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Use the cash flow planner in QuickBooks Online

SOLVEDby QuickBooksQuickBooks Online15Updated June 15, 2022

Learn how to use the cash flow planner in QuickBooks Online to forecast your income and expenses.

Through the cash flow planner, you can forecast money in and out of your business. This way, you can keep track of your cash flow. You can also add and adjust future items to see how certain changes affect your cash flow. Here’s how to set up the planner and create, edit, or delete items.

Changing items won’t affect your books. This helps you make informed decisions about when to save, spend, borrow, and transfer money. Here’s how to set up the planner, and create, edit or delete items.

Note: The Cash Flow planner is not available for QuickBooks companies that have Multicurrency enabled.

Step 1: Set up your Cash Flow planner

  1. Go to Business overview and select Planner (Take me there).
  2. Follow the on-screen steps to set up the planner.

If you already connected your external bank accounts for online banking, you're ready to go. QuickBooks automatically analyses the transactions in these accounts and predicts future money in and out items. You can see which accounts are connected in the Linked Accounts section of the Cash Flow menu.

Step 2: Forecast your cash flow

The planner gets info from a few places:

  • Your connected savings, checking, and credit card accounts
  • Transactions you've entered into QuickBooks with a due date in the future
  • Items you add manually to the planner

To get the latest forecast:

  1. Go to Business overview and select Planner (Take me there).
  2. Select the dates filters shown below Today's balance to set the forecast range.
  3. Select the All, Money in, and Money out tabs to filter the list.
  4. Drag the bar across the chart to a specific date. This shows you a list of items that may impact your cash flow.

Items all have different labels:

  • Predicted: Money in and money out items QuickBooks predicts based on your financial history. These are marked with a special icon.
  • Invoice, sales receipt, bill, expense, payroll payment: Transactions you've entered into QuickBooks.
  • Planned: Money in and money out items you manually add to the planner, which aren't included in your regular accounting.

Fine-tune forecasts

<strong>Important</strong>: The Cash Flow planner is a planning tool. Adjustments you make in the planner won't affect your accounting in QuickBooks. They won't impact your chart of accounts or online banking transactions.

You can edit the expected amount and date of future items to see how specific changes may impact your cash flow. To adjust an item, select it from the list, make your change, then select Update.

QuickBooks doesn't include overdue invoices and bills in forecasts since they're incomplete. If you want to include them:

  1. Go to the top of the Cash flow planner list.
  2. Select Update to open a list of your overdue bills and invoices.
  3. Select a new expected date and select Update for each transaction you want to add.
  4. When you're ready, select Done.

Step 3: Add a new item

You can manually add items for potential income and expenses. For example, if you have a big sale coming up, add it as an item so it's part of the forecast. You can also create repeating items to make planning even easier. Here’s how.

Important: Remember, items aren't actual transactions. QuickBooks won't add them to your books.

  1. Go to Business overview and select Planner (Take me there).
  2. Select Add item.
  3. Select Money in if the item is income, or Money out if it's an expense.
  4. Give the item a name and enter an amount.
  5. If it’s a recurring item, select Repeating. Then select how often the item repeats.
  6. When you're done, select Save.

Edit or delete an item

You can edit or delete items to see how that changes your projected cash flow. To edit or delete items:

Note: Changing items won’t affect your books. This helps you make informed decisions about when to save, spend, borrow, and transfer money.

Edit an item

  1. Go to Business overview and select Planner (Take me there).
  2. Select the item you want to edit.
  3. Change the date, name, amount field, money in or out, or the repeat details.
  4. Select Update to save your changes. Note: If you are updating a repeating item, select Update, then Continue.

Delete an item

  1. Go to Business overview and select Planner (Take me there).
  2. Select the item you want to delete.
  3. Select Remove.
    Note: If you delete a repeating item, you can:
    • Select Only item to delete that single item in the series.
    • Select Entire series to delete all repeating items.

Step 4: Have an overview of your cash and a snapshot of your cash flow planner

You can have an overview of the money in and money out transactions taken into account in the cashflow planner, that are already present in your QuickBooks account, as well as a snapshot of your Cashflow planner.

You will be able to see and view the number of Overdue and Open invoices and bills that make up the amount used in the Cash flow Planner.

  • Select View under Open invoices and Open bills to see the list of your open transactions, waiting to generate cash.
  • Select View reports on either Money in our Money out to see summary and detailed reports on your unpaid invoices and bills.

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