Chart of Accounts is a complete list of all the company’s accounts and balances. You can tell how much money your company has, how much money it owes, how much money is coming in and how much money is coming out by simply looking at your chart of accounts.

QuickBooks Desktop automatically creates your chart of accounts based on the industry and type of company you choose when you created your company file. See Record opening balance in QuickBooks Desktop if you just created your file and you need to enter an opening balance.

Type of Accounts

There are 2 main type of Accounts in QuickBooks Desktop called Balance Sheet accounts and Income and Expense Accounts.

Accounts that QuickBooks set up for you

When you create a new company file, QuickBooks Desktop requires you to select a type of company which determines the Chart of Accounts your company file will begin with. However, there are accounts that QuickBooks Desktop automatically creates regardless of the company type selected.

QuickBooks Desktop Accounts and Account Numbers

Quick tip

Using Account Numbers in QuickBooks Desktop is a company preference that you need to turn on. Go to Edit > Preferences > Accounting > Company Preferences > Use account numbers.

  • Asset (10000 – 19999)
    • Current Asset (1000-1499) - Assets that you can easily turn into cash such as checking accounts, savings accounts, money market and CD accounts, accounts receivable and inventory.
    • Fixed Asset (1500-1999) - Items with a minimum cost that you have to sell in order to generate cash. Example of this are automobile, equipment and land. Consult your accountant or tax preparer to determine the actual minimum cost that you should use to determine fixed asset.
  • Liabilities (20000 – 29999)
    Funds the company owe.
  • Equity (30000 – 39999)
    The account that represents the health of your business.
  • Income/ Revenue (40000 – 49999)
    Money that you get from your normal day to day business task such as sales revenue, professional fees, reimbursable expense or income for services rendered.
  • Cost of Good Sold/ Job Costs (50000 – 59999)
    These are the cost associated with your line of business. If you are a home builder, the job cost are whatever it cost you to build a home. Example are materials, subcontractor, and equipment rental including direct labor. If you sell product, this includes cost on inventory, raw materials, freight charges and any labor cost that you incurred to finish the product.
  • Expense/ Overhead Costs (60000 – 69999)
    Fixed costs your business have even if you run out of work. Examples include rent, telephone, insurance, and utilities.
  • Other Income (70000 – 79999)
    Income you earned outside of the normal business process like rent for a building you own, stock sale, insurance settlement and interest income.
  • Other Expense (80000 – 89999)
    Expenses that's outside of your normal business, such as a loss on the sale of an asset or stockbroker fees.

Common Tasks under Chart of Accounts