How to Create Estimates in QuickBooks Online
Create an estimate to give your customer a quote, bid or proposal for work you plan to do. Estimates are non-posting transactions and will not affect your books.
The Estimate form is completed in the same manner as an invoice. In fact, it looks very much like an invoice. The purpose of an estimate is to begin negotiations with your customer (not to record a sale).
Later, once the work is done and you're ready to invoice your customer, convert the estimate into an invoice by opening the customer’s profile in the Customer Center.
There are three ways to create an invoice from an estimate:
- If you have opened the Customer profile and see the estimate in the Transaction List, select Create invoice in the Action column next to the estimate
- Start to create an invoice from any access point (for example, from the +New menu). After you enter the name of the customer for whom an estimate exists, you’ll see the estimate in the drawer on the right; you’ll be able to add it to the invoice.
- Open the original estimate and click Create invoice in the top right corner.
If the work included on an estimate does not end up happening, change the status of the estimate by clicking the status drop-down under the customer name. There are four statuses available for estimates. You can also add the initials of the person in charge of accepting/rejecting it and the date on which they did it:
- Pending – Automatically assigned to an estimate when you create it
- Accepted – Automatically assigned to an estimate when you first create an invoice from it but don’t invoice it completely
- Closed – Automatically assigned to an estimate after it has been converted to one or more invoices that completely invoice out the estimate
If you want to produce more than one invoice from a single estimate, you’ll need to edit the setting. Click the gear icon, Account and Settings, Sales, Progress Invoicing, check the box next to Create multiple partial invoices from a single estimate. Then click Save and Done.
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