Contra Revenue Definition

contra revenue definition

Profit shows you the amount your business gains or loses after you deduct expenses. To calculate your profit, or net income/loss, you must use your business’s revenue as a starting point. To find your profit, subtract your total expenses from your total revenue. The net amount – i.e. the difference between the account balance post-adjustment of the contra account balance – represents the book value shown on the balance sheet. Many cars are sold on credit or account sale which means that the car payments will be made over time. Car sales are typically under warranty for a set period of time and can be returned as a return on sales later on.

contra revenue definition

A contra asset account includes allowance for doubtful debt accounts and accumulated depreciation accounts. An accumulated depreciation account is used to record depreciation of fixed assets of a company such as land, machinery, equipment and buildings. This account appears on the asset side of the balance sheet as a reduction from the fixed assets.

So, you need to debit these accounts and credit the corresponding account, like Accounts Receivables. A major example of a contra account is the accumulated depreciation. Again, accumulated depreciation reduced fixed and capital asset balances. Apple breaks out its amount of property, plant, and equipment (PP&E) and then lists its accumulated deprecation that reduces the PP&E figure. The allowance method of accounting allows a company to estimate what amount is reasonable to book into the contra account. If your company has minimal contra revenue activity, it is acceptable to record these transactions within the revenue account.

Importance Of Contra Accounts

A revenues account with a debit balance instead of the usual credit balance. Examples include sales returns, sales allowances, and sales discounts. The sale on account definition is when a business allows customers to make payments on a product at a later time. Sale on account is also known as sale on credit because the business is giving the customer a product but expecting money on a set date. On the sale on account’s attached contra asset account, this will be recorded as accounts receivable. Sales on account are often risky for businesses because customers are unsecured creditors.

Stay updated on the latest products and services anytime, anywhere. For accounting purposes and convenience of taxation, firms show the historical cost of accounts instead of directly showing the net value. In addition to lowering net revenue as shown in the example, contra-revenue programs add complexity and administrative costs. If you have investments that earn interest, you will need to create an Interest Revenue account. Here is an example of a journal entry you would create when you make a sale .

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Contra Asset Account

That way, you can keep your accounting books updated, organized, and legal. Suppose a company has recorded $100,000 in accounts receivable (A/R) and $10,000 in the allowance for doubtful accounts (i.e. 10% of A/R is estimated as uncollectible). GAAP, the allowance for doubtful accounts represents management’s estimate of the percentage of “uncollectible” accounts receivable (i.e. the credit purchases from customers that are not expected to be paid). Sales discounts – Normal discounts given to the customers are recorded separately because of special circumstances. Normal discounts usually consist of a marketing strategy, when a customer purchases a large volume of product, or if a customer wants to make early payments on the product. Sales allowance – Allowances are recorded when products sell below the normal price for whatever reason.

  • ABC Co. compensated XYZ Co. for the returns by reducing its accounts receivable balance.
  • The accounting entries for sales allowances will be the same.
  • The difference between a normal account and a contra account is that, if there is a debit balance in the normal account, you will have the opposite balance in the contra account.
  • Therefore, a contra asset account is credited in order to reduce the amount of the asset.
  • This is a common practice, and the discount may differ from one company to the next depending on the terms and conditions.

Another example could be when a product is bought and is returned at face value because of a defect. The contra return on sales account will be debited while the normal cash account will be credited.

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What Is The Difference Between Net Revenue, Net Sales, Cost Of Sales & Gross Margin?

Revenues define the income from a company’s operations during an accounting period. These revenues may arise from the sale of either goods or services. Regardless of their source, revenues play a significant role in a company’s profits and success. Therefore, companies strive to increase the numbers as high as possible. Sales Discounts is a contra revenue account that records the value of price reductions granted to buyers in order to incentivize early payments. Examples include Net D cash discounts like 2/30 Net 60, where a full invoice payment is due in 60 days but a buyer will receive a 2% discount in case of an early settlement within 30 days.

contra revenue definition

In addition to sales returns, the most common contra revenues are sales discounts and sales allowances. Sales allowances are price reductions offered to persuade customers to accept merchandise with damage or minor defects not serious enough to warrant a return. To illustrate the contra revenue account Sales Returns and Allowances, let’s assume that Company K sells $100,000 of merchandise on credit.

What Is The Difference Between An Inventory Write

Mark to market is a method of measuring the fair value of accounts that can fluctuate over time, such as assets and liabilities. Depreciation is an accounting method of allocating the cost of a tangible asset over its useful life to account for declines in value over time.

