It is often confused that the terms ‘invoice’ and ‘statement’ are interchangeable, when in fact they each carry different purposes. To make use of invoices and statements correctly, you need to understand the purpose each serves, so let’s consider what the differences are between them.
An invoice is used when you wish to collect payment from your clients. It serves as an itemized list of work done for the client, and details on what they owe you for it. An invoice will not show you what has already been paid, it will simply list the total costs of time and expenses owed. You can send out invoices daily if need be, but are usually sent out in regular intervals, such as once a month.
Statements are sent out to let clients know where they stand, to remind the client that they need to pay, and it serves as an account summary for clients at a particular point in time. Details of charges are not as comprehensive as in an invoice, as it is mostly used to generate a list of unpaid invoices that include the total unpaid balance for a specific time period.
For the client, receiving an invoice means that the sender is obliging you to make a payment. Yet receiving a statement is strictly informational, and means a reminder has been sent to you, designed to clarify and highlight balance due.
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