How to write a simple invoice

The hope of reward adds joy to labour. To let the person for whom you have laboured know that money is due for work done, you need to send an invoice. Invoices must be precise yet detailed. They should let the buyer of goods or services know exactly what they are paying for. The invoice must be a brief reproduction of the terms of the contract.

Type the word "Invoice" in a bold font at the top of the sheet. Put your name or business name, your address, contact number and e-mail at the top or upper left of the page. You should then put a reference number. Experts recommend a four digit reference number like 0001 that works well with spreadsheets. The unique reference number is important because the accounts department of some companies process invoices. The actual buyer does not process the invoice.

Put the date of creation of the invoice under the reference number. You can also put the date across the reference number. In some cases and to make the invoice clearer and in greater detail you can put the date of services and time of billing. Put the address of the buyer preceded by the preposition, "To," after at least four carriage returns from the dateline.

Describe the work completed in this part of the invoice. This part of the invoice needs to be in great detail. Make a list of items sold or services rendered. You can even include the time spent in doing the tasks. List each item and its cost clearly and separately as a list. Put the gross amount due at the end. Put the subtotal of all services rendered and goods sold below the gross amount due and finally clearly state the grand total in a bold font.

Anticipate the time of payment and make a note of the date on which payment is due. Typically payment is due within 15 to 30 days of the completion of work. You can also specify the method of payment under the time of payment. You may want your check mailed to a particular address or funds to be transferred to a particular bank or you can ask for a PayPal payment to your e-mail address. Type the details of how the payment should be made in this part of the invoice.

Print out the invoice. It is prudent that a hard copy of an invoice must be kept even though its digital version is stored on the computer. The printed copy is easy to keep track of. The printed copy should be filed for future reference.


Use any word processor or spreadsheet for your invoice. Keep the first invoice as a template and save yourself the trouble of creating new invoices for every transaction.

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Things Needed

  • Computer
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Specialised invoicing software
  • Clear font (such as Arial or Times New Roman)
  • List of services rendered or goods sold
  • Copy of the contract
  • Calculator
  • Printer
  • Paper
  • File

About the Author

Giselle Diamond is a freelance writer and has been writing since 1999. Diamond is experienced in writing in all genres and subjects, with distinguished experience in home and garden, culture and society, literature and psychology. Diamond has a Master of Arts in English and psychology from New York University. Diamond has articles published on both eHow and LiveStrong.

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