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Balance Sheet Template: How to Prepare a Balance Sheet

The International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) have formulated internationally accepted rules, standards, or procedures that are used by companies to prepare financial statements to record and report accounting information.

As per IAS 1 - Presentation of Financial Statements, every business entity is required to prepare a statement of financial position, also known as the balance sheet at the end of an accounting period along with the other fundamental financial statements. These include a profit and loss statement and cash flow statement.

Such financial statements provide useful information to both internal and external stakeholders regarding financial soundness, performance, and changes in the financial position of a business entity.

Thus, a simple balance sheet gives a true and fair view of your business’s financial position.

In this article, you will learn:

What is a Balance Sheet

A simple balance sheet is one of the three fundamental financial statements that give a snapshot of the financial position of your business entity at the end of an accounting period. 

It basically showcases your company’s assets, liabilities, and shareholder’s equity as on a specific date. That is, what your company owns, the amount it owes together with the amount that is invested by its shareholders.

In other words, a company balance sheet is a financial statement that calculates the worth of your business (equity) by deducting the amount that your business entity owes (liabilities) from the amount that it owns (assets).

Furthermore, the balance sheet is also referred to as a statement that showcases Sources of Funds and the Application of Funds.

This is because your business requires assets that have a longer life, that is, more than one year. Such resources can be acquired via funding provided either by you as an owner or a group of owners in the form of your investments, by banks in the form of loans, or by suppliers in the form of credit.

Thus, a simple balance sheet exhibits a list of resources (assets) and how such resources are funded (liabilities). So, given the above-mentioned views, a classified balance sheet is prepared by recording the sources of funds (liabilities + owner’s equity) on the left-hand side, and the application of such funds (assets) on the right side of the T-Account.

This means that money invested in your business entity’s assets is either provided by the owners or the creditors. Accordingly, the sum total of assets must be equal to the sum total of liabilities and the owner’s equity.

The Role of the Balance Sheet in Financial Statements

As stated earlier, IFRS requires business entities to prepare a balance sheet at the end of an accounting period. Basically, there are three important financial statements that every business entity needs to prepare, each having its own purpose.

  • A balance sheet is a financial statement that gives a snapshot of your business entity’s financial position at a particular point in time. It reveals the resources that your business entity has or owns (assets) and the claims of both the creditors (liabilities) and owners (shareholders equity) against such resources. It is a financial statement that provides useful insights to both the external and internal stakeholders about your entity’s financial status that further helps them in making informed financial decisions.
  • The income statement, on the other hand, is a financial statement that provides information regarding the amount of profit or loss your business entity has earned or incurred during an accounting period. Further, it helps in determining how the profit or loss was generated or incurred by your business entity. For instance, the gross profit figure helps you to keep a check on the cost of goods and services that you provide as a business entity. Likewise, operating profit shows business profit before taking into account the impact of the financing activities.
  • The cash flow statement showcases cash inflows and cash outflows over an accounting period. It provides insights to interested parties, such as investors, who can understand the cash-generating ability of your business entity and how cash is utilised.

Do I Need a Balance Sheet?

A company balance sheet is one of the more important financial statements. A balance sheet reveals important insights to both the internal as well as external stakeholders. Thus, such a statement helps them in making informed financial decisions.

There are many reasons to prepare a balance sheet including:

Strategic Decision Making

A balance sheet gives you an understanding of where your business stands at any specific date. By knowing the financial health of your business, you can make some important strategic decisions.

For instance, in case the sum total of assets is less than the total of liabilities and shareholder’s equity, it is an indication that you need to reduce the amount you owe to outsiders.

This could include either increasing the sources of revenue, putting in more capital, or collecting payments from debtors.

Availing Loans and Advances

Balance sheet accounts allow banks to understand whether your business is financially sound enough to avail loans and advances.

Thus, by calculating the Debt-Equity ratio, they can know if extending additional loans to your business would be safe or risky.

Identifying the Trends

The balance sheets of several accounting periods helps you identify the trends in the various items listed on the balance sheets.

For instance, you can see how much your business has grown over a given period of time.

Short-Term Financial Standing

You can see the current assets against the current liabilities and get an understanding of the short-term financial health of your business entity.

Accordingly, you can know if you have sufficient funds in the short-term to pay off or meet your short-term obligations like operating expenses, supplier payments, etc.

How Does a Balance Sheet Work?

There are two views that can help us in understanding the impact of economic events on the company balance sheet.

Resources and Claims View

According to this view, assets are resources that your business entity owns on a specific date. These resources provide benefits to your business entity for a long period of time, that is, more than one year.

On the other hand, liabilities are the amounts that your business entity owes to external stakeholders like banks, creditors, etc. And Owner’s Equity is the capital that belongs to you as an owner.

Sources and Use of Funds

As per this view, assets are the resources that are acquired by your business entity to be utilised over a long period of time. Whereas, the liabilities and owner’s equity are the funds through which such resources have been acquired.

