I paid my credit card balance twice resulting in a credit balance.
I accidentally paid my credit card balance twice, once through the credit card website, and another time through my bank's bill pay. It resulted in a credit balance of $88.94. I tried spending the credit by charging things on the card, but when I do that, it deducts money from my available budgeted categories. Any suggestions on what I should do now to fix this would be appreciated!
A positive CC is exactly like a checking account, because you don't have to pay those purchases back. So yes, money leaving spending categories is exactly correct.
Additionally, your CC Payment category should be $0 while the account is positive. Fortunately, TBB was also increased, so you have funds to cover any negative in that category.
This is NOT how it is working for me. I paid my Amazon twice :( I followed the instructions on the help which says this:
"Because this account is now behaving like a cash account, when you make a purchase on a card with a positive balance, no money will move to the Credit Card Payment category. That’s because YNAB is smart enough to know you don’t have to pay back that spending on the card.
Once the balance is negative, YNAB will start moving money for budgeted purchases to the Credit Card Payment category."
So my available balance was zero and the account itself was correctly showing the $332.21 credit, HOWEVER, I made a purchase and now the available balance is a red negative number -$21.22. YNAB is NOT smart enough to know I don't have to pay that, apparently.
Any way to fix this?
an over-payment to a credit card [...] always resulting in a net zero change in wealth
This is right.
Intuitively, this is right, but it's not what YNAB does.
Since the amount of cash in the budget hasn't changed, there must be a net zero change in the budget as well. The issue is the payment will decrease the CC Payment category. That mandates an increase somewhere else to balance, so TBB goes up.
One should immediately cover the overspent Payment category (generally recommended for any category). This results in the intuitive situation where TBB and the Payment category ARE unchanged from their pre-payment values.
If, on the other hand you make the credit card purchase in the same month you over-payed, YNAB will [...] effectively transfer that same amount from the available credit card spend to the clothing category, which remains unchanged.
I'm afraid this is not accurate, and whether the purchase was in the same month or next doesn't matter.**
The key to remember: a credit account with positive balance acts like a checking account. An outflow in checking categorized as Clothing will decrease the clothing category. That's it. Nothing else in the budget (e.g., a credit card payment category) changes.
(**) outflow transactions on the same day as the overpayment are deemed to happen first and would shift funds to the Payment category if funds were Available in the spending categories. That's the only timing-related thing to consider.