Friday, October 8, 2010



The following are 10 very useful tips when using Quickbooks accounting software:

1. Use keyboard shortcuts.

Just as in other Windows-based applications, there are numerous keyboard shortcuts you can use in QuickBooks. Here are a few:

Ctrl-I Create invoice
Ctrl-E Edit transaction selected in register
Ctrl-F Find transaction
Ctrl-J Open Customer Center
Ctrl-M Memorize transaction or report
Ctrl-N New invoice, bill, check, or list item in context
Ctrl-Q QuickReport on transaction or list item
Ctrl-T Open memorized transaction list
Ctrl-W Write new check
Ctrl (while opening) Start QuickBooks without a company file

2. Customize the icon bar.

QuickBooks comes with a default icon bar at the top of the screen. You can add, remove, or modify the icons to better suit your work needs.

To remove an icon: Go to the View menu and click Customize Icon Bar. Select the icon you want to remove and click Delete.

To add an icon: Go to View Customize Icon Bar and click Add. Select the desired item from the list and change the label and description if you wish. Click OK.

To modify an icon: Go to View Customize Icon Bar and select the item you want to modify. Click Edit, make your changes, and click OK.

The Customize Icon Bar window lets you make other changes to the icon bar. You can also add separators between icons, change the order in which icons appear, and opt to show both icons and text or icons only.

3. Use the QuickMath Calculator.

This is cool, especially if you miss the old calculator tape that used to come out of the machine. QuickBooks has its own calculator (click Edit Use Calculator), but it's more fun to use the QuickMath Calculator.

Click inside the field where you want to calculate (say, the amount field on a check).

Press = and a mini-tape will appear.

Type the numbers you want to calculate, followed by the appropriate sign (+, -, /, *, or =).

Click C once to clear an entry, twice to clear the tape.

Press Esc to cancel.

4. Use program preferences.

QuickBooks has a setup wizard that helps you lay the groundwork for your company, but it's not comprehensive: There are many more decisions you need to make that aren't covered by the wizard.

Click Edit Preferences to open the Preferences window. Among the options you can set here are:

What are the default accounts for activities like writing checks and paying bills?

Do you want a one-window or multi-window view?

What is the default annual interest rate?

Do you want to use inventory and purchase orders?

Do you create estimates?

Do you want to use multiple currencies?

Do you want to use payroll?

What reminders would you like?

Do you charge sales tax?

Do you track time?

5. Use right-click menus.

QuickBooks makes extensive use of right-click menus everywhere in the program. Try them out anywhere you want to do something instead of heading right for the toolbar icons and menus.

For example, highlight an entry in the Chart of Accounts, and you can perform myriad tasks, such as editing or deleting the account, customizing the columns, transferring funds, or getting a QuickReport.

6. Clean up your Chart of Accounts.

As you go through QuickBooks setup wizard, you'll indicate what kind of business you have. QuickBooks then assigns a Chart of Accounts (income, expense, and other accounts that serve as the backbone of your bookkeeping) that best matches your needs.

This Chart of Accounts may be overkill for you, or it may not have enough entries for your specific business. Clean it up; it'll help neaten some reports and make life easier for you.

Click Lists Chart of Accounts to see what you've got, then right-click to customize. Be sure to assign the correct account type—this is critical to the accuracy of your books.

7. Use Classes so you can better track profit and loss.

When you're working with Preferences, make sure Classes is turned on (Edit Preferences Accounting Company Preferences Use class tracking).

Classes are your own way of categorizing elements of a business.

When you enter a transaction, a Class drop-down box will appear; you can create your own Class, such as Marketing, or Advertising, or Building One, or Region A. Then you'll be able to run a Profit & Loss by Class report.

8. Export reports to Excel.

QuickBooks' reports are highly customizable, but they don't have Excel's power to manipulate and format data and to run what-if scenarios.

You can easily export QuickBooks reports to Excel.

Open the report you want to export.

Click the Export button at the top of the report.

Choose whether to export as a comma-separated values (CSV) file, or into a new or existing Excel workbook.

Click the Advanced tab if you want to preserve some of the QuickBooks report formatting options.

Click Export.

9. Use Intuit's free support options.

Intuit charges for phone support if you have an issue involving more than installation or certain bugs and errors. But the company offers plenty of free assistance online.

Poke around user forums to see if someone else has had the same problem you're experiencing—the odds are pretty good, after all—click Help Live Community.
QuickBooks' program-based help is quite comprehensive. Click Help QuickBooks Help (or press F1) to search.

If that doesn't work, click Help Support to search the QuickBooks KnowledgeBase.

10. Back your data up to the cloud.

QuickBooks contains a wizard to walk you through the process of backing up your data to a removable data storage device. If you'd rather Intuit handled your backups and kept them safe, QuickBooks' Online Backup Service is an option, though not a free one. Plans start at five bucks a month and let you retrieve your files from any computer with an Internet connection.

