What is the difference between cash basis accounting and accrual based accounting?

What is the difference between cash basis accounting and accrual based accounting? 

Everybody wants their firm to succeed and leave a lasting impression on the business world. A successful firm is built on a solid foundation of strategy and direction. The accounting side is crucial to the success of every firm. A great accounting system supports the growth of your company. Cash basis accounting and accrual basis accounting are the two major accounting methods for recording accounting transactions. 

Accounting Techniques 

There are two widely used accounting procedures for businesses. The first is accrual basis accounting, whereas the second is cash basis accounting. The time of when revenue and expenses are recognised is what separates the two.

Accounting on a cash basis 

Revenues and expenses are recorded as payments are received and made, accordingly, in this clear-cut and basic style of accounting. This technique of accounting provides a clear picture of how much cash is on hand for a company. Both benefits and drawbacks of cash basis accounting exist


  • Easy to use and maintain 
  • Recognise the company’s cash flow easily 
  • Pay taxes solely on the money you have received 
  • Potential tax advantage 
  • An accurate cash flow picture 


  • Overstate or understate how a business is doing 
  • possibly challenging to switch to 
  • Doesn’t give a complete picture of the company 
  • Not applicable to all company types 

Accounting on an accrual basis 

It is a common accounting technique that is advantageous to most businesses and tries to give a precise picture of the company’s place in the market. The matching principle, which asserts that income and expense recognition periods must coincide, underpins this approach. The accrual approach helps to depict the business’s genuine and underlying economic realities


  • Display a true image of any company’s financial situation. 
  • Help the company make better financial decisions 
  • Give prompt input on the company’s cash flows 
  • Easy for the business to manage its current resources 


  • It is more difficult than cash accounting 
  • It requires careful monitoring of the invoices because of its relative complexity 
  • Cost of implementation 
  • Occasionally can produce short-term cash flow problems 

Implementing a solid accounting system based on one of the above techniques will lessen your tax obligations, resolve any tax problems you may have, assist in the growth of your company, and save you valuable time

Comparison of Cash Accounting and Accrual Accounting 

The main tax accounting methods of cash accounting and accrual basis accounting are distinguished by the timing at which revenues and expenses are recognised. While the latter method concentrated on projected revenue and expenses, the earlier strategy allows the delayed recognition of revenue and expenses. Well-known businesses typically utilise the accrual approach, while smaller enterprises typically use a primary tax accounting system based on cash accounting


If the above blows your mind, that’s why you need great system and support in your businesses to help you navigate through such areas and this is where we can help. 

If you would like to see how Itas Solutions can help you and your organisation with accounting with the latest cloud accounting solutions for your business accounting needs with powerful cloud accounting software such as Sage’s Intacct, we will only be too happy to show you the benefits and how we can help.  

Who we are 

Itas Solutions began in 1995 with just one client and today serves over 200 businesses around the UK and we are always on call to help our clients.  

Itas is a company trusted by our clients for more than 20 years, and we have grown through customer and IT professional recommendations who appreciate the knowledgeable yet individualised service we provide.  

You can reach out to us at [email protected], give us a call at +44 (0) 1824 780 000, or send an email to learn more about how Itas can assist your company with finance automation, Sage implementation, and improved purchasing control.