How to move to FreeAgent from another software provider
This article explains how to import accounting data into FreeAgent if you’ve been using another software package.
Please note that the information in this article applies only to customers whose businesses are already trading and who have been recording their accounts in another software package. Find out more about switching to FreeAgent.
For advice on extracting data from other software packages, please refer to your software provider.
Before you start
Choose a FreeAgent start date
Your FreeAgent start date is the date from which you're going to start keeping your books in FreeAgent. Your choice of date will depend on how long your business has been trading. If you’ve been trading for less than a year, you might decide to start keeping your books in FreeAgent from the start date of your business. If you’ve been trading for longer, you might choose the start of the most recent accounting year.
You will enter your FreeAgent start date when you sign up but if you need to change it you can do so within FreeAgent. Navigate to the drop-down menu in the top-right corner of the screen, select ‘Settings’ and then select ‘Accounting Dates’.
Importing your data into FreeAgent
You can import your opening balances into FreeAgent as of your FreeAgent start date. Please note that you won't be able to import your opening balances if you have an unincorporated landlord account.
When you import your opening balances, be sure to include:
- The balance of all your bank accounts
- Balances due to the business by your customers
- Balances owed by the business to suppliers
You can import your bank transactions into FreeAgent automatically by setting up a bank feed.
If the bank feed is connected via Open Banking then you can import transactions dating back two years. This means that if your FreeAgent start date is within the past two years, you can import all the transactions from this date onwards.
If your bank account is with a challenger bank such as Monzo, Starling Bank, Revolut or Capital on Tap then you can set up an integration, which will function in a similar way to a bank feed. You may be able to import historical transactions, depending on which bank you use. Please refer to the specific instructions for each integration for details.
If a bank feed isn't available for your bank, or you need to import historical transactions that are outside the scope of your bank feed, you will need to either upload bank statements or enter transactions manually.
After your bank transactions have been imported or uploaded, you will be able to view them in the ‘Banking’ area of FreeAgent, where you can explain them.
Once you’ve started explaining transactions, FreeAgent’s Guess feature will attempt to explain your transactions automatically. Guess is enabled by default for Open Banking bank feeds, but you will need to enable it manually for challenger bank feed integrations.
There are several ways to import your contacts into FreeAgent, depending on the software you’re currently using to maintain your contacts. For full details, see the instructions in the following articles:
- How to import contacts from email software such as Outlook, Google Mail or Mac Mail
- How to import contacts from Basecamp
- How to import contacts in CSV format
Your imported contacts will appear in the ‘Contacts’ area of FreeAgent, which you can access by selecting ‘Contacts’ at the top of the screen.
If you’ve been using Basecamp to manage your projects, you can import your Basecamp project data into FreeAgent.
Your imported projects will appear in the ‘Projects’ area, which you can access by selecting the ‘Work’ drop-down menu at the top of the screen and selecting ‘Projects’.
Historical expenses and mileage
Before importing this data, it’s a good idea to familiarise yourself with the difference between an expense, a bill and a bank payment in FreeAgent.
If you have lots of historical expenses or mileage to import into FreeAgent, you can upload them in bulk by using a template. For full details on how to do this, see the instructions in the following articles:
After your expenses and mileage have been imported, you’ll be able to review them in the ‘Expenses’ area of FreeAgent, which you can access by selecting the ‘My Money’ drop-down menu at the top of the screen and selecting ‘Expenses’.
Sole traders with no staff can access the ‘Expenses’ area by selecting the dedicated ‘Expenses’ option at the top of the screen:
Historical sales invoices and bills
If you have historical sales invoices or bills to import into FreeAgent, you can use a third-party integration such as AutoEntry or Fabio to import the data. Alternatively, you can import the relevant bank transactions and explain them as ‘Sales’.
If you use a third-party integration to import bills, the data will appear in the ‘Bills’ area of FreeAgent, which you can access by selecting ‘Bills’ at the top of the screen.
Imported invoices will appear in the ‘Invoices’ area, which you can access by selecting the ‘Work’ drop-down menu at the top of the screen and then choosing ‘Invoicing’.
Find out more about switching to FreeAgent.