Modify Credit card payment amount

I just entered a credit card transaction, let's say for $4,000. I had $1,089 budgeted in that category. When I entered the credit card transaction, it moved the entire $1,089 into the payment for the credit card. I actually only want to pay $1,000 and use that other money for other things. I have 24 months to pay off the amount with no interest. 

I cannot get this to work and it has royally screwed up my budget. First I just tried to move money from the credit card available back into the original category. It added the money to the original category, put in a negative amount for the amount budgeted and DID NOT CHANGE the amount of  the credit card payment available. I tried messing with the budget amount in the credit card and original category. Now it's all a mess. I think the problem is that  there is the budgeted spending activity, done by YNAB that very incorrectly assumed I wanted to spend all the budgeted money on a payment. 

How do I fix this?

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  • Move $89 from the credit card payments category to wherever you would like it.

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    • satcook Actually, since the transaction was $4000 and Coral Song only wants to pay $1000, they will have to move $3000 from the CC payment category to the original category. 

      I've not tested it, but I think it would work. Let me know!

      ETA: Just tested and fixed the above numbers.

      Like
      • jenmas
      • jenmas
      • 12 days ago
      • Reported - view

      Move Light Sound Life There was only $1089 in the category, so the full $4000 would not show up in the credit card payment category, only the $1089.

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    • jenmas Yeah, but as soon as that $89 went back to the original category, it would flow to the credit card again, until there had been $4000 worth of flowing ($3000 additional to the desired $1000). 😄

      I just tested it, but if you're getting something different, let me know, please.

      I suppose if the $89 went from the CC payment category to a different category, that's all that would need to move. 

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  • By the way, when you want to make payments for the other $3000, you'd budget that directly to the card, and not the category. 

    Another, different, technique:

    When I did a similar thing (let's pretend it was a desk), I had a separate category for the desk, and when the minimum payments came through, I categorized them to the desk category. The tricky thing here is that the desk was the only thing on that credit account for me, and it was a tracking account in my budget. Therefore, the actual payments needed a category.  However, it wasn't the kind of card I could use for other purchases, so it didn't need to be on budget. 

    I budgeted the total/24 each month to the desk category, and a month before the grace period ended, I made the lump sum payment, categorized to the desk category. 

    I only recommend this second technique if you're not using the credit account for other spending. If it's a normally used credit card, you can still have the "desk" category and budget total/24 monthly, then move the amount you need over to the CC payment category when you need it. Check your terms to see what is necessary.

    ETA: Either way, I'd make a totally separate category to save for the desk repayment. If I was saving money in a generic Furniture category, I would be concerned that, one year from now, I'd see $1500 and think I could use it to buy a new bed or something. 

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  • Move Light Sound Life said:
    I suppose if the $89 went from the CC payment category to a different category, that's all that would need to move. 

    Yeah, that's my thought too - OP says they want the $89 for other things so just move the $89 out of the payment category to the needed category. Now if the "other things" happen to be from the same category as the original transaction, just leave it in the payment category and it will have the same net effect on the budget.

    Like 2
    • jenmas Ah, good point. But then they can't look at the original category for spending guidance on the $89.

      Like 1
  • I'm not sure I'm being clear, but pretty much nothing suggested works. Here's the situation:

    * I had $1,089 budgeted in my home maintenance category.

    * I made a purchase for $4,000 and assigned it to that category.

    * The entire $1,089 was moved from the home maintenance category to the cc category

    Everything makes sense so far.

    I don't want to make the full $1,089 payment though, I need that $89 to cover some small home maintenance stuff (e.g. a new handle for my screen door that just broke). So I really just want $1,000 at this point in the cc budget. Now the trouble starts...

    In the cc line, there are three numbers: 

    - Assigned: $0

    - Activity: $1,089

    - Available: $1,089

    and the home maintenance has the following:

    -Assigned: $0 (money was assigned in previous month)

    -Activity: $4,000 for the purchase

    -Available: -$2,911 (with the cc icon) (4000-1089)

    OK, makes sense so far still. What I want is to move $89 from the cc Available back to home. I put the purchase on a cc for a reason, I don't have enough money on hand to pay for it now (or more accurately, I don't want to spend the money on hand on that right now). So I did exactly what satcook indicated and I moved $89 from the cc available back into home. I would expect the available to now be $1,000 and there to be $89 in home. That is NOT what happened. It looks like this now:

    -- CC 

    -assigned: -$89

    -activity: $1,178 (what the....)

