Drawings in Accounting- Characteristics and its Concepts

Drawings in Accounting- Characteristics and its Concepts

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Chanchal Aggarwal
Senior Executive Content
Updated on Nov 27, 2023 16:56 IST

Drawings in accounting refer to the withdrawals made by business owners from their own companies’ funds for personal use. These transactions are not considered business expenses and are recorded separately to maintain accurate financial records. Understanding the concept of drawings is crucial for maintaining the integrity of financial statements and evaluating the profitability of a business.


In accounting, drawings refer to the money or assets business owners withdraw for personal use. For example, let’s say John owns a small business. He takes $1,000 from the company’s cash account to pay for his personal expenses. This $1,000 withdrawal is recorded as a drawing in the accounting books to track John’s personal use of company funds. Drawings are not considered business expenses and are separate from the company’s revenue and expenses for accurate financial reporting.

Drawings or a drawing account are two terms accountants use to denote withdrawing funds from an account. Let’s understand the concept of drawing in accounting.

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What are Drawings in Accounting?

Drawings refer to the money or assets that business owners take from their own company for personal use. It’s like when you take some cash from your own piggy bank to buy yourself something. In accounting, we record these drawings separately to keep track of the owner’s transactions apart from the business finances. It helps ensure accurate financial records and shows how much money the owner has taken out for personal expenses, separate from the business’s income and expenses. Drawings are not the same as costs or salaries paid to the company. Drawings are noted as a reduction in the owner’s assets and equity.

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What is Drawings Account?

The Drawings account is an accounting record that tracks the withdrawals or distributions made by business owners for personal use. It is a specific account used to separate personal transactions from business transactions. When an owner takes money or assets from the business for personal use, it is recorded as a debit in the Drawings account, reducing the owner’s equity. This allows for accurate financial reporting and evaluation of the owner’s personal withdrawals separate from the business’s financial activities.

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The drawing account includes assets rather than just money or cash since money, cash, or funds are a type of asset. It is a current asset of the business and one of many assets that the owner(s) may take out for their own use.

Consequently, the drawings also include any assets removed for personal use by the owner, such as machinery and unsold items from the closing inventory. The drawing’s account records any withdrawal from the firm that reduces the total owner equity or the company’s total capital.

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A modest cafe owner has friends visiting from out of town. One morning, they go to the cafe for coffee and pastries but do not conduct business there. The business owner adds up their meal costs to deduct the cost of their meals from their drawing account and put it into their cash account. These are things, not cash withdrawals, but since they are business assets utilized for personal purposes and are recorded as such, they count against the drawing account even if they are not cash withdrawals.

Characteristics of Drawings Accounts

1. Helps Track Capital used for Personal Use

The draws account aids in keeping track of the entire amount of money taken out of the company for personal usage. It assists in keeping tabs on owner withdrawals and supports keeping the company’s total capital balanced.

2. Not a Continuing/Permanent Account

Since the balance transfers to the owner’s equity at the end of a fiscal year, drawings are not a continuous or permanent account. If any, it is only used once again the next year to keep track of the business withdrawals from that year. As a result, it is a one-time account rather than one that is ongoing or permanent.

3. Not an Expense Account

The drawing account is a debit account that deducts from the total amount of money accessible in the company. But it is not an expenditure account because the company made no expenses. Instead, it is just a decrease in the company’s overall equity for personal benefit.

Instead of appearing on the balance sheet, the drawings account would appear in the business’s profit and loss (P&L) account if it were an expense account.

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How Drawings in Accounting Work

A business owner typically transfers money from their drawing account to their cash account. This is due to the requirement that every debit be balanced by credit when using a dual-entry accounting system. A common organizing method for commercial bookkeeping. It is common practice to open drawing accounts at the start of each year and close them at the end. It is done to track money withdrawn from a company during the year.

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Who Uses a Drawings Account?

Small business entrepreneurