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Church Accounting for Fixed Assets

Question:

What would a church consider as "Fixed Assets"? Would things like media equipment used for worship or chairs be considered fixed assets? And is there a dollar minimum/life span for anything to be considered a Fixed Asset? Also, do churches need to depreciate any of their assets?

Answer:

Unless a church wishes to report its financial results using full GAAP accounting, I recommend recording equipment purchases as expenses and omitting any depreciation concern. For non-GAAP compliant churches I recommend a modified cash basis of accounting with the Balance Sheet containing only Cash, Savings, and Investments in the asset section, Accounts Payable and other short-term debts in the liability section, and Designated Funds plus the General Fund balance in the Equity section. Both long-term debt payments and long-term asset purchases generally are made out the the church general fund budget monies and the members best understand these disbursements as expense-type items. I do not refer to the statement reporting income and expenses as a Profit or Loss Statement. Rather, I prefer to call it a Statement of Receipts and Disbursements.

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  1. I found this information very helpful. Thank you.

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