As you may have already guessed, in the real world trial balances do not always balance the first time. As with anything, human errors will occur, and somewhere along the line, someone is likely to have entered a bad journal or processed a ledger incorrectly. This shows the importance of producing a trial balance in the first place – it tells the user that the accounting equation is out of balance and it needs to be fixed before going any further. When the trial balance does not balance, try re-totaling the two columns. If this step does not locate the error, divide the difference in the totals by 2 and then by 9. If the difference is divisible by 2, you may have transferred a debit-balanced account to the trial balance as a credit, or a credit-balanced account as a debit.

A trial balance is important because it acts as a summary of all of our accounts. By looking at our trial balance, we can immediately see our bank balance, our loan balance, our owner’s equity balance. In fact, we can immediately see the balance of every single account in our business. This is where you can make the mistake of recording items in the wrong column or even the wrong account.

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A trial balance is a summary of the ledger account. It helps in referring to the ledger only during the requirement of more details in respect of an account. Due to their similar name, it’s easy to confuse the trial balance with the balance sheet, or to think they’re one and the same. Although each document records similar information, these are separate documents with distinct purposes.

Trail balance is worksheet which consists of all ledger balances and columned them as debit and credit. Trail balance ensures entries are mathematically proven. It is prepared at end of reporting period and repeated for every period. Thus it is very important to make sure that in every step of the accounting cycle that all transactions are entered correctly and accurately to minimise the occurrences of the above errors.

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The required what is a trial balances in the accounting cycle are listed in random order below. Note that for this step, we are considering our trial balance to be unadjusted, which means it includes accounts before they have been adjusted. As you see in step 6 of the accounting cycle, we create another trial balance that is adjusted after posting adjusting entries in step 5.

  • Like an unadjusted trial balance, it will have accounts listed in order of either their account numbers or in the order they appear on the balance sheet.
  • A trial balance includes the balances of all the ledger accounts.
  • Let’s now take a closer look at the T-accounts and trial balance for KLO to see how the information is transferred from the T-accounts to the trial balance.

A central concern for any company is that it might lose track of the money coming in and the money going out. Nobody wants to run out of cash for a few weeks and be pressured to take out a high interest loan just to cover rent and payroll. It’s sometimes the way of things that a business presents a united front, but a glimpse behind the scene reveals a tangled mess. About the Author – Dr Geoffrey Mbuva(PhD-Finance) is a lecturer of Finance and Accountancy at Kenyatta University, Kenya. He is an enthusiast of teaching and making accounting & research tutorials for his readers.


Assume that a trial balance is prepared with an account balance of $8,900 listed as $9,800 and an account balance of $1,000 listed as $100. B) What is the purpose of preparing a trial balance? A wrong amount recorded in the books of original entry and the same amount being incorrectly debited and credited cannot be identified by a trial balance. Routinely record all transactions in journal entries, both as credits and as debits.

What are the two 2 types of trial balance?

There are three types of trial balances: the unadjusted trial balance, the adjusted trial balance and the post- closing trial balance.