I am learning Gnucash to do my household finances. You can easily add subaccounts to a parent account in Gnucash, but I can't figure out how to do it in a budget.

When you create a new budget, it has a standard set of subaccounts under Expenses, but for the life of me, I can't find any instructions on how to edit them (either changing the names of what's there, or adding more). I read and searched the manual, and searched online (and here) before asking. Please help.

  • Hey Guy! Welcome to the site. I think that this question may be better answered on our SuperUser site. They have a tag for Gnucash (I've linked it above) and handle more technical questions, or questions about the functionality itself. This site could probably also answer and it would still fit within the guidelines of the site, but I am not sure. A more experienced user can correct me if I am wrong.
    – Flats
    Commented Jan 6, 2022 at 16:54

1 Answer 1


You can't add new subaccounts to a budget in GnuCash, or change the names of existing subaccounts.

The GnuCash Tutorial and Concepts Guide says, in part:

Even before you begin to make a budget, it’s important to have given some thought to your account hierarchy. For example, if you want to budget a certain amount for your electric bill and a certain amount for your water bill, you can’t have only an Expenses:Utilities account. Your accounts must be at least as specific as your budget.

The key is to make any desired changes to your account hierarchy in your live GnuCash database before you select Budget > New Budget. The new budget will be created with all of the accounts and subaccounts that already exist. This allows GnuCash to produce a Budget Estimate for you by summarising past transactions in one or more accounts over a specified period and entering those amounts as estimates in the corresponding accounts in your budget.

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