I have a customer set up with multiple jobs and they over paid on two of these jobs. They finally took the over payment and applied it to the new job/invoice. But I cant figure out how to apply the over payment to the new job. It does show the customers balance is zero but the new job now shows the balance of the overpayment under the job. Any thoughts on how to clear this up.
Attached is a screenshot of what the account looks like now.....
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"What if the over-payment was in a previous closed month, ie: January 2017,"
Then you were carrying meaningless Negative AR all this time?
"and the customer short-paid the amount of the over-payment on their next payment in February?"
Apply their payment now.
"How do I use that over-payment towards the short-pay without disrupting the closed month of January?"
You already have the money. It is time to apply it.
"However, if you record the payment against the customer and not the customer:job, it messes up the A/R reporting. A/R reports will show an amount owing for the job name and an overpayment for the customer."
Yes, until you open that payment and Apply it to the Job, which is seen in the image I provided.
If you are carrying that overpayment for any length of time, you really should never carry it as negative AR at all.
AR is an Asset. Negative AR really = Liability to you. Next, you need to find out if it is even Allowed for this entity to carry liability. A Cash Basis Entity would carry this as Income when paid, and applying it later is going to reduce income, later. An Accrual Basis Entity gets to carry it as Liability. A Landlord or law firm with Liability requirements would also carry liability, even though they typically are a Cash Basis entity.
All of which means you do not use Receive Payment when there are no open charges; or, create a Holding process for the overage. Example:
Make an Other Charge type item; link it to liability or to income to meet your Accounting requirements. Use this on an Sales Receipt for the date you are processing a Customer's Prepayment that you required from them. Put it on an Invoice for the date you are processing a payment that will result in an Overpaid condition. The goal is to Not let anything create negative AR.
Now that item can be used later, on a Credit Memo, to apply to any invoice. That even means the First payment to you is Job A, but later the Customer asks you to apply it to Job B = create a Credit Memo on that later date, for Job B, using the Same Prepayment/Overpayment item and amount.
Create a Custom Transaction Detail report total by Name, filter on your Prepayment item and/or account. Now you can see that Job A resulted in value In, which was used on Job B as Value Applied.
If you are managing this in a Liability account, it is time to Reconcile to an ending balance of 0. You are going to Clear from both sides, any activity for a Name that ends at 0, or for any Name where you know there is the offset, such as Job A = Job B, in this examples; clear Both of them. You always use ending Balance of 0, and the bottom right is Difference of 0, as well.
Set up Two Versions of this Custom Transaction Details report for managing as Liability: one is filtered on Cleared Status = Yes, and Retitled "Current Customer Prepayment Balances" and Memorize it. One is filtered on Cleared Status = Either, and Retitled "Customer Prepayments - All Activity" and Memorize it.