Setup - Credit Cards & Expense Reports
Hi YNAB community!
I've just begun using YNAB and am trying to wrap my head around two particular challenges.
1. How do I budget appropriately when my automatically paid credit card payment will be not for the current month for which I'm accruing new expenses and for which I've budgeted, but for the previous month?
2. I have variable work-related expenses that make up a significant portion of my spending, and inflow when they're reimbursed. Sometimes the reimbursements are paid during the month in which I've accrued the work expenses, sometimes not. How do I budget appropriately for these situations?
Thanks for your help!
As a one time only event, you must budget for all transactions that happened before you started YNAB. You do this in the applicable credit card payment category. After that, assuming you only make budgeted purchases, you won’t have to budget to the credit card payment category again. Though you do have to monitor this category because returns and cash back as statement credit can mess it up.
@jenmas thanks, I think I'm getting there. So every month I need to budget in the "credit card payment" category exactly the amount I will be paying the credit card company that month? I also don't understand how this works, as my budgeted spending doesn't get aligned with the budgeted credit card amount, since that amount reflects what I spent *last month*, not this month.
Am I missing something here?
Hi Beige Chef ! Welcome to You Need A Budget!
It looks like a few of your questions have been answered, but I wanted to chime in with some additional resources. Here are the two best to help you understand how the Credit Card Payment category works:
- The Help Docs section on Credit Cards & Debt
- The workshop titled Master Credit Cards with your Budget
And for question #2: There are two ways we recommend to handle reimbursements:
1. Budget for the initial expense, then treat the reimbursement as income.
2. Temporarily overspend, then use the reimbursement to cover it.
You can learn more about those options in our reimbursement Help Doc. Let me know if you have any questions!