Setting your conversion date

The conversion date (or start date) is the date you've chosen to start entering your day-to-day transactions into Xero. If you update your conversion date, you might also need to update your conversion balances and historical transactions.

If your conversion balances are locked, only users with the Adviser user role can update the conversion date.

Date main

About your conversion date

The conversion date is usually the date you start using Xero. The only transactions you should enter in Xero dated before this date are invoices and bills that were unpaid when you converted.

Your conversion date is always the 1st of a month. January 2006 is the earliest date you can use.

If you’re coming from another accounting system, it's important the conversion date is the day after the date when you balanced all your accounts in your previous system. If you’re entering balances from your trial balance, make sure you’ve run this report to the day before you want to start using Xero.

If you’ve already entered conversion balances and need to change the conversion date, you’ll need to confirm the balances and make any changes that are needed. For example, entering, editing or deleting conversion invoices or bills.

If your conversion date is in the past and you've carried on business since then, then as far back as your conversion date you'll also need:

  • Invoices and bills
  • Bank account and credit card statements

to import into Xero.

Can I add transactions dated prior to conversion?

Only transactions that take place from your organisation's conversion date onwards should be entered in Xero. This includes the unpaid amount of any sales invoices and purchase bills at your conversion date. The conversion date is the start date for Xero reporting.

The conversion balances entered create the opening balances for the accounts they're entered for. When creating reports, Xero looks at transactions dated after the conversion date, and adds them to the conversion balance for the account. Prior conversion dated transactions are not included in reports.

If you want to have full transaction detail for previous years in Xero, we suggest you set an earlier conversion date and recreate the earlier years' accounts in Xero.

Tips for choosing a conversion date

The month you choose will depend on how you currently manage your accounts and what data you want to bring across. We suggest you choose:

  • The month your current VAT period starts from, if you're VAT registered, or
  • The current month, if you aren't VAT registered.

You can choose a conversion date:

  • In the future, if you want to get Xero set up before you start using it
  • In the past, if you want to recreate your account back to then
  • That's different from the start of your financial year.

Set or change your conversion date

  1. In the Settings menu, select General Settings.
  2. Under Organisation, select Conversion Balances.
  3. Click Conversion Date.
  4. Select the month and year you'd like to start entering transactions from.
  5. Click Save.

You'll need to review and confirm your conversion balances next.

Tips when changing your conversion date to a later date

  • Void any invoices and bills that were paid before the new conversion date, but retain any that were still unpaid at the new date.
  • Delete any bank statements that have been imported, and are dated earlier than the new date.
  • Remove any other transactions that are dated earlier than the new date.