How to get started with FreeAgent
Welcome to FreeAgent! This article is a quick guide to help you get started with your FreeAgent account, from entering your initial settings to linking your bank account and creating your first invoice.
The Getting Started page on the FreeAgent website contains some handy videos on setting up your account, along with a recorded webinar that offers a guided tour of the software. You’ll find a whole host of more detailed information on how to get started with FreeAgent here in the Knowledge Base. You can also select the blue ‘Help’ button in the bottom-right corner of the screen if you need assistance.
If your business is already trading and you've been recording your accounts in another software package, find out about switching to FreeAgent.
To get up and running quickly with FreeAgent and familiarise yourself with its main features, we recommend you work through the following steps:
1. Set up your account
When you sign up for a FreeAgent account, you’ll receive an email asking you to verify your email address. It’s important that you follow the instructions in the email to confirm your account and prevent temporary limitations being placed on your account.
When setting up your FreeAgent account, you’ll need to enter your business’s accounting dates. Find out more about accounting dates in FreeAgent.
If your business has been trading for a while and you’re moving to FreeAgent from another software package, the next step will be entering your opening balances. If your business is new, you can move on to importing your data.
If you're unable to log in to your FreeAgent account, please see our troubleshooting steps for login problems.
2. Enter opening balances
If you’ve been trading for a while, you’ll need to enter brought-forward opening balances from your previous accounting software into FreeAgent.
These are your figures as they stood as at your FreeAgent start date, and you can obtain these from a trial balance from your previous software package. Your opening balances include any money owed to the business from customers and money owed from the business to suppliers.
Find out more about how to enter your opening balances.
3. Import your data
If relevant to your business, you can import accounting data into FreeAgent, such as bank transactions, contacts, projects and historical income and expenses. You can find more details on each of these below.
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.
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 to tell FreeAgent what each transaction relates to.
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.
The Projects feature in FreeAgent can be used if you undertake large pieces of work for a customer. It allows you to see everything relating to a particular project - including invoices, estimates, expenses, tasks and tracked time - in the same place.
Historical income and expenses
Before importing historical income or expenses, it’s a good idea to familiarise yourself with the difference between an expense, a bill and a bank payment in FreeAgent. Then follow the steps below if you need to import them.
If you have historical sales invoices 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 have historical 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 to the relevant cost categories.
4. Start creating invoices, bills and expenses
To do this, first enter your company details and add a company logo if you wish. You can add a business email address to send your invoices from. There is also the option to set up templates to automatically email your invoices, email payment reminders and email a thank you note once the invoice has been marked as paid.
5. Learn about projects
After creating the project, you can create an invoice from the project to record your income against it. Alternatively, you can create the project from an estimate after you’ve sent it to your customer.
6. Keep on top of your admin
Radar is a FreeAgent feature that contains an ‘Admin To-Do List’ and provides a feed containing tailored Insights into your business’s performance and information on any new features or product updates.
FreeAgent mobile app
You can download the FreeAgent mobile app and perform a range of tasks on the go.