Church 360° Ledger is based on the principles of Fund Accounting. Here is a list and description of the five account types offered in Ledger:
Assets are items your congregation owns. They include money, building, land, and equipment. There are two types of assets, current and fixed.
- Current Assets - Assets that you can easily spend to support the congregation’s mission. They include checking and savings Accounts, certificates of deposit, and other assets that can be easily converted into cash.
- Fixed Assets - Non-monetary assets. These include buildings, pews, and organs. Fixed Assets are normally used directly in support of your congregation’s ministry, and the congregation doesn't intend to sell them.
Note: Fixed assets are often expensive. Congregations may need to borrow money to acquire them. Consequently, adding up all your assets does not supply all the information about your congregation’s financial strength. To get the complete picture, you must subtract what you owe (liabilities) from what you own (assets).
Liability Accounts track your congregation’s debts. You can divide liabilities into short-term and long-term debt.
- Current Liabilities - Short-term obligations. They can include payroll taxes that have been withheld but not submitted, or offerings received for other organizations that have not been remitted.
- Long-term Liabilities - Long-term obligations. Your congregation probably has long-term debts such as a mortgage. Long-term debts are also considered liabilities.
Income accounts record the source or revenues received. For churches, income generally consists of offerings. Income may also include interest on bank Accounts or property rental.
Expense Accounts record how money was spent. These expenses usually include categories such as salaries, materials for church programs, office supplies, postage and utilities. Purchases of assets, such as property or equipment, generally are not considered expenses because you are converting a cash asset into a physical asset without really changing your net worth.
Restricted Accounts hold money that is reserved for a special or specific purpose.