Quickbooks Accounts Payable balance out of kilter with TB | AccountingWEB

Quickbooks Accounts Payable balance out of kilter with TB


I have a TB with an A/P balance that is different to the figure that I see on the Supplier aged summary for the same date (both reports run on an accrual basis).

I think it has something to do with cheques being written to Accounts payable rather than as Bill payments.  Where the cheque is written in advance of the bill, would this cause a problem?  I can't see why it should as the two would surely eventually give an account balance of zero.

Any ideas?


Preference Bill Setting

amutyaba.yahoo.com | | Permalink

This happens when you the bill payment is not properly set. To do this you need to go to the following link in Quickbooks. Edit/preferences/bills/company preferences/ tick paying bills- Automatically use discounts and credits. Select purchase discount and then click okay. So when you go to bill payments, the system will show all the credits that needs to be applied. Before even you apply, the TB accounts payable balance and total supplier balances will agree. I hope this will help. Enjoy Quick books


Mrs Incredible's picture

TB vs A/P listing

Mrs Incredible | | Permalink

Thanks for the suggestion.  I have tried it but it doesn't appear to make any difference.

zxcvb's picture

No answer yet......

zxcvb | | Permalink

I am having a similar problem.  I think I have narrowed it down to automatic journals posted when filing VAT.  I have asked the question on the Intuit community forum, so will post an answer here if I get a solution!!

QB Acconts payable differs to TB

Kim Harden | | Permalink

The problem could also be caused by a journal being posted directly to the Accounts Payable account rather than being allocated to a specific AP account - check that any journals have the "Name" column correctly filled in.

coolmanwithbeard's picture

Difference TB to AP reports    2 thanks

coolmanwithbeard | | Permalink

Sadly this seems to be an issue with the latest versions of QuickBooks - if you add credits to AP then there is no guarantee that your payment will be correctly attached. I have discussed this with QB support and sadly get differeng responses including one who told me that the current version could not cope unless Pay Bills had been used to generate the payment. - Its not designed to take cheques directly to AP apparently.

If you produce an open balance report for affected suppliers you will find some of your payments on this list with no amount - these are there because they are not fully allocated - even though the payments have been used as credits on pay bills.

The only work arounf I have found is to unallocate the payments by putting them to a contra bank account set up for the purpose and using paybills for that - a time consuming and tedious solution to something that used to work so well.



Another42's picture


Another42 | | Permalink

eek!  I haven't noticed that one yet - but I can imagine it will cause all sorts of problems for my clients.  Thanks for the heads up...

AB out of balance

nicknell | | Permalink

I thought I would just check my AP control account and, yes, mine doesn't balance either!  Doh

Mrs Incredible's picture

eek echoed

Mrs Incredible | | Permalink

Thanks for these replies.  I'm disappointed to see that the facility to use the cheque in this way has now disappeared - QBooks not going in the right direction here.

VAT Filing

amutyaba.yahoo.com | | Permalink

I haven't started using Qbooks 2010 but 2008 has a similar problem with VAT filing if not dealt with properly. One needs to file the returns which in the end transfers the VAT liabilities for a given period to HM revenue & Excise Accounts payable. Payments of VAT again should posted to the HM revenue & Excise AP account but not the VAT control. 

 I usually check errors by exporting transactions to excel; in this case Supplier balances (when you click in the total figure the system will generate all the transactions on all the suppliers listed in a given period) and AP (trial balance figure, again click in the figure to generate the transactions). Comparing both sets of transactions in excel will give you a clue as to why the don't agree. With that understanding you will be able to get right the next time.

Also check the default account you use to pay bills. You may find that some credits are hiding in some other bank accounts.



zxcvb's picture

Long winded unacceptable solution

zxcvb | | Permalink

I managed to make Accounts Payable the same as the Trial Balance in only one afternoon!!

I opened both reports and changed the dates to "all"  (in case of any forward dating errors).  Clicking on the trial balance figure, then reporting "by supplier" I was able to compare the two reports and see where the errors were.

All of the differences were where we had made a cheque payment to a supplier as a payment on account.  Up to that point it still works fine and both reports are still the same.  The point at which that changes is when you go to "pay bills" and allocate the cheque (which appaears as an available credit) against the invoice.  Although everything appears fine under the "supplier centre", the cheque is no longer included in the Accounts Payable reports


The only solution to this is as mentioned above by coolmanwithbeard (delete or re-post cheque and re-enter as pay bill).




Mrs Incredible's picture

How tedious is that if the bank has been reconciled?

Mrs Incredible | | Permalink

I had reached the same conclusion myself, pretty much.  But if the bank's been reconciled that is such a time waster as the undoing and re-doing of the reconciliation (perhaps more than one) has to be added in to the whole fandango.

