Credit card churning on personal and business accounts with YNAB


I do credit card churning. This means I sign up for credit cards to get initial start-up bonus rewards and then either cancel or downgrade them to their basic credit card that no annual fee (although after I get the reward I do not use them anymore). I purchase both my business and personal expenses on a particular credit card that I am using that month.  It complicates things more because I have my personal and business expenses. It is important to note that I have a business expenses spreadsheet specifically for my business. What I currently have is 2 separate personal and business budgets, and it gets complicated because I have one chequing account since I do not use it anyways. I will budget some money for the business budget and keep savings and the rest on my personal budget.

When I make a business expense, I go to my business budget and input the expense which will add it to my credit card balance on YNAB and same for personal. For example, if both my credit card balances on both budgets are 0$, then if I spend 50$ on personal and 100$ on business, there will be 50$ to my credit card balance on personal budget and a 100$ balance on my business budget. However, my balance for the credit card on my bank statement says 150$. At the end of each day or two it gets confusing because when I reconcile and pay off the card every month, I have different balances on two budgets, and I have to constantly go back to excel and add business and personal account to make sure the chequing account matches.


Is there any other way around this or another solution? I feel like giving up and just having my business expenses along with my personal budget just in a "Business" category and just dealing with my business expenses in-depth on my excel spreadsheet which is what I already do. I really tried to make this work but with so many purchases it gets so confusing at the end of the month.

Thank you!

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  • Having the same accounts set up on separate budgets is a recipe for a bad time. You would have to do so much double logging that I really can't see how it would be worth it. If you're going to have your personal and business expenses & income co-mingle in your accounts in real life, then in my opinion you might as well reflect that in YNAB.

    You could just set up a business category group and then add all of your business categories under that. That way you get the reporting separation in one YNAB budget. Then when you spend just make sure you are categorizing everything appropriately as far as personal vs business categories.

  • A given real world account should only be in a single budget. Purchases "across budgets" should be tracked as reimbursements in BOTH budgets. That's just the price to pay for not having dedicated accounts.

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  • Yeah, that sounds like a maintenance nightmare to me.  Perhaps you could purpose your credit cards to be solely for either business or personal, so that each card is linked to only one budget?

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