Let’s say you kept a diary as a kid. It contained your closely guarded secrets, and one day, your friend read its contents. You’d be mad about it sure, but the revelation of your secrets never affected your life in a significant way. That is where the comparison between a secret childhood diary and a business cash book ends. Unlike the diary, the revelation of what your cash book contains would devastate your company. There would be no forgiving because the consequences are much direr. If that piques your interest, then let us explore what a cash book is some more.
What Is a Cash Book?
To answer that question in-depth, let’s turn our attention to journal entries and general ledgers for a moment. Both are important accounting documents. However, there are some misconceptions about whether cash books are journals or ledgers. The concept of a journal is to record both non-economic and economic sales transactions in chronological order. Most entries involve the purchase, sales, and cash. The reason for recording these financial deals is to trace its impact on the business’s accounts. No matter how little the amount these deals contribute or take away from the account, it can affect the general ledger.
How are journal entries and general ledger related? Without journal entries, a business ledger would have nothing to account for. Before a financial transaction ends up in a general ledger, a bookkeeper or accountant has to record these deals as a journal entry. It is simply put that a journal entry is the entry point of any business transaction before making it into other book accounts. Thus, a general ledger is a book of account that collates recorded transactions from the business journals. Now that the concepts of a general ledger and a general journal are clear, distinguishing a cash book can be easier. A cash book, which is a subsidiary book or book account, is both a ledger and a journal. This book can keep original records of all transactions, which makes a cash book related to a journal entry. Since there is no separate ledger for money, a cash book can be a subsidiary book for cash accounts.
Keeping an eye on every business transaction can be a close-to-impossible task. Since several transactions could happen in a day, it might be difficult to track all of them. But it does not mean you could not do anything to record those transactions. The reason why a cash book exists is to help a business in recording business deals that mostly involve receipts and payment of cash. Hence, you can make another account related to payment and receipt as a cash book.
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If you think a cash book is useful for your business, then prepare yourself to make one. Yet, before jumping into your cash book, take the time to learn about the four major types of cash books. These types depend on the accounts it contains, and knowing this will give you an idea of making a business cash book. Also, if you know the book account you need, you will finish quickly. Below are the types of cash books for your business:
Single Column Cash Book. The cash book type businesses use to record cash transactions only.
Double/Two Column Cash Book. This cash book type records both cash and bank transactions.
Triple/Three Column Cash Book. A triple-column cash book records four accounts: cash, bank, purchase discount, and sales discount.
Petty Cash Book. This cash book records daily expenditures with a small amount.
How to Create and Use a Cash Book
It is a no-brainer to access business accounts in making a cash book. Completing a cash book has to start by identifying the number of accounts the cash book has to contain. Properly recording these accounts makes the cash book balanced. More on this below:
Make the Objectives Clear
On working on a cash book, starting could be one of the difficult parts, especially when you have no reference on how to begin an accounting journal. The way around this is setting a goal. With goals as the core of your task, you have a guidepost that will lead you to complete the cash book. So, before digging deeper into your cash-book-making task, set your goals first.
Don’t Miss Out on Any Transaction
For the record, you need to catch up with all the transactions made by your business. Remember that a cash book is a record of all business deals that involve cash payment and receipts. That said, your main task is to gather all the receipts from purchases with or without discounts. By doing this, it will be easier to record on the sheet.
Legibly Record the Data
A great cash book is understandable. To do this, arrange the accounts and organize them according to their category. The easiest way to store data on the cash book is by making tables. These tables will make the cash neat and nice to look at. You can make a manual cash book if you want, but using excel spreadsheet software to aid you is better.
Arrange the Columns
The several types of cash books have a different number of sections. These sections organize the accounts accordingly. It is important to arrange the columns in the cash book before recording any data. With this, the data will be orderly and easy-to-trace. Apart from the column for the accounts, provide columns for the receipt, cash payment, discount, debit, credit, checks, date, and contra entry, as well.
What is a contra entry?
A contra entry is a transaction that affects the debit and credit accounts in different situations. Simply put, when you deposit from a bank, it means you debit the account. Whereas, withdrawing from the bank means crediting the account.
What is the difference between debit and credit?
If an entry increases an expense account or decreases an equity account, then it is a debit. On the other hand, a credit entry is different because it increases an equity account or decreases an expense account.
What type of account is cash?
Cash is an asset account that increases assets—assuming that any account that involves cash is a cash account.
Securing a cash book for a business is like keeping a diary; it holds a record of the important information you want to keep to yourself. But at the end of the day, it is in your hand to unfold these details. Cash books contain transactions made by a business. It also secures the accounts that majorly affect the business. That is what makes cash books a private document where only the owner has the right to peek.
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