If you’re a freelancer or a small business owner in New Zealand, you’re likely familiar with the invoicing process. And how tedious and time-consuming it can be.
Creating, sending, and managing invoices is a crucial part of running a business but not often one that most self-employed look forward to. Yet, invoicing is directly connected to one of the main goals of having a business: getting paid.
An invoice is a required document for most sales, so understanding exactly what must be included is an important basic, as missing details can result in an invoice not being valid. From there, it’s about communication with your customer, promotion of your brand, and professionalism.
What needs to be on a New Zealand tax invoice
The details that are required to be presented on an invoice differ from country to country. In New Zealand, a tax invoice must contain certain, specific information in order to be considered a legal document in the eyes of the the tax authorities.
While this can differ slightly across industries and depending on the total amount of the invoice, the main requirements for every tax invoice are:
That GST is for all items on the invoice That all amounts are stated in New Zealand dollars Originality: each invoice must be unique. If a secondary invoice needs to be issued
In addition, if both you and your buyer are GST-registered, the tax invoice must be issued within 28 days of the sale.
However, invoices for amounts under $50, a tax invoice is not necessary but it’s good practise to keep records of these sales and payments.
NZ tax invoices between $50 and $1,000
When the total of your invoice falls between these amounts, it’s important to make sure that it includes certain details:
- The words ‘Tax Invoice’ clearly visible
- Your (company) name, address and GST number
- Invoice issue date
- A description of each item
- The total amount due
- A clear indication that GST has been included
As long as each invoice you create between these values has the above information, your invoice will be considered legal and valid.
NZ tax invoices over $1,000
If your invoice totals more than $1,000, there are a few additional details that must always be included on your invoice. In addition to the above, :
- The name and address of customer (company) as well as their GST number
- The quantity of each item in the invoice
- The total amount and the GST amount or a statement that the GST is included in the total amount (if that is the case).
Ensuring your invoices have the appropriate information depending on your sale is important not only for your documentation and records, but also for getting paid.
How to create a New Zealand invoice
Creating an invoice used to be a bit of a tedious process. It usually involved working with Word or Excel, trying to adjust a fiddly template that you found in the software or downloaded from the internet.
However, today there are plenty of other (read: better) options when it comes to your invoicing. Invoicing software like Debitoor makes the invoicing process faster, easier, and available wherever you have an internet connection (with offline capabilities as well!).
By entering and saving company details, product information, and even customer details, you can simply click and select and the fields will autofill, helping you create invoices fast and greatly reduce the risk of errors.
Creating an invoice that includes the required information is one thing. Making every invoice not only professional but also representative of your brand, helping your business stand out from the competition and be more memorable for your customers is another (alright, a bit more than that!).
Customising your invoice in Word or Excel invoice templates is not necessarily a pain-free process. It can be incredibly time-consuming, and end in frustration when some strange setting prevents you from getting the look you want.
Online invoicing software solves this issue by making it easy to upload your logo or banner image, select your fonts and colours, switch instantly between different layouts, and more - all with the aim of giving you the tools to design your invoice with ease.