1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Catch up on the conversation with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, in the Franchising forum.

    Dismiss Notice

Quickbooks Question

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Performance Lawn Care, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. Performance Lawn Care

    Performance Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    Hey all,
    I'm not too smooth with quickbooks yet so I could use a hand setting rates on an item. What I would like to do is to have lets say "lawn maintenance" as an item, but somehow set a different rate for each account. Right now having to enter the rate each time on each months invoice is a good bit cumbersome and I feel that its defeating the purpose of a good program like this. Thanks for your help. Bill
  2. backors

    backors LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    I use qbooks pro. We set up an item "Lawn Care Agreement", then set up sub item for each customer. We put the price per month in for each customer (sub item) and when we create an invoice, we key in their name and it pulls up the price. We then add any additional charges to the invoice.

    Hope this helps.
  3. Lovingreen

    Lovingreen LawnSite Member
    Messages: 147

    qickbooks support is very helpful, you should give them a call
  4. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    I do much like backors, ...

    Item: Grass cutting
    Sub-item: mowcustomer1, $35.00
    Sub-item: mowcusotmer2, $45.00

    When making an entry on the invoice, the appropriate sub-item is called up, and the price will be inserted properly.
  5. Frue

    Frue LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,472

    Roger how long does it take to bill all your customers? Using quickbooks. Do you use the monthly billing total or do you do dates attended at the property and services provided then the charge?
  6. Performance Lawn Care

    Performance Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    Yea this is kinda what I was getting after. On the invoice when you print it will it say Grass Cutting under the item column or will it say mowcustomer1
  7. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Frue, I can't give you a good answer to your "time" question -- good question, though.

    Let me explain. I will limit my description o those customers that have reoccurring costs (e.g. weekly mowing). I bill monthly. At the beginning of the month, after I have a billable event for a customer, I open a new invoice. I make an entry for that task, be sure the "date of invoice" is set to the last day of the month. "due date" is set by QB on my setting (15 day net). I close the new invoice, and it is filed away. I do this activity every night after getting home, covering all customers with a billable event for the day.

    As the month rolls on, and I do the next billable event for a customer, I open the existing invoice (remember, it has not been printed and sent, or e-mailed). I click on the next entry line, and enter the appropriate information. Usually, the only thing that needs to be entered is the date. I use the scheme noted above with an item list to fill out the full entry -- description of work, amount. Again, I close the invoice. It now has two entries in the service list. I do this task for all customers serviced for the day, every customer with a billable event. No invoices have been sent.

    As the month rolls on, the third entry is made, fourth, and sometimes the fifth (some months have five Mondays, for example). If there are two entries, such as "Leaf control" and "Grass cutting," they both are entered. If I have direct cost, such as leaf disposal, it too is entered at the same time when the event happens -- at least that night.

    On the last entry of the month, when I know that a customer will not have any more billable events, after I've made the routine entry, I now process the invoice out. That could mean printing, ready for an envelope, or it could mean an e-mail distribution. So, despite the date on the invoice being the last day of the month, the invoice could be processed out a few days before -- just do it when I know there is no more entries for the month. If there is any doubt, I just close, and do a final cleanup of any invoices on the last day of the month. My procedure is one of "keeping up daily," rather than "process the invoices out, all at one time." I never sit down and print a total set of invoices for the month. Rather, I print them (or e-mail) as I make the last entry of work for the month.

    When an invoice is processed out, I activate the "Pending" status. This zeros out the balance on the customer's account. A quick scan of the customer list, and their outstanding balance will show me any invoices not yet processed out. A "pending" status means that none of the balances will show up on a report, other than a "pending" report. I can make a quick "pending" report with a quick scan to see if I'm getting them processed out rightly.

    When I get a payment, I activate the customer, and click on the invoice and change status to "final." The watermark of "pending" is removed,the balance shows up in all records. I click on "receive payments" and fill in the amount of the payment, the date received (which should be the current date -- process payments as they come in the door), the check number, the invoice number against which the check is to be applied, and the month of the invoice. The check and invoice number is very useful in preparing summary Statements for review and reference. If there is a question about a customer's payment pattern, I can quickly make a Statement. All the entries of billable events are noted, plus the invoice number and date, plus the payment record (e.g. customer's check number). If there is a question, I can send the customer one of these reports to check against their checking account information. This has helped in many cases where a customer isn't sure if they have paid, or in some cases, have paid twice against the same invoice.

    Time, ... The daily entries may take 10-15 minutes. This includes making two sets of backup files, ... done every day. When payments are processed, I need a few extra minutes to record the information about check, etc.

    When making a deposit, say once a week, I click on "record deposits.' I will get a screen of all payments in a receivable list. I can flip through the checks, being sure I have the check and the right entry, a cross-check on what checks I have in hand, against the deposit and payment records I have in QB. It takes much longer to write out a deposit slip (bank insists on a deposit slip with all checks listed -- will not accept a QB list).

    This all sounds very complicated, but is far simpler than it sounds. I want to keep my records up to date every day, and I want to have my records consistent with my bank account. I can do a quick statement reconciling when the bank statement arrives.

    I should also add that when I am entering billable events for customers, I also enter any expenses incurred that day (e.g. debit card receipts or gas, tools, checks written, cash, etc). This means my expense list is up to date daily.

    Don't know if this helps, ...
  8. prezek

    prezek LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 291

    Roger-Thanks for taking the time to post that. I switched over to Quickbooks myself this year and am learning as I go.
  9. Performance Lawn Care

    Performance Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    hmm thats a really good way to look at it. instead of an hour or 2 at the end of the month you take 10 minutes after your done for the day and update it. seems that would be a real plus for the expense list you mentioned at the end, instead of having to keep receipts for the month then go back through them, you do it that day = no lost papers, no "what did i buy that day?". a good new perspective, thanks.

Share This Page