Now, taking both the views into consideration, we come to the following simple balance sheet formula or balance sheet equation based on which the company balance sheet is prepared:

Assets = Liabilities + Owner’s Equity

Where,

Assets = Current Assets + Non-Current Assets

Liabilities = Current Liabilities + Non-Current Liabilities

Owner’s Equity = Share Capital + Retained Earnings

Thus, as per this equation, the following is the Balance Sheet accounts:

  • Assets
  • Liabilities and
  • Owner’s Equity

How to Read a Balance Sheet?

There are certain things that you must keep in mind in order to read a new balance sheet properly. These are as follows:

Grow Your Business with QuickBooks

Elements of a Balance Sheet

If you take a Balance Sheet sample, there are three major balance sheet accounts including:

  • Assets
  • Liabilities
  • Owner’s Equity

Each of these is further broken down into sub-items. Let’s have a look at each of them.

Assets

Assets are the resources owned by your business entity that provide you with economic benefits in the long run. These are further categorised into current assets and noncurrent assets.

Current Assets

Current Assets are the assets that can be converted into cash within one year or a normal operating cycle for your business entity, whichever is longer. Operating Cycle is the time it takes a business entity to buy produced inventory, sell the finished goods, and collect cash for the same.

There are a number of current assets that form part of your company’s balance sheet. These include:

  • Cash
  • Marketable Securities
  • Accounts Receivables
  • Inventories
  • Prepaid Expenses

Non-Current Assets or Fixed Assets

Non-Current Assets are the assets that cannot be easily converted into cash in the normal course of business. They are long term assets that have been purchased for providing goods or services and are not meant for resale to earn profits.

The Non-Current Assets can be further subdivided into tangible non-current assets like plant and machinery, property, etc., and intangible non-current assets like goodwill, copyright, etc.

Liabilities

Liabilities are the money that you owe, as a business entity, to your creditors, lenders, and equity owners against the assets of your business entity. These can be further grouped into current liabilities and non-current liabilities.

Current Liabilities

These are the liabilities that are required to be paid off within the normal operating cycle of the business or within one year, whichever is longer. Current Liabilities include:

  • Accounts Payables
  • Accrued Expenses
  • Current Portion of Long-Term Debt
  • Deferred Revenues

Non-Current Liabilities

These are the liabilities that are due for payment for more than one year. These include:

  • Long-Term Borrowings
  • Deferred Tax Liabilities
  • Long-Term Provision

Owner’s Equity

Owner’s Equity is the amount invested by investors in your business entity. Thus,

Owner’s Equity = Paid-In Capital + Retained Earnings

This means that an increase in your business earnings would ultimately lead to an increase in owner’s equity.

Balance Sheet Equation

We know that the balance sheet is based on the balance sheet formula which states that Assets must be equal to Liabilities plus Owner’s Equity.

This is because the claims of both the creditors as well as the owners against your business entity must equate to the amount that you have invested in various business assets.

In other words, the worth of your business, that is equity, is the difference between everything that you own in the form of assets and the amount that you owe to the outsiders in the form of liabilities.

The Balance Sheet Formula and Example

The balance sheet is based on the following Accounting Equation where assets on one side of the equation equal to the Liabilities and Shareholder’s Equity on the other side. So, let’s try to understand what this balance sheet formula means.

Your business entity has to get funds for everything that you own (assets). You can fund these assets either by borrowing it from the creditors, taking loans from banks (in other words taking liabilities), or avail these funds from investors (shareholder’s equity).

Say, for instance, you as a business entity take a seven-year loan for plant and machinery worth $10,000. As per the double-entry system of accounting, your cash account would increase by $10,000. On the other hand, the Loan Account would also increase by $10,000, thus balancing both sides of the balance sheet.

Furthermore, the assets, liabilities, and the shareholder’s equity can be further divided into current assets, current liabilities, long-term assets, and long-term liabilities. These vary depending upon the industry you are in and the type of business it is.

Balance Sheet Format

Typically, both the asset and the liability side of the balance sheet are structured based on how current the assets and liabilities are.

That is, in the case of assets, the most liquid assets such as cash, inventory, etc are recorded first on the top of the new balance sheet. Whereas, the least liquid assets like plant and machinery, land and building, etc, are recorded at the bottom.

Likewise, in the case of liabilities, the short-term liabilities like creditors, short-term loans and advances, etc are recorded at the top of the new balance sheet. Whereas, the long-term liabilities including long-term loans and advances are showcased at the bottom.

Example of a Balance Sheet

Following is the balance sheet sample of Star Enterprises Pvt Ltd as of December 31, 2019.

Current AssetsAmt in $Current LiabilitiesAmt in $
Cash10,000Accounts Payable7,000
Marketable Securities4,000Bank Loan Payable2,000
Accounts Receivable9,000Accrued Liabilities1,000
Inventories10,000Taxes Payable2,000
Prepaid Expenses1,500Current Portion of Long Term Debt3,000
Total Current Assets34,500Total Current Liabilities15,000
Non-Current AssetsNon-Current Liabilities
Property, Plant, Equipment at Cost25,000Long Term Debt Less Current Portion10,000
Less: Accumulated Depreciation13,000Deferred Income Taxes1,000
Net Property, Plant, Equipment12,000Total Liabilities26,000
Other Assets:Owner’s Equity
Investments2,000Common Stock1,000
Patents and Trademarks1,000Additional Paid-In Capital11,000
Goodwill1,500Total Paid-In Capital12,000
Retained Earnings13,000
Total Owner’s Equity25,000
Total Assets51,000Total Liabilities and Owner’s Equity51,000

How To Create Balance Sheets For Your Small Business?

