How to Record and Print Checks from QuickBooks - dummies

How to Record and Print Checks from QuickBooks

By Stephen L. Nelson

Obviously, any business writes checks to pay bills and to pay employees. QuickBooks includes a command and a window specifically for the purpose of recording and possibly printing checks.

To record or print checks, follow these steps:

1Choose the Banking→Write Checks command.

When QuickBooks displays the Write Checks window, use the Bank Account drop-down list to select the correct account on which to write a check.

2Use the No. (check number) field to identify the check number.

If you don’t know the check number yet because you haven’t printed the check, leave the No. field blank. Then select the Print Later check box, which appears on the Main tab of the Write Checks window.

When you select the Print Later check box, QuickBooks displays the phrase To Print in the No. field.

3Use the Date field to record the date that the check is written or will be written.

You can enter the check date in mm/dd/yyyy format. You can also enter dates as simply mmdd or m/dd, and QuickBooks transforms them to mm/dd/yyyy. Thus, 3/17, 0317, and 03/17/2014 are all valid ways to enter the same date, if the current year is 2014.

Alternatively, you can click the small calendar button that appears to the right of the Date field. When you click the calendar button, QuickBooks displays a pop-up calendar. To select a day shown on the calendar, click the day. The pop-up calendar also includes a pair of buttons that you can click to scroll back and forth through the months.

4Use the Pay to the Order Of field to identify the individual or business that you’re paying with the check.

If the check that you’re recording is the first check that you’ve ever made out to the payee, you must type the payee’s name in the Pay to the Order Of field.

If you’ve previously paid the payee, you can click the arrow button at the right end of the Pay to the Order Of field. When you do, QuickBooks displays a list of previous payees. You can select a payee from this list by clicking the name.

5Move the selection cursor to the Dollars (or amount) field and type the check amount.

QuickBooks writes out the check amount on the line below the Pay to the Order Of field.

6(Optional) Provide an address.

If you want, you can use the address block to provide the payee’s address. Note that QuickBooks writes the payee name on the first line of the address block when you fill in the Pay to the Order Of field. You can add the other lines to the address block manually.

7(Optional) Provide a memo description.

You can use the Memo field to provide or record additional information. If you’re going to print the check, for example, you can use the Memo field to identify your account number or the invoice number that the check pays.

8(Optional) Select the Pay Online check box on the Memo tab.

So here’s the deal: If you’ve told your bank that you want to do the online banking thing and have followed its instructions for setup, you can select the Pay Online check box (which appears after you’ve set up online banking). This setting tells QuickBooks to transmit this check information to your bank, along with instructions to the bank to make the payment.

9Distribute the check amount to the appropriate expense or asset accounts.

If the check pays for a particular expense or purchases a particular asset, click the Expenses tab. Then use the lines or rows of the Expenses tab to identify the account and the amount that the check pays. If you categorize the expense as one incurred for a particular customer or job, you can use the Billable? column to indicate whether this item should be billed to the customer later.

10Describe the items that the check purchases.

The figure shows the Items tab of the Write Checks window. You use the Items tab when you write a check to purchase items shown and described in your Item list. For example, if you write a $1,000 check to buy 1,000 $1 items for inventory, you use the Items tab. To use the Items tab, identify the item being purchased by entering the item code or name in the Item column.

11To print a check, click the Print button.

Alternatively, if you want to print checks in a batch, after you’ve recorded the very last check that you want to print, click the down arrow below the Print button. When QuickBooks displays the Print menu, choose its Print Batch command. QuickBooks displays the Select Checks to Print dialog box.

Select the checks that you want to print by clicking them. Use the First Check Number box to identify the number of the first check form to use for printing.

12Click OK.

When QuickBooks displays the Print Checks dialog box, use the Check Style area to identify the type of check forms on which you’re printing. If you’re using standard or wallet-style checks, you also need to indicate the number of checks. Then click the Print button.

13After you describe the check and the reasons for writing the check, click either the Save & Close or the Save & New button.

The Save & Close button saves the check and also closes the Write Checks window. Click the Save & New button to save the check and then redisplay the Write Checks window so that you can record another check. If you don’t want to save the check, click the Clear button.