In an account of mine that I use to receive bills and make payment for some services, I wonder what "balance available" means? Why is it different from "balance due"?

Balance Due: $0.00

Balance available: $500.00

The only explanation about "balance available" I could get from the the account management party is:

The Limit that you can charge up to is $500.00 in which we will bill you monthly in the payment system.


  • Are you willing to provide any additional information at all? Are these numbers from a bank account statement? credit card account statement? Have you tried calling the issuer of the statement to ask what these numbers mean? – Dilip Sarwate Jan 29 '15 at 14:45
  • Updated. I just would like to know what that means in general. I don't understand the explanation I got from the issuer. – Tim Jan 29 '15 at 16:05

Balance available is (Effectively) your credit limit minus your current balance due and any pending charges. It's the credit equivalent of your bank account (positive) balance: how much could you bill/charge if you wanted to. With a balance available of $500, you could charge something for $480, but you wouldn't be allowed to charge $530.

With a limit of 500, you might have:

Balance (due): $0
Balance Available: $500


Balance (due): $50
Balance Available: $450

etc. The available balance also takes into account various credit holds (like if you go to the gas station, the pay-at-pump puts a $100 hold on for a day or two before you pump, to make sure you can cover the actual cost - it will be adjusted down once the reconciliation occurs, and you'll never be charged interest for it, but it does reduce your balance available. Those holds are often included in "Pending Charges" or similar.

Balance: $0
Pending Charges: $75
Balance Available: $425

You can also have other kinds of available balance - like available for cash advance, etc. - that might be lower.

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