Creating an Electronic Benefits Transfer Account

Ian Konen iankonen at
Fri Jun 7 10:31:00 EDT 2013

On Fri, Jun 7, 2013 at 12:41 AM, Terry Morse <tmorse at> wrote:

> I am setting up accounting for a friend's business in GNU 2.4.13. One
> source of income to the business is an electronic fund transfer from the
> government. This is money coming in from outside, not connected to any
> sales. Thus, it is not linked to any other account for the purposes of
> double entry bookkeeping. Is there a way in GNUCash to set up an account
> into which money can "magically" appear each month, or do I need to create
> a bogus invoice to get the money into the system?
> Thank you,
> Terry

Income is not limited to sales by definition.  In fact I would pretty much
define income by quoting half of your coming in from
outside, full stop.  Unless one is expected to pay it back, in which case
it's a loan (a type of liability).  Grants, farm subsidies, lawsuit payouts
and lottery winnings would all be considered income, and if you don't see
the appropriate category under the default set of income accounts GnuCash
set up for you, you can add it yourself at any time.  The income:<whatever>
account IS the other account the eliminates the need for magically
appearing money.

You also don't need to make an invoice to transfer from an income account
to an asset account.  In GnuCash at least, the invoice mechanism is for
selling goods and/or service on credit and helping you track unpaid bills.
 For an electronic funds transfer from the outside, just enter it directly
as a transaction from Income:<whatever> to Assets:Checking.  If it's a
regular, constant amount, you might want to look into scheduled

Ian Konen
iankonen at

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