Overview

This article covers how to troubleshooting an account reconciliation. For instructions on why and how to reconcile, see What is a reconciliation? instead.

Below are the 3 most common reconcile questions


Incorrect opening balance: where does the opening balance come from?

First, open your register.

  1. Select Accounting from the left menu
  2. Select Chart of Accounts at the top.
  3. In the Action column, choose View register (or Account history)

The last column on the right will indicate the status of each transaction.

  • Any transaction with the status of R affects the opening balance regardless of date, type, or amount.
  • Any transaction with the status of  C or blank does not affect the opening balance.  
If the last reconciliation balanced correctly, one of the following scenarios has taken place:
  1. Transaction(s) were edited in the register and the reconcile column was changed to show the wrong status as follows:
    • Unreconciled transactions were incorrectly marked with an R so they affect the opening balance (they should not). 
    • Reconciled transactions were incorrectly marked with a C or left blank so they no longer affect the opening balance (they should).
  2. Transaction(s) marked with R were deleted from the register.

Now that you understand what transactions affect the opening balance, here are steps to help locate the discrepancy:

  • First, view the changed transactions report to see what transactions have changed since the last reconciliation using Changes to the Reconcile Report explained for step by step instructions.
  • If you are able to locate the transaction(s) using the changed transactions report, while in the report, select the transaction(s) to edit the amount if necessary and/or view the register to correct the status (R, C or Blank) and re-start the reconcile.

  • If a previously reconciled transaction was deleted, did you reenter it to its original state? If not, make these changes and check your opening balance and restart your reconcile.
     


If using the changed transactions report didn't locate the transaction or help you correct the opening balance, there are additional reports you can use to help identify the issue.

First, print a copy of your last Reconcile Report. To do this:

  1. Select Reports from the left menu, then type Reconciliation Report in the search box and select that report.
  2. Choose the account in question and Print the most recent reconciliation report.

Next, run the following report to compare with your bank statement:

  1. Open the reconcile window and write down the opening balance.
  2. Select the Gear icon at the top  > Chart of Accounts.
  3. Click on the account in question to highlight it.
  4. In the Action column on the right hand side, click Run report and an Account QuickReport will open.
  5. Click Customize.
  6. Set the Transaction Date to All Dates.
    1. If you are using QBO Plus or Essentials:
      1. Click the Change Columns button, select Last Modified and add that column to the right window.  
      2. Click OK.
      3. Change the Sort In option to Descending order.
      4. Scroll down to the Status section and change the Cleared drop-down arrow to Reconciled.
    1. If you are using QBO Simple Start, go to the Sort By field and select Clr.
  7. Click Run report.
  8.  

    This report shows all the transactions that are marked reconciled in QBO.  We suggest that you print this report along with your bank statements and compare the two. Since we assume the bank statements are accurate, the idea is to get the report from QBO to match the bank statements.  If you're using QBO Basic or QBO Simple Start, look only at transactions that have a letter R in the Clr column.

    How to compare the reports: 

    Go through the report and the bank statement and make the changes in QBO as necessary, then run and print the report again.  If the report total matches what the opening balance should have been, you've found your problem and can continue the reconcile.  If not, you'll want to repeat the process until you find the problem transaction(s).  It is likely that the changes were made to more recent transactions however we ask that you run the report for all dates because any transaction from any period with a letter R can affect the balance.  If you prefer, start with most recent transactions and statements first.

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    Is your opening balance correct, but you still have unreconciled historical transactions in your register?

    Let's say your opening balance is correct but you have some old unreconciled transactions in QBO which have already appeared on your bank statement in the past.  If the opening balance matches, then one or more of these old transactions has already been accounted for; that is, it has been duplicated and marked with an R.  Here's how to deal with this situation:

    Run the following report to identify the problem transactions:

    1. Open the reconcile window and write down the opening balance.
    2. Select the Gear icon at the top > Chart of Accounts.
    3. Click on the account in question to highlight it.
    4. In the Action column on the right hand side, click Run report and an Account QuickReport will open.
    5. Click Customize.
    6. Set the Transaction Date to All Dates.
      • If you are using QBO Plus or Essentials:
        1. Click the Change Columns button, select Last Modified and add that column to the right window.  
        2. Click OK.
        3. Change the Sort In option to Descending order.
        4. Scroll down to the Status section and change the Cleared drop-down arrow to Reconciled.
      • If you are using QBO Simple Start, go to the Sort By field and select Clr.
    1. Click Run report.

     

    If the QuickReport shows any transactions that say Adjust or Adjustments in the Memo column and have a letter R in the Clr column, they can be considered possible culprits.  Adjustments are made because previous reconciles did not balance. When the adjustment is put in, it is taking the place of an actual transaction that was either missing or duplicated.

     

    If there are no adjustments:

     

    Once the historical transactions have all been resolved and the report is correctly reflecting the opening balance, you should be able to continue your reconciliation.

