I have bank accounts in both Pound Stirling (£) and Euro (€). At the moment I can't include my Pound Stirling account because as there is no exchange rate in reporting the figures would be wrong.
Are there any plans to support multiple currencies?
Thanks for taking the time to give your feedback. We need to think carefully about this one. It might be rather tricky to implement for the following reasons:
1. With envelopes and accounts we are keeping two separate sets of balances.
2. However, envelopes are a "virtual" overlay over your actual accounts, which means that the funds in one envelope can in fact be split across multiple accounts. You can think of it as a pool of money that sits in various accounts but that you can allocate across your various envelopes.
3. Given this, we can't have conflicting currency denominations for envelopes and for accounts.
One possibility might be to consider envelopes always to be denominated in one currency only and do conversions to get to accounts but I can imagine that getting very complicated *very* quickly and also be unreliable since transactions happen at different times an different exchange rates.
Those are my initial thoughts. Being from the U.S., we have the luxury of not living in a multiple currency environment, which also means that we haven't been forced to think much about these types of issues.
Do you (or others) have thoughts about how you might envision it working based on your experience with other products?
Previously I've been using KMyMoney. It handles multiple currencies by having a base currency for instance Euros and this currency is used for income/expense categories (envelopes) and reporting. So if a transaction is made from an account which is setup in another currency the days exchange rate (xe.com have an API I believe) is also saved in the transaction and used to calculate the amount in the base currency. So on the account ledger I would see the amount in the accounts currency but in the categories and reports the exchange rate saved with the transaction would be used to create the amount in the base currency.
Our main concerns are still what Chi-Ming described above. Keeping Envelopes "virtual" so that the money in them may come from multiple Accounts makes multiple currencies a problem.
As Bill noted above, one option would be to keep certain Envelopes/Accounts a particular currency. This would be like having two EEBA accounts in one. You might have USD accounts with USD Envelopes, and Euro Accounts with Euro Envelopes. If you made a transfer between the two, you could tell EEBA what exchange rate was used.
Would this be a workable solution for others?
I don't know when we could implement something like this, but I'm curious if it would be a welcome solution for those looking for multiple currency support.
The user would understand that once multiple-currencies were enabled the value of their envelopes wouldn't be EXACTLY spot on -- but certainly pretty close -- and for those of us who live with multiple always-fluctuating currencies, you don't usually get much better than that!
Thanks for taking the time to think about this!
So what is the current status for this consideration started about a year ago? Any decisions so far?
Using the _base currency_ concept and a service converting the secondary currency "on-the-fly" might be a good idea.
Myself I am a bit stuck when started using EEBA with two bank accounts in € one account in Russian rubles and one in $. Everything is now in a disorder and a cant wait to clear it all off befor the new budgeting period.
I understand the concerns you noted and wanted to give some feedback to it. The suggestion so far seems to be to have different envelopes dedicated to different currencies. That would work, practically, especially in cases like mine where I spend USD for 2 months and make and spend RMB for 10 months. It would work, but is far from elegant, especially for annual/irregular expenditures.
The other suggestions people are making of a "base currency" are probably the most elegant and would be rather simple to implement. What you'd need to do is to give the option of specifying a currency for each account. So, I would have several accounts (petty cash, bank, etc.) in RMB and several accounts in USD. Then I would choose a base currency (RMB) so that my envelopes would appear functionally as RMB and there'd be no need for duplicating the budgets. To fill the virtual envelopes, then, would require converting the non-base currency (USD) account into the base currency (RMB). You could do this with automatic feeds, as other suggest, but my recommendation would be to make this optional. If you only rarely transfer between accounts (I only exchange RMB to USD every few months), then it makes sense to let the user set the exchange rate at the time of each transfer (increasing the accuracy of the amount in the envelopes). Or, if people regularly make purchases in multiples, then they could have it automatically calculated.
It seems like this thread is a little old. It absolutely shouldn't be.
Currently, I use EEBA only for my Canadian envelopes, and use one of your (free) competitors for my foreign envelopes since I refuse, on principal, to pay for two or three EEBA subscriptions. I'd love to switch everything to EEBA, though, since I like it very much.
I still love it though, even with this drawback.
@roxydiva Are you paying for two subscriptions? Send us an email at email@example.com with the EEBA Household names you're using and we'll work something out.
Love the iPhone app... heads and shoulders above many of the other competing solutions.
Ten months of the year I live overseas and two months I live in the US. I started EEBA overseas and saved for those 2 months in the US, but because EEBA lacks multiple currency support, it was really difficult to use in the US since everything was keyed to my currency overseas. I tried, alternatively, to just "make good decisions" about spending, but without a budget, I spent way too much.
Further, because I didn't log those 2 months of expenses into EEBA, when I got back overseas, my budget was such a disaster--from overspending and from missing data--that I had to wipe all the data and start over. My overspending and failure to add data into EEBA is my fault. But the reason for the overspending and lack of data was it is so hard to use EEBA with multiple currencies.
