Use special category Transfer

fiqu personal budget app logo boost your financial iiq

It is advisable to capture all your expense or income transactions in FiQu. Either via importing files with information from your bank (either directly as .CSV or converted to FiQu .ODS format) or entering them via the Add a transaction screen. In this way, you obtain the best possible financial insights, helping you to boost your financial IQ.

However, some transactions are not really an expense and also not an income. You should give special attention to these, to avoid a distorted view of your financials. FiQu helps you with two special categories: Savings and Transfer.

fiqu budgeting app financial iq special category transfer

Sometimes two related transactions on your (salary) account, have together a net result of zero. So you are not actually earning or spending money on this account.

Typical situations are:

  • Money passing through your account. Either the “income” transaction comes first: prepayment, gift for which you buy something, bonus you want to invest etc. Or it starts with an “expense” transaction, like money you spend now that will be fully compensated later.
  • An expense transaction you want to split up in another account. An example is a cash withdrawal from an ATM on your salary account, explained below. The categories of the split up expenses in the other (cash) account are relevant provide the financial insight you need.

Transfer example: money passing through your account

For a business trip, you book and pay the tickets. But you can claim these costs as expenses and get them fully refunded by your employer later. This will result in two transactions, shown here on the Transactions list screen in the FiQu app:

fiqu budgeting app financial iq prepayment and refund transactions with typical categories

The choice of categories Income and Transportation gives unexpected results in the Expenses versus income per month graph. You can see negative savings (the blue dot) in the month of the business trip and extra high savings in the month when the refund arrives:

fiqu budgeting app financial iq impact of prepayment and refund without transfer category

Because this is about an expense transaction that costs no money plus an income transaction that you did not earn, these should not count in your graphs. You achieve that by using the Transfer category:

fiqu budgeting app financial iq prepayment and refund transactions categorized intelligently with special category transfer

The result is a correct graph: the actual amounts saved (income not spent) per month are shown, represented by the blue dots.

fiqu budgeting app financial iq special category transfer gives correct epenses versus income per month graph

Transfer example: expense moved to another account to split up

The transaction below, a cash withdrawal from an ATM, does not help to get financial insights. Because it is not clear how many things you have actually purchased for this $200:

fiqu budgeting app financial cash ATM withdrawal not categorized intelligently

If you add more detailed (cash) transactions here, you have two challenges:

  1. Double counting expenses: both the above $200 with the Houselhold expenses category and the split up cash transactions with possibly other categories, also totaling $200.
  2. The transactions of your salary account in FiQu do no longer match your bank statement. That is in itself no problem, because there is no connection to your bank. But it can become a problem if you import files for overlapping periods.

The solution requires two steps. And an optional third step:

  1. Give the ATM withdrawal the special category Transfer. Then it will no longer count, in graphs and budgets.
  2. Enter the split-up transactions in a separate account. With each their correct amount and category.
  3. Optionally: create a transaction in this new account with category Transfer and the same but positive amount of the ATM withdrawal. This helps you to see in this new account where the money came from. And for a good overview it helps to have transactions with special category Transfer in pairs, each having together a net amount of zero.
fiqu budgeting app financial iq transactions classified with special category transfer

Now you can manually enter the separate transactions showing how this $200 cash withdrawal is actually spent. This gives you much more financial insights than one amount with one, too generic, category.

fiqu budgeting app financial iq intelligent registration of cash spending in separate account with transfer of ATM cash withdrawal

Using the optional transaction with special category Transfer, you can now quickly calculate that your Cash wallet is supposed to contain zero dollars. You can physically check that in your pocket.

Tip: set up a separate cash account upfront

It is good practice to capture every transaction in FiQu. For cash transactions you must do that as soon after the payment as possible. Sometimes you don’t get a receipt, the receipt gets lost or after a few days you no longer remember what you actually purchased or why, as typically receipts are brief. You then loose valuable learnings to improve your spending behaviour.

If you spend more than a few percent of your income cash, prepare to capture every one of these expense transactions in FiQu. By already creating a “cash” account. Get in the habit of entering every transaction in FiQu first; adding the special category Transfer in the right places can come later.

Transfer category: only counted when explicitly selected

If you do want to track money flowing through your (salary) account, you can create a budget for category Transfer. Or generate graphs for category Transfer instead of “All transactions”. Ideally, this budget and graphs should report zero.

Transactions with category Transfer will only be counted when this category is explicitly selected. Or when you include the special category Transfer in a filter.

The only exception is the Transactions list screen: All transactions are shown here, including the ones with category Transfer. You can see that in the example above, where an “income” with category Transfer is listed in the Cash wallet account, while “All transactions” was selected in the top right of the screen.

Renaming special categories is possible

You can give the special category Transfer a different name, if you like. And also a different emoji icon.