    -available: $1,089 (huh???)

    -- Home Maintenance

    -- assigned: $89

    -- activity: $4,000

    -- available: $2,822 (what??)

    I actually moved several $1 amounts to confirm that this is what is happening. It is possible that every time I move money back into the Home Maintenance category it is automatically moving it back to the cc, but it is magically reducing the amount I'm overspending (increasing the amount in home maintenance available and leaving the available unchanged in the cc category. I would expect it to increase the overspending in home maintenance, since I'm reducing the amount I'm spending there now and to reduce amount available for the cc payment. 

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      • Vibrant
      • No more counting dollars, we'll be counting stars
      • vibrant
      • 6 days ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Coral Song it sounds like you didn't try what was actually suggested. You need to move the $89 from the credit card category to any other category EXCEPT an overspent one. Until the month rolls over, YNAB will interpret any money added to the Home (or any other overspent) category as intended to cover the overspending, and will keep "helpfully" moving it back to the credit card category.

      Like 1
  • Ok, so why is it mucking with numbers? If I understand you correctly, you're saying that any money I put into the same category as the cc purchase, that money is just moved back to the cc. If that happened in a sane way, then nothing would really change. The overspent amount would say the same for sure (not change as it is doing now). And the activity either wouldn't change or it would show the actual activity...moving money out and then it getting moved back in. 

    And this makes no sense when applied to real life. As mentioned there is a reason I used the cc. And I have other needs to be addressed in that category during the month. Now that category is completely useless (or maybe even harmful). I'd say I would create a category just for this purchase and after it is paid off, re-categorize it so I have good spending reports, but I've had problems doing that in the past too. 

    And I didn't do exactly what you suggested because it totally doesn't answer the need. I don't need the money in some random other category, I need it in the same category as the purchase. 

    I appreciate your help, but if this is all by design, it's a horrible design. I have no idea what going to happen now that I need to actually spend that  other money in this category...I can't just wait for as much as a month to do maintenance on my home.

    And what happens next month? Will I not be able to budget for the little stuff at all while this is being paid off?  I might try moving this to its own category, but I'm afraid that will cause all sorts of problems....

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    • Coral Song If you keep spending in the home category, you will just be continuing to add to the overspending. YNAB doesn't actually care if the overspent money is for that $4k purchase, or for a smaller purchase. It just cares that the category is overspent, at all, and by how much, total. That's why, when you try to move the $89 to the home category, it just moves back to the card.

      I am a bit concerned that YNAB is counting the money moved from the card to the home category as covering overspending and reducing the total it says is overspent, but it makes sense from a programming perspective. You may need to speak with support to figure out how to get those numbers correct.

      As far as I understand, when the month rolls over, that debt will just be debt on the credit card, and you can assign money to the home category as normal without it moving to the credit card. But that is only changed when the month rolls over.

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  • Thank you all for helping me understand how YNAB works. I'll contact YNAB

    And to really clarify why I'm a bit miffed about this, I'll go back to envelope based budgeting. I put a 1,089 into my home envelope. I then make the $4,000 purchase on a cc. I take a $1,000 out for the initial payment and put that in the cc payment envelope. Then my home envelope will still have $89 in it, so I can go buy my screen door latch. Simple.

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    • Coral Song But you don't really have those $89 in the category. Because you still have the -2911. So whether you hold onto the $89 in cash or use the cc without cash backing, you end up in the same place - with 3000 in cc debt. 

      Like 1
    • Fuzzball Meows The benefit of taking $3000 from the CC payment category is that it reflects the OP's plan: increase debt by $3000. It also informs spending of the category. OP can look at the home maintenance category and know that anything else will have to stay under $89 to not add more debt.

      Alternatively, if the OP gets a windfall, they can look at the CC payment category to know that's the place to get rid of the debt.

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  • Move Light Sound Life said:
    Actually, since the transaction was $4000 and Coral Song only wants to pay $1000, they will have to move $3000 from the CC payment category to the original category. 

     Did you really try this one?