I appreciate EEBA because it makes budgeting simple and easy, but the failure to support multiple currencies made budgeting excessively complex and so tremendously difficult that I just didn't budget. It's precisely that complexity and difficulty that EEBA wants to fix yet, ironically, due to a lack of features, EEBA created that complexity and difficulty.
I had hoped to keep using EEBA, but multiple currencies is a huge part of my life. I'm encouraged to know that multiple currencies is "under consideration", but this is a crucial issue that needs to be addressed, and soon. If it isn't, I'm going to need to look at other programs which support multiple currencies.
You set the budget for the coming month to the amount you'd add to an envelope in EEBA and you can track spending exactly like you were tracking using an envelope.
We can definitely see that you and others in your situation would need to have a way of managing two different types of currency. We don't have an ETA on this feature right now, but our developers are always working on new updates.
Feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to look into using multiple Households.
Then again, I mainly spend my primary currency only, and just accumulate foreign currencies, so I have no trouble with having to do many exchanges.
People of EEBA/Goodbudget, what's going on with you?!
This is totally wrong approach which is... well... just wrong. The suggestion is marketing-originated: more households - more money. What about the logic? What if I have Euro in my bank account and cash British Pounds in my pocket? Should I re-login to get my expenses tracked or what?
You will get slammed by more or less adequate software architect for proposing this!
I started to use the tool four years ago. At the beginning I fell in love with it and became a paid user. Then I found that I couldn't go on with my household because I had (and still have) multiple bank accounts in Euro, US dollars, Hong-Kong dollars, Chinese yuan and Russian rubles. Unfortunately the tool couldn't handle those and still cannot.
This was the reason I quit. These days I use my own application which can perfectly handle multiple currencies. It took me about 4 months to craft the whole thing from scratch. My app uses European Bank daily XML reports to keep an eye on the currency rates.
Again: offering your customers to implement multiple households IS WRONG. It leads to a complete chaos, requiring users to logon/logoff several times per day to manages the decentralized environment.
@Nikola Novak: converting currencies is not the way out. It will lead to the mess once the rates change. The one and only one holy idea: to implement Currency Accounts.
Another thing that surprised me very much is the reaction of EEBA people who seem to have queued the feature request but do nothing to implement it. Any comment on that?
I realize that multi-currency is not a weekend project, but perhaps you could attract more paying customers and get back old customers if you implemented this feature. Multiple logins really isn't a viable stopgap. If I told my wife she had to log in and out of two accounts to manage our money, she would roll her eyes at me and tell me, "no". I *want* to like this app... but this missing feature is still preventing me also from using it effectively. Otherwise, well done. :-)
I've suggested allowing multiple logins as a quick and easy way to leverage GoodBudget's web page's current capabilities to be used by the mobile apps, as well. GoodBudget online can already handle multiple currencies separately with different family IDs.
A flag could be added to each GoodBudget ID's database indicating which currency it is handling, thus opening up a clear path for future database interaction capabilities.
A permanent long term solution to change the whole composition of goodBudget's databases to add integrated multiple currency handling and currency conversion capabilities would require an incredible amount of brainstorming and time to pull off and would be a major undertaking just to figure out how to best approach it, but GoodBudget is already capable of holding and managing multiple currencies separately. Why not offer simple access to those built-n functions of GoodBudget while mobile, as well?
Once GoodBudget's current capabilities are fully leveraged to offer mobile access to all of GoodBudget's relevant current online capabilities, the team could better focus on how to best approach and implement other automated multiple currency conversion calculations and database features into GoodBudget for the future.
Why hold up short-term progress on mobile apps for a long term project on the whole infrastructure?
I've suffered the same kind of problem for many years, with different circumstances, but GoodBudget already has the capability to hold and manage multiple currencies separately. Why not simply share that capability with the mobile apps? That would solve more than half of the problem with currently built-in capabilities!
This would offer a quick and easy way for the mobile apps to access the functionality as the GoodBudget web page. At the same time, it will solve part of the problem for all foreign users and show them that the GoodBudget team has been listening and has not forgotten about them.
This would also offer a clear path for the GoodBudget coding teams to better focus on the longer term project of the best possible approach to add additional currency conversion capabilities that could enable GoodBudget to automatically handle currency conversions and transfers in the future.
At the very least they might even be able to add a currency conversion capability to the amount input functions on the spot in GoodBudget so Goodbudget could directly interact with the other different ID's databases (different currency accounts) in the future to offer the same result, while continuing to keeping each currency database separate from the others.
In conclusion, GoodBudget already has the capability to handle and manage different currencies. Why deny mobile access to the same built-in functionality that GoodBudget has online, and not open up a clear path to future separate currency conversion capabilities?
I suggest leveraging the capabilities GoodBudget already has built-in before brainstorming about major projects like currency conversions and transferring multiple currencies from envelope to envelope. Multiple currencies in the same database would be a huge and long-term undertaking.
