Category Archives: Job Costing

Working with Customer Deposits (Or Prepayments)

Do you take payment up front from customers when starting a job? Whether you’re in the construction industry, landscaping, trades or some other type of business, deposits up front help cash flow and enable you to pay employees and purchase materials for the job. While there are different ways to handle this scenario, not all of them are correct from an accounting perspective. The results can be misleading information or confusion for the bookkeeper or customer. Here’s the method I recommend for handling prepayments in QuickBooks. Continue reading

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New and Improved Intuit Payroll Products

Have you looked at your payroll options recently? Although changing your payroll option can be a pain to change, it is worth evaluating from time to time to make sure you’re getting the payroll option best suited to your business needs. And since Intuit recently released some new offerings late 2019, this might be the perfect time to start evaluating! Continue reading

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QuickBooks Desktop vs. QuickBooks Online

If you’re in a desktop version of QuickBooks (Pro/Premier/Enterprise) you may be wondering if it’s time to move to QuickBooks Online (QBO) so you have remote access and because some 3rd party products are saying Desktop QuickBooks (QBDT) is going away or work only with QBO. With the new products rolling out soon, I thought this would be good to discuss pros/cons – and my opinion ;-) Continue reading

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QuickBooks Setup for Success

It’s the start of a new year and for many, this is the time to make changes to your QuickBooks before your season gets busy. Here are 4 major areas I consider when working with contractor clients: Continue reading

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Allocating Overhead by Job

Your jobs have to generate enough revenue to not only cover the job, but your overhead AND still result in a profit. So, you need to keep those “extra” costs in mind when estimating jobs. Last time, we discussed allocating at the division level (which might get done monthly or quarterly). Today we’re focusing on the job level. You can allocate overhead costs one of two ways: (1) on an account level (you would view in a P & L for the job) and (2) at the Item level (which provides more detail) – you would view these in your Estimated vs Actual Details and Job Profit Profitability Detail reports Continue reading

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Allocating Overheard Part 1

Understanding all the costs that involved with a job is important for contractors. There are the obvious ones such as labor and materials. However, you not only need to cover direct job costs but also the overhead for the business, and still net a profit (or why else be in business?!) A few areas to consider could include office staff/expenses, equipment/vehicle costs (direct and indirect like wear & tear), indirect costs (e.g. fuel), shop staff, repairs & maintenance. There are a variety of ways you can allocate overhead. Today we’ll look at the simplest and fastest method – allocating by division. I’ve broken this up into 2 parts: (1) allocating ALL your overhead expenses and (2) allocating your Indirect Costs Continue reading

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Commonly Overlooked Features in QuickBooks Part 2

I frequently see that there are features in QuickBooks that can be very useful but clients frequently are unaware of their existence or how they can help. So, today’s article takes a look at several features you might find helpful. Continue reading

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What Your Profit and Loss Is Really Telling You

Who doesn’t like to look at profit?! But I find many have misconceptions about what the Profit & Loss report (or Income Statement) can/should do for them. This is usually due to a lack of knowledge when it comes to accounting. But whether you are the business owner or the bookkeeper you should understand at least a little bit about accounting and your financial reports. So here are some basics that will help you both review your jobs or projects as well as your business. Continue reading

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Estimated vs Actual Hours

How did the actual time on the job compare to what you estimated? That’s one of the big things you want do know, right? If job costs run over, it’s usually in the area of labor, not materials. Here’s how you create it. Continue reading

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Margin vs Markup

When reviewing the job cost reports in QuickBooks and turning on the %, it’s important to know just what percentage you see in the report. Where this really jumps out is comparing the P & L for a particular job to the Job Profitability Detail report. You’ve probably noticed these percentages are not the same Continue reading

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