Credit card paid off from external source

My roommate paid off a credit card balance for me (and I now owe her). I already owed her money so that has a line item that gets budgeted each month. But how do I handle the transaction for the credit card? I closed that account since it's paid off but the transaction is still uncategorized. The credit card line shows as red and there is an uncategorized green balance for the exact same amount at the top of the Budget since it now thinks I have that money to spend. Since the money did not come from any of my accounts, what do I do?

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  • Hi there! 
    Good question! Since that payment came from an outside source, you can enter it as a regular inflow to your credit card account. So the payee can be your friend's name and the category is Inflow: To Be Budgeted. You won't see anything appear in To Be Budgeted or the Credit Card Payment category, but you should see the account balance turn to zero. Let me know how it goes!

    Like 1
  • Janelle's right about the transaction. Then in your budget you move the money from To Be Budgeted to the credit card payment category. That should square everything up.

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  • This solution doesn’t work if the respective charges put a given category into the negative. 

    For example, I used a credit card to pay for a charge which I knew would be covered by a non-YNAB account. The charge needed a category, so I put it under “Vacation,” which put the category into the negative (there wasn’t anything in it).

    The card was paid with the non-YNAB account and  added into “To Be Budgeted” for the credit card account, but the “Vacation” category still shows as in the red for that total amount. To Be Budgeted shows a zero balance. 

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      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router Your credit card payment category now has too much money in it relative to the card balance. You would need to unbudget the money and budget it to the vacation category.

      Like
    • nolesrule 

      I appreciate the comment. Unfortunately, that is not the case. When the external payments were added to To Be Budgeted, the balance of the card went down but nothing changed on the budget screen.. I tested a moment ago by removing (then adding) the payment. No change to the budget I’m either step

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router It seems the problem is that you didn't budget for the charge in the first place, so money was never budgeted to pay that charge in the first place. You've got an overspend combined with an outside payment. By removing the money from the Credit Card Payment category, you are putting yourself in the same position to make a payment on the card as before relative to the card balance.

      The other option would be to categorize the inflow to the Vacations category to offset the overspend, but then your spending reports will be inaccurate.

      Do you pay the card in full every month?

      Like
    • nolesrule Thanks for the prompt reply. I reached out to YNAB via chat and the gentleman who helped wasn’t able to resolve the issue.  I didn’t ‘overspend’ because the charges were paid in full from non-YNAB account. 

      It appears that YNAB may not be configured to handle this particular scenario; it’s being looked into. I will post an update after he investigates further. 

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router If you put the original charge in a category that went negative then by definition you did overspend that category. This has nothing to do with the source of the payment.

      Like 1
    • nolesrule 

      When viewing from the perspective of “how YNAB chooses to handle a cost”, yes. But when put into “I paid my bill and that money isn’t owed,” no. It’s simply a scenario which hasn’t currently been accounted for within the logic of YNAB. 

      The only overpayment is in YNAB’s logic. The debt is paid, period. There isn’t a simple way to track that without adding inaccurate credit/debits to my spending account in YNAB. 

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router Sigh. In YNAB, words have specific meaning and we must stick to that meaning in order to have a conversation about how to deal with issues. If you don't learn the lingo, you will continue to have issues.

      Your Vacations category is, by YNAB definition,  overspent, and it was done on a credit card. The external payment doesn't know if that was for your vacation category or for something else, and it really doesn't matter, because Money is Fungible. So you need to:

      1) Inflow the payment to your card, categorized as Inflow: To Be Budgeted.

      2) Move money from the card payment category to the Vacations category to correct the overspending, which will in turn correct the payment amount to the credit card.

      Or alternatively:

      1) Categorize the Payment inflow directly to the vacations category (but this will result in showing a net zero spent in the vacations category in reports.

      That is how you fix the scenario.

      Like 2
  • *le sign returned* lol

    I do appreciate your reply (though admittedly, the assumption that someone posting on here isn't familiar with YNAB sufficiently to use it is a tad condescending :D ) 

    The 1st suggestion simply doesn't work. Check this quick screen capture for details. https://youtu.be/OF9_QB6xUEM

    You already said why the 2nd option won't work, and that is because the reports will be incorrect.

    There is a 3rd option, which also results in incorrect reports. Create a "deposit" to the checking account in YNAB and simply make the payment to the credit card account from there. But once again, the reports will be wrong.

    As a note -- I am well aware that YNAB's philosophy is to have all accounts in YNAB or put all money into a single account. The former doesn’t work for my family for several reasons and the latter is just a bad practice by keeping all the eggs in one basket. Based on many, many posts on here and reddit, a good number of YNABers are dissatisfied with that approach, as well (though it is fair to assume that the same number are likely satisfied with it).

    YNAB evangelists always say, "But this is how YNAB works! Just do it the YNAB Gospel way and it will work!" Then a sufficient end-users comment offer complaints/suggestions for improvements and YNAB eventually releases an update to alleviate the complaints. So, this is my feedback that YNAB sucks at handing inflows to debt from external sources. :) Again, thank you for taking your time to reply and suggest solutions.

