I want to set up recurring invoices in QuickBooks. However, I do not want the invoice to be generated on a future date, I want all invoices generated today. For instance:
I have an engagement with John Smith, my client. John Smith is going to pay me $100/month for 10 months, on the 1st of each month. I want all invoices to be generated today, so that I can track my A/R accordingly and always see the balance for John Smith.
Is this feature possible?
To create invoices today that have future invoice dates you should create your "unscheduled" invoice template per customer, then "use" this template to create your customer invoices today with future invoice dates so they will show up in your A/R report. You can also "copy" invoices, which is just as quick and easy to do.
You should raise the income when goods or services are delivered. So you are right to date the sale now, but you can do that with just one invoice. No need to create an invoice for each future payment. Those are Receive Payment type transactions, when you receive the payment.
You can enter the payment schedule as a note on the invoice
You can turn-on service dates and enter a line for each (future) service date within one (1) invoice, that is true. But if you would like an "individual" transaction number and invoice date in your customer transaction history, you should create/copy multiple invoices.
No this is not right. Asker is not providing service on multiple dates in the future (it seems). They are just getting paid on multiple dates in the future, so if they create multiple invoices dated on payment date they are misstating their income. This is on the accrual basis, which really is how the books should be kept. If they don't care about accrual basis then an invoice for each payment would work. But they said they want to date the sale today (if that's what they mean by "generate")
I believe they wanted to create individual invoices for each month of service that were all dated on the same date and then receive payments against each invoice as they came in each month, on a cash basis, as most small businesses use the cash accounting method these days. They can choose to create one invoice with multiple line items that include service dates (if they turn-on the service date feature), or they can create a "unique" service item or bundle of service items that include"multiple" months of services, or they can create an invoice for one month of service, then copy that invoice and create multiple invoices for additional months of service and date them with the same date, receiving payments against these invoices on a cash basis in future months, or they can create an "unscheduled" recurring invoice and "use" it in the same way.
You can choose either option, an "unscheduled" recurring invoice that you can choose to "use" multiple times, or you can open an existing invoice and "copy" it to use for a new invoice. I've tested this, I believe that the "copy" option takes less time, but it is a personal preference, I believe. Some of my clients have chosen to setup "unique" service items or bundled items that will charge their customer for "multiple" months of service at a time, which is an option for you as well. They were matching their customer service agreements. Some would receive payment in full for months of service, and some would receive multiple payments over time. It depends on the terms of the service agreement. If you are a small business you will most likely use a "Cash Accounting Method", and not an "Accrual Accounting Method". Many small businesses use a "Cash" and not an "Accrual" method of accounting. On a cash basis, your income will be recorded as customer invoice payments are received.
..Many small businesses use a "Cash" and not an "Accrual" method of accounting.
If they want a loan the bank will want accrual based reports, as cash basis is meaningless in terms of business evaluation
A small business (without inventory) using the "Cash Accounting Method" can choose to run both "Cash" and "Accrual" financial reports in QBO for any number reasons. With the "Cash" method they can track the cash in-and-out daily and are able to easily identify how much cash they have at any given time. Today's small businesses can accelerate invoice payments or sales receipts by routinely collecting payments for goods & services sold at the time of sale, which can reduce the potential for uncollectible receivables that they do not have the time or resources to chase after. Many of today's small businesses also pay for their cost of goods or services sold upon receipt, and they often pay for operating expenses in the month they were incurred, thus income and expenses are better aligned than ever before. The most "meaningful" report is the "Statement of Cash Flows".
A small business (without inventory) using the "Cash Accounting Method" can choose to run both "Cash" and "Accrual" financial reports in QBO for any number reasons.
If you want to run both "Cash" and "Accrual" financial reports in QBO, you have to keep the books on the accrual basis. If you keep the books on the cash basis, you cannot run "Accrual" financial reports. Therefore sales should be created when goods or services are delivered, not when payment is received
That is not correct. You do not have to "keep" the books on the "Accrual Basis". Go to the QuickBooks Online sample company, "Account and Settings", "Advanced", "Accounting" and "Accounting method" and choose "Cash", then click "Done". Then go to sales and create a sales invoice with today's date, then run an "Accrual Accounting Method" Profit and Loss Report" under "Reports". You will find the invoice included with Income even though it has not yet been paid. You have a choice to run many QBO financial reports on either a "Cash" or "Accrual" basis.
Small businesses often create Sales Receipts and not Invoices and Payments, and many small service businesses charge a recurring amount on the 1st of every month for that months services. Many small businesses charge for products when they are ordered via online websites. They can create a Sales Receipt or an Invoice and Payment before services or products are delivered.
They can create a Sales Receipt or an Invoice and Payment before services or products are delivered.
If they do that (and use an Item linked to an income account) they will never be able to run an accrual P&L
That is not true. Items linked to products and services that are linked to income accounts show up on the P&L Report on a cash and accrual basis in QBO.
Invoices show up on Accounts Receivable Aging Reports. Income shows up on P&L Reports. A cash basis P&L Report will show income from paid invoices and sales receipts while an accrual basis P&L Report will show income from all sales receipts and invoices regardless of whether they have been paid or not. A small business can run either report, one that shows sales that they have collected on and one that shows both sales they have collected on and sales they have not collected on. It's up to the business owner what they want to see on their P&L Report.