Estimate is a non-posting transaction. Creating an Estimate form does not affect income, expense, or balance sheet accounts. QuickBooks refers to this as creating an estimate, but you can give the form your own title such as bid, grant, or proposal (see below for how to change form title).

Writing an estimate is very similar to writing an invoice.

Start with a blank estimate (create + sign > customers > estimate).

  • Choose a customer already on your customers list or enter “+ add new” to create a new customer as you write
  • Fill our information. If need to assign your own estimate number, see instructions below for settings change.
  • Enter product/service (items) already on your Products and Services list, or enter new item as you write by clicking + add new link.

create estimate

Estimate Form comes with the following four dropdown “Estimate Status” selectors:

  • Pending
  • Accepted
  • Closed
  • Rejected

You can also make Recurring Estimate” by clicking “make recurring” at the bottom middle.

How to convert an Estimate to an Invoice once it is accepted?

Take the following steps below.

  • Pull up the estimate you’d like to convert.
  • Change your Estimate Status to Accepted.
  • Enter Accepted by and Accepted date
  • Click Save.
  • Click Copy To Invoice and proceed.

Note: There is no partial copy to invoice. There is no progress invoicing in QBO. Once it’s copied to Invoice, estimate status is closed. If you have received partial order (or making partial shipment) out of the estimate, you will need to change it on Invoice form. If you have backorder left on estimate, you will need to create a new estimate again.

copy to invoice

How to turn on Estimate feature?

Click on the Gear Icon > Under Settings > Choose Advanced Settings > > Choose Automation > Choose Copy estimates to invoices click the Edit pencil Icon

turn copy estimates to invoices feature on

How to change Estimate form title?
From the home page screen

  • Company gear (upper right corner)
  • Settings
  • Custom Form Styles (for older version, do not see custom form styles, see “note” below.
  • Select “Edit” under Action (to create new style for estimate, select new).
  • In the “select style” window, click next at the bottom right
  • In the “make adjustment” window, click the Header tab
  • Under Form Names, choose which form you’d like to rename, and enter the name you would like to use
  • Click Save

header form names

Note: For older version without Custom Form Styles to change the Sales Form titles:

  • Go to the Gear Icon > Company Settings.
  • On the left side of the window, click Sales.
  • Click the Customize Look and Feel button.
  • In the window that appears, click the Header tab.
  • Under Form Names, choose which form you’d like to rename, and enter the name you would like to use.
  • Click Save.
  • In Company Settings, click Done.

customize look and feel

How to change Estimate number?
Click on the Gear Icon > Under Settings > Choose Sales Settings > > Choose Sales form content > Choose Custom transaction numbers > ON checkbox > Save > Done

custom transaction numbers

I accidentally created an Invoice rather than an Estimate. How to change it to an Estimate rather than an Invoice?

There’s no way to convert that Invoice to an Estimate.
QuickBooks Online doesn’t have a mechanism in place to create Estimates out of Invoices. You’ll have to manually create the Estimate and delete the Invoice.

How do I remove “Accepted by” on Estimate?
At this time the Accepted By field is built in feature. It can not be removed.

How I can create Purchase Order (PO) from Estimate?
You cannot create a PO from an Estimate, you will have to make a new PO manually. Just for the record, an Estimate is linked to an Invoice, not a PO.