I would like to propose a feature whereby it allows to select two transactions and convert them to an Inter Account transfer.
Since i work with two bank accounts in different currencies i would prefer to use the Inter Account Transfer when representing the movement of funds from one account to another, This allows to more accurately represent any gains or losses from the resulting exchange.
Most of the time i am importing transactions into Manager by means of bank statements and this convert feature would greatly help streamlining my bookkeeping.
I was thinking about this what would be the best way to faciliate this. And I think the solution is to have built-in account called Inter-account transfers. This is account where you’d post transactions which could be paired up. Then once viewing transactions within this account, you could do the pairing process.
This is not something that would be required as it would not change your financial statements but it would be useful to find bookkeeping errors.
If you are importing your bank transactions and using bank rules, you can end up with the correctly categorized transactions with almost zero effort.
Bank rules are useful to categorize your internal transfers between bank accounts into some equity account.
Now, this equity account should have zero balance if everything is imported. For every debit, there will be a corresponding credit. But often, that’s not the case due to bookkeeping errors. By having a method to pair transactions up within this account, you can find the bookkeeping error faster.
Sounds sensible to me.
Computer matching transactions can be done by successive matching from exact multi field, to approximate partial fields. Followed by user conformation with matching exactness displayed via colour or other means. Similar to what was described here Idea: Enhanced Bank import / Bank reconciliation
One way to do this which would work perfectly in my case is, you start by importing transactions from bank statements like normal. The transactions in question are assigned to the ‘Transfer clearing’ account with a status of pending.
The new feature would then be in the Create Inter Account Transfer dialog. This would allow to select the source bank account and a dropdown would list the transactions that are flagged as transfer clearing and pending. then you select the destination bank account and here as well a dropdown lists the corresponding transactions that are in the Transfer clearing and pending.
Once the Inter Account Transfer is saved, the corresponding transactions from the two bank accounts are removed and replaced with the new Inter Account Transfer record.
I think this would help immensely to make the job of specifying inter account transfers so much cleaner.
Or a bank rule which creates half an inter account transfer.
When the first bank account is imported the second bank account is left unspecified.
bank import from the second bank account would then select the matching half specified inter account transfer (if a computer match was safe).
alternatively a user could choose to complete the inter account transfer manually by manually specifying the second account (individually or by a find and recode type facility)
alternatively the inter account transfer bank rule could have an optional parameter which enable the user writing the bank rule to specify the second account (similar to specifying a customer or supplier for imported “cash” transactions)
I think that this would be the best option, but for inter account transfer bank rule have two amount fields for each line of the transaction, a primary amount field and a secondary amount field. The file import bank account would be allocated the primary field and the nominated bank account would be allocated the secondary field, with status of cleared if the primary field contains an amount and the status pending if only the secondary field contains an amount.
I just realized that @lubos had already mentioned a way it could be done with a new account for inter-account. That will make it possible to flag transactions of this kind automatically with bank rules.
However, the pairing process is manual, which i don’t mind, considering that it will become much easier to define the inter account transaction.
To note also that inter-account transfer can happen between accounts of different currencies
I like option 2 better but would like most to use an approach which is compatible going forwards.
Maintaining future compatibility can be done by continuing to manually creating inter account transfers and manually deleting the corresponding imported transactions until the built in Inter-account transfers account is available
but if option 2 will never be available, living with option 1 (a user created Inter-account transfers account and disabling the Inter-account transfers tab) is probably more efficient.