As a former programmer, I can see now how GoodBudget could easily be improved with minor tweaks to open up paths to handle all of the advanced automated currency conversion functions you have been talking about, and so much more!
Without a clear path for action and insisting on all improvements at once, we could still be debating this for many more years to come. Without a clear path for a plan, nothing will be accomplished, at all.
Just my two cents, for what it's worth. Your further thoughts and ideas are welcomed and requested. United with a plan, GoodBudget can accomplish anything! :-)
John Vander Stel
Grand Rapids, MIchigan USA
to add integrated multiple currency handling and currency conversion capabilities would require an incredible amount of brainstorming and time to pull off and would be a major undertaking just to figure out how to best approach itGoodbudget isn't the first money management application, but is among the few without currencies. My point here is that multi currency money management and budgeting has at least 25 years history if we only count software, but believe me people (and companies) were accounting with multiple currencies since money was invested so there are very clear solutions to implement, nothing has to be invented by Goodbudget.
Why not offer simple access to those built-n functions of GoodBudget while mobile, as well?I really don't get what multiple currency related features are there on the website except that one can create a new user account for each currency. Multiple user accounts can already be used in Android app, I assume is the same on iPhone. Go to Settings -> Log Out and there you have what you asked already implemented.
However, this approach is mostly useless because if someone has money in multiple currencies they most likely transfer money between financial accounts and this can't be recorded in Goodbudget if those financial accounts are in different user accounts, not to mention that none of the reports would be complete (ie if one sells on eBay in different currencies they couldn't get a complete income and expense report from Goodbudget).
it will solve part of the problem for all foreign usersIf by foreign you mean non-US than there's no relation to this. Many people in US have money in multiple currencies and many non-US people have money in a single currency. It affects those who invest in multiple currencies or deal in multiple currencies. And these are the people who need an app like Goodbudget the most and would be willing to pay for it, so GB is ignoring a market segment what could generate revenue for them.
Traveling alone doesn't require this feature because purchases in other currencies are registered either on a card or checking account in base currency or a cash account in base currency.
At the very least they might even be able to add a currency conversion capability to the amount input functions on the spotThis would only be useful for cash transactions because in all other cases the conversion is done by a financial institution (bank or card processor usually) and there are thousands of apps for this so GB should rather fix defects instead of this - of course this is my personal preference.
Multiple currencies in the same database would be a huge and long-term undertaking.As a current programmer I don't see why this would be a huge or even big effort. Maybe if they would try to reinvent the wheel and spend time with analysis, but if they choose a proven approach then it should be a medium effort.
A proven and working approach is that user has a base currency (i.e. USD) and each account has its own currency too. All budgets and reports are displayed in base currency. Balances are also displayed in base currency so that a total can be calculated, and balance in original currency is displayed as information where applicable and there's enough space available (ie in mobile app there might not be).
Users can enter the FX rates themselves, and only as a bonus there could be an option to update rates automatically on a daily basis using one of the many services available (ie xe.com).
What needs to change for this?
-Need a setting for base currency.
-Need a setting for FX rates.
-Accounts need a currency setting.
-Account currency has to be displayed on the UI, i.e. when entering a transaction, making a transfer, where a balance is displayed (and please don't forget that not all countries have currency symbol before amount like US has).
-Balances have to be converted to base currency before displayed.
-Values have to be converted to base currency when a report is built. This again is not a major change and should only affect a specific area of code.
-Budgets (envelopes) would all be in base currency. As a bonus there could be budgets and envelopes in other currencies.
-Account transfer input screen and API will need two amounts when accounts have different currency, because if the currencies are not the same the amounts will be different too. User must have the option to enter amounts and override the automatic conversion because Goodbudget has no way of knowing concrete the FX rate applied to a purchase by a bank or card processor.
Most of the changes should be to isolated areas of API and some parts of UI, definitely not a major refactoring.
Wow! Since this thread has been quiet for the last few years (until this weekend), we didn’t realize that we need to communicate more proactively. That’s clear to us now given the discussion this weekend, so thanks for weighing in, everyone.
Obviously, we have not built support for multiple currencies, and I want to be clear that we do not plan to do so. I understand that for all of you who live in a multiple currency environment, it’s simply part of your financial reality and therefore a must-have feature, so regrettably, Goodbudget may not be the right solution for you. I understand that means we may miss out on an opportunity to serve a segment of people like you who use multiple currencies. And it could be argued that more multiple currency users haven’t tried Goodbudget because we don’t offer the feature. But we’re a small team, and we have to prioritize our work.
If you’re interested to see what we have been working on in the last couple years, you can read about our efforts in our changelog. I think you’ll see a theme of us working on projects that affect the majority of our users -- things like Reports on the mobile phones. We’ve also built some of the features requested on other popular forum threads, like Goal Envelopes. And you can see what we're planning to work on in our roadmap.
For those of you who do choose to stick with Goodbudget and find the workaround of using multiple households acceptable, drop us a line via email at email@example.com. We’re happy to comp a second Plus household to our loyal subscribers who’ve already signed up for one Plus household.