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How to Prepare a Trial Balance in 5 Steps

preparation of trial balance

A trial balance can be used to detect any mathematical errors that have occurred in a double entry accounting system. A trial balance is a statement where the balance of all ledgers is compiled into the debit and credit side of the accounts. The summation of the debit and credit sides should match. It is usually prepared at the end of every reporting period.

  • About the Author – Dr Geoffrey Mbuva(PhD-Finance) is a lecturer of Finance and Accountancy at Kenyatta University, Kenya.
  • Making a list of the above balances brought down produces a trial balance as follows.
  • A debit amount is erroneously posted as a credit amount or vice versa.
  • For instance, recording a debit entry into the Equipment account instead of recording the debit in the Equipment Repairs Account will not be uncovered by the trial balance.
  • These cover the initial entries into the spreadsheet.
  • He is an enthusiast of teaching and making accounting & research tutorials for his readers.

A wrong amount recorded in the books of original entry and the same amount being incorrectly debited and credited cannot be identified by a trial balance. Assume that a trial balance is prepared with an account balance of $21,740 listed as $2,174 and an account balance of $4,500 listed as $5,400. Assume that a trial balance is prepared with an account balance of $8,900 listed as $9,800 and an account balance of $1,000 listed as $100. Not all accounts in the chart of accounts are included on the TB, however. Usually only active accounts with year-end balance are included in the TB because accounts with zero balances don’t make it on the financial statements. Step 5 − If totals in trial balance are not balanced, then there must be an error in recording an entry.

Trial Balance – Example #2

Duplication in the listing of one of the individual account balances. There are two ways to prepare an adjusted trial balance. This is perhaps one of the simplest steps of the accounting cycle as it just requires the bookkeeper to compile the separate balances into one report.

The trial balance is prepared after posting all financial transactions to the journals and summarizing them on the ledger statements. The trial balance is made to ensure that the debits equal the credits in the chart of accounts.

How to prepare a trial balance

An accounting error is an error in an accounting entry that was not intentional, and when spotted is immediately fixed. The accounting cycle records and analyzes accounting events related to a company’s activities. Keen to see how a basic trial balance may look? Here’s an example for the Future Tech company. This is something you or your accountant will complete every time there’s a transaction made by your business. The computer and bank loan accounts have single entries on one side, like the furniture account, so they need to be treated in the same way.

preparation of trial balance

They will be shown in the debit side/column of the trial balance. A trial balance is a financial statement containing all major accounting items like assets, liabilities, equity, revenues, incomes, expenses and losses.

Steps in the preparation of trial balance

Harold Averkamp has worked as a university accounting instructor, accountant, and consultant preparation of trial balance for more than 25 years. He is the sole author of all the materials on

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As with anything, human errors will occur, and somewhere along the line, someone is likely to have entered a bad journal or processed a ledger incorrectly. This shows the importance of producing a trial balance in the first place – it tells the user that the accounting equation is out of balance and it needs to be fixed before going any further.

Recording transactions in the journal and posting to the ledger

The furniture account has a single entry on one side. This amount is the total as well as the balance in the account. Add up the amounts on each side of the account to find the totals.

preparation of trial balance

Making a list of the above balances brought down produces a trial balance as follows. Enter the larger figure as the total for both the debit and credit sides. Recording the balance of an account incorrectly in the trial balance.

A trial balance is the accounting equation of our business laid out in detail. It has our assets, expenses and drawings on the left and our liabilities, revenue and owner’s equity on the right . We can see everything clearly and make sure it all balances. Well, as you know, accounting/bookkeeping is all about balancing. The accounting equation needs to balance, every transaction needs to be balanced, our debits and credits need to be balanced and so on.

  • Therefore, it may not be relied up on by the stakeholders of a business to know more of the organization financial health.
  • Trial Balance is the statement of balances of all ledger accounts of any firm on a particular date.
  • Later these debit and credit columns are equaled.
  • The trial balance is the next step in the accounting cycle.

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