Fixed Assets Acctg at a Church Issues - 2007-07 ZZeod
2007-07 Fixed Assets Acctg at a Church Issues - ZZeod


TOPIC:   Church and Fixed Assets Accounting Issues                               DATE: February 5, 2000

TOPICAL OVERVIEW: This Church needs to upgrade to GAAP; which involves proper accounting for Fixed Assets and Depreciation using QBs)  

FILE: 2007-07                                                                           

    I am associate pastor of a church with responsibility for the accounting.
We have been using QB Pro for two years and making reports that are adequate for management purposes. We are at a point where we need to upgrade to GAAP standards due to the need of a major loan for building in 12-24 months, and therefore the need to submit financial data.

My questions include at least the following:
>> How can we most effectively use QB? Do you have material available to help (free or for fee)?

>> Is there another program (e.g. Peachtree) that would be better for us?

>> In addition to needing data for loan app. we are probably at a point of needing annual audits--how can we minimize audit costs with these products?
>> What are the questions I need to be asking that I am not? I have limited accounting knowledge, and no accountants in the congregation

>> We are currently at $725k in annual general fund income, another $75k in restricted donations or fee income.

    Before you digest our comments below, we suggest you view the pages and the links of the Web Site below and get some of our perspective as much of it speaks to your comments above.
1> Our personal experience is that QB is just what is needed for Churches of your size. Tell us what you think of the info included in the two links below:


2> But the QB system accounting/reporting emphasis is to meet the every day internal management needs of the General Fund (we call this " General Purpose Fund - GPFund") and the restricted/Fee (I call these the "Special Purpose Funds -SPFunds") ---- and not to simply comply with public reporting requirement of FASB or GAAP.  Some of this is addressed in the following links:

3> Therefore we recommend that the Ministry have some two or three QB Companies; often QB Companies A> and B> below are unnecessarily combined.

   A> For Day to Day GPF and SPF operations on the accrual basis of accounting; that includes
Depart "Actual to Budget" reporting.
    B> For the Fixed Assets (Land, Bldgs and Equipment) and related mortgage etc. --- usually only reported annually.
    C> For Annual Combination of A> and B> above, but structured once a year to be in compliance with Non Profit FASB &GAAP.  So that the Ministry can readily comply with pronounced issues as to unrestricted; temporary (or permanent) Funds and Functional expenses.
  See some of the QB samples via the Library per URL below:


          As most of you know, we here at  dialog by email with Onliners regarding Ministry Finance (MinFin) matters.  Above are what we call "Edited Onliner Dialogs", or edited version of actual dialogs with some of you, but we have honored your privacy and not used your name or that of your Ministry. Our purpose is to make topical MinFin information available to any interested Ministry Finance Team so you can learn from one another.. Let us know if you would like to dialog on a Peer to Peer basis with the other Onliner involved and we will try to put you together.   Thanx - Jim Bramer  - Proverbs  9:10