It might not be the usual thing to have on opening balance in a "Salary" account, but if one did, this is what I tried in gnucash:

  • description: payday again :-)
  • transfer: Equity:Opening Balances
  • charge: -
  • income: 1,500

Subsequent entries could look similar:

  • transfer: Assets:Current Assets:Checking Account

What confuses me is when to "use" charge vs. income. What do they mean? Who and/or which account is charged?

(consider this question draft-stage; I'll be happy to polish it up once I understand more.)

1 Answer 1


I'm not an expert. Gnucash uses double entry bookkeeping, For wages, you could set up an "Income" account called Salary, and an "Asset" account called Checking, or some such. To record the paycheck, you would record the entire income amount in the Salary account (as income), then transfer your take-home pay into your Checking account. So you debit the Income account, and credit the Checking account (double entry). You would also have accounts for federal taxes, social security, etc into which the remainder of the deposit in the Salary account would be transferred.

In my Gnucash setup, paychecks "deposited" into an income account are called "income" in that account, and funds transferred out of the account (i.e. to checking etc) are called "charges". Gnucash sets these up automatically.

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