Chapter 13. Managing Accounts Receivable

In between performing work, invoicing customers, and collecting payments, you have to keep track of who owes you how much (known as accounts receivable) and when the money is due. Sure, you can tack on finance charges to light a fire under your customers’ accounting departments, but such charges are rarely enough to make up for the time and effort you spend collecting overdue payments. Far more preferable are customers who pay on time without reminders, gentle or otherwise.

On the other hand, sales receipts are the simplest and most immediate sales forms in QuickBooks. When your customers pay in full at the time of the sale—at your used-CD store, for example—you can create a sales receipt so the customer has a record of the purchase and payment. At the same time, QuickBooks posts the money from the sale into your bank account (at least in QuickBooks) or the Undeposited Funds account. Sales receipts work only when customers pay in full, because they can’t handle previous customer payments and balances.

Because companies need money to keep things running, you’ll have to spend some time keeping track of your accounts receivable and the payments that come in. In this chapter, you’ll learn the ins and outs of tracking what customers owe, receiving payments from them, and dinging them if they don’t pay on time. QuickBooks 2011’s new Collections Center helps you find customers with overdue or almost-due invoices, so you won’t forget to collect what ...

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