    You're adding $3000 worth of debt to your credit card. This is how you do it. 

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    • I realized you weren't tagged on this most important reply. Please, try this way of moving $3000 from CC to home maintenance.

      Coral Song

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  • Coral Song said:
    It is possible that every time I move money back into the Home Maintenance category it is automatically moving it back to the cc,

     This is how it will work until you've balanced the transaction. It's the same logic of budgeting for interest charged on a card by moving money out of the CC payment category. 

    If I had decided I wanted to pay $100 to the card this month, and I had $15 in interest, using the move money tool to cover the interest "overspending" would leave $85 in the Assigned column, but the available would still be $100 because the other $15 would have "flown up" to the category as budgeted spending.

    Same with this scenario, except that your total spending is less than the total you want to pay. You had $1089 assigned in the category, and you want to keep $89 in the category after making a $1000 payment on your $4000 credit purchase.

    You could move money by the $1000s from credit card payment category to see the mechanics in action if you can't trust the math of $4000-$3000=$1000.

    With no money move, there are $89 too many available in the CC payment category.

    With the first $1000 move, there will still be $89 too many available in the CC payment category, but the Assigned will say -$1000. Home improvement will show +1000(plus whatever you'd already assigned earlier this month) and $0 available.

    With the second $1000 move, there will still be $89 too many available in the CC payment category, but the Assigned will say -$2000. Home improvement will show +2000(plus whatever you'd already assigned earlier this month) and $0 available.

    With the third $1000 move, there will be the correct available in the CC payment category, but the Assigned will say -$3000. Home improvement will show +3000(plus whatever you'd already assigned earlier this month) and $89 available.

    Seriously. Try it. Try it to the end of the process before clicking undo.

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  • Fuzzball Meows said:
    I am a bit concerned that YNAB is counting the money moved from the card to the home category as covering overspending and reducing the total it says is overspent, but it makes sense from a programming perspective.

     It makes sense from a math perspective.  The total available of the budget did not change because credit was used without having the cash to back it.  That fact must be represented in the budget somewhere.  It's like saying, "I'm taking $3000 from this credit card to fund this purchase." Does it take you out of PIF status? Absolutely. That's why you want to use it (the increase of credit debt) intentionally.

    It was HappyDance, Jenmas, and Word Tenor (I am 90% sure) who explained it to me. I didn't believe it until trying it out in my budget, either.

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    • Move Light Sound Life Ah, I missed the YNAB is simultaneously increasing the cc debt. That makes sense and is no longer concerning. Thank you!

      Like 1
    • Fuzzball Meows I think a lot of people would like a bigger warning when this happens. In one of the more recent updates, YNAB does turn the CC payment bubble yellow if it's not in PIF status. I think that's native YNAB. The toolkit has had that option for a long time.

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  • Coral Song said:
    I appreciate your help, but if this is all by design, it's a horrible design. I have no idea what going to happen now that I need to actually spend that  other money in this category...I can't just wait for as much as a month to do maintenance on my home.
    And what happens next month? Will I not be able to budget for the little stuff at all while this is being paid off?  I might try moving this to its own category, but I'm afraid that will cause all sorts of problems....

     Read my original response with the desk example.

    Do this after actually moving the $3000 from the cc payment category to the original category. If you're using the move money tool instead of typing in the budgeted cell, you may be forced to only move $1000 at a time.

    I'm happy to clarify, but only if you're going to actually try what I suggested. 

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  • Move Light Sound Life said:
    That fact must be represented in the budget somewhere.  It's like saying, "I'm taking $3000 from this credit card to fund this purchase." Does it take you out of PIF status? Absolutely.

     This is why I dislike YNAB (and forum users) not teaching about what happens when the month rolls over. If you don't cover your cash overspending, you lose next month's TBB. If you don't cover credit overspending, you lose PIF status. Maybe if people actually knew what math was happening in their budget, instead of just letting YNAB do it for them (leaving the category overspent until the month turns), they would feel more comfortably in control. Plus, as this user has noted, it's an incomplete plan.

    Saying this concept is too difficult for users to understand is insulting and lazy. Teaching users to let YNAB babysit their math without understanding what's happening with their money is simply irresponsible and against how I thought YNAB approached their mission. 

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