Direct Import helps make sure you have all your transactions in YNAB. Transactions import once they clear your bank (which can take a day or two), so it's best to record your spending right away. When transactions are imported, they'll match right up with the ones you entered—and you'll know you haven't missed any.

In This Article

  • Setting up Direct Import on a New Account
  • What to Expect After Connecting
  • Setting up Direct Import on an Existing Account

Setting up Direct Import on a New Account

To add an account and set up Direct Import at the same time, start by tapping Accounts > Add Accounts (under Manage) > Linked.

  • Then, select from your list of connections or add a connection and search for your financial institution by name or URL. If this is your first Direct Import connection, you'll skip right to the searching.
  • Enter your login credentials and follow the prompts. If you run into an error, try these troubleshooting steps or Skip to set up an Unlinked account.
  • Select the account you'd like to add. Then, give it a nickname and click Next!
  • If you added a credit card account, you'll see the option to set a goal to pay off your starting balance. Otherwise, you're done. Success!

Can't find your bank?
If you search for your financial institution and come up empty, you'll see an option to suggest an institution. We can't guarantee if or when a new institution may be added, but your request will help our Direct Import provider prioritize which banks to add next.

In the meantime, you'll be able to import transactions from a file downloaded from your bank as a quick and easy alternative to Direct Import!

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What to Expect After Connecting

Once you have your connection established, YNAB will import your most recent balance—and that's it. As your “pending” transactions clear, they'll be available to import within 24 hours.

If transactions are available to import, you'll see a red notification next to Accounts:

When you tap Accounts, you'll see a bright blue banner at the top letting you know you have transactions to import, approve, or categorize. Go ahead, tap it!

Once the transactions have imported, tap one, select a category, and hit Approve! Wash, rinse, and repeat until you've approved and categorized all of your transactions.

As you spend, you should still enter transactions in the mobile app! Once those transactions clear your bank and import, they’ll match right up (as long as they’re the exact amount and within 10 days of each other). You can also manually match an imported transaction with one you entered.

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Setting up Direct Import on an Existing Account

If you've already added an account to YNAB, and you'd like to get it linked to your bank, follow these steps:

  1. Reconcile your account. (This helps limit the possibility of duplicate transactions.)
  2. Tap the Accounts icon.
  3. Select the account you want to connect.
  4. Tap the three dots in the upper right-hand corner.
  5. Select Edit Account and Connect to Bank.
  6. Follow the prompts. If you run into an error, try these troubleshooting steps.

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Having trouble setting up Direct Import? 

Check out our troubleshooting article, but whatever you do - don't let it stop you from budgeting! Enter your transactions when you're on-the-go or try File-Based Importing. It's as simple as dragging and dropping a file into YNAB! 

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