I have also found that if I compare the A/P summary with the Supplier Balance summary from I can see where the differences lie and dig up the offending cheques that way.

Another42's picture

deleting cheques and paying bills

Another42 | | Permalink

That works fine unless you have clients who persistently give you bank statements to work from AND their VAT return information at the last minute AND you need to reconcile in order find out what invoices are missing AND only come up with the VAT invoices when bullied...

I think I need an aspirin

coolmanwithbeard's picture


coolmanwithbeard | | Permalink


The reconciled bank is why I suggest amending the cheque to repost to a contra account (simply an extra bank account for your own purposes) as it does no affect your reconciled bank accounts and then pay bills from there - you get the double check that this account should end up with a zero balance.


It's not elegant or disirerable but it works



zxcvb's picture

A little more info

zxcvb | | Permalink

I've just learned that the problem with cheque payments on account to accounts payable only happens if the cheque amount is for more than the invoice. This would of course be the case if a cheque paid more than one invoice.


This means that if the cheque pays the invoice exactly, or a part of it,  Accounts Payable reports will be correct.

petersaxton's picture

No invoice

petersaxton | | Permalink

What about when there isn't an invoice?

Another42's picture

Overpayment of invoice or no invoice

Another42 | | Permalink

If you overpay an invoice through finger trouble, or make a payment on account for more than the invoice eventually comes in for you will have a credit on the account for that supplier.  You can either leave it there to put towards a later invoice, or ask the supplier for a credit note, or if neither of these is forthcoming write it off at a later date.

If you have no invoice but are expecting one, then a payment on account to Accounts Payable is the way to go.  When the invoice arrives you can enter it as normal.  Go to pay bills and use the credit to pay the invoice.

If the invoice never materialises then you should make a deposit to the bank using Accounts Payable, pay the deposit with the payment on account and then enter a simple cheque using the relevant expense account. (or you could just change the account on the original cheque to the relevant expense account instead of accounts payable - do I hear screeches of horror from the Sage adherents).  It really depends how far back it  is.  It shouldn't affect your VAT because there should be no VAT code on a cheque to accounts payable, and if you have no invoice you can't claim the VAT anyway.

If you know you will not have an invoice then enter a simple cheque using the relevant expense account.

Mrs Incredible's picture


Mrs Incredible | | Permalink


Agreed - that would be the way to go.

petersaxton's picture

Not correct

petersaxton | | Permalink

"If you overpay an invoice through finger trouble, or make a payment on account for more than the invoice eventually comes in for you will have a credit on the account for that supplier."

Debit not credit

"You can either leave it there to put towards a later invoice, or ask the supplier for a credit note, or if neither of these is forthcoming write it off at a later date."

You shouldn't ask for a credit note that would mess both sets of books up.


Another42's picture


Another42 | | Permalink

Sorry, brain fugged by a cold - what I  meant to say was 'ask the supplier for your money back', not 'ask the supplier for a credit note'.  Thanks for noticing that Peter.

petersaxton's picture


petersaxton | | Permalink

You are welcome

VAT Visit

rayjames | | Permalink

Have just had a routine VAT visit

We deduct amounts from salaries for purchases made and treated them as negative input tax

No loss to HMRC but not strictly correct and also messes up the reconciliation of outputs to P&L figures

We were asked to declare these items as outputs from now on

So another vote for coolmanwithbeard - thank you!


Have already discovered the advance payment problem for AP when we have to have a credit balance in their AR (it's for CRB checks) to get items processed

I now maintain a constant balance which I took out of AP and put to sundry creditors

Not pretty but is logical in terms of the overall Balance Sheet 

No back to some proper work!

Thank you!

jjoddiiee | | Permalink

I've been faffing on with deleting & re-entering (with a low success rate) for years, so pleased I've found this solution, thank you!


Same issue, now resolved

0242736 | | Permalink

Had the same problem.

One way to identify which payments are causing the issue is to run a supplier transaction report, though add the "Paid" column. the payments that show up as unpaid, are the ones that are causing the imbalance, well in my case they were anyway.

I had to then delete these payments, check that both balances then agreed and proceed to pay the invoices, which now appear as unpaid, through "pay bills".

This resolved the error and both reports now agree.

There still doesn't seem to be an efficient way to enter payments on account.




coolmanwithbeard's picture


coolmanwithbeard | | Permalink

As a matter of interest QB 2014 has been fixed in this regard



Quickbooks 2014

Marischoles | | Permalink

I am having the same issue in Qbooks 2014 and further cheques when appearing are increasing the supplier balance

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