CC Refunds, Clear as Mud

I've been trying to wrap my head around this all night.  Finally decided to just do a sample budget to see what happens and I think it cleared it up for me.  

The basic premise is easy.  $100 budgeted, spend on CC, $100 available for payment, pay the CC $100 cash out the door, $0 available for payment on CC.  


Where things get wonky is what happens when you get a refund. 

If you get a refund after you make your CC payment.  Then YNAB treats this as cash available sitting on the CC and the available amount sits in the original category.  

If you get a refund before you make your CC payment but you still make the CC payment then the refund goes to TBB.  You get a red available in your CC line.  And you have to budget that $100 back to the CC line to make it 0.  

I don't understand why its done differently because in either scenario I have no cash in the bank and the credit sits with the credit card.  So while the physical location of money is the same, YNAB makes me treat it differently so its confusing as hell.  

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  • Hi King !

    Overpayments on credit cards automatically affect your To Be Budgeted because those payments are transfers and don't have a category.  With refunds you have the option to choose where they are applied - we suggest the same category as the original purchase in order to balance out that spending, but if you categorized it as Inflow: To Be Budgeted it would affect your To Be Budgeted much like the overpayment (sans the overspending).

    These are two separate occurrences - the overspending appears because more was paid towards the credit card than what was available and the positive amount in To Be Budgeted appears because of the positive balance on the credit card. If you budgeted to pay $100 towards your credit card but there was only an $80 balance, paying the $100 wouldn't cause overspending (because it was budgeted for) but you'd still see $20 in To Be Budgeted because of the positive amount in the credit card.

    Does that help clear things up?

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