PDA

View Full Version : Entering Weekly maintenence into quickbooks


pj550v12
12-07-2011, 08:02 PM
Hi all! I have been using Groundskeeper Pro for the past few years but would like to switch to Quickbooks. One (of the many) questions I have is how exactly do you guys go about entering weekly service charges for customers? In Groundskeeper you would "enter charges" for certain customers on certain days, and at the end of the month print their invoice and voila. I don't see a similar way to do this is quickbooks but maybe you guys can explain otherwise. I am finding I have to create the invoice and then enter each particular charge then. So what are you guys doing? Keeping track of all maintenance visits and dates and entering them all at once at the end of the month? I know there is probably an easier way. Any help would be appreciated guys!

pj550v12
12-08-2011, 05:24 PM
Anyone?
Posted via Mobile Device

zturncutter
12-08-2011, 06:22 PM
Explain how you are doing it now

zturncutter
12-08-2011, 06:31 PM
Are these customers by the cut ?

zturncutter
12-08-2011, 06:39 PM
Anyone ? :waving:

JFGLN
12-08-2011, 10:31 PM
You need scheduling software to work with Quickbooks. Look at QExpress.

JFGLN
12-08-2011, 10:32 PM
opps, Qxpress

Darryl G
12-08-2011, 10:43 PM
Hi all! I have been using Groundskeeper Pro for the past few years but would like to switch to Quickbooks. One (of the many) questions I have is how exactly do you guys go about entering weekly service charges for customers? In Groundskeeper you would "enter charges" for certain customers on certain days, and at the end of the month print their invoice and voila. I don't see a similar way to do this is quickbooks but maybe you guys can explain otherwise. I am finding I have to create the invoice and then enter each particular charge then. So what are you guys doing? Keeping track of all maintenance visits and dates and entering them all at once at the end of the month? I know there is probably an easier way. Any help would be appreciated guys!

I enter mine weekly (sometimes) and then save it as a pending invoice. Then the next week I go to the sales menu and pull up pending sales (be sure to change the search date to your invoice date or they won't show), sort them alphabetically and then just pull them up and add to them, save again as pending. At the end of the month I enter the final charges, right click to make it final and print/email. I do that part one by one, but you can also put them in the "to be printed" category as you go through them and print them all later.

You may also want to use the memorized transactions function, but I'm not proficient at that. I think you can have a memorized transaction so that it will remember your customer's rate. There was a thread on here about that recently but I didn't get into it...but I know it's here.

And right click is your friend on QB as in many other programs...it's context sensitive, so depending on what you're doing it will pull up the viable options.

Hope this helps...not saying it's the right or best way to do it but it's how I've been doing it.

Roger
12-09-2011, 08:30 AM
I have used QB for many years. My operation includes about 40-45 accounts. This is the procedure I have used, and found to be effective, efficient, and simple:

1. At the beginning of the month(first visit), I open a new invoice (I have templates set up for each month, ones with a tear-off at the bottom third of the page - my address and return address position to be used with a #9 double window envelope).
2. The date of the invoice is set to the last day of the month.
3. Every customer has an entry in the Item list; listed as mowXXXX, and the price per cut (no chance of entering a wrong price because it is part of the Item list).
4. Add an entry on the invoice, date, description (filled it from the Item list), price (filled in from the Item list).
5. SAVE the invoice (do no print, just save and close).
6. Go to the next customer, and repeat for each visit for the day.
7. Next week, find the invoice and open; go to the next entry on the invoice and make an entry just like #4. The only difference from previous entry is the date.
8. Repeat for all other customers of the daily work.
9. Repeat #6,7,8 throughout the month.
10. On the last visit for the month, make the typical entry (for weekly visits, each month will have four or five entries); when doing other work, such as leaf cleanup, bush trimming, etc., make an entry just like the mowing entry. These additional services have an entry in the Item list, but with no price. Any direct costs, such as mulch, are also added. If any work other than simple weekly mowing, the end of the month will have more than four (or five) entries. If items are taxed, the tax is added, and rolled up at the end. It no tax, it is so labeled.
11. Print the invoice (or send it via e-mail).
12. Designate the invoice as Pending. The balance will show as $0.00, but will show up under A/R as Pending.
13. When payment arrives, open the invoice, and designate as Final. Save the modified invoice.
14. Click Receive Payment, and add appropriate info (e.g. amount received, check number, date of receipt, and memo (I put the invoice number here, and the month -- shows up on a report of the account).
15. Repeat process for next month.

