Contra Asset Examples, How a Contra Asset Account Works

contra asset account

These accounts will typically help track sales discounts, product returns, and allowances (e.g., a price reduction for a good with minor defects). In its general ledger, the business will want to capture its gross sales figures and the actual value of the discount. A contra account is an asset account that is kept at either a negative or zero balance and is used on a balance sheet to offset the positive balance of a paired asset. To put it another way, a contra account is an account listed within a general ledger with the purpose of capturing the reduced value of a paired or related account when the two are added together.

contra asset account

Instead, you need to record this value gap, and a https://beregovo.info/advert/?tag=tesla serves that purpose. The accumulated depreciation account is perhaps the most common contra asset account used by business owners. For example, accumulated depreciation is a contra asset that reduces the value of a company’s fixed assets, resulting in net assets. To offset this, the allowance for doubtful accounts balance is adjusted via a credit, while the bad debt account is debited to balance out the AR account. When combined, the AR account and the allowance for doubtful accounts contra assets offer a projection of how much net cash is expected to be received from outstanding accounts.

What Are the Different Types of Contra Accounts?

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contra asset account

Examples of fixed assets include buildings, machinery, office equipment, furniture, vehicles, etc. The accumulated depreciation account appears on the balance sheet and reduces the gross amount of fixed assets. Properly documenting these contra accounts in your ledger can sometimes feel counter-intuitive since they operate in an opposite manner from their parent accounts. Consider an asset account, where the values are listed as debits, and the account itself will present a positive total. Conversely, for a contra asset account like depreciation, you would list all entries as a credit, carrying a negative total balance for the overall account.

A Guide to Computerised Accounting

Normal asset accounts have a debit balance, while contra asset accounts are in a credit balance. Therefore, a contra asset can be regarded as a negative asset account. Offsetting the asset account with its respective contra asset account shows the net balance of that asset. The following are examples of commonly-used contra asset accounts you could create to better understand your business financials.

For example, a company might have a https://www.astrprok.ru/n_2315_.html for depreciation expense and a separate asset account for equipment cost. Contra asset accounts are a type of contra account that net off against asset accounts. These include accumulated depreciation, accumulated amortization, allowance for receivables, obsolete inventory, and discount on notes receivables. There are three contra asset accounts that commonly appear in an organization’s chart of accounts.

The purpose of contra accounts

However, it’s important to keep in mind that you can create any contra account you want to more clearly describe your business — this is not an exhaustive or definitive list. Unlike the three previously mentioned contra accounts, contra revenue accounts are not listed in the balance sheet but are written near the top of the income statement. Contra revenue accounts typically offset revenue accounts in a firm’s income statement.

  • Now, if that sounded like a lot of mumbo-jumbo jargon to you, don’t worry.
  • GAAP, the allowance for doubtful accounts represents management’s estimate of the percentage of “uncollectible” accounts receivable (i.e. the credit purchases from customers that are not expected to be paid).
  • Usually, the asset account is listed first, and its contra asset counterpart is listed underneath, with the asset’s net value or book value.
  • Asset accounts usually have a positive value which is the same as a debit balance.
  • The assets are always shown on the left-hand side, and the liabilities are always displayed on the right-hand side.

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