Cashflow is a budget planning app that helps you to plan your income and expenditure to give you an idea on how they affect your assets and liabilities such as bank accounts, credit cards and mortgages. It's innovation is to help you answer questions such as: will my future cashflow leave me with enough money to carry out a certain project at a certain time in the future?
The key features of cashflow include:
- Ability to manage asset and liability accounts as well as income and expense categories in any currency
- Ability to manage transactions that move money between accounts. Both one-off and recurring transactions are supported.
- Ability to organise transactions into scenarios that may or may not occur.
When you install cashflow for the first time, it comes with a simple set of accounts, some transactions and scenarios to get you started. The accounts page shows the list of accounts and their balances for the current month. You can use the left and right arrow buttons to go forward or backward one month or select a date by tapping the current month on the left of the navigation bar.
The main screen is divided into four sections: accounts, transactions, scenarios and settings.
There are four types of accounts in Cashflow: assets, liabilities, income and expense accounts. These are organised into four tabs.
Assets are things that you own that are of value. These include things like bank accounts, cars, houses or loans that are owed to you.
Liability accounts represent your debts and obligations. Create accounts here for your credit cards, car loans, mortgages and other debts.
Income accounts are used organise the different categories of income that you earn. For example you can have income accounts such as Paid employment (for salaried incomes), dividends, etc. As each account has an associated currency it is best to create different accounts for each income categories per currency.
Similar to Income accounts, expense accounts are used to organise the categories of expenses you make. For example you can have accounts such as travel, food, fuel, etc. As with income accounts, it is best to create a separate account per currency for each expense category.
To create a new account, navigate to the tab for the type of account you wish to create, and tap the add button on the top of the screen. This will open up a form where you can enter the details of the account.
The following details can be entered for assets and liabilities:
- Name: the name of the account
- Type: Cashflow supports x types of asset accounts currently. Loan, bank account, residential home, and a generic asset type. Liability types include loans, credit card, mortgage and a generic liability type.
- Currency: the currency for the account
- Value: the value of the asset or liability
- Value date: the date of the asset or liability valuation. Cashflow will not simulate any transaction for an account before its value date.
Income and expense accounts have details similar to assets and liabilities except that they do not have a type field or a limit field. Instead a monthly budget may be entered for each income/expense account.
You manage your cashflow by creating transactions. A transaction describes how money moves between the account you have set up.
Each transaction has a source account and a destination account. For example, a transaction such as a salary received at the end of the month will have an income account as its source and an asset (e.g. Bank) account as its destination.
On the other hand an expense transaction will have an asset (e.g. Bank) or liability (e.g. Credit card) account as it's source and an expense account as its destination.
You can also have arbitrary transfers between accounts. For example, you can represent a credit card or loan payment by a transaction that has as its source, an asset account, and a liability account as its destination.
Some asset and liability types can automatically create the required transactions. For example, a mortgage has monthly payments that is calculated based on certain parameters such as rate, term and principal. It will automatically create the interest transaction as well as the capital repayment transaction if applicable.
To ease transaction entry, cashflow allows you to create income and expense transactions in a slightly simplified workflow, which ensures that your source and destination accounts are correct.
Transactions may be one off, or can be made to recur on a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly basis. You can also indicate how often it recurs as well as start and end dates.
Cashflow provides a simple but effective way for you to manage financially relevant scenarios that may or may not occur. For example, if you are planning to move home but not sure exactly when, you can create two scenarios where in the first, your current rent ends at a specific date and a new rental starts, and a second scenario to describe the alternative case.
At any time you can decide which set of scenarios are active. Cashflow will ensure that only transactions associated with an active scenario are used in its cashflow simulations.
Finally you can reset the stored data to the default state by tapping the Reset Data option.