Hopefully, these basic tips will help you navigate around Quickbooks easier. If you have any questions about Quickbooks or our Quickbooks Training or Quickbooks Installtion services please give us a call or email us. We can be reached at:

email us: OR 214-250-0195

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010


10 Common QuickBooks Mistakes:

1. Account for outstanding bank account transactions.

If there was any interim time between the date of your statement and your beginning date in QuickBooks, make sure that you also recorded any checks or deposits that occurred in between.
For illustration, if your QuickBooks start date was 01/01/09, you would utilize the ending balance on your December 2008 bank statement as your opening bank account balance.

2. Pay bills in two steps

Not using Multiple Steps to pay Your Bills To pay bills in QuickBooks you should use a 2 step process. First step when you receive a bill enter it into the enter Bills window, this gives you the added benefit of being able to track how much money you owe. next when you are ready to make the payment for the bill choose the bill from the list in the Bill Payment window.

3. Deposit Your Receivable into the Undeposited Funds Account

When you use the Sales Receipt or Receive Payments forms to track receivables coming in to your commercial enterprise, you have the option to put payment into the “Undeposited Funds” account, which is like a cash drawer where you keep checks and currency in between trips to the bank. If you select this option on either form, QuickBooks won’t recognize the receivables into your bank account until you tell it that you have actually taken your money to the bank. When you do go to the bank, record it in QuickBooks by utilizing the Make Deposits window, and choose the payments you have just deposited. Do not record a separate deposit into your bank account register to show this money.

4. Incorrectly set up preferences to indicate when you owe sales tax .

If the amount of sales tax you owe appears to be incorrect, check to make sure you’ve set up your preferences right, telling QuickBooks when you owe sales tax. You may owe sales tax on an accrual basis, or when you make a sale, even if you haven’t received payment yet. Or, you may owe sales tax on a cash basis, or when you actually receive receivables from your client.

To verify your sales tax is set up correctly, follow these steps:

1. From the Edit menu, choose Preferences.
2. On the left side of the window, click the Sales Tax icon.
3. Select the Company Preferences tab.
4. Under Owe Sales Tax, select either “As of invoice date,” or “Upon receipt of payment.”

I highly recommend you choose Upon receipt of payment even if you are reporting on an accurral basis.

5. Don’t enter a credit card charge and a bill for the same expense.

If you charge a purchase and record it into QuickBooks through the enter Credit Card Charge window, do not record it again as a bill (in the record Bills window). If you do, it’ll appear like you owe twice as much as you actually do.

6. Use Sub-Items and Sub-Accounts.

If an account or item has sub accounts or items, do not designate your transactions to the parent item or account if you can help it. Always use the sub- items and accounts to increase your knowledge of your business. Sub-accounts and sub-items will show up on your QuickBooks reports as separate items, but will still be grouped together and sub-totaled.

7. Link Up Inventory Items with the Appropriate Accounts.

If you keep inventory, make sure that you assign your inventory items to all the right accounts. All inventory type item should have three: Inventory Asset account, Cost of Goods Sold, and a Sales account.

When you tell QuickBooks that you have inventory, it automatically sets up an Inventory Asset account (to track the current value of you inventory) and a Cost of Goods Sold account (to track how much you paid for your inventory items). You must also set up sales income accounts to track the income you make from selling your inventory items.

Here’s how to check yours:

1. From the List menu, select Reports, and then Items. QuickBooks will display your Item list, detailing each one’s name, description, type, posting account, and price.
2. Verify that each inventory item is associated with all three accounts – Cost of Goods Sold, Inventory Asset, and Income Account

8. Be Careful with Reconciliation Adjustments.

QuickBooks won’t normally make reconciliation adjustments automatically. However, if you’re out of balance in the Reconciliation screen and you select Reconcile Now, QuickBooks will make the adjustment, and post the positive or negative amount to the Opening Bal Equity account.
do not let QuickBooks do this! The correct thing to do with small differences you find when reconciling is to enter a check or a deposit for the amount, using the bank statement date for the transaction date and put it to an appropriate account set upon your best guess of where the difference arose. You can then mark that transaction as cleared and proceed with reconciling.
In fact, your Opening Balance Equity account is a clearing account, and should always display a $0 balance. If it doesn’t, your QuickBooks was not set up properly. You can check for these adjustments by looking at the account’s transaction detail:

From the List menu, select Chart of Accounts.
Double-click your Opening Balance Equity account.
If there are transactions in the account not related to your beginning balances, reclassify them

9. Paying Loans

Recording a Bill for the Monthly payment instead of recording and asset and a liability
When creating loan payments we often enter the monthly loan amount as a Bill.
Here is how you should process loan payments: Setup a Fixed Asset with sub accounts for the Cost and Accumulated Depreciation. Then, set up a liability account with the loan balance. Go to Banking> Loan Manager>Set Up New Loan. Follow the directions, then click the Set up payment option to have QuickBooks document the monthly payment.

10. Do Not Try to Do it All Yourself.

QuickBooks is easy to use, but it will be even easier and give you more peace of mind if you work with a QuickBooks Pro Advisor . Setting up your QuickBooks correctly is critical to getting the most out of your QuickBooks program. The HELP topics are also a great resource.

Certainly - you could simply allow the pros to do it for you - hire a bookkeeper or accounting professional to help you with your bookkeeping. Give us a call to speak with a Quickbooks Pro specialist at 214-250-0195.

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