What is Construction In Progress Accounting_ Everything You Need To Know

What is Construction In Progress Accounting: Everything You Need To Know

Accounting in the construction industry is unlike most other industries. With construction companies always on the move, there are more categories and accounts to keep track of, creating challenges that are unique to the construction industry. One of these challenges is learning how to record construction in progress accounting.

 

Construction in progress accounting is one of the most important categories to keep track of for construction firms, so below we’ll go over what construction in progress accounting is, how to record it, and provide an example of what it may look like in your books.

 

And because accurate accounting is crucial to successful construction management, we’ll give you some tips on how implementing a construction management software with accounting integration can help your business to maximize its efficiency.

 

construction in progress accounting

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels

 

What is CIP Accounting

Construction in progress is an accountancy term for all the costs of construction associated with the building of fixed long-term assets. The construction in progress account has a natural debit balance, and is labeled as property, plant, and equipment as part of a company’s long-term assets on a balance sheet. Accountants will begin tracking depreciation once construction of the asset is complete and is put into service.

 

The cip account is basically just an account for recording all the different expenditures that will occur during a construction project. Because of this, it can be one of the largest fixed asset accounts in the books.

 

Construction in progress accounting is also a prime target for auditors due to the length of time the account can be left open. Because companies can store costs under the account for extended periods of time, they can avoid depreciation, therefore reports could have profits listed at a higher value than they really are.

 

Recording CIP Accounting

In addition to knowing what construction in progress accounting is, you should also know what’s involved when recording the account. Like previously stated, the construction in progress account has a natural debit balance. All the construction costs associated with building the asset will accumulate under the account until the project is completed and the asset is in service.

 

Once the asset is put into service, the construction in progress account will be credited, and the debit is transferred to property, plant, and equipment. Below we’ll show you an example of what the recording may look like for a company.

 

Example 

For this example, let’s say Company ABC is the contractor and just began construction on a project for a new building. Here’s what Company ABC’s journal entries might look like during the construction process:

 

1) On July 18, 2019, Vendor A delivered materials to the job site and issued an invoice of $200,000:

Account Title                                                  Debit               Credit 

Construction in progress                             200,000

Accounts Payable                                                                200,000

 

2) On July 19, 2019, Company ABC received a bill from the transportation company for delivering the materials priced at $2,000:

Account Title                                                  Debit               Credit 

Construction in progress                             2,000

Accounts Payable                                                                   2,000

 

3) On July 26, 2019, Company ABC used some of its inventory in constructing the building. The inventory was valued at $1,000:

Account Title                                                  Debit               Credit 

Construction in progress                             1,000

Inventory                                                                                  1,000

 

4) On July 30, 2019, Vendor B delivered supplies to the job site and issued an invoice of $60,000:

Account Title                                                 Debit               Credit 

Construction in progress                             60,000

Accounts Payable                                                                 60,000

 

5) On August 15, 2019, Company ABC finished construction on the building and put it into service. The finance department totaled the costs at:

Vendor A invoice       200,000

Transportation bill    2,000

Inventory                    1,000

Vendor B invoice       60,000

Total                        $263,000

 

The journal entry would be:

Account Title                                      Debit               Credit 

Equipment                                          263,000

Construction in progress                                        263,000

 

Company ABC would now start to depreciate the equipment since the project finished.

          

The Benefits of Accounting Integration Software

While traditional methods of accounting in construction management may still work for some companies, implementing a construction management software with accounting integration can simplify the process, ease the stress, and make your business much more efficient. There are many perks to using software, such as automated job costing, better financial tracking, and workers in the office and field having instant access to files like timecards and change orders. Depending on the software, it can also include security and auditing features to help avoid risks. Overall, utilizing a software with accounting integration can help to improve the speed and accuracy of your reports.

 

Conclusion 

From reading this article, you should have a much better idea of what construction in progress accounting is, and how record it in your books. It’s important to remember that there can be many different costs associated with construction in progress accounting, so your accuracy in tracking and reporting these costs is vital to keeping the project on budget. Also be sure to check out how a project management software with accounting integration can help your business prosper in both the field and office.

 

Subcontractor Software Demo

Posted in Construction Software.