Rolling Over Underfunded Reimbursement Accounts


I'm fairly new to YNAB and I have some bills that I pay and split with my siblings. When the money is charged to my credit card. I split the transaction so that the portion I'm responsible for goes into my cell phone budget and the remaining goes to my "Sibling Reimbursement Account".  My sister is a student and struggles with money sometimes so she doesn't always get it to my by the end of the month which leaves my reimbersement account underfunded at the end of the month. 

My understanding is when she does Venmo me for that money and it hits my bank account, I use that to fund the reimbursement. 

My question is, is there a way to carry over that negative amount that she hasn't paid yet to the next month so I can be aware of it and fund it when it's paid?

My current set up is that I just got paid for the bill 2 months ago and I didn't even remember that it was still underfunded. 

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  • Prefund your money lending category with a certain amount and set a Savings Balance target equal to that base amount. When you send money out of that category, the balance will be below the target and there will be an indicator on category telling you how much below the target it is. That's the amount owed to you. When you receive the money, you put it directly back in the category and you'll be back at the target.

    If you ever need to lend more than the target, you would have to up the target amount.


    Alternatively, you can create a tracking account and when you lend the money, transfer it to the tracking account. When you receive money you transfer it back from the tracking account. The balance of the tracking account, a a positive number, is how much money you are owed.

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  • I think the second option sounds better. Essentially, what I do is any payments that I pay for that need to be split, I'll split the transaction with half going to the proper budget and the half she owes will go into the Reimbursement account. 

    If i understand you correctly, your suggest is to take all the money in the reimbursement account at the end of the month and transfer it to the tracking account which will show as a positive, then when I receive the money,  reduce it by that amount? 

    Ill usually get paid via Venmo which will come to my checking account. How would I handle that that if I use the tracking account method?

      • Ceeses
      • Ceeses
      • 2 wk ago
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      Alice Blue Projector Nope that's not what nolesrule is proposing. When you pay the phone bill, you enter a split transaction:

      • the total is the amount of the bill.
      • the first split is categorised to your phone bill category and is your portion of the bill
      • the second split, you change the payee to be a transfer to the tracking account and the category to the reimbursement category. The amount is your sister's portion of the bill.

      When your sister pays you, you categorise to the reimbursement category but the payee is a transfer from the tracking account.

  • Also, since you seem to be paying the bill with a credit card, if you don't put fund in the reimbursement category first, then if the reimbursement category available is ever positive, you must move that money to your credit card payment category. Remember YNAB only move the money automatically during the same month, not afterwards. Otherwise, your credit card payment category will get short.

  • I like to cover the overspending so I don’t have to worry about the credit card category. Then I use flags in the account register to show which transactions have not been reimbursed yet. I clear the flags when I get the money. 

  • Yeah - you need to have a float for each source you lend to temporarily. 


    You can do this with categories or with off budget imaginary accounts. I prefer categories to imaginary accounts but both work.


    I float my employer $1000 for occasional business expenses.

  • I also recommend having a bit of padding in those categories, in case reimbursement is late or doesn't come - this will also be the easiest way to keep your Credit Card Payment category happy! 

    I'll second Britnee about using flags to track reimbursable expenses, too!  Finally, in case it's helpful, this Help Doc outlines our recommended best practices for handling reimbursable expenses 😊

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