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Insurance policies can require advanced payment of fees for several months at a time, six months, for example. The company does not use all six months of insurance immediately but over the course of the six months. At the end of each month, the company needs to record the amount of insurance expired during that month. Supplies increases (debit) for $400, and Cash decreases (credit) for $400. When the company recognizes the supplies usage, the following adjusting entry occurs. In the adjusting entry above, Utilities Expense is debited to recognize the expense and Utilities Payable to record a liability since the amount is yet to be paid.

Suppose MacDonald’s bought land in San Fransisco in 2013 for $1,000,000, if the land is revalued to a fair value of $1,500,000 by April 2023. It means there has been a revaluation gain worth $500,000 on the land. Hence, for MacDonald’s to ensure that their financial statements accurately reflect the current value if this land, they will journalize an adjusting entry to record the land s current fair market value.

An adjusting journal entry involves an income statement account (revenue or expense) along with a balance sheet account (asset or liability). It typically relates to the balance sheet accounts for accumulated depreciation, allowance for doubtful accounts, accrued expenses, accrued income, prepaid expenses, deferred revenue, and unearned revenue. In this case someone is already performing a service for you but you have not paid them or recorded any journal entry yet. The transaction is in progress, and the expense is building up (like a “tab”), but nothing has been written down yet. This may occur with employee wages, property taxes, and interest—what you owe is growing over time, but you typically don’t record a journal entry until you incur the full expense. For the adjusting entry, you debit the appropriate expense account for the amount you owe through the end of the accounting period so this expense appears on your income statement.

  • Assume that as of January 31 some of the printing services have been provided.
  • Unearned revenue is a liability created to record the goods or services owed to customers.
  • Any remaining balance in the Prepaid Taxes account is what you have left to use in the future; it continues to be an asset since it is still available.
  • Let’s say a company has five salaried employees, each earning $2,500 per month.
  • Accounts Receivable increases (debit) for $1,500 because the customer has not yet paid for services completed.

To defer means to postpone or delay; thus, a deferral is a revenue or expense recognized later than the original point at which the cash was originally exchanged. Wages Payable has a zero balance on 7/3 since nothing is owed to employees for the week now that they have been paid the $1,000 in cash. An expense is a cost of doing business, and it cost $4,000 in wages this month to run the business. bank reconciliation example Accruing revenue is vital for service businesses that typically bill clients after work has been performed and revenue earned. Accrued revenue adjustments involve recognizing revenue that has been earned but not yet received, ensuring that the revenue is reported in the period it was earned. Customer B comes in and buys a gift card for $100 to give to her mother as a birthday present.

The Various Types of Adjusting Journal Entries

Payroll is the most common expense that will need an adjusting entry at the end of the month, particularly if you pay your employees bi-weekly. In many cases, a client may pay in advance for work that is to be done over a specific period of time. Revenue must be accrued, otherwise revenue totals would be significantly understated, particularly in comparison to expenses for the period.

Note that this interest has not been paid at the end of the period, only earned. This aligns with the revenue recognition principle to recognize revenue when earned, even if cash has yet to be collected. After the first month, the company records an adjusting entry for the rent used. The following entries show initial payment for four months of rent and the adjusting entry for one month’s usage. Depreciation may also require an adjustment at the end of the period.

Accruals & Deferrals

The same is true about just about any asset you can name, except, perhaps, cash itself. You can earn our Adjusting Entries Certificate of Achievement when you join PRO Plus. To help you master this topic and earn your certificate, you will also receive lifetime access to our premium adjusting entries materials. These include our visual tutorial, flashcards, cheat sheet, quick tests, quick test with coaching, and more. Accrued Revenue (a.k.a. Deferred expense) involves performing a service before the cash is received. Because Delta wants to record part of the revenue in November but fully deliver the service in December, Delta will still have to make an adjusted entry on Nov 31st.

An accrued expense is an expense that has been incurred (goods or services have been consumed) before the cash payment has been made. Examples include utility bills, salaries and taxes, which are usually charged in a later period after they have been incurred. Since the Accumulated Depreciation account was credited in the adjusting entry rather than the Equipment account directly, the Equipment account balance remains at $6,000, its cost. The adjusting entry above is made at the end of each month for 60 months.

What Are the Types of Adjusting Journal Entries?

In simpler terms, depreciation is a way of devaluing objects that last longer than a year, so that they are expensed according to the time that they get used by the business (not when you pay for them). Did we continue to follow the rules of adjusting entries in these two examples? In this case, Unearned Fee Revenue increases (credit) and Cash increases (debit) for $48,000. There are a few other guidelines that support the need for adjusting entries. Accrued expense refers to an expense that the company has not paid yet but it has already incurred.


Let’s assume you used $100 of the $1,000 of supplies you purchased on 6/1. If you DON’T “catch up” and adjust for the amount you used, you will show on your balance sheet that you have $1,000 worth of supplies at the end of the month when you actually have only $900 remaining. In addition, on your income statement you will show that you did not use ANY supplies to run the business during the month, when in fact you used $100 worth. Here is the Supplies Expense ledger where transaction above is posted.

The remaining $1,100 in the Prepaid Insurance account will appear on the balance sheet. The preparation of adjusting entries is the fifth step of accounting cycle and starts after the preparation of unadjusted trial balance. If you create financial statements without taking adjusting entries into consideration, the financial health of your business will be completely distorted. Net income and the owner’s equity will be overstated, while expenses and liabilities understated. This principle only applies to the accrual basis of accounting, however. If your business uses the cash basis method, there’s no need for adjusting entries.

You prepaid a one-year rent policy during the month and initially recorded it as an asset because it would last for more than one month. By the end of the month some of the prepaid rent expired, so you reduced the value of this asset to reflect what you actually had on hand at the end of the month ($11,000). To transfer what expired, Rent Expense was debited for the amount used and Prepaid Rent was credited to reduce the asset by the same amount. Any remaining balance in the Prepaid Rent account is what you have left to use in the future; it continues to be an asset since it is still available. The adjusting entry ensures that the amount of insurance expired appears as a business expense on the income statement, not as an asset on the balance sheet.

Expenses may be understated

These are the five adjusting entries for deferred expenses we will cover. The same process applies to recording accounts payable and business expenses. If you haven’t decided whether to use cash or accrual basis as the timing of documentation for your small business accounting, our guide on the basis of accounting can help you decide. At the end of the year after analyzing the unearned fees account, 40% of the unearned fees have been earned. Let’s say a company paid for supplies with cash in the amount of $400. At the end of the month, the company took an inventory of supplies used and determined the value of those supplies used during the period to be $150.