The 6 Best Construction Accounting Software of 2020

Track the income and expenses for your construction projects

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Accounting software helps businesses track income and expenses. The construction industry uses it for those tasks, but also for tasks like tracking project-specific finances, reporting the percent of a job that’s complete, budgeting, monitoring equipment usage, and collaborating with subcontractors, and managing payroll.  

By using construction accounting software, construction companies and contractors can be as efficient as possible, stay organized, and increase profitability. 

We reviewed more than 20 construction accounting software programs and after researching them, we chose the top six. These six best construction accounting software programs were chosen based on how easy they are to implement and use, features including budgeting, payroll management, and level of accounting knowledge required, cost, and other industry-specific features.  

Keep reading to see which software program is right for your construction company

The 6 Best Construction Accounting Software Programs

Best Overall: Jonas Premier

Jonas Premier

Jonas Premier 

Jonas Premier is part of the Jonas Construction Software Company, founded in Canada in 1990 as a way to build a better-integrated construction software solution and is now a division of Constellation Software, Inc. It’s used throughout North America by construction companies, land developers, home builders, and general contractors. 

It’s cloud-based and the accounting software can be used by multiple companies and divisions to allocate revenue and expenses between jobs. It also includes a customizable management dashboard that can be used differently by various types of contractors such as HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and more. 

Jonas Premier features include:

  • Granular reporting
  • Complete audit trails
  • Multiple accounting periods open
  • Multi division and multi-company accounting
  • Accurate real-time reporting and tracking with general ledger accounts receivable and payable
  • Automated workflow
  • Job and dispatch scheduling
  • Job costing
  • Document, inventory, and equipment management

It also offers payroll and union reporting features including federal remittances and year-end reporting and can be integrated with apps including Plangrid, Contigo, and more. 

No bookkeeping experience is required to use Jonas Premier and there is an unlimited free training, videos, webinars, and eBooks available to help you get set up. 

Pricing for Jonas Premier is as follows:

  • Implementation fee: Starts at $20,000 and includes one-on-one training sessions for six weeks, unlimited group training and unlimited support, designated account manager, and unlimited document storage
  • Monthly: $199/concurrent user/month with no annual commitment 
  • Annually: $189/concurrent user/month with an annual commitment 
  • No hidden fees and everything is included 

We chose Jonas Premier as our best overall construction accounting program because of its 30 years in business, it specifically caters to the construction industry, and the accounting software is full of robust, easy-to-use features that are available on-the-go.

Runner-Up, Best Overall: CMiC

CMiC

CMiC 

A computer software company founded in Ontario, Canada in 1974, CMiC provides enterprise software for construction companies, general and specialty contractors, heavy and highway contractors, and project owners. It’s used by family-owned businesses and national-scale enterprises and is specifically built for the construction industry. You do not need any accounting knowledge to use it. 

It offers full payroll services including employee life cycle management, talent acquisition, human resource management, payroll, and employee self-services. It works well with other systems and can be used with pre-built integrations, API bundles, integration adapters, and project and financial data can be shared across systems. Revenue and expenses can be allocated to specific projects and individual companies. CMiC can also help with scaling your business and changing management teams. 

Features of CMiC include:

  • Budgeting
  • Corporate and project forecasting
  • General ledger
  • Accounts receivable and accounts payable
  • Monitor cash flow and optimize spending tools
  • Automated financial controls
  • Corporate risk management 
  • Asset management 
  • Enterprise planning

Pricing is available upon request and is dependent on features needed, type of company, construction business volume, and more. 

CMiC is our choice for runner-up to the best overall construction accounting software program because of its long track record in the industry, robust feature offering, and because it is tailored specifically to the construction industry.

Best for Beginners: Buildertrend

Buildertrend

Buildertrend

Buildertrend was founded in 2006 in Omaha, Nebraska as a better way to manage construction projects. It’s used by builders, commercial and specialty contractors, construction companies, and remodelers around the world. 

Buildertrend can be integrated with QuickBooks, Excel, Dropbox, and Facebook. The software includes a pre-sales process, project management, accounting tools, and customer management including support and training. 

Other features of Buildertrend include:

  • Automatically generating line item invoices
  • Lien processing
  • ROI calculator
  • Accept online payments
  • Compare estimate vs actual
  • Use the app to track finances on the go
  • Purchase orders
  • Time clocks

No accounting experience is necessary to use the software. 

Buildertrend doesn’t have as many robust accounting features as some of the other options, so we recommend integrating it with QuickBooks, Xero, or your own accounting software. You also need to integrate it with a payroll company because it doesn’t include payroll features. 

Pricing is as follows:

  • No contracts, month-to-month pricing with a 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Unlimited users and unlimited jobs with tiered pricing
  • Core: $99/month for the first 3 months and includes financial tools, streamline project management, budgeting, and communication with employees and clients
  • Pro: $299/month for the first three months and includes more financial and accounting tools and advanced features
  • Premium: Completely custom pricing and features for your business 

We chose Buildertrend as our best construction accounting software for beginners because it is easy to use for companies of all sizes and bookkeeping levels. It also offers onsite training, online webinars, and customer support.

Best for Extra Features: COINS

COINS

COINS 

In business for more than 30 years, COINS provides software to the construction industry including home builders, specialty and general contractors, engineers, and designers. It includes accounting, project management, operations, and supply chain management. It includes a payroll and HR division which is for onboarding employees, building schedules, managing vacation time, and managing payroll information for employees and subcontractors. You can collaborate on projects with your team and allocate revenue and expenses on a per-project basis. 

It can be integrated with its built in-app as well as external web services, warehouse management, CRM, e-commerce, and payment systems. It was built to manage the full product life cycle on one platform. 

