Oct 5, 2022 Accounting — Eric Giguere

Best Construction Accounting Software for 2021 - NerdWallet

How do you know which construction accounting software is the best fit for your business? This article will provide information on the best construction accounting software available, both cloud-based and desktop-based.

But before weighing your options, it's important to understand how accounting software for construction companies is different from most typical business accounting software .

QuickBooks Desktop: Best desktop-based option

The desktop versions of QuickBooks -- QuickBooks Pro, QuickBooks Premier and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions -- all have features you will find beneficial in your construction accounting software.

For the smallest companies, QuickBooks Pro will likely meet all your construction accounting software needs. QuickBooks Pro can handle all basic accounting functions for small construction businesses, including expense management, invoicing and financial reporting. It is also easily customizable to meet your business's specific needs. The payroll add-on can be customized to show job profitability. Construction accounting software is available for $399.99. This price is affordable enough to be used by even small construction companies.

QuickBooks Premier offers more functionality for your construction accounting software. QuickBooks Premier offers more functionality than QuickBooks Pro. It can produce industry-specific reports and allow you to track inventory costs. You can also set prices by customer type. QuickBooks Premier comes at a one-time cost of $649.99.

QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions is another option for construction accounting software. It is the most powerful of all the QuickBooks Desktop products. Like QuickBooks Premier, QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions offers industry-specific tools, reports and features. You can also set up custom permissions for up 30 users. This allows you complete control over who has access to what information in your growing construction business. QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions is $1,155 per annum.

All desktop versions of QuickBooks can be accessed via the cloud using a hosting company like Right Networks. Hosting solutions come with an additional fee per user.

QuickBooks Online with construction-specific add-ons: Best cloud-based option

One such cloud-based accounting software for builders is QuickBooks Online , which has made tremendous advances in job costing, project management and progress billing in the past few years, but alone it's probably still not powerful enough to support your construction company's accounting needs. You will need at minimum one app to manage your construction accounting needs if you use QuickBooks Online.

Let’s take a closer at some of these addons you may find most beneficial with your construction accounting system software:

  • QuickBooks Time can track the time of your construction company. The ability to assign time to projects makes billing simple. TSheets' GPS tracking is an even greater benefit for remote employees. You can pinpoint the exact location of your employees whenever they log in to work. TSheets will cost you $20 per Month plus $5 per User per Month for their small-business plan. The plan allows between 2 and 99 users. You'll save 20 %.</span if you opt to be billed monthly instead of monthly.

  • Hubdoc simplifies data entry while removing the burden of collecting receipts. Hubdoc lets construction workers snap photos of receipts to be tagged for the correct project. All of this information is easily transferred to QuickBooks Online with just a few mouse clicks.

  • Knowify provides all the additional things general contractor construction companies need: project management, contract and change order management, and job costing. You can manage up 150 jobs for $186 per month, or $1,788 annually. Additional users are available for $15/month

  • CoConstruct is the highest-rated software for custom home builders and remodelers. CoConstruct is the best software for managing your construction business. Like Knowify, CoConstruct integrates with QuickBooks Online. The recommended pricing for CoConstruct is $249 per month. However, that price includes unlimited user access and unlimited prospecting and estimate project.

Buildertrend is a preferred choice for larger construction companies, particularly home builders and remodelers, by Ruth Kohler, Due Diligence Bookkeeping, Kaydee Parker, Measure Initiative, Inc.

Buildertrend gives you all the reports you need for your construction company, as well as some useful streamlining tools, such direct vendor invoicing against a buy order, direct submission and approval change orders, and direct vendor billing. Buildertrend does more than construction accounting, too -- it also serves as a CRM and email marketing campaign manager.

Buildertrend's pricing structure is straightforward: $299 for up to 3 users and $39 for each additional. Buildertrend is available to provide customized pricing for customers with more than 20 users.

QuickBooks Online

Core by BQE: Best all-inclusive option

Core by BQE, a building industry accounting solution, is an alternative to QuickBooks. Core is an all-inclusive project accounting software that handles project management, billing and accounting. Marketed primarily to professional services firms like architects and engineers, Core is still capable of helping you manage your small to medium-sized construction company's accounting. Core is DCAA compatible if you need help managing government contracts.

Although Core can be difficult to set up and use it is possible to get help from an active Facebook group. Core is the most flexible software on this list. It can be customized for any type of user, and it has the best pricing.

Sage 100 Contractor - Best features

Sage 100 Contractor is another program for construction accounting. Sage 100 Contractor is designed for small and medium-sized construction companies. It offers all the features of other construction accounting programs mentioned in this article in one place. QuickBooks Online is made more robust by adding on apps. However, these apps can cost extra. Sage 100 Contractor allows you to access the functionality you require starting at $115 per Month for one user.

Construction accounting Software: What should you look for

Construction companies require special accounting requirements. While your profit and loss statements (PL) and balance sheets will be very similar to those of other businesses, there are many important details that you need that is not visible in these financial statements.

Some of the reporting your construction company needs in addition to the standard PL and balance sheet are:

  • Job costing is a way to allocate expenses for each job. You can't know which jobs, or what types of jobs, are the most profitable for your construction business without job costing.

  • Project management: It is not enough to know the phase of each job, although that is an important aspect. Project management is essential to ensure that resources are allocated appropriately to the different projects your construction company is undertaking at any given point. It allows you also to bid on your project requirements.

  • Budget and completion analysis: This allows you to see how your construction projects are progressing from a budget perspective. If you want to maximize profitability on a job, make sure it's delivered on time and within budget. You can't predict if it will happen without this analysis in your accounting software for construction.

  • Change order tracking: A construction project without change orders is rare. It is possible to lose money, or to have to make costly modifications to work that has been done incorrectly, if you cannot track your change orders.

These are the "basic" accounting requirements that construction companies need. Each company may have different requirements. This makes it more important to find construction accounting software that is fully compatible with your business.

This version was published for the first time on Fundera. Fundera's subsidiary is NerdWallet.

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