This might seem complicated if you are unfamiliar with QB. However, when you have some experience, all these pieces will make sense, and it will be much easier than it reads.

Any questions, PM or post here.

Darryl G
12-09-2011, 09:00 AM
Yeah, I use my item list differently. I pull up the Mowing item under my Lawn Care category and the default is $50, so I have to adjust it for each customer to their actual rate. I also date mine the first of the month following the month of service...sales and use tax is calculated based on invoice date and paid quarterly, so if I entered the date for my Sept. services as Sept. 30 it would be due at the end of Oct...if I put it in as Oct. 1 it's not due until the end of Jan. I enter mine as pending so they will not show up as receivable until they're finalized and I get a nice alphabetical list of them to pull from for subsequent entries. I had my accountant set me up when I first started the business and this is how he had me do it.

Roger - Not saying your way is wrong or anything...I like that your way you don't need to have a list or remember how much each lawn is. I don't understand why you need a different template for each month though...I use the same one all the time. I do have different ones for lawn care/landscaping and plowing though.

For those who bill a flat rate per month rather than per service, things would be different.

Roger
12-09-2011, 09:09 AM
My monthly templates are only different in that it has the month at the top, e.g. November Invoice, June Invoice, etc.

No, not a big issue, but it may help some organize their records.

mattfromNY
12-09-2011, 08:43 PM
My procedure is similar to Roger above, except that: When setting up a customer, I create a list of 'items' for each customer, such as: 'Smith, john, mow' that may carry a description of "mow and trim lawn; Date: Time:" and the appropriate price. I may also make an item for snow plowing, or other common repetitive tasks for each customer. Then, each month when I create his invoice, I type "smith" into the 'item code' line, choose "smith, john, mow" from the drop-down menu, scroll over the description to fill in the Date and Time. No re-typing information each week, guesswork or changing of prices for each task.
Once you start an invoice, and 'save and close' it, you can just go to 'Open customer invoices' to view/ update or print/ email them. This list also shows you the date created, and invoice number of each invoice. Helpful if you have multiple invoices open for one customer, or over due invoices.
Hope it helps. Matt.
With just about 120 weekly mowing accounts, I can usually enter all mowings for a month, for all customers in about 2 hours.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-09-2011, 09:26 PM
I've personally never found Weekly charging as efficient as having contracts that are a Flat rate, 12 Months a year, but everyone like to do things the way they find easier, thats just us, we bill 12 months per year a set agreed upon flat rate monthly charge...

Darryl G
12-09-2011, 11:21 PM
I've personally never found Weekly charging as efficient as having contracts that are a Flat rate, 12 Months a year, but everyone like to do things the way they find easier, thats just us, we bill 12 months per year a set agreed upon flat rate monthly charge...

I wish I could do that here, but it's just not the way it's usually done...dunno why. I've tried to sell the idea and I tell people how much it is per month for 12 months and they seem fine with it until suddenly it hits them that it's 12 months and not just during the growing season and they flip out...why should I pay you for mowing the lawn in the winter when you're not doing anything, lol. We also typically get a July/August dry spell and maybe they think they'll get ripped off if it's dry and doesn't need mowing...but that's factored in too...basically they wanna pay per cut for mowing here. Not much drought up your way usually, right? Maybe it's my sales approach, but I haven't been able to sell it so gave up on it.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-09-2011, 11:33 PM
I wish I could do that here, but it's just not the way it's usually done...dunno why. I've tried to sell the idea and I tell people how much it is per month for 12 months and they seem fine with it until suddenly it hits them that it's 12 months and not just during the growing season and they flip out...why should I pay you for mowing the lawn in the winter when you're not doing anything, lol. We also typically get a July/August dry spell and maybe they think they'll get ripped off if it's dry and doesn't need mowing...but that's factored in too...basically they wanna pay per cut for mowing here. Not much drought up your way usually, right? Maybe it's my sales approach, but I haven't been able to sell it so gave up on it.

