before you change to EUR, you should zero out all your envelopes by either doing a Fill that “Sets” each envelope to 0, or just doing envelope transfers back into Unallocated. Either way, your Unallocated balance should then equal your account balance.
Edited to add: the Accounts and Envelopes are independent of one another, although their cumulative balances should remain the same.
Ok, that makes sense now.
I have got the information about transactions prior to 1/1/2023 from the bank. They will not be converted to euros. If I have to choose between accurate transactions and accurate reports, I’ll go with accurate transactions. This leaves me with 2 options suggested by @Tiffany :
- Convert account balance to EUR on 1/1/2023.
- Create new account with balance in EUR on 1/1/2023.
For now, I am more inclined to go with option 1 as this feels more natural, i.e. this will happen in real life. Balance will be converted to EUR.
At least the date is easy to manage; although your reports will look odd, it will be easy to differentiate the true value of the transactions before and after the change.
I’m currently tracking accounts in two different currencies (USD and GBP) and moving money between them on a regular basis can sure be a headache if I’m not careful–I can’t even imagine a wholesale switch!