QuickBooks HelpQuickBooksHelpIntuit

Create budgets in QuickBooks Online

SOLVEDby QuickBooks15Updated 3 days ago

Learn how to add budgets in QuickBooks Online Plus.

Many businesses use budgets to help plan their finances. Look back at your assets and liabilities, then create a budget for the coming year, month, or quarter. 

With all your financial data in QuickBooks, you can create both profit and loss or balance sheet budgets you need for your company. This gives you an overview to help compare your actual income and expenses with your budget.

Create a budget

To create a new budget, you’ll need to sign in as an admin or as a user with the correct permission to access budgets.

Note: Only QuickBooks Online Plus subscriptions have access to the budget feature. If you have a different subscription and want to use budgets, learn how to upgrade your subscription to Plus.

Step 1: Review the financial year for your business

Make sure the beginning of your financial year is correct in QuickBooks. You can create a budget any time, but it helps if you start at the beginning of the financial year.

  1. Sign in to QuickBooks Online.
  2. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Account and settings.
  3. Select the Advanced tab.
  4. In the Accounting section, review the First month of financial year field. If it’s incorrect, select Edit ✎.
  5. Select the required month from the ▼ dropdown and select Save.
  6. Select Done.

Step 2: Create your budget

To create a budget, you can either use your past financial data or previous budgets in QuickBooks. If this is your first budget, start here. We'll show you how to copy a budget after you’ve added your first budget.

Note: QuickBooks Online creates the budget accounts list directly from your chart of accounts. If you need more accounts in your budget, add them to your chart of accounts before you create the budget.

  1. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Budgeting.
  2. Select Create budget.
    Note: Select Create a budget, if you are adding for the first time.
  3. Ensure the Budget type is set. Note that Profit and loss is set as the default option.
  4. From the Period dropdown ▼, select the financial year you're creating the budget for.
  5. Select the Budget format: Consolidated budget or Subdivided budget.
    • For subdivided budget, select what you want to subdivide by, from Subdivide by and Add subdivided budget for dropdowns ▼.
  6. Select Next.
  7. You may take the following actions as needed:
    1. To customise the budget title, select the edit icon ✎ next to the automatically generated title. 
    2. If you want to add either past actual or past budget data as a reference, turn the Compare reference data switch on, and select what type of reference data you want to use.
    3. If you want to prefill your budget with the reference data, select the checkbox next to Accounts to select all the rows, or select individual rows. From the Batch actions dropdown ▼, select Copy reference data.
    4. To remove the reference data, select the required rows, then select Clear data from the Batch actions dropdown ▼.
  8. Enter your budget for each account for each month.
  9. Select Save or Save and close.

Duplicate an existing budget

Instead of starting from scratch, you can duplicate an existing budget. This jumpstarts your new budget by using last year's data. Here’s how to duplicate a budget:

  1. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Budgeting.
  2. Find the budget you want to duplicate.
  3. From the Actions column, select the ▼ dropdown, then select Duplicate.
  4. From the Period dropdown ▼, select the financial year you're creating the budget for.
  5. Select Duplicate.

This saves the copy as a new, separate budget.

Edit a budget

If you need to edit a budget, make your changes in QuickBooks:

  1. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Budgeting.
  2. Find your budget on the list.
  3. From the Actions column, select View/Edit.
    Note: This maybe available under the ▼ dropdown in the Actions column.
  4. Edit each account one month at a time.
  5. To change the time period from monthly to quarterly or yearly, switch between Yearly/Quarterly/Monthly views.
  6. Select Save or Save and close.

Delete a budget

If you decide to delete a budget, be careful. You can't recover deleted budgets.

  1. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Budgeting.
  2. Find your budget on the list.
  3. From the Actions column, select the ▼ dropdown, then select Delete.
  4. Select Yes to confirm.

Run budget reports

You can run special profit and loss budget reports that help you keep track of your budget goals.

  1. Go to Settings Settings gear icon. and select Budgeting.
  2. Find your budget on the list.
  3. From the Actions column, select the ▼ dropdown, then select Run Budgets vs. Actuals report or Run Budget Overview report.
  4. If you want to export a budget as pdf/excel, export them via reports.

Tip

  • The Budget Overview report summarises budgets by account.
  • The Budgets vs. Actuals report provides a comparison between accounts and your actual account totals. It shows how much you're under or over budget.

Was this helpful?

You must sign in to vote, reply, or post
QuickBooks Online Plus

Sign in for the best experience

Ask questions, get answers, and join our large community of QuickBooks users.

More like this