Spring-Clean Your QuickBooks Company File

After this crazy, trying, long winter, you’ll probably hear few complaints about things like puddles in the street, summer heat and spring cleaning. Most people are eager to throw open the doors and windows, and attack the dirt that the season left behind, both inside and outside of the house.

Just as there are tasks you can do to spring clean around the house, there are a few tasks you can do to spring clean your QuickBooks.

Review your QuickBooks version: Is it time to get a newer version?  Or perhaps your business has grown or evolved so that the QuickBooks you’re currently using is no longer the best fit.  Intuit will discontinue support for the 2011 products, but don’t wait until the last minute.  We’ll be happy to help you get the QuickBooks best for you – just contact our office.

Review your lists (Chart of Accounts, Items, Customers, Jobs, Vendors): Look to see if you can make some of the names, accounts or items on the list inactive, so you have a smaller list.  Perhaps you may even want to do some organizing – especially in your Items list.

Resort your lists: Make a backup first (File>Create Backup or Backup Company file).  Then click on List (on the menu bar) and go to each list named in the List menu, including those in the Customer & Vendor Profile List.

Usually down at the bottom of the list will be a button with the name of the list.  Click on that button and then select Re-sort list. FYI – not all lists have a resort option, so don’t panic!

For Customers, vendors, employees, click on Banking>Write Check. Then click on the Payee field, press Ctrl-L.  This will pull up all your names. Click on Names down at the bottom, then select Re-sort.  (Ever wonder why you can’t use the same name for both a customer and a vendor?  It’s because they’re actually all in only 1 table, not separate tables!).

Head off issues. 

Verify Your Data: Click on File>Utilities>Verify Data. If your data won’t verify, then contact our office.

Press F2 and if the DB File Fragments (found about halfway down on the left) are nearing 100, contact our office. There are a series of steps we can take to lower the number.

Address issues: If you are experiencing any of the following issues, contact our office for assistance:

  • Performance problems
  • Inability to execute specific processes, like upgrading
  • Occasional program crashes
  • Missing data (accounts, names, etc.)
  • Refusal to complete transactions
  • Mistakes in reports

One of the reasons QuickBooks files get corrupt is simply because they get large. That’s either a sign of your company’s success or of a lack of periodic maintenance. Tasks such as creating verified backups (from inside of QuickBooks) on a monthly basis, and resorting lists annually, you can do yourself.  Other maintenance tasks might be best left for a professional.

An Ounce of Prevention…

We’ve suggested many times here that you contact us for help with your spring cleanup. While that may seem self-serving, remember that it takes us a lot less time and money to take preventive steps with your QuickBooks company file than to troubleshoot a broken one.


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