Here in Southern Oregon we don't get any drought with the exception it does get fairly hot in the summer but nearly every property is equipped with an irrigation system, which is nice, its just standard landscaping practices here.

I don't give customers the option when doing a bid, I simply introduce the proposal for a flat fee, 12 months a year, I have maybe had 1 or 2 customers oblige in my business history. Most customers IMO would rather have the same bill amount, month after month, no fluctuation with service intervals or delays or missed services.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-09-2011, 11:35 PM
Most customers just understand it here, if I miss X week because of rain, it makes up for X month where there was 5 services instead the normal 4, etc and so on..

lawntennis
12-11-2011, 06:56 PM
Darryl you could set up different item numbers for the different prices you charge ie.
50m, 55m 60m 65m. the price and discription would enter automatically each time and save you a little time each entry. Just a thought.

prezek
12-12-2011, 09:19 PM
I generate STATEMENTS, not invoices. Not saying it's better, but I use the program and some of you had me confused. I have about 8 charges preprogrammed for mowing. 30, 35, 40, 45, etc. At the end of each day, I click statement charges on the main screen, click the customer's name and click the service performed, i.e. "Mowing $40"...At the end of the month, I click generate statements and print them out. For 20 lawns a day, it's about 40 clicks and press one button at month's end.

Darryl G
12-12-2011, 09:28 PM
Prezek...so when you enter statement charges it shows up as receivable and all that?

The only time I use statements is when a customer hasn't paid their previous month's invoice and I generate a statement that shows accounting of their previous balance and the new invoice, or depending on what I set the date as, an accounting of invoices and payments going back as far as I want.

prezek
12-12-2011, 09:35 PM
Yes. Shows up as a receivable. I vaguely remember searching for information when I first started using Quickbooks, I may have gone to my accountant, I don't remember, but found this to be the easiest way for businesses like ours, where you are doing multiple tasks for a single customer during a billing cycle.

Floridalandcare
12-14-2011, 10:11 PM
Just bill them monthly . I invoice all my clients on a monthly schedule unless they had something else done by us ,then I bill the separate . No need for weekly invoicing.

Darryl G
12-14-2011, 10:24 PM
I am and I think the others are billing monthly, just entering it weekly for services done during that week. Are you talking about billing a flat monthly fee? I think that's more common down south than here up north...up here it's usually by the cut plus extras.

t608
12-15-2011, 06:38 PM
I have an item called mowing. Then I have sub items under mowing for each customer with a generic description and the amount in the amount section. When I add the charge to the invoice I add the date in with the description. I do this all at once at the end of the month. It's not the best way to do this because I'm always late getting my invoices out. I need a better setup.

Ticolawnllc
12-15-2011, 10:43 PM
I set my items up as
Maintenace
1- Cut December 01-08-10-15-30 Qt 5 Price Total
2- Clean ups December 01 2011
3- Weeding December 10
4- ect You pissed me off so here is something extra
LawnCare
1-Fertilizer 20-00-00 Dec 07
2-Weed control Q 4 Pluse Broad leaf, crabgrass June 8th you still haven't paid this one
3-ect
Landscaping
1-Pavers Normayl I just do contracts and enter the job as one at that end
2-Planting
Other
1-Late Fee This one I go to the side bar and write in the unpaid invoice numbers
2- Disposal
3-ect
4-Freight
I have works sheets the guys hand in every week. I photo copy, give it back and collect at the end of the month. I use the crew copy for billing. the photo copys are just back up. The day after the last cut the bill is riten up and sent out. I do my cutting first. Check the print later and move on to next costomer. If the costomer as lawn care, I go back select that costomers invoice and add all extra work.
I use the main categorys to I can tell what I sold with Maintenace, Instal, and lawn care. I have QB 2011 and it has a company snap shot that show sales for each main category.

