A balance sheet is a snapshot of your company’s financial position at a specific point in time. One side of the balance sheet details your assets, while the other displays your liabilities and equity. The two sides must equal, or be balanced, hence the name of the report. A balance sheet can be generated through the reports tools in the QuickBooks software.
Types of Balance Sheets
Five different types of balance sheets can be generated in QuickBooks.
- Standard: A basic balance sheet that shows your assets, liabilities and equity for a specific date.
- Detail: Expands on the data on the Standard balance sheet by displaying beginning and ending balances for the month along with each transaction that took place during the time period.
- Summary: A brief report that just shows the ending balances for all types of accounts, rather than each individual account. For example, the summary report will show the accounts receivables balance as one lump sum rather than separated by the type of receivable.
- Previous Year Comparison: Compares the balance sheet for a specific date this year to a corresponding date one year earlier.
- Class: The data on the balance sheet is displayed by class, which is QuickBooks' way of categorizing your transactions. For example, expense classes for a photographer may include transportation, food and lodging, photography equipment, computer equipment, assistant, DVDs and prints, postage and marketing. Classes must be assigned to every income and expense transaction to be able to use this report
Generating a Balance Sheet
- Open QuickBooks and choose the account from the File menu from which you want to generate the balance sheet.
- Click Reports and choose Company & Financial from the drop-down menu.
- Choose the type of balance sheet that suits your current needs from the submenu.
The balance sheet will be for the current date when it is first displayed on the screen. You can click the date field and enter a new date to view the report from a different time period. Choose Refresh once you have typed in the new dates to generate the revised balance sheet.
Beth Rifkin has been writing health- and fitness-related articles since 2005. Her bylines include "Tennis Life," "Ms. Fitness," "Triathlon Magazine," "Inside Tennis" and others. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Temple University.