Lime Books Review
We are Lime Books accountants. If you use or want to use Lime Books as your online accounting software, we’ll help you use it. We will also do your accounts and tax returns etc based on your accounting records on Lime Books. All of this is included in our low fixed monthly fees. You can see our prices or get an instant quote. This is our Lime Books review as of 1st July 2022.
What is Lime Books
Lime Books is relatively new online accounting software. It claims to automatically analyse your bank statement in seconds, and export your analysed bank accounts as a spreadsheet. As we found below, it’s not quite full accounting software (i.e. with double entry where everything balances). It simply provides a way of mainly categorising all of your bank transactions, and listing all of your sales.
Is Lime Books any good?
This page is our Lime Books review. If you’re looking for a quick answer, it’s yes, but only as a bank analysis software, not as full accounting software.
How much does Lime Books cost?
As explained above, Lime Books isn’t full accounting software which is reflected in it’s low and unusual pricing structure of 5p plus VAT per transaction. So if you have 50 transactions per month, it will only cost £2.50 per month plus VAT. For comparison purposes, we can get Pandle Pro for our clients for the same amount, however, Pandle is not as easy to use but it is full accounting software. So if you just need an easy and cheap way to analyse your bank statements 5p per transaction is good value. Our Lime Books review rating for cost is 5/5.
How easy is it to use Lime Books?
Setting up Lime Books was very easy. After registering, you follow a set up wizard which imported data from Companies House (only for companies) and asked for other details e.g. VAT and PAYE.
It was easy to add a bank account, you just need your opening balance to hand. We had a good experience with importing CSV bank statements. Both HSBC Business and Lloyds Business account imports worked fine. There is no facility to read PDF bank statements. Once the transactions are imported you have to manually categorise each transaction. Nothing was selected automatically, although the ‘analyser’ may learn so the more you use it the more automated it gets, we don’t know yet. We like the way it automatically selects the VAT code based on the account selected, and also ticks the transaction for you so it’s ready to bulk post, which saves time. We couldn’t see a way to bulk categorise transactions. You can select ‘transfer’ as a category but it doesn’t let you select the other bank account and it just treats this as another income or expenditure category. There wasn’t a way of matching income to a sales invoice but there is a Cash (Sale already recorded) category, however that just appeared as an expense category. There is a useful Reconcile feature to help you check that the balance in Lime Books agrees with your bank statement.
Sales were quick and easy to add but there was an issue dealing with the bank income relating to those sales invoices. As mentioned in the banking section, there isn’t a way of matching bank income to a sales invoice. Trying it from the other direction, you can add bank income to a sales invoice, but it doesn’t ask which bank it was received in, so we don’t know what happens to that amount, we couldn’t find it! We couldn’t see a way of adding purchase invoices except for travel expenses. So all other costs will need to entered as and when they are paid.
As explained above this isn’t full accounting software, so if you are trying to use it like that you’ll find it difficult! However, as a simple bank analysis software it’s quick and easy. Our Lime Books review rating for ease of use is 4/5.
Reports on Lime Books
There are only a handful of reports: Travel claims; Unreconciled transactions; Bank transactions; Income & expenditure; Category report; Sales; and interestingly an Analysed Report. The Analysed Report looks like how we used to categorise bank transactions on paper or using a spreadsheet. It lists all of the transactions, then shows the amount for each transaction under one of the many category columns. This would be a useful report to provide your accountant. As the software is fairly limited, there aren’t any more reports to provide. The reports can’t be tailored and there are no comparatives. Our Lime Books review rating for reports is 4/5.
We couldn’t fully test this but it looks like a fully functional VAT return which you can use to submit to HMRC complying with the Making Tax Digital (MTD) rules. There is also a quick an easy way of viewing the transactions that make up the amounts on the VAT return.
This allows a quick and easy way to record expenses that don’t go through a bank account such as mileage and food.
Our Lime Books review rating for other features is 3/5.
Overall Lime Books Review
If Lime Books was trying to be full accounting software, it would be receiving a low rating due to it’s limitations. However, it’s simply providing a useful bank account analysis tool. This will still be useful for small businesses who aren’t required to produce accounts more than once a year. Our Lime Books review overall rating is 4/5 (bank analysis only).About Us Our Prices Instant Quote