Key features of COINS include:

  • Accounts payable and accounts receivable
  • Accrue finance charges
  • Automated job cost updates with billings and cash receipts
  • General ledger
  • Reporting and business intelligence
  • Sales order processing
  • Determine job profitability
  • Call management system
  • Job management reports and 1099 forms

No accounting experience is needed to use COINS as it’s designed to be easy to use.

Because it offers so many features and covers multiple types of construction industries, it doesn’t offer tiered or upfront pricing. Instead, it offers custom pricing solutions based on your company’s needs so you’ll need to contact the company for a quote. 

COINS is our top choice for construction accounting software with extra features because of the substantial amount of features important to the construction industry including human resources, operations management, asset management, and project management. Users can also share communication logs, drawing sets, daily reports, and more.

Best On The Go: Acumatica

Acumatica

Acumatica 

Founded in 2008 in Bellevue, Washington, Acumatica develops enterprise resource planning software for small and medium businesses including construction companies and contractors. Acumatica is used by construction, manufacturing, distribution, retail, and e-commerce companies and offers an industry-specific version of their software to construction companies.  

There are no per-user fees so you can collaborate with teams and share documents. Acumatica supports integrations with programs including Microsoft Office, DocuSign, and Procore. 

You can manage labor, budgets, and schedules with the software and allocate revenue and expenses to certain job sites. 

Additional features of Acumatica include:

  • Job cost accounting
  • Project management 
  • Inventory control
  • Service management
  • Project reports and budgets
  • Forecast and manage costs
  • Calculate taxes accurately
  • Complete contract accounting 

The software is designed to be easy to use with no accounting or bookkeeping background necessary. 

Pricing is set according to the features you need rather than the number of users. Features that are factored into the cost include the applications you want to use, type of license you need, business volume, and data storage. To get the most accurate price for your company, you will need to contact Acumatica. 

Since Acumatica offers a complete real-time view of your business anytime and anywhere, we chose it as the best construction accounting software program on-the-go. All of the features are available on a cloud and on your mobile device and are set up with an all-inclusive user licensing model.

Best for Customization: Foundation

Foundation

Foundation

Foundation was started in 1985 and focuses exclusively on the construction industry. Its accounting and management software is built with Microsoft SQL Server database technology and updates as an industry need change. 

The software is typically used for commercial, industrial, and government work. It’s used by small companies with 10 employees and large construction companies with over 1,000 employees. It’s easily integrable with timekeeping, project management, and estimating apps you might already use. It also has a separate section specifically for CPAs including audit review modules.

Some of Foundation’s main features include:

  • Job costing
  • General ledger
  • Purchase Order
  • Accounts payable and receivable
  • Scheduling 
  • Project management and inventory tracking
  • Unit price billing

Beginners can use the software and don’t need an accounting background. Additionally, payroll is easy with Foundation. All you need to do is submit the time and it does the rest including calculating payroll taxes, prevailing wage rates, union fringe benefits, and more. 

Foundation does not offer pricing tiers. Instead, custom prices are offered based on the type and size of your company and what functions you need the software to perform. 

Foundation is our choice for construction accounting software that can be customized because it allows you to easily design and customize accounting reports and construction statements, thanks to its integration DataGenie.

What Is Accounting Software for Construction Companies?

Accounting software for construction companies is a specific type of software tailor-made to fulfill the often sophisticated functions required in the industry. Typically, it’s used by a construction company owner and their CPA.

However, accounting software does more than keep track of accounts payable and accounts receivable. It helps the construction company owner keep track of expenses per job, as well as performs payroll tasks, monitor wages, maintaining compliance with state and national tax laws, and other industry-specific functions. 

Why Do Construction Companies Need Accounting Software?

According to Keith Melanson, project manager for RenosGroup, “A construction company should use accounting software to keep track of projects and reduce costs and time spent completing repetitive tasks.” 

In addition to tracking projects and reducing costs, account software can help eliminate manual errors and double entries, as well as assist with data entry and categorizing receipts and expenses. Construction companies of all sizes need accounting software to accurately report income and expenses per job, perform payroll tasks, and keep financial records stored safely.

They’re also a great method of keeping financial records centrally organized, making tax time much more efficient. However, it’s important to find the right accounting software for your construction company to decrease the risk of human errors, increase efficiency, and even increase profitability. 

The wrong software might wind up costing you money instead. 

How Much Does Accounting Software Cost?

Accounting software varies in cost. Typically, you can expect to pay $99 to $299 or more per month per user. Some software companies also charge an implementation fee to onboard and train the users and that fee can be upwards of $20,000. 

Keep in mind that many construction accounting software programs don’t offer up-front or tiered pricing but instead offer custom pricing solutions based on the number of users, amount of work or sales volume your company does, and what types of licenses and features you will need. 

You can contact the software company directly to share your needs and get a price.

How Is Accounting Software Different for Construction Companies?

Accounting software for construction companies is different from generic or non-industry specific accounting software. It offers industry-specific features and functions and can often be used at the office, on-the-go, or at the job site. Some software programs offer packages that combine accounting features with construction project management features. 

Typical construction accounting software programs include functions such as job cost accounting, forecasting and managing costs, purchase requisitions, inventory control, and compiling financial documents to submit to your CPA and payroll. 

How We Chose the Best Construction Accounting Software Programs

We evaluated 20 construction accounting software programs on features including price, ease of use without an accounting background, payroll and budgeting capabilities, multi-user functions, and ability to integrate with other apps and software.

The six that made our list were chosen due to their robust, construction industry-specific functions, pricing options, and ease of implementation.