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    What if my opening and ending balances are correct but the reconcile still doesn't match?

    When reconciling in QuickBooks Online you're required to input the ending balance, which comes from the bank statement.  It is imperative that this balance is entered accurately. 

    If your opening balance and ending balance are correct and the difference does not equal 0 then the error lies in the transactions that have been checkmarked.  Go through and double-check the following:

    • If you see a corresponding transaction on both reports, cross them off and move to the next transaction.

    • If the report from QBO has a transaction that is not on the statement from the bank, click the letter R in the register to remove it.
    • If the report from QBO has a transaction that is on the statement from the bank, but a different amount, Edit the transaction to reflect the correct amount
    • If the statement from the bank has a transaction that is not on the report in QBO, first check the register for the transaction.
      • If you find the transaction place a letter R on it and save it.
      • If the transaction is not in the register, add it to the register and place a letter R on it.
    • If the adjustments add up to the amount of the outstanding historical transactions you can delete the adjustments and manually reconcile the historical transactions in the register. 
    • To manually reconcile a transaction click Edit from the register and add the letter R in the check mark column. 
    1. Click Customize on the Account QuickReport
    2. If you are using QBO Plus or QBO Essentials, go to the Cleared field and select All
    3. If you are using QBO Simple Start, go to the Sort By field and select Default
    4. Click Run the Report
    5. Look for any duplicated reconciled transactions. 
    6. Should you locate the duplicate transaction you will need to determine which one is correct and delete the duplicate. Keep in mind that if you delete the reconciled transaction, you will need to manually reconcile the historical transaction to keep the opening balance accurate.
    • On the statement mailed from the bank or obtained from the bank's website, compare the total payments amount and the total deposits amount to the totals listed in the reconcile window; this will help further identify if the incorrect transaction(s) are deposits or payments.
    • One of the checks/cheques or the deposits may have been entered incorrectly.  Double-check the amounts and make sure they are checkmarked correctly.

    • You may have overlooked your interest earned or bank fees. If so, enter them in QBO.
    • One or more transactions which are on your statement are missing altogether from QuickBooks Online.  In this case you may need to do 1 of 2 things:
      • Uncheck the box that says 'Hide transactions after the statement's end date' located above the deposits and other credits column.
      • add any missing transactions to the register so they will show up on the reconcile list.
    • Check to see if the difference is a factor of 9.  If it is, someone may have transposed some numbers of one of the transactions.  For example, if the amount was really $220.00 but they entered $202.00 in QBO, the amount of your difference would be $18.00, which is a factor of 9.
    • If you can't find errors or omissions in QBO records, the problem may be the result of a bank error.  To determine this, you'll need to check hard-copy documentation that you have.  If it does turn out to be a bank error, record an adjusting transaction for the difference between what the statement says and what the transaction should be.  Then contact the bank to report the error.  When you receive the next bank or credit card statement, verify that it contains an adjustment for the error, then find and delete the adjustment transaction that you made.

If the transactions are all correctly checkmarked, and the ending balance is correct, then the opening balance has to be incorrect.   If this is the case click here to go to the top of this article and click on the link which says "The opening balance is incorrect when I reconcile," then follow the steps.

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How to find previous reconciliation adjustments?

When you run a reconcile and it doesn't balance, you receive an option to create an adjusting entry.  If the adjustment is accepted and created the memo field will contain a note that says: Reconcile Adjustment. 

You may then go back the same day or at a later time to view, edit or delete the adjustment, but, you will need to either locate it from the register that you reconciled for, use the find function, or run a report, depending on the format you prefer.

To find a reconcile adjustment you can either use the find function or run a report.  

  • Search function
  • Transaction List by Date report (This report only applies to Essentials and Plus versions.)

 

To find a reconcile adjustment using the Search function. 

  1. Choose the Search icon at the top and click Advanced Search
  2. This function has various filters, set accordingly:
    • Transaction Type: All (Except Statements)
    • Search: Memo > Contains > Reconcile   
  3. Click Search


Note: The list will contain all of the reconcile adjustments that have been created by date order, starting with the most current. 

 

To find a Reconcile Adjustment you can use a Transaction list by date report.


Note: This report only applies to Essentials and Plus versions.

  1. Click Reports from the left menu.
  2. In the "Go to report" field, enter and select Transaction List by Date
  3. In the Transaction Date field, select the appropriate time frame or set custom dates
  4. Click on Customize
  5. On the left click Match
  6. In the Memo: field type in: Reconcile Adjustment
  7. Click Run Report
 


Discrepancy report.


 If you are questioning the balance of one of your accounts a discrepancy report is normally the quickest way to find what has changed. And can be useful when you are unable to determine which transactions have been changed that had been previously reconciled. Click Discrepancy Report for steps on running this report. 

 

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