I think the piece you’re overlooking is the relationship between Envelopes and Accounts. Both of these show the same money, just from different perspectives. The Account(s) show all your money and where it “lives”, while the Envelopes show how you intend to spend it. The amount of money in your Accounts will always equal the amount remaining in your Envelopes, so you can’t have money in Envelopes if it doesn’t exist in Accounts. And likewise, you can’t move money from Accounts to Envelopes or vice versa, because it’s the same money.
Because of that relationship, you need to Fill your envelopes with the money from your Accounts. You can automate this, so it fills a certain amount on a schedule, or you can do it manually. The envelopes will be empty or show a negative balance until they’re filled, and then they represent how much you have to spend. It sounds like you tried to move money out of an account and into an envelope, but I hope it makes sense now why it doesn’t work that way.
Finally, one possible (but difficult) workaround for savings is to enter the transfers from checking as a charge, just as if the savings account were a bill that you’d paid. Then you run a report showing how much you’d “spent” on that payee but that’s really cumbersome.
I personally think the subscription is well worth the cost, and it’s really helped me a ton to have all my accounts tracking in one place. (A note: if you add savings accounts to Goodbudget, be sure you create envelopes to “assign” that money to Savings–otherwise it will look like you can just spend it all!)
I hope this helps!
PS–I don’t work for Goodbudget or anything, LOL, I’m just a superfangirl
PPS–I’m currently tracking 26 Envelopes and 23 Accounts! Pro is SO worth it!!