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What Is Deferred Revenue and Expenses?

Introduction to deferred revenue and expenses on an orange background with an illustration.

Have you ever heard about deferred revenue and expenses but never clearly understood what it means?

The success of every firm or individual in finance depends on having a solid foundation in accounting. As a result, recording deferred revenue and expenses on the accrual method of accounting may aid in matching income and expenses to the dates they are received or spent.

Additionally, it enables you to assess the income statement and comprehend the profitability of an accounting cycle more accurately.

Learn more about it in this article.

What Is Deferred Revenue?

Deferred revenue is generally the part of the revenue you invoiced in advance for products or services that are going to be performed in the future.

Examples of deferred revenue:

Imagine you own a software company, and you invoice for a one-year subscription. Furthermore, you will recognize 1/12 of this amount as revenue each month. Therefore, the rest stays in deferred revenue on the balance sheet.

What Are Deferred Expenses?

Deferred expenses are costs that have been invoiced from your suppliers but not incurred. Usually, these expenses are for goods or services that will be used in the future.

Examples of deferred expenses:

You receive the invoice for the cost of a service (generally, it’s also when you pay in advance) that will be provided in the next 12 months. Then, the cost of the service is deferred, and each month, 1/12 be recognized as an expense.

Usually (but not always), for simplification purposes, companies recognize the invoices as deferred when they have paid or received the cash. In addition, It helps them to reduce the payable/receivables accounts for services that are not received or executed.

The Bottom Line

Did this small lesson help you? I hope you have a better picture of deferred revenue and expenses now. Also, let me know which topics you would like me to cover in the future.

For broader lessons on similar and different topics, you can take my course and improve your knowledge.

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