chart of accounts numbering

Asset ClassAssets are classified into various classes based on their type, purpose, or the basis of return or markets. EquityEquity refers to investor’s ownership of a company representing the amount they would receive after liquidating assets and paying off the liabilities and debts. It is the difference between the assets and liabilities shown on a company’s balance sheet. But if you’re looking for recommendations, these account number ranges might help. These ranges are based on account types and follow Generally Accepted Accounting Principles . Create a chart of accounts that doesn’t change too much over time, so you can compare performance of accounts over time.

Align direct cost account numbers with the corresponding sales account numbers. For example, to track the cost of hardware purchased for resale, you might use account number COS-Hardware, which would align numerically with Sales-Hardware . The consistency comes in handy when designing financial reports or making journal entries, and also makes sense to non-accountants.

What is the Chart of Accounts?

Typically, when listing accounts in the chart of accounts, you should use a numbering system for easy identification. Small businesses commonly use three-digit numbers, while large businesses use four-digit numbers to allow room for additional numbers as the business grows. Liabilities are what a company owes or has borrowed, usually a sum of money. They can include a future service owed to others or a previous transaction that created an unsettled obligation. Similar to assets, liabilities are classified as current and noncurrent.

chart of accounts numbering

The numbering system of the owner’s equity account for a large company can continue from the liability accounts and start from 3000 to 3999. The chart of accounts provides the name of each account listed, a brief description, and identification codes that are specific to each account. The balance sheet accounts are listed first, followed by the accounts in the income statement. Balance sheet accounts tend to follow a standard that lists the most liquid assets first. Revenue and expense accounts tend to follow the standard of first listing the items most closely related to the operations of the business. In some cases, part or all of the expense accounts simply are listed in alphabetical order.

Account descriptions

When conducting chart of accounts mapping, within these main types of accounts you will also find subtypes of accounts. In the chart of accounts balance sheet, you have your Assets, Liabilities, and Equity while in your Income or P&L statement you have Income, cost of goods sold , expenses, etc. These sub-types will decide which account in the corresponding financial statement the transaction will be classified under. Through the financial reports created from the chart of accounts, you can evaluate your company’s performance during a particular period of time. You can also conduct a comparative review of company performance with historical data during a different period of time. Chart of accounts helps these companies consolidate and compile their financial records.

  • Equity represents the value that is left in the business after deducting all the liabilities from the assets.
  • Harold Averkamp has worked as a university accounting instructor, accountant, and consultant for more than 25 years.
  • RevenuesRevenue is the amount of money that a business can earn in its normal course of business by selling its goods and services.
  • As long as you’re consistent about how you book things to answer that question, you’ll be able to maintain a clean general ledger.
  • All the owner’s equity entries contain the account number starting with 3.

If used by a consolidated or combined entity, it also includes separate classifications for intercompany transactions and balances. While some countries define standard national charts of accounts other countries do not . In the European union, most countries codify a national GAAP and also require IFRS for public companies. The former often define a chart of accounts while the latter does not.


It can be a private company, a public company, a limited or unlimited partnership, a statutory corporation, a holding company, a subsidiary company, and so on. A person can look up additional details related to the account in the ledger using this number. Review annually to see if there’s an opportunity for consolidation. These are familiar sentiments to anyone who has sat through a few financial meetings. The discussion flows and inevitably someone says “It would be nice if we could see…” The CFO gets an exasperated expression on their face and writes the request on their notepad. Please email accounting questions you would like considered for the column to with the subject line of “Ask the Accountant.”

Build the accounts for management, not for GAAP and tax purposes. It’s inevitable that you will need to add accounts to your chart in the future, but don’t drastically change the numbering structure and total number chart of accounts of accounts in the future. A big change will make it difficult to compare accounting record between these years. A well-designed chart of accounts will help you plan, analyze, and control your business results.

Write a comment:


Your email address will not be published.

© 2015 AVOR Motors