Duplicate transactions for PayPal and CC

Hey guys,

I’m having an issue where my transactions are being counted twice, once as a PayPal transaction and once as a credit card transaction.

The issue is that when I’m making online payments through PayPal, I use my business credit card to make the payment, not my PayPal balance. So, what ends up happening is I get the same transactions showing up in Triller, one from my credit card and one from PayPal.

Is there any way to fix this?

Hi, Ryan. Welcome to Tiller Community!

I pondered the same issue after adding PayPal to my tracked accounts. Ultimately, I stopped monitoring the PayPal account directly, and used the payments that covered the PayPal transactions as a proxy record of PayPal activity.

Downloading the PayPal transactions added no value. No useful payee information was provided by PayPal that didn’t also appear in the covering payment (in my case, from my checking account), and as you point out, it was duplicative.

Since I keep no substantial balance with PayPal, it did not figure into net worth or a balance sheet and, once I categorized the covering transaction, my budget bases were covered. PayPal is just a way station en route to the vendor. That’s the information I really want.

To get it and keep it, I routinely rename cryptic transactions descriptions such as PayPal, Square (sq ), Toast (TST) and other payment platforms with uniform descriptions such as the restaurant or retailer who was being paid. (The Full Description column in Tiller captures the downloaded description for posterity.) Further, I have applied data validation to the Description column that references a lookup of all prior transaction descriptions. This largely eliminates multiple versions of the same payee name (i.e. Cheesecake Factory; The Cheesecake Factory), which facilitates any sorting, searching, or reporting I subsequently do.

If there is a statement, transaction record or receipt, or other document related to the transaction that might be useful to have in the future, I upload it to Google Docs and paste a link to it in the Note column of the Tiller Transactions sheet.

Pardon me if I seem to be getting into the weeds. If you do wish to keep a record of all PayPal transactions as downloaded, you might wish to filter them out using the Institution column.

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PayPal is a PITA! What is happening is PayPal is paying the vendor, and pulling funds from your credit card, so technically there are three transactions:

  • Credit card shows transfer of funds to PayPal
  • PayPal shows transfer of funds from Credit Card
  • PayPal shows payment to Vendor

Lately PayPal hasn’t been giving me the transaction for the transfer from the Credit Card, so I’ve been creating them manually. I then categorize the first transaction as a ‘Transfer Out’, the second as a ‘Transfer In’, both are part of the Transfer group, which is hidden in budgets and reports. The third transaction is categorized appropriately so it appears in budget.
As @GregC mentions, if you have a normal PayPal account and don’t keep any funds in it, you could just ignore it all together as it doesn’t add any value to tracking your spending. I have a business account, which sometimes carries a balance, so there is data there that needs tracking, and thus I’m forced to deal with the strangeness that PayPal often comes with.

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This is my observation as well and I have a similar approach. I have a specific Transfer category called PayPal Transfer that I use for the charge on my credit card account and add a corresponding manual funding deposit to my PayPal account. The one difference in my approach is that I don’t hide the PayPal Transfer category from budgets and reports so I can see at a glance if there is a transfer imbalance, usually due to me forgetting to add the manual funding deposit.

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Makes sense. I do the same by using Conditional formatting to color any ‘Transfer In’ or ‘Transfer Out’ that doesn’t have a ‘Match’ tag next to it in the Tag column, so it’s easy for me to see what needs to have it’s matching transaction either downloaded or manually created. I then add the ‘Match’ tags as I see both sides of the transaction, and the formatting changes to grey (I color all my transfers grey, positives green, and negatives red).

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