Monthly Quickbooks Checklist for Business Owners

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Just as a car needs regular maintenance, your business requires consistent monthly bookkeeping. Think of this monthly checklist as your maintenance guide. Neglecting routine work can lead to financial mistakes, unpaid invoices, cash flow issues, and more expensive work at tax time.  Thankfully, with tools like QuickBooks Online, the monthly process is simple and efficient.

Confirm your QuickBooks is set up properly

Ensure your account is linked to your bank accounts and credit cards. Double-check configurations like tax settings, invoice templates, and user permissions. Make sure payroll is set up if applicable. An accurate initial setup paves the way for smoother monthly checks and fewer financial mistakes.   Organizing your chart of accounts properly is critical to assist your accountant prepare your tax return and pay the correct tax amount.   If you’re unsure about your QB setup or need a guiding hand, don’t hesitate to reach out for Quickbooks help.

10-Step Monthly QuickBooks Online Checklist

1. Update Customer and Vendor Information

Regularly review and refresh contact details, payment terms, and any notes to ensure smooth transactions.

Important Tip: Keeping customer info updated can help improve your invoice delivery success rate.

2. Categorize and Match Transactions

As transactions flow in from your bank and credit cards, categorize them appropriately. This keeps your financial data organized and accurate.  Don’t rely on the automatic “match” feature.  These are frequently incorrect and will lead to major inaccuracies in your financial statements.

Don’t Forget: Regularly review the “For Review” tab to ensure no transaction goes unmatched.

3. Review and Send Invoices

Generate and email invoices for any services rendered during the month. If you bill for the same services each month, you can easily set up recurring invoices to automatically be created and sent to clients. This is useful for monthly and annual contracts.

Important Tip: Personalize your invoice reminders in QBsettings for a friendly nudge to clients.

4. Review Unpaid Invoices and Send Reminders

Monitor your A/R Summary closely.  At the end of every month, send out reminder emails or make contact with any customers who carry an open balance.

5. Record Monthly Bills and Expenses

Enter any bills or expenses that arise, ensuring they’re categorized correctly and recorded in the appropriate account.

Detailed Instructions: 1. Go to the + NEW button.. 2. Click on “Add Expense” or “Add Check” or Enter Bills” depending on the nature of the transaction. 3. Fill in the necessary details and save.

6. Reconcile Bank and Credit Card Accounts

Match your QB balance with your actual bank statements to spot and rectify any discrepancies.

Don’t Forget: Regular reconciliations can help detect any unauthorized transactions or errors early on.

7. Run Payroll (if applicable)

Ensure all employee hours, salaries, and deductions are up-to-date and process the monthly payroll.

Important Tip: Regularly update any changes in employee details or tax settings to avoid payroll mistakes.  Confirm that monthly payroll taxes are debited from the payment account.  Review the quarterly payroll tax submittals to the federal and state tax agencies to ensure accuracy with your records.

8. Monitor Loan and Interest Payments

Record any loan payments made, ensuring you separate the principal from the interest.  Loan accounts should be reconciled monthly to ensure accuracy on the balance sheet.

Don’t Forget: Regularly checking loan balances can help you strategize on early repayments or refinancing options.

9. Generate Key Financial Reports

Create monthly reports like Profit & Loss, Balance Sheet, and Cash Flow statements to gauge your business’s financial health.

Important Tip: Regularly reviewing these reports will offer insights into areas of growth or concern. P&L is a report that all business owners should look at monthly. It’s a great way to catch recurring expenses that you no longer use or need.

10. Set Aside Funds for Taxes

If you are self-employed, use QBO’s tax estimation tools to forecast the tax amount you could expect to owe.  Be sure to set aside the funds you’ll owe, avoiding year-end surprises.  Your accountant can advise on the proper quarterly tax submittals and we can ensure those payments are made, which will avoid a huge tax payment in April. Don’t Forget: Always consult with a tax professional to ensure you’re saving the right amount. This checklist offers a structured approach to monthly bookkeeping in QuickBooks Online. By following these steps, you’ll ensure your business’s financials are in order, ready to face a new month with confidence.

Expert help if you need it

Navigating QuickBooks can be a breeze with the right checklist in hand. But if you ever feel like you’re treading water, know that we’re here to help. From one-time cleanups to monthly check-ins, our bookkeeping services are designed to give you peace of mind. There’s value in doing it yourself, but there’s also value in expert guidance. If you ever need assistance or just want to ensure everything’s on track, reach out for a free consultation. We’re QuickBooks Certified and work remotely with clients from all across the USA.

Blue Swan Bookkeeping

Blue Swan Bookkeeping

BookKeeping Service

Blue Swan Bookkeeping, based in Newton, NJ, specializes in helping small businesses their finances. Led by Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor Ellen Griffiths, our team offers monthly bookkeeping, QuickBooks training, payroll, and tax support. We prioritize honesty, transparency, and affordability.

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