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Create recurring transactions in QuickBooks Online

SOLVEDby QuickBooksQuickBooks Online1238Updated October 07, 2022

Learn how to create templates for recurring transactions in QuickBooks Online Essentials, Plus, and Advanced.

In QuickBooks Online you can create templates for recurring transactions, like recurring expenses. You can do this for any transaction except bill payments, customer payments, and time entries. We'll show you how to set up and make the most of recurring templates.

Create a new recurring template

Here's how you can create a new template:

Cursor creating a recurring transaction - animated

  1. Go to Settings ⚙.
  2. Select Recurring transactions.
  3. Select New.
  4. Select the type of transaction to create, and then select OK.
  5. Enter a Template name.
  6. Select a Type: Scheduled, Unscheduled, or Reminder.
Type What it does How you control it What you use it for
Scheduled Creates a series of transactions according to the schedule you set. If you choose to send them by email once created, they are sent automatically. You can choose to be notified when the transactions occur. Either way, they're recorded without any extra work from you. Use for transactions with a fixed schedule and amounts that don't change, such as rent payments, loan payments, and depreciation.

Note: Invoices you create by a scheduled template are finalized when they're created.

Reminder Creates a schedule to remind you to create transactions. These transactions aren't sent until you decide to create and send them. Once you get the reminder, you can find it on the Dashboard in Tasks. Select Action and then select View Reminders. You can select a reminder task then select Action to review, edit or create it. Use for transactions with a fixed schedule that need to be edited before they're created, such as utility bills.

Note: Invoices you create by a reminder template are first saved as draft invoices. You can finalize them once you've reviewed them.

Unscheduled Saved with partial or complete data and without a schedule. Nothing happens to this type of template until you choose to use it.
  1. Go to Settings ⚙.
  2. Select Recurring transactions.
  3. Choose the template, then in the Action column ▼ dropdown menu select Use to use the template as a starting point for a new transaction.
Transactions with a lot of detail that you don't want to retype but aren't needed on any set schedule. One example is complicated invoices that need to go to different customers.

Note: Invoices you create by an unscheduled template will first be created as draft invoices. You can save them as drafts to finalize them once you've reviewed them.

If you create a Scheduled or Reminder type of recurring template and:

  • You create an Invoice template, verify if it should include unbilled charges and automatically send emails.
  • You use Merchant Services, determine if your customer can pay you online. To do this, check or uncheck the boxes for Cards and Bank transfer in the Online Payment section.
  1. Complete the fields and select Save template.

Make any transaction a base template for a recurring transaction

Your estimates or invoices will look different depending on whether you have the old or new estimate and invoice experience. Find out which experience you have.
  1. Open an existing transaction.
  2. In the footer of the form, select Make recurring to create a template (or Enable Recurring Payments).
  1. Open an existing transaction.
  2. In the footer of the form, select Make recurring to create a template (or Enable Recurring Payments). If you opened an invoice, instead select Automation, then Recurring invoice.

Recurring estimates are not supported in the new estimate and invoice experience. To make an estimate a recurring transaction, switch to the old experience.

Duplicate an existing template

Create templates more quickly by duplicating existing templates.

  1. Go to Settings ⚙.
  2. Select Recurring transactions.
  3. Choose the template, then in the Action column ▼ dropdown menu select Duplicate. All settings except the title will be in the duplicate copy.

Edit a recurring template

For details on how to edit a recurring template, check out this article.

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