I'm a small OP so I can type up 30-35 invoices up in 2-3 Hours and go on with my day.

Darryl G
12-15-2011, 11:37 PM
I have my main service catergories in my items as Lawn Care, Landscaping and Snow Plowing and then sub items under them such as Spring Cleanup and Mowing and Hedge Trimming under Lawn care, etc. Then I have a Hauling and Disposal item with sub items for different disposal...by the bag, by the barrel and by the cubic yard. I like keeping things categorized that way so I can pull up my sales charts and see what percentage of my sales falls into Lawn Care, Landscaping and Snow Plowing, which is something my insurance company asks on my renewal forms. So to start an invoice I would pull up my customer's name from my customer list, select the mowing item, enter their weekly price, the price and date. If I hauled off materials I add that in...I don't haul anything for free unless it's something like a handfull of sticks or a half catcher of grass or something.

Ticolawnllc
12-15-2011, 11:51 PM
I If I hauled off materials I add that in...I don't haul anything for free unless it's something like a handfull of sticks or a half catcher of grass or something.

Me too. I get chared $10 to dump grass, $12 per yard of hard wood and$8 to dump leaves per yard. I charge $5 a bushel of grass and leaves the first yard is $15, each yard after that is $10. Hard wood and bush is $20 first yard $15 each yard after that.

I wish I could just compost that stuff. I just don't have the room

Tyler7692
12-16-2011, 01:00 AM
Use statements and statement charges instead of invoices. Print statements and send them out once a month. MUCH easier than the invoicing thing.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-16-2011, 01:07 AM
Use statements and statement charges instead of invoices. Print statements and send them out once a month. MUCH easier than the invoicing thing.

Aren't Statements on QB a list of outstanding Invoices?? Not sure how you make a statement without first creating invoices...

t608
12-16-2011, 09:31 AM
Aren't Statements on QB a list of outstanding Invoices?? Not sure how you make a statement without first creating invoices...
This is what I always thought.

Say for example you send bills out weekly. I send mine out monthly but using this as an example. So once a week you send out an invoice. At the end of the month you send out a statement which tells you and the customer what invoices have been paid or haven't been paid.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-16-2011, 12:25 PM
This is what I always thought.

Say for example you send bills out weekly. I send mine out monthly but using this as an example. So once a week you send out an invoice. At the end of the month you send out a statement which tells you and the customer what invoices have been paid or haven't been paid.

I don't know why anyone would mail out bills weekly, what a waste of paper and stamps, etc...

Tyler7692
12-16-2011, 12:47 PM
Dont even use invoices.

Just enter the statement charges each week, and then send the statement out once a month. That's it.

t608
12-16-2011, 02:40 PM
I don't know why anyone would mail out bills weekly, what a waste of paper and stamps, etc...
No you wouldn't want to invoice weelky, I was just trying to give Tyler an easy example of what statements are used for. They are not meant to be used the way he is using them.

Darryl G
12-16-2011, 02:43 PM
I could see invoicing with statments if you're charging a flat rate fee per month for services. If you're charging per cut and/or billing for multiple services/fees that vary month to month and require a detailed accouting of the charges I think invoices are more appropriate.

prezek
12-16-2011, 07:13 PM
Use statements and statement charges instead of invoices. Print statements and send them out once a month. MUCH easier than the invoicing thing.

Exactly what I was saying earlier in the thread. Right on the main screen, there is a button for statement charges. Every mowing/application/whatever you do, enter it as a statement charge over the course of a month. End of the month click print. Mail them out. Very simple.

