Tracking "Keep the Change" Savings program

  • 1
  • Question
  • Updated 9 years ago
  • Answered
  • (Edited)
I have two accounts at my bank... a checking and a savings. the savings is unique in that every time I use my debit card (checking) whatever "change" I had from the transaction gets transferred from my checking acct to the savings. this is done daily. example... my total at the grocery store is $2.15... $2.15 is deducted from my checking acct as well as .85 goes to my savings.

how i am handling this right now is with a simple acct transfer. the problem is that the savings acct is supposed to reflect what's in my vacation envelope. the balance in my envelope does not change when i do the account transfer. am i also supposed to do an account adjustment?

Krystal
Photo of Able Rooster

Able Rooster

  • 5 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
  • very confused

Posted 9 years ago

  • 1
Photo of cmchien

cmchien, Official Rep

  • 610 Posts
  • 44 Reply Likes
Hi Krystal, I'm guessing this is the "Keep the Change" program? Unfortunately, there isn't an easy way to handle this right now within EEBA.

I'm not that familiar with Keep the Change (although somebody else has mentioned it) but from what you are describing, you probably have an extra "automatic" transaction daily that does the transfer from Checking to Savings. Is it just one that handles all of the "change" from your various transactions or are there multiple automatic transfers each day?

Regardless, doing an Account Transfer in EEBA to reflect this transfer is correct. You need to transfer the extra money from Checking to Savings, because that is what is happening. If what I'm describing is accurate, these are the transactions you need in EEBA in order to mimic this behavior:

1. Regular expense from Groceries: $2.15 from the Groceries envelope and the Checking account.
2. Account Transfer from Checking to Savings: $0.85.

These two in conjunction cause your Checking, Savings and Groceries to have the right balances: Groceries deducts $2.15, Checking deducts $3.00 and Savings increases by $0.85. So, up to this point I believe this is exactly what you are doing.

Now with respect to your comment re: wanting to have your Savings Account reflect your Vacation Envelope. This is not the way that we typically think of things in EEBA. EEBA treats Envelopes as another way of viewing the *same* money that you have in your Accounts. It's the view of your money where every dollar is assigned a job.

If you *do* want your Vacation envelope to now have $0.85 extra, here's one way to handle this:

1. Record your initial expense as a split expense. $2.15 total transaction amount, $3.00 from your Groceries envelope and *$-.0.85* to your Vacation envelope.

2. Account Transfer from Checking to Savings: $0.85.

This does what you are in effect doing--a transfer from your Groceries to Vacation at the same time that you are paying from your Groceries. You still have to do the Account Transfer as a separate transaction. Doing this would in fact keep your Vacation envelope in sync with Savings.

In general, I think manually keeping an Envelope (Vacation) with an Account (Savings) may turn out to be frustrating, because that's not the way that EEBA works. But this solution will work in this limited case.
Photo of Able Rooster

Able Rooster

  • 5 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
That's a do-able workaround. I've been mulling this around... how about using the petty cash acct? Of course, in order for it to work properly you would have to budget a certain amount in the petty cash envelope just for this case. This method would require 3 steps.

1. Record the transaction like you normally would. Expense 2.15 from grocery envelope.

2. When you see the daily transfer (could possibly be multiple transactions that cleared) transfer that amount from petty cash envelope to savings envelope.

3. transfer from checking account to savings.

This method might be better for me because I can see that my husband would probably forget to "add the change" into his transaction, therefore I would have to constantly edit his transactions.
Photo of cmchien

cmchien, Official Rep

  • 610 Posts
  • 44 Reply Likes
I'm not sure that I understand exactly what you're saying here. Do you track your Petty Cash in a separate Account or in an Envelope? I think you referred to it in two different ways above.

Regardless of the method that you follow, the things to think about are:
1. Make sure for Accounts that the sum total of your transactions to an account causes the right $ amount to hit each account.

2. Make sure that Expense transactions against an envelope record what you want recorded as "spent" against that envelope. That keeps your reports of Expense by envelope accurate.

3. Make sure that it's not so complicated that you can't keep it up!
Photo of Able Rooster

Able Rooster

  • 5 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
sorry. petty cash is an envelope.