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Which QuickBooks Version Is Best For A Construction Business?

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QuickBooks is one of the most extensively used accounting software for tracking financial transactions in enterprises. With so much financial data to keep track of in a firm, having the right software is crucial. With QuickBooks, clients not only get high-quality software, but they also get it at a reasonable price.

While many businesses benefit from this software, you may be asking if it is appropriate for construction firms. Does QuickBooks take into account the fact that there is so much unique data and information to track when calculating accounting efficiency?

QuickBooks Contractor is a construction-specific version of QuickBooks Premier.

It has unique features and statistics that aid in the planning and accounting for the expenditures of large projects.

QuickBooks Premier Contractor Edition comes with online backup, unlimited customer support, and version updates for a one-time purchase or a yearly subscription.

During the download process of QuickBooks Premier, you can choose the Contractor Edition after purchasing it.

As a general contractor or subcontractor, QuickBooks Premier Contractor Edition is the most beneficial version of QuickBooks.

The Contractor Edition, on the other hand, comes with all of QuickBooks Premier’s advanced accounting capabilities.

QuickBooks Contractor Edition is one of the best construction accounting software options since it’s ideal for general contractors and subcontractors that have trouble controlling job expenses or spend too much time tracking costs.

The Contractor Edition, on the other hand, is confined to PCs that have the software installed.

QuickBooks Contractor Edition is ideal for contractors.

Contractors who keep track of job costs separately from their accounting:

With QuickBooks Premier Contractor Edition, you can expedite your work by combining task costing and basic bookkeeping. You may try to keep track of job costs using an Excel spreadsheet, as many small contractors do. Because job costs are tied to total company expenses, the Contractor Edition will not only save you time by consolidating jobs, but it will also protect you from missing charges.

Contractors that have multiple crews:

Even if detailed task costing is not accomplished, experienced owners are relatively effective at estimating profit on projects in which they are significantly involved. However, when your company expands and different crews develop, you lose daily involvement in each job, making job profitability estimation much more difficult. As a result, having precise task costs to analyses and aid your project managers in cost control with numerous crews is vital.

Contractors on the lookout for cost-cutting opportunities:

The inventory feature in QuickBooks Contractor is the same as in QuickBooks Premier’s base edition. Resources that have been turned in from a job site can be preserved so that your project managers can plan to reuse them on future tasks instead of ordering superfluous materials.

QuickBooks Contractor Edition isn’t designed for 

Accounting in the cloud:

Some accounting tasks may be required on-site by your company. A construction company, for example, can need a repair worker to generate invoices while on the job. QuickBooks Online is a superior alternative if this is a key priority.

Read Also: Best Accounting Software For Small Businesses You Must Know

Bookkeepers who are new to the job:

Your off-site certified public accountant (CPA) or bookkeeper will not be able to examine your accounts from their office computer, unlike with online software.

Instead, while utilizing QuickBooks Contractor, you must prepare an Accountant’s Copy and email it to your CPA. Although this isn’t a bad strategy, you don’t want to do it on a daily or monthly basis.

There are more than five users: The maximum concurrent user limit for QuickBooks Contractor Edition is five. Assume, however, that your construction company has a larger accounting department to which you need constant access. In that situation, QuickBooks Enterprise, which allows up to 30 concurrent users and includes a contractor-specific edition, is the best option.

QuickBooks Contractor’s Key Features

Calculate the cost of jobs:

You can create and send out job estimates to potential clients. Because the estimate will serve as the foundation for later change orders, invoices, and budget assessments, it is vital to include as much data as feasible in the estimate.

Make a request for a change:

Large projects rarely go according to plan. If you need to make a modification, you can make it to your original estimate, and QuickBooks will generate a change order for you to give to your customer right away.

Create purchase orders by following these steps:

From the estimate screen, purchase orders can be generated right away. This prevents your project managers from forgetting to order required components, resulting in costly extras and lost time. Purchase orders can also be used by project managers to identify goods that are required but not included in the estimate.

Make an invoice:

You can create an invoice from the estimate. You can construct an in-progress invoice by billing for each item on the estimate at a predetermined percentage, or you can invoice only specific things on the estimate. You may, for example, invoice only the materials listed in the invoice. When it’s time to invoice the remaining amount on the outstanding estimate, go back to the estimate, select Create an invoice, and QuickBooks will ask you to do so.

Set aside time for each job and service item:

You can link an employee’s compensation to a specific work item and a service item that corresponds to the service items on your estimate. QuickBooks automatically allocates applicable payroll taxes to a task and service item when earnings are assigned to it.


There are a variety of reports to help you manage and evaluate your building projects:

  • Profitability of work:

Describes the job’s real earnings and costs. For a single project, income and expenses for all selected jobs can be totaled or presented per service item.

  • Estimated vs. actual job performance:

Estimated revenue and expenses are compared to actual income and expenses. The report can be broken down into service items for a given job or summarized by job.

  • Estimates vs. Invoices for Work in Progress:

To find jobs that haven’t been fully invoiced, compare the total amount of progress invoices to the estimate for each job.

  • Profitability of the item:

Across all tasks, it shows the real revenue and expense for each service item. This will help you figure out which service goods are the most profitable and which are the least profitable.

  • Actual vs. item estimates:

A comparison of actual vs. anticipated revenue and expenses for each service item across all projects performed. This will help you figure out which service items are overestimated.

  • Job-related unpaid bills:

Displays a list of unpaid debts organized by employment. This is crucial for properly wrapping up jobs and avoiding any errors that could result in a customer being notified and filing a claim with your provider.

  • Expenses that aren’t related to a specific job:

Provides a list of expenditures that should be double-checked to make sure they don’t include any direct materials or other prices that could be invoiced to work.

Center for job costing:

The job costing center shows the top and bottom three profitable jobs over the previous three months. It also offers access to crucial job costing reports as well as some highlights of your recent performance:


QuickBooks Premier Contractor Edition combines the sophisticated bookkeeping capabilities of QuickBooks Premier with solutions that help general and contracting businesses better track spending, analyses performance, and prevent errors.

The software is thorough and complicated, and hiring a full-time accountant will almost probably be required, but that is the nature of cost accounting for large projects.

Before you can purchase QuickBooks Premier Contractor Edition, you must first purchase QuickBooks Premier. You will be asked if you want a complimentary industry-specific edition before downloading the software.

Select Contractor Edition and you’ll be on your way to more precise job costing.

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