Set up to do business in other countries

To do business in other countries, you’ll need to set up your invoicing and banking for multiple currencies.

Multi-currency invoicing

Before you can use multi-currency invoicing, you need to enable multi-currency transactions. This will allow you to set home currencies for your customers so that new invoices default to that currency.

You also need to choose which nominal accounts to record any bank charges, interest, exchange rate gains, or losses in. This ensures we can account for these on your tax return and other financial reports.

Turn on multi-currency transactions

  1. Go to Settings, Business settings, Financial settings.

  2. Select Currencies and select Enable foreign currency transactions.

  3. Optionally, choose whether to apply Live exchange rates from the Federal Reserve System (FRS). Here’s how it works when it’s turned on or off:

    Live exchange rates turned on

    Rates are automatically updated as they change, so you will always have the latest rate. You don’t need to enter them manually.

    Live exchange rates turned off

    You’ll need to get the latest rates from the FRS yourself and manually enter them. You’ll also need to make sure that you keep them updated with the latest exchange rates.

  4. Three currencies are automatically created for you, US Dollar (USD), Canadian Dollar (CAD), and Mexican Nuevo Peso (MXN). You can’t delete your base currency, or a currency that’s in use.

  5. Add new currencies from the drop-down list as needed.

    Set up multi-currency nominal accounts

  6. Check the Bank charges and interest nominal account is correct. By default, this is the same account used for your domestic invoices.

  7. Check the Exchange rate gains and losses ledger accounts are correct. The nominal accounts you choose for these options will show your gains or losses (from changes in the exchange rate) on reports. The standard chart of accounts in Sage Accounting includes the Exchange rate gains and losses nominal account, but you can change it as needed.

  8. Select Save.

Customer and vendor currency settings

To use multi-currency invoicing, you need to set the default currency on your contacts. When you create an invoice, it automatically uses the default currency set for that customer or vendor.

Set currency settings on a contact

  1. Go to Contacts, select either Customers or Vendors.

  2. Select your customer or vendor from the list.

  3. Go to Options and Account details to view the currency.

  4. After viewing the currency settings in Account details, select the pencil icon to edit.

  5. Select the new currency from the drop-down list. You won’t be able to do this if there are existing transactions for the contact. Instead, create a new contact for them with the new currency.

  6. Select Save.

Multi-currency banking

With multi-currency invoicing, you’ll also want to add multi-currency bank accounts for payments, revaluations (also called conversions), and other transactions. Multi-currency bank accounts cannot be used with cash accounts.

Adding them is the same as adding an account in your base currency. Just select the currency you want in the Currency field.

Once you’ve saved it, the account will show on the Banking page. The balance will show in the selected currency with your base currency underneath it.

Bank feeds are not available for bank accounts in other currencies.

Creating multi-currency transactions

Once you’ve added a foreign bank account, you’re ready to process multi-currency transactions. Your sales and purchase documents will show the default currency of the contact and the exchange rate used. You can also change the currency view by toggling between the foreign currency and your base currency.

How to create foreign currency transactions

Once you select Record Payment you can choose which bank account you want to record the payment to. The selections will include your base currency accounts and an account that matches the foreign currency on the invoice.

Working with bank accounts in other currencies

When doing business with other countries, you may need to update transaction exchange rates. To do this, select the relevant bank account on the Banking page to open it. A list of transactions show on the Activity tab at the bottom of the page. Here you can review each transaction, including the amount received in both currencies.

Use the Currency view buttons to see your transactions in the currency of the account or your base currency.

Revalue a bank account

Revaluing refers to a change in the value of your base currency due to changes in the exchange rate. This is completed monthly or quarterly when needed.

Revalue an account

  1. Open the relevant bank account.

  2. Open the Revaluations tab and select Revalue this bank account.

  3. Select the date you want the balance to be revalued on.

  4. The exchange rate automatically populates but can be changed manually.

  5. A loss or gain is shown as a difference.

  6. The difference will post to the Exchange rate gains and losses ledger account and will appear on your Profit and Loss Report as an overhead.

  7. Add a reference for audit purposes, for example month end revaluation.

  8. Select Revalue.

Once you’ve completed the revaluation, details of all revaluations are shown in the revaluations tab. If you notice any errors, you can delete the entry and complete the revaluation again.

Bank transfers

It’s common practice for businesses who deal with foreign currencies to make transfers between their accounts. We’ve made this easier by enabling bank transfers between base currency accounts and foreign currency accounts.

How to transfer money between accounts

Help with multi-currency invoicing or banking