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Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Hey guys, so basically I am just looking for some advice on this.  

Currently I use an iPad app to write up estimates, if I get the job I turn that estimate into an invoice thru the app.  When I get paid I enter the payment into the app and that "Paid" invoice becomes my receipt, which I email the PDF to myself.  I then enter the payment into QuickBooks (Desktop, for Mac) via the "Sales Receipt" function and attach the PDF of the receipt to that Sales Receipt dialog box.  I have been doing that successfully for 5+ years now.  

But it's a pain to do the estimates and invoices from the iPad when I am sitting at the desk, I would rather use the computer.  So I am thinking why not just use QuickBooks for estimates and invoices when I am in the office?  

And that is why I am here asking your advice.  Is there anything I should know before I make the switch?  Can I do it both ways?  I just want to be sure that I don't screw anything up, so if there are any caveats I would appreciate the heads-up!

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Best answer 12-10-2018

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Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

You can do both, the only issue and it may not be something you care about at all, is the invoice numbering system in desktop vs the ipad app invoice.

Sounds like you go to a work site and do the approved work, then get paid on the spot - true?

If so, unless you can copy the estimate from the desktop to the app, you will have to create the estimate again in the app on site, invoice and get paid. 

View solution in original post

18 Comments
Highlighted
Level 10

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Have you considered QBO, which lets you access your books from any device with internet?
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

You can do both, the only issue and it may not be something you care about at all, is the invoice numbering system in desktop vs the ipad app invoice.

Sounds like you go to a work site and do the approved work, then get paid on the spot - true?

If so, unless you can copy the estimate from the desktop to the app, you will have to create the estimate again in the app on site, invoice and get paid. 

View solution in original post

Highlighted
Level 10

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

I see that your friend has been busy:
"Last viewed by asker: 1 hour ago"
answer posted "39 minutes ago"
"Was this helpful? Yes 1"
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

I am not sure what Malcolm is saying.

Rustler, as always, thank you for the reply.  

-"Sounds like you go to a work site and do the approved work, then get paid on the spot - true?"

Typically I will go out and look at a job, then come back to the office and write up an estimate and email it to the customer.  Then, if they accept it, go back to do the job (usually small 1 day or less jobs, no big renovations that take weeks).  As soon as the work is complete, the customer pays me and I go back to the office and email a receipt (which is just an invoice PDF that is marked "Paid").  The only difference is that sometimes for more expensive jobs I will ask for a deposit, so I will get payment in two steps.

Having the estimate/invoicing app on the iPad means that I can do estimates or invoices in the field, but I  end up doing them in the office 99% of the time.  So that's why I would prefer to use the computer instead of the little iPad.

So I would like to stop using the app and use QuickBooks (almost) all the time.   But I would still like the ability to write up an invoice in the app if necessary and enter that sale into QuickBooks via the Sales Receipt function that I have always used before- if that is possible.

So it seems like this would work, but I just want to make sure that I don't mess anything up lol.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Yes it will work
the only difference between a sales receipt and invoice, in terms of posting to the accounts, is that a sales receipt is "I got paid right now" - so if you were paid at the site and return to the office, doing a sales receipt is fine
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

So if I make an estimate on QuickBooks, I could then come back to the office after receiving payment and fill out a Sales Receipt?  I never thought of that.

I guess I thought if I wrote up the estimate that I have to change it into an Invoice and use that.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Estimates are used for Quotes, for tracking, for invoices "from" them, or not, and for comparison reporting.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

@ elect
You can use the estimate, come back when being paid, use a sales receipt and then bring up the estimate and set its status to closed or void it - it is non posting so it does not matter
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Thanks!
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

You're Welcome
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

I have one more question about using estimates and invoices in QuickBooks.  Up until now when entering a Sales Receipt I just chose the Electrical Work Item.  I don't enter any info about the job.

If I am going to start using QuickBooks for estimates and invoices, I will have to enter a couple dozen job tasks with descriptions, like "Electrical panel upgrade" with a paragraph explaining what is included.  This way I can just pull that up and add it to an estimate or invoice quickly instead of having to type it out each time.

Do I enter that as an Item?  Or somewhere else?  It just seems like if I enter them as Items it will get clogged up with lots of tasks.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Its a trade off, you have to decide how much detail you need in the description block of an item.

as an example
I use several assembly type items in desktop, rather than trying to list all the parts that make it up, I created a reference binder for the shop, when the estimate (job order) gets to the shop with an assembly item on it, all they do is flip to that page in the binder if needed.
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Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

I am not looking to get very deep into listing parts and assemblies.  I would just like to list maybe 2 dozen tasks so that I could pull them up quickly to put on an estimate or invoice.  Such as:

Panel Change -  Blah blah description blah blah.  $Price
Vehicle Charger - Blah blah description blah blah.  $Price
New receptacle -  Blah blah description blah blah.  $Price

This is just a scope of work for the customer to see.  Many times I will end up just choosing "Electrical Work" and then typing in the description of that particular job myself.  But for the ones that I do often, iIwould like to be able to save them and pull them up quickly.

So I would make those tasks each it's own Item?

Could I delete all the items that are already there that I will never use?  Like Plumbing, HVAC, Building Sale, Reimb Group, etc?
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Yes each would be a service type item

you can not delete anything, all you can do is make it inactive, why not edit and rename and or redo the description of those you would have deleted
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

Maybe something changed in this version, but I just tried to delete Item "27 Contingency" and it deleted.

I could edit them as you mentioned too.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

"I then enter the payment into QuickBooks (Desktop, for Mac) via the "Sales Receipt" function

Duplicate Sale. The Invoice already is the sale.

Invoice = an Unpaid sale, and the payment follows later.
Sales Receipt = a paid sale as One Step.

Same function, meant for you to use one or the other, to meet the way Payments happen.
Highlighted
Level 4

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

It's not a duplicate sale because I have never used the Invoice function in QuickBooks.
Highlighted
Level 15

Using the Estimate/Invoicing function vs. Sales Receipt

"Up until now when entering a Sales Receipt I just chose the Electrical Work Item.  I don't enter any info about the job."

It is up to you to use whatever matters to what you want to see, show the customer, and see in the reporting.

"If I am going to start using QuickBooks for estimates and invoices, I will have to enter a couple dozen job tasks with descriptions, like "Electrical panel upgrade" with a paragraph explaining what is included."

You don't have to Detail it.

"This way I can just pull that up and add it to an estimate or invoice quickly instead of having to type it out each time."

You can use Service Items for labor and Noninventory Items for materials you buy specific to these jobs, but not In detail. Ceiling Fixture vs Wall Sconce, or just Fixture is fine. Or, generically "Materials." And Other Charge = permits, for instance.

"Do I enter that as an Item?  Or somewhere else?  It just seems like if I enter them as Items it will get clogged up with lots of tasks."

Use as little or as much detail as matters to you. You can make Group Items and list the things that Always apply, then list the Group Item on the estimate, the sales receipt, the invoice. Examples:

Two Car Garage = X qty of GIF outlets, X openers, X light fixtures, X hours projected. Three Car Garage = a different set  of things.

You cannot delete anything that has been Used.

I have screenshots for this, from the Desktop PC Job reports.


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