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      How do I create an Expense?

      FreshBooks makes it easy to keep track of your spending with Expenses. This is helpful if you are required to document business-related purchases already made for your business and for tax deductions.

      You can create Expenses, as well as Recurring Expenses that can generate automatically on a frequent basis (perfect for subscription-related costs). You're also able to upload receipts, and mark an Expense up for rebilling to your Clients.

      To learn more about managing your Expenses, including duplicate expenses, handling refunds or credits, updating or removing the Category, Merchant, Sales Taxes and more with individual and bulk actions, go to How do I manage my Expenses? here instead.


      Create an Expense

      There are three ways to create a new Expense: 

      • On the Dashboard, click on the Create New button, then select Expense
      • Go to the Expenses section (from the left menu) and click on the New Expense button
      • Go to the Expenses section (from the left menu) and at the top of the list, click on the + New Expense button (quick entry)

      From the first two ways above, you'll be taken to the New Expense page:
      New expense screen with fields to fill out.

      1. A category is required, click on Add category to select a Category or Subcategory (or create your own Custom Subcategory instead)
      2. To attach a receipt image to the expense, follow the steps here
      3. Next, the Date is automatically set to present day, click to change it to a different date instead
      4. If needed, click on Add Merchant and type in a new Merchant or choose from a pre-existing list of Merchants you've used before
      5. If needed, click on Add description to give more details on the expense
      6. To add taxes, click on the Add Taxes link and follow the steps here
        1. If you need to override the tax amount with a different total, click inside the tax amount and update it
      7. Next to Grand Total, click in the 0.00 area and type in the full amount of the expense
      8. Under Expense Settings are a few more options:
        1. If you need to assign this expense to a client, and/or mark it up, click on Mark as billable and follow the remaining steps here
        2. To make the expense automatically generate copies on a frequent basis (Make Recurring), jump to the Recurring Expense section below
        3. Click on Currency to change to a different currency and click Done to save
        4. To associate this expense with client costs (Costs of Goods Sold/COGS), follow the rest of the steps here
      9. When you're done, click on the Save button to finish.

       

      Create a Quick Expense 

      Quick expense section with fields to fill out.

       

      If you’re looking to quickly create or edit an Expense, use these steps:

      1. From the Expenses section click on the + New Expense button above the list
        New Expense button above list of expenses.
      2. Click on Add Merchant and type in a new Merchant or choose from a pre-existing list of Merchants you've used before
      3. Click on Add category to select a Category or Subcategory (or create your own Custom Subcategory instead)
      4. Next, the Date is automatically set to present day, click to change it to a different date instead
      5. If needed, click on Assign to client/project to assign the expense to a Client or to a specific Client's Project
      6. To add Sales Taxes, click on Tax Amount
        1. Check off up to two boxes next to Taxes you want to add (or you can use the Add another Tax button to make a new Tax instead)
        2. Then click Apply Taxes
        3. If you need to override the sales tax amount with a different total, click on the advanced expense settings and follow the remaining steps above
      7. Under Grand Total, type in the full amount of the expense
      8.  If needed, click on Add description to give more details on the expense
      9. To attach a receipt, click on the attach receipt link
      10. When you’re done, click on the checkmark button to save the Expense. If you’re looking for more settings like Mark as billable, Make Recurring, change the Currency, or Mark as COGS, click on advanced expense settings instead and follow the remaining steps above.

      Create a Recurring Expense

      If you have Expenses that are identical and repeat on a frequency, use the below steps to set up a Recurring Expense to take care of creating Expenses automatically:

      1. Go to the Expenses section
      2. Click on the New Expense button at the top of the screen (rather than above the list of Expenses)
      3. On the New Expense screen, under Expense Settings, click on Make Recurring
        New Recurring Expense button on an expense creation screen.
      4. Click on the Make Recurring button to confirm
      5. In the New Recurring Expense area, choose a date under Next Expense Date that you want the first Recurring Expense to generate on
      6. Next, in the How Often, choose either Weekly, Monthly, Yearly or Custom as the frequency
      7. In the How Many? field, choose between Infinite or 0 remaining and specify the number of expenses you want it to generate
      8. Add in the rest of your Expense details with the remaining steps above
      9. Click Save to finish.

      New and existing Recurring Expenses will appear in the Recurring Expenses sub-section next to All Expenses inside the Expenses section:
      Recurring expenses sub-tab above list of expenses.

      To stop a Recurring Expense, you can delete it with the below steps: 

      1. In the Recurring Expenses sub-section, check off the box next to the expense
      2. Click on the Bulk Actions button
      3. Click on Delete.


      FAQs

      Should I keep track of expenses that have been incurred due to COVID-19?

      Any expenses incurred as a direct result of COVID-19 are not a part of your day-to-day operations. These expenses are extraordinary and may be eligible for tax credits and payroll tax relief through government programs.

      To ensure these expenses can be easily referenced in the future, the Description field of any COVID-19 related expense should contain the keyword COVID at the beginning. Including the keyword COVID ensures these expenses appear in your search results and Reports.


      Expense with COVID in the description field.

      Afterwards, to find COVID-19 related expenses, you can either:

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