Tips for Using QuickBooks

Posted on April 4, 2014 by

It is the goal of this column to answer questions about QuickBooks and how it is used in the REI arena. Know how to record transactions in the proper way and have your set of books in good shape when it comes time for taxes. It is our intention to do this by you, the members submitting questions to, and getting answers here in this column.

Q: I have negative balances on some expenses on my income statement.  How did this happen?

A: Negative expense numbers can happen. It is possible you made a purchase and booked it to one expense and returned it and booked the refund to a different expense.  Therefore, the refund had no expense to cancel out (if there is nothing else in that account). Do a search for the original purchase and either move that to the account you booked the refund to or put the refund where the purchase is.  A negative balance can show up if you made a journal entry and did not post the debit/credit transaction correctly.  Just go back and reverse the entry.

Q: I run some reports and customize them and filter them to get the information I want, then the next time I want that same report I don’t remember how I got there.   How can I keep the report as I made it with the information I like?

A: While your report is open and set up how you like it, go to file dropdown list, then down the list to Memorize Report and click on it.  It will then ask you to name your report. It does not save it in the memorized transactions. You need to go to Report’s dropdown list and go to Memorized Reports and your report with its’ special name you gave it will be there.

Q: Sometimes when I close QuickBooks® it asks me if I want to “back up the file”.  How often should I back up?

A: My personal practice is to back up every time I do any data entry.  I also use Carbonite to back up everything on my PC, external hard drive and my laptop, along with having an external hard drive to create a “mirror image” of my PC.  I keep the individual data files that I have backed up on a thumb drive so that I have easy access quickly if needed. 

Karen BershadKaren Bershad is The Small Business Advisor. Most small business owners have a challenge handling all the different areas of running a business. The accounting can be a challenge, particularly if the software seems overwhelming. The Small Business Advisor is what you may need to get you to the next level of your business. We work at your office or provide off site assistance in getting things under control by providing a wide variety of services that are specifically for the small business.

Contact Karen Bershad


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