Credit Card Starting Balance - Splitting Balance into Categories

Hello All!
 

I have been doing research for about an hour, and I am unable to find anything talking about the question I have. 

I have had YNAB for about a year and a half and did not at first realize that I could connect a  credit card to my budget. Instead, I have been manually paying off every individual transaction on my credit card and then going in and manually entering those into my YNAB as well so I can make sure everything stays in the correct category. This is a lot of work, but I do it regularly so that my credit card is always paid off. 

I would have linked my credit card, as I now understand how to do that, but I do not want loose all of my current transactions to a general balance on the card.  I have tried to wait until the balance on my card is $0, but that is nearly impossible because it is my only credit card and I have a lot of automatic payments linked to it. Is it possible to link my credit card and split up the "starting" balance between all the appropriate categories, or can I only pay it in general chunks? My problem is NOT how to get out of debt, but how to keep all my money organized. 

Do I just move the amounts from the appropriate categories to the credit card budget instead of taking the necessary money from "to be budgeted"?

Not sure if this is clear, but it is a little tricky to explain. Would very much appreciate any help on this!

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  • If funds were available in the categories at the time of purchase, you could, in fact, pay the account to $0 (probably split and categorized to the various spending categories) and then create a new account with $0 starting balance. Any subsequent credit card transactions (automatic or not) would be recorded in the CC account.

    However, you could instead create a new account $0 balance, and start entering regular (non-split) transactions in reverse order (most recent first) until the account balance matches the negative version of the payment you would have made.

    Moving forward, make sure you record your CC payment as a transfer from checking to the CC account.

    Lastly, it is technically possible to record the starting CC balance as (or edit it to be) a "split" transaction, but the actual purchase dates will be lost. That's why I feel recording individual transactions is better.

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  • lovelessmrswilson said:
    Do I just move the amounts from the appropriate categories to the credit card budget instead of taking the necessary money from "to be budgeted"?

    You could, but your spending reports and averages would leave out those transactions. Not sure if that's important to you or not.

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  • Hi  I love the way YNAB handles credit cards. I used to do things the way you do before YNAB.  But you are using the term linked incorrectly. Linked means connected to the bank so transactions come in and match up to your YNAB transactions. I think you mean adding the credit card in YNAB itself as a budget account. 
     

    so as I understand it you have 2 issues. First, setting up the card and any balance owing. Then second, going forward. 
     

    to set it up initially, add the card with a zero balance due. Don’t worry about all the past transactions that you have already recorded by the payment. Then enter any transactions that you haven’t paid (and therefore not recorded) yet. Enter these as credit card transactions. Reconcile the account to the online balance to make sure everything is lined up. make sure you balance to the actual balance including pending transactions not to the statement balance. 
     

    Here is where the magic happens. The amount of the transaction is moved from the expense category to the credit card payment category. For example if you enter a $50 transaction for groceries the groceries category will go down by $50 and the credit card payment category will go up by $50. Then when you pay the credit card, the amount will reduce the credit card payments budget amount. 
     

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  • lovelessmrswilson said:
    Do I just move the amounts from the appropriate categories to the credit card budget instead of taking the necessary money from "to be budgeted"?

     I think the previous answers should get you what you want, but I just wanted to address this.  Your "To  Be Budgeted" should never have money in it (except for when you just got paid, and haven't assigned to any budget categories yet.)  That's the whole point of Rule #1, Give every dollar a job.  If it's sitting in TBB it doesn't have a job yet.  Fill your categories, and if you have any left over, put it in savings, or True Expenses.

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