QuickBooks 2016: The Sales Tax Code List, Class List, and Other Names List

By Stephen L. Nelson

QuickBooks 2016 offers you many lists. You may want to check out the Sales Tax Code list, the Class list, and the Other Names list. If you need to see these lists, just choose the list from the Lists menu or choose Lists → Customer & Vendor Profile Lists and choose the list from the submenu that QuickBooks displays.

The Sales Tax Code list

The Sales Tax Code list, which appears if you turn on the Sales Tax option, just maintains a list of sales tax codes. These sales tax codes, when used on an invoice or bill, tell QuickBooks whether items are taxable.

The Class list

Classes enable you to classify transactions by department or location, for example, so that you can track trends and assess performance across parts of your business. Classes are cool (really cool), but they add another dimension to the accounting model that you use in QuickBooks. You should definitely get comfortable with how the rest of QuickBooks works before you begin mucking about with classes. Here are just a handful of useful tidbits in case you want to use classes:

  • You may need to turn on the QuickBooks Class Tracking feature. To do this, choose Edit →Preferences, click the Accounting icon, click the Company Preferences tab, and select the Use Class Tracking check box.

    The Class box appears in data entry windows only after you turn on Class Tracking.

  • To display the Class list, choose Lists → Class List.

  • To add classes to the Class list, display the Class List window (choose Lists  → Class List), right-click the window, choose New to display the New Class window, and then fill in the blanks.

  • To tag transactions as falling into a particular class — invoices, checks, bills, journal entries, and so on — select the appropriate class from the Class list box.

By the way, one other point: Before you go off and start using classes to complicate your accounting, make sure that you can’t get what you want by beefing up your chart of accounts.

You won’t see a Class List command in the Lists menu if you indicated during the QuickBooks Setup that you don’t want to use classes. But you can change your mind later and start using classes. Choose Edit  →Preferences, click the Accounting icon, and select the Use Class Tracking check box on the Company Preferences tab.

The Other Names list

QuickBooks provides an Other Names list that works as a watered-down, wimpy Vendor and Employee list combination. You can write checks to people named on this Other Names list, but you can’t do anything else. You can’t create invoices or purchase orders for them, for example. And you don’t get any of the other information that you want to collect for vendors or employees.

You’re really better off working with good, accurate, rich Vendor and Employee lists. If you don’t like this suggestion, however, just choose Lists  → Other Names List to display the Other Names List window, click the Other Names button, choose New from the drop-down list, and then fill in the blanks in the New Name window.