There are a number of ways in which you can prepare a new balance sheet for your business. The quickest and most error-free way of preparing a balance sheet is with the help of accounting software.

However, you can also choose to prepare a new balance sheet manually or using a balance sheet template.

Method 1: Preparing Balance Sheet By Hand

It can be very challenging to prepare a balance sheet sample by hand. However, if you are running a business on a very small scale, then preparing the balance sheet by hand is the most appropriate way.

To create a balance sheet by hand, organise the various items that you are keeping track of under the three main heads of the balance sheet as mentioned above - assets, liabilities and equity

Assets

Assets are divided into two sub-sections: current assets and noncurrent assets. Accordingly, you first need to record all the current assets like cash, inventories, debtors, etc.

Once the current assets are recorded, you need to report non-current or the fixed assets of your company such as property, plant and equipment, investments, etc.

After recording both the current and noncurrent assets, you need to total the amounts to determine the total of the asset side of your company’s balance sheet.

Liabilities

The next section of the balance sheet consists of liabilities that you owe to external parties. Under this section, you need to first report your business’s current obligations like accounts payables, short-term loans, etc.

Next, you need to record all the non-current liabilities that you are keeping track of like long-term loans from banks and other long-term liabilities.

Once both current, as well as non-current liabilities, are recorded, you need to calculate the total of current liabilities and non-current liabilities in order to determine the total amount of liabilities.

Owner’s Equity

This is the last section of your business’s balance sheet where you need to report the capital invested by the investors and the portion of the retained earnings of your business entity.

Take the sum total of the capital and retained earnings to determine the total amount of shareholder’s equity.

Hence, your balance sheet should look something like the one given in the example above.

Method 2: Preparing Balance Sheet By Spreadsheet

A balance sheet template is done the same way as done manually. The benefit of preparing a balance sheet template in excel or in a spreadsheet is that you can use SUM and DIFFERENCE formulas to make your calculations quick and accurate. Our free balance sheet template has done that work for you.

Following are the steps to fill in our balance sheet template in an excel spreadsheet:

  1. Download our free balance sheet template
  2. Add your company details and date/period
  3. Determine all of your current and non-current assets and add them under the Assets section with their respective amounts. Make sure to change the names of the assets in the cells to match your needs, and add any extra rows for additional assets
  4. Determine all of your current and non-current liabilities and add them under the Liabilities section with their respective amounts. Make sure to change the names of the liabilities in the cells to match your needs, and add any extra rows for additional liabilities
  5. Determine your owner’s equity and add under Owner’s Equity in the template
  6. Our template will do all the math for you. You just have to make sure that your balance sheet balances. Your total assets should equal your total liabilities & owner’s equity

Once the spreadsheet is complete, you can convert this into a balance sheet in PDF format so that you can share it with the owners or the other stakeholders of your business.

Method 3: Preparing Balance Sheet By QuickBooks

For preparing a balance sheet in QuickBooks, you need to perform the following steps:

1. Link your bank account with QuickBooks. Next, categorise transactions so that QuickBooks records these transactions in the software.

2. Once this is done, go to the ‘Reports’ tab on your dashboard and click on the Balance Sheet Report.

3. You will see QuickBooks automatically generating a Balance Sheet Report in the sections Assets, Liabilities, and shareholder’s equity.

You can export the balance sheet report in excel format from QuickBooks Online accounting software and then convert the same into a PDF format.

Balance Sheet Report By QuickBooks

A balance sheet in QuickBooks can be generated easily and accurately by navigating Reports > Balance Sheet to generate the report automatically. You can also customise your balance sheet in QuickBooks by changing the accounting period, accounting method, adding sub-columns for comparison with previous periods, customising the header and footer of the balance sheet, etc.

In addition to this, you can also print and email the balance sheet Report directly from QuickBooks. You can even export the balance sheet of a specific accounting period in Excel format.

Restore a Deleted Balance Sheet Account in QuickBooks

Quickbooks allows you to restore a Balance Sheet account that is deleted or is inactive. Following are the different ways in which you can restore a deleted account in QuickBooks:


Chart of Accounts

  1. Go to Settings and select Chart of Accounts.
  2. Above the Action column, select Settings, then select ‘Include Inactive’.
  3. Find the deleted account.
  4. In the Action column, select ‘Make Active’.

Audit Log

  1. Go to Settings and select ‘Audit Log’.
  2. Find the deleted account.
  3. In the Event column, select the account hyperlink. This takes you to the Account screen.
  4. At the bottom left, uncheck ‘Inactive’.
  5. Select ‘Save and close'.

FAQs on Balance Sheet Template

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