Re-billing Expenses

Hello there, I’m Sid from Request Initiative. We’re just looking to migrate our accounting software and QuickFile looks like a really great option. However, our accounts have proved rather difficult to integrate with most accounting packages as we’ve got an unusual business model. I had a few questions as to how we can use QuickFile to it’s fullest potential.

We perform public interest research of a semi-journalistic nature, specialising in the Freedom of Information Act, on behalf of charities and NGOs. So we don’t fit very well into the standard model of: buy supplies, pay for staff, sell products, invoice. Half our our clients will pay a lump sum up front for us to carry out research, which we expend in staff time carrying out research, then once it’s used up we receive another payment. Our other clients we bill for a monthly research fee, plus any expenses that we’ve incurred in the course of our work e.g. buying company accounts and other documents, expenses for meeting contacts etc.

What really appealed to us was the receipts integration, as it would make creating our expenses invoices much easier. We need to send an itemised invoice each month, along with the bundle of receipts for each expense. I might have missed something, but is there a way to automatically attach receipts to an invoice?

The best solution I could think of was putting all the expenses items in a ‘re-bill’ nominal account, but wasn’t sure if I could export all the receipts from that nominal account together. Slightly arbitrary, as it would be possible to assemble it by hand, but as a feature, it would be so useful for us!

Many thanks.

You could use the following method on Quick File:

  1. Set up each Charity and NGO as a client.

  2. Also, set up each Charity and NGO as a new supplier called ‘Expenses - [Enter Charity or NGO Name]’, enter ‘Zero’ in the ‘Default VAT Rate’ as this will be claimed later when entering the actual expenses, finally select ‘Miscellaneous Expenses’ as the ‘Default Purchase Category’.


  1. When tagging the expense payments made on behalf of the Charity or NGO from the bank, select ‘Payment to a supplier’ and then ‘Create a new purchase record for this transaction’, select the Charity or NGO supplier set up in step 2, enter the ‘Description’ and relevant ‘Category’, finally click to save. This will allocate the expenses incurred to the relevant Charity or NGO supplier account:


  1. When you create your sales invoice enter a new line on your sales invoice e.g. ‘Expenses - see attached sheet referenced QF# for full breakdown’ or enter each item of expense on the sales invoice as well as in purchases:

You will now be able to obtain both sales and purchase reports for each Charity and NGO. There is no requirement from HMRC to cross reference as you are also recording the expenses in your sales. That said, for your own records and completeness, cross referencing is good practice.

With regards to being able to export all receipts, my colleague Glenn has suggested that if you gave each receipt a specific name convention e.g. rebill001.pdf, rebill002.pdf that would make it easier to use the advanced search facility in order to select the relevant receipts to download as an archive.

Many thanks for the reply Joe! I’ve met up with out bookkeeper today and talked over some of the choices available to us for dealing with this. He had a slightly different solution…

He suggested that we categorise our re-billed expenses as sales, so then when we invoice back to our clients we can add a category in the Description section to update the journal automatically. However, this causes problems when tagging receipts. Receipts can only be categorised as expenses so won’t link to them.

The problem we saw with categorising our re-billed items as expenses in the way you described was that when we made an invoice to our client we wouldn’t be able to add an item that categorised this as such. So on the invoice, the rebilled expenses would come out as ‘General Sales’ or similar. See what I mean? This would require a bit of fiddling with journal transactions to clear the outstanding ‘Miscellaneous expenses’ category.

At the moment I’m thinking that fiddling with journal transactions is worth it to integrate receipts. But is there are more elegant solution, or have I missed something?

Apologies this has devolved a little into accounting help! It’s much appreciated. Other than that, I think I’ve got the hang of the software in general. It’s a great package!

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