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      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router In your video example you completely skipped over the  second step I outlined above that is required for option 1. After you enter the $500  payment from the outside source, you need to remove $500 from the Credit card payment category and budget it to the Vacation category.

      Here's why.
      Removing the $500 from CC payment makers the Available payment -$500. Adding it to the Vacation category eliminates the overspending in the category, making the purchase budgeted  and moves the money back to the credit card payment category, which in turn makes the Available $0 again. And then your budget is in balance and with the correct reporting.

      Yeah, i agree it's not intuitive because it feels recursive, and I do not particularly care for the credit card management, but it does work if you follow that last step.

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router I'll also add that if you do not add any money to the Vacation category per option 1, it will self-correct when you go to the next month. The category is zero and the payment amount is 0.

      That said, I'm not quite sure what would happen if you use the categories for additional spending, so it's best to explicitly cover the credit card overspend from the card payment category with the card inflow from an external source.
      And again, I agree it's a pain and I dislike the behavior. As you can see by my tagline, I still prefer and use YNAB4, and this is one of the reasons.

      Like
      • Patzer
      • Retired at age 60. Thank you, YNAB!
      • Patzer
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Tomato Router 

      I will affirm that this is a big honking bug in how YNAB works.  Clear away the clutter of your examples.  Suppose you owe $500 on a credit card, have $500 in the credit card payment category, and accept a $500 payment on the card from your external source.  You record the $500 inflow to the credit card as TBB, because that's logical and in line with everything YNAB has told you in general.  Suppose further that TBB is $0, and you have nothing budgeted in any future month.  (This additional assumption is needed to avoid some other insane fringe cases.)

      You would expect the following to happen: 1. Credit card balance goes to $0; 2. Credit card payment category goes to $0; 3. TBB goes to $500.

      What actually happens:  1.  Credit card balance goes to $0; 2. Credit card payment remains $500; 3. TBB remains $0.

      The official YNAB advice is that when you do this, you also need to go into the budget page and move $500 from the credit card payment category to TBB.  That accomplishes the expected result.  It is also a workaround for the BIG HONKING BUG that YNAB has no way to add a deposit to a credit card that reduces the balance, reduces the card payment category, and increases TBB exactly as you would expect to happen if a 3rd party pays your credit card, you record cash back as a credit to the card, or you accept payment of any form of real income as a payment on your card.

      Should this be fixed?  Absolutely.  Will it be?  If I were a gambling man, I'd bet against it.  In the meantime, you work around this bug by making a corresponding budget page adjustment every time you have a deposit to the credit card that really ought to be TBB  in your budget.

      Like 3
      • bevocat
      • Sometimes, It Just Sucks to Be You
      • bevocat
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Patzer It's the exact same steps you take when you get a cash-back statement credit.  Because it's the exact same situation.

      It's weird, but I've gotten fairly used to the mechanics of it by now. Put in the statement credit, go to budget and negative-budget that amount from the CC payment. You get used to it; not that we should have to.

      Like 2
    • nolesrule
    • Been waiting 5 years for the Stealing From the Future fix...
    • nolesrule
    • 2 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    One last thing on the credit card behavior. Another way to consider it.

    Since the Vacation category was overspent at the time of the purchase and you knew that you were not going to fund that payment amount from the budget, an even more correct procedure would have been to move money from the CC payment category to the Vacations category at the time the Vacation overspend occurred. This explicitly  turns the overspend into credit card debt in the current month (rather than waiting for the next month). Then, when the external payment was made to the card to cover the debt, nothing is out of whack.

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  • Patzer said:
    What actually happens:  1.  Credit card balance goes to $0; 2. Credit card payment remains $500; 3. TBB remains $0.

     This is exactly what I except to happen, Here is my reasoning;

    Everyone including you promotes YNAB as an envelope budgeting system, So when I budget I put money into an envelope for the credit card payment or as I use my CC I move money to my CC envelope from another envelope. Then I get a statement credit or someone gives money to my CC company on my behalf. CC balance goes to $0; TBB remains at $0 because I wasn't given the money to budget. There would still be $500.00 in the CC envelope for the original payment. I would have to take it out of the envelope and move it to TBB and budget it someplace else. 

    Like 1
  • Hello, this is not happening for me. When the external payment is applied, the cc balance goes down but my tbb amount goes up. Can someone explain why and how I can fix this?

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    • Turquoise Moose It sounds like your card may be ending up with a positive balance after the payment. That's the only way a credit card payment can cause money to appear in To be Budgeted.

      The first thing I would do is reconcile your credit card and make sure the balance in YNAB is correct. If you're still having the issue next time you make an external payment, go ahead and enable Support Access for your account and I can take a look and see what's going on. Once you’ve done that, let me know—and mention whether you’d like to continue the discussion here or via email instead.

      Like
    • I will enable support access. The balance is still negative after payment. 

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    • Turquoise Moose Great, I can take a look now!

      Like
    • Thanks! It’s okay to communication via email going foward too.

      Like
    • Turquoise Moose Great! Just sent you an email.

      Like
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