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

You can add an account and set up Direct Import at the same time by following these steps:

  1. Tap the Accounts icon.
  2. Tap Add Accounts*
  3. Select either Linked or Unlinked -- Linked means you would like to connect the account with your bank and Unlinked means it won't be connected to your bank.
  4. Select from your list of connections or add a connection and search for your financial institution by name or URL. (If this is your very first Direct Import connection, you'll skip right to the searching.)
  5. Enter your login credentials and follow the prompts. If you run into an error, try these troubleshooting steps or skip this step to continue setting up the account. 
  6. Select the account you'd like to add, edit the account name if you'd like, and click Save!

If your bank isn't in the list, or you don't want to connect to your bank, tap on Back then select Unlinked. You can still enter transactions on the go with the mobile app or you can use a quick and easy alternative to Direct Import in the web app!

What to Expect After Connecting

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

When you see a New Transactions Banner at the top of your account register in the mobile app, you'll know you have transactions ready to import! Tap the Banner and the transactions will import. 

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.

Setting up Direct Import on an Existing Account

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

  1. Reconcile your account. (This helps prevent duplicate transactions from importing.)
  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.

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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