  • Examples include sales returns, sales allowances, and sales discounts.
  • If the company pays before the maturity date, the granter may offer some reduction or discount, which is recorded in the contra account.
  • The percentage of sales method assumes that the company cannot collect payment for a fixed percentage of goods or services that it has sold.
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  • The contra account is used to report the correct assets while preserving the transactions and balance of the relating account.
  • A company may decide to buy back its shares when management feels the stock is undervalued or because it desires to pay stock dividends to its shareholders.

Since other partners have the same product but did not have to invest their time and energy to find and specify the deal, they can quote a lowball price and undercut the partner that performed all the work. The brand owner can lose sales and market share as a result. Operating revenue is revenue you receive from your business’s main activities, like sales. If you own a landscaping company, your business’s operating revenue is derived from your services.


By reporting contra accounts on the balance sheet, users can learn even more information about the company than if the equipment was just reported at its net amount. Balance sheet readers cannot only see the actual cost of the item; they can also see how much of the asset was written off as well as estimate the remaining useful life and value of the asset. The most common type of contra account is the contra-asset account. This type is paired with the asset account, which allows a business to record the original price or value of the asset at time of purchase. The contra asset account then allows recording of the value factoring in depreciation.

  • Most companies pay their sales representatives a salary plus a bonus or commissions.
  • Normal accounts on the general ledger will usually have a debit balance, while contra accounts are typically either zero or hold a negative credit balance.
  • The following information is available from the financial records of X Company.
  • For example, accumulated depreciation is a contra-asset that reduces the value of a company’s fixed assets, resulting in net assets.

They can combine the right programs and adjust the investment amounts in each program to better align channel payouts to the brand owner’s growth strategies. Instead of being against revenue, the ultimate outcome is long-term results and strong, consistent sales performance from a loyal channel. To compete against other brands, companies contra revenue account often have to offer better prices than the competition. This is better than dropping the price on a more permanent basis. If your business owns stocks in other companies, you will receive dividend payments. This is another non-operating revenue because it is not a day-to-day activity and is not the main operation of your business.

Sales allowance represents discounts given to customers to entice them to keep products instead of returning them, such as with slightly defective items. The sales discount account represents the discount amount a company gives to customers as an incentive to purchase its products or services. Another example of a contra asset account is the accumulated depreciation account which reduces the reporting value of capital assets. Allowance for obsolete inventory or obsolete inventory reserve are also examples of contra asset accounts. Sales returns is a contra revenue account as the figure is a negative amount net against total sales revenue.

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  • Instead, they must record it as soon as the transaction happens.
  • In total, the brand owner spends 8% ($80,000) on incentives given to the distributor.
  • Key examples of contra asset accounts include allowance for doubtful accounts and accumulated depreciation.

For instance, the balance of the equity account is $10,000, and the owner of the business withdraws $900 for personal use. Likewise, drawing means to withdraw money from the business for personal use. There are many situations where one account is used to offset another account.

Instead, it is reported at its full amount with an allowance for bad debts listed below it. Maybe more importantly, it shows investors and creditors what percentage of receivables the company is writing off. Sales allowances refer to refunds provided after-sale to customers because of damage to the products, missing products, or minor defects in the products. These issues cause the customer to be dissatisfied with the product. Because of these inadvertent flaws in the product and in order to retain the customer’s business, the company may provide refunds for sales allowances. You must then subtract the amount of the sales allowances from gross sales revenue to yield net sales revenue. Again, the company’s management will see the original amount of sales, the sales discounts, and the resulting net sales.

Types Of Revenue

However, it is crucial to understand how companies account for their sales first. When a company sells a product or service to a customer, it will use the journal entries below.

For most businesses, the majority of its revenue is derived from sales. Obsolete inventory reserves – This type of inventory counts as a loss for a business and includes any product that can no longer be sold or used because the product is defunct. Accumulated depreciation – This is the value of depreciated value shown on an asset over time. Depreciation is the loss of value for something through time and usage. Accumulated depreciation shows a reduced overall value for assets like buildings, machines, and vehicles.

What Is A Contra Account? Definition

If the amounts of these line items are minimal, they may be aggregated for reporting purposes into a single contra revenue line item. DateParticularsDrCrSales AllowancesXXXXAccounts ReceivableXXXXCompanies must also present the sales returns and allowances figures in the financial statements. Usually, these are a part of the net sales calculation in the notes to the financial statements.

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