How to categorize expenses that will be reimbursed

I am having trouble figuring out how to handle travel expenses that will be reimbursed in the following month.  I was on a business trip last week and put the airfare and hotel on my credit card, and most of my meal expenses on debit.  Now I will put in my expense claim but it  won't be reimbursed until (hopefully) next month.  I'm just not sure how to enter the categories because the expense is relatively large and several transactions. I have been on YNAB since February and really don't want this to mess up my budget when the month rolls over.  Also, I don't want to cover all the expense with available to be budgeted because I have other bills to pay and don't have enough to cover the expense that will be reimbursed AND cover the immediate expenses, so I have left money in TBB because I am unsure of how to handle this.  It is feeling complicated.  Any tips are appreciated :)

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  • You need a category to capture the reimbursable expenses. If all purchases had been on the CC, this is all you would have to do:

    1. Enter transactions: categorize all the expenses to the Reimbursement category. When you are reimbursed, categorize the inflow to the Reimbursable category as well.

    2. Potentially shift funds: If the Reimbursable category ever turns green (has a positive Available amount), move those funds to the CC Payment category.

    Because some of the charges were made on your debit card, the Reimbursable category will probably show as red. Cover that portion of the overspending from the CC Payment category (which I assume has enough Available from your normal, budgeted purchases). The Reimbursement category can be yellow without issue -- that just signifies you took on new debt without having the cash to pay it off (hardly a surprise). In the future, put everything on your CC if possible.

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  • And for the money in your TBB, budget it for your other upcoming expenses.

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      • Orange Mask
      • Orange_Mask.5
      • 11 mths ago
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      • Reported - view

      Thanks for all the replies! I am going to  set it up this way but in the future keep all these expenses on the credit card. I see how that would have been easier.    farfromtheusual  dakinemaui Ceeses  

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  • What the others have said is pretty much the easiest way to manage it in YNAB.

    I would recommend using credit to pay for all reimbursables because it will keep your budget cleaner and from going into the red, which will give you less stress/headache trying to keep it all managed. I would also suggest using one credit card for reimbursables to keep everything together. If you've got the ability to mentally "assign" a credit card for reimbursables only that makes it even easier, but it is still really manageable if you choose to put personal expenses on the card as well.

    YNAB would, of course, recommend that you pre-fund your reimbursable category with however much you need. But the vast majority of people choose not to do this, taking the risk of over spending and waiting for the money, and dealing with the consequences if the reimbursement doesn't come in. If you are using your debit card, then I would recommend doing it that way, only because it will keep your categories from going into the red, which is much harder to deal with because YNAB prioritizes any cash that comes in to apply towards repaying that spent "cash".

    I hope that helps a little bit!

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