how to do accounting for construction

This report can be used to track project profitability, as well as identify problems with certain projects. Additionally, this report can help you make more informed decisions about pricing for future projects. Contractors hold retainage on their subcontractors, thereby impacting construction firms as well as the people they work with. Wages, insurance, and equipment expenses all need to be paid, which can be difficult if retainage is putting a strain on cash flow. Retainage provides a financial incentive for contractors to complete projects as agreed.

Construction accounting requires specialized skills to support the construction industry’s unique practices in areas such as job costing, retainage and revenue recognition. Accounting software can help companies reduce administrative effort, simplify financial management and increase profitability. Because you only record revenue when you receive payment, you don’t have to pay taxes on sales for which you haven’t yet collected the money.

Break Down Project Costs—Job Costing

Because of this, there is a lot of variability when it comes to both costs and income. As such, accounting for construction relies on the careful tracking of the expenses and profits of each project. It might seem like accounting is generally applied to all businesses the same way. However, each industry has distinct needs, including construction contractors. While many industries can apply general accounting to their business model, there are several adjustments necessary when it comes to accounting for construction.

how to do accounting for construction

You’ll generally be working with multiple subcontractors, in various places, on different projects, each with their own terms and payment dates. No matter how far you are in the weeds, our team is here to help with your bookkeeping catchup that will have your financial records in order in no time. We are here to empower you to run your business with accurate financial information that makes bidding on projects, operating your business with minimal losses, and earning a profit easier.

How is accounting for construction companies is different from other industries?

One common construction billing format is known as AIA progress billing, named after the American Intsitute of Architects that produces its official forms. As a type of progress billing, AIA billing invoices the customer retail accounting based on the percentage of work completed for that billing period. This invoice generally consists of a signed summary sheet, followed by a schedule of values that details what’s been completed and billed to date.

As a result, it’s best to get construction accounting and tax services from an expert. Many small businesses, including contractors, can benefit from outsourced accounting services. Doing a company’s accounting and project management is always hard, but it’s even more difficult in the construction business. Not only is construction accounting more time-consuming overall, but there are many more potential complications.