Surprise birthday parties can be a blast.
Surprise gifts can be terrific.
Surprises in your accounting software - not so much fun.
There is one surprise that many QuickBooks users find really irritating...
That surprise being the maximum number of items (inventory, non-inventory, etc.) and names (customer, vendor)
In QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks Premier versions, you can't have more than 14,500 items or 14,500 names.
NO EARLY WARNING SYSTEM FOR YOU
I'm guessing that you didn't ask if there were limits like these when you purchased QuickBooks, right? Don't feel bad - tens of thousands of other users didn't either.
Sadly, there is no early warning system within QuickBooks to let you know that you are approaching these thresholds. No alerts. No flashing lights. It's up to you to know how close you are getting (see below).
The day you reach the limit is the day that QuickBooks says "no more". From there, you cannot add any more names to the list that has hit capacity.
Talk about a scramble!
WHAT TO DO?
So, here are some options for you to consider:
- Use the condense function built into QuickBooks (under File > Utilities). This option may free up some list space for you, depending on the data within your file. Always be sure to make one or more backup copies of your QuickBooks database BEFORE undertaking this step and be sure to understand the implications of what the condense function is going to do to your data.
- Turn to an outside service to have your file "supercondensed". I have worked with the pros at QuickBooksUsers.com for a number of years. They offer an overnight turnaround on this service, but be aware that there are fees involved to use it. Their service gets the job done.
- Start a brand new QuickBooks company file. While this is certainly an option, the timing is usually wrong. Ideally, you want to start a new company file at the beginning of a new fiscal year, but luck has it that you don't normally bump into these limits on such a timetable. If you start a new company file mid-year, your accountant then has to combine two sets of records, and there are a number of other considerations and transitional issues involved with this option as well.
- Upgrade to the Enterprise version of QuickBooks. Enterprise has a much higher threshold for number of items and names, and your existing database can be upgraded into QuickBooks Enterprise very easily. Here's the rub with this option - it isn't cheap to purchase Enterprise (though I can certainly get you discounts if you opt to purchase it!)
As you can see by the above, there are pros and cons with each of the options listed. Best bet is to be informed and plan your strategy well before you run into this problem.
HOW DO I KNOW HOW MANY NAMES I HAVE IN MY QUICKBOOKS FILE?
This is quite easy to figure out - just tap the F2 key on your keyboard (or CTRL + 1 as an alternate) and you'll be presented with a product information box. Look in the List Information portion of the screen as shown below:
Here you will quickly find just where you stand in your journey to fill up these lists!