DA Quality Lawn & YS
12-16-2011, 11:33 PM
I just got QB a week ago and have been setting things up for the 2012 season. I too thought Statements were the way to go for monthly bill customers. BIG BUT....you cannot do sales tax in Statements. I suppose you could lump it in but then you have to explain the rate on the Statement, and then you would have to track accumulated sales tax externally far as I gather....correct me if I am wrong.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-17-2011, 12:11 AM
I also use QB mailing service and you cannot use it to mail statements, only invoices...

Roger
12-17-2011, 05:11 PM
I just got QB a week ago and have been setting things up for the 2012 season. I too thought Statements were the way to go for monthly bill customers. BIG BUT....you cannot do sales tax in Statements. I suppose you could lump it in but then you have to explain the rate on the Statement, and then you would have to track accumulated sales tax externally far as I gather....correct me if I am wrong.

Statements are not intended for regular billing. This is why sales tax is not included in Statements, only Invoices.

Statements are for summaries. Your cannot receive payments against a Statement, only an Invoice. There are good reasons why an Invoice is the right way to use these kinds of software packages.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
12-17-2011, 05:15 PM
Statements are not intended for regular billing. This is why sales tax is not included in Statements, only Invoices.

Statements are for summaries. Your cannot receive payments against a Statement, only an Invoice. There are good reasons why an Invoice is the right way to use these kinds of software packages.

Yes, exactly, I have only used invoices and don't understand the folks wanting to use Statements, I didn't think it would work at all without creating invoices first off...

Darryl G
12-17-2011, 05:30 PM
Here is what they have in Quickbooks help about statements.

Use statements if you need to track how much your customers owe you (or accounts receivable, also called A/R), or if you receive payments in advance.

You enter statement charges one by one, as you perform the services for the customer.

Statement charges are ideal if you want to accumulate charges before requesting payment, or if you assess a regular monthly charge.

Later, you print a billing statement that shows the previous balance, details of all new charges, payments received, and the new balance. Billing statements (that is, statements that show information about new charges) are appropriate if you want to send monthly statements that show the detail of new charges as well as the previous balance and payments received.

Summary
Use statements if you:

Need to track how much your customers owe you

Receive payments in advance

Accumulate charges before requesting payment

Need to show customers a history of their account activity (charges, payments, and balance)

Statement limitations

Examples of business likely to use statement charges and billing statements include medical and dental practices, property management companies, and organizations that assess monthly fees.

Personally, monthly invoices work best for me with statements only being used if my customer's previous montly invoice was not paid or if they get confused about what they paid and what they owe.

pieperlc
12-19-2011, 09:41 AM
Statements are not intended for regular billing. This is why sales tax is not included in Statements, only Invoices.

Statements are for summaries. Your cannot receive payments against a Statement, only an Invoice. There are good reasons why an Invoice is the right way to use these kinds of software packages.

You can receive payments against the individual statement charges. We've been doing it this way for years. On the statement it shows the date, the service performed, and the amount. If a customer is past due it shows them the outstanding amount, no need to print off a separate form. Entering is fast. You just key in the customer and enter the charge. When printing at the end of the month it prints a statement for all customers with outstanding balances, so if you performed a one time service and that customer hasn't paid, they get a reminder printed. I don't have to worry about sales tax yet, so it may not work for everybody.

lasher66
12-20-2011, 11:59 PM
Im in the same boat. Been using groundskeeper for my routing, invoicing and I use quickbooks to track my expenses using the register. Kind of sucks because I cant see a good snapshot of the company all on one screen. But, I cant get past everyone saying it takes 2 to 3 hrs to enter 40 invoices every month when I have about 130 invoices a month. With groundskeeper, I get home every day, open up it up, click mondays route for example, hit enter charges and automatically charges everyone on mondays route the amount I set up for mowing in 2 seconds. If there was any extra work, I can easily enter it manually on the same screen. So I have about 15 min a month in adding charges to 130 invoices. Wish there was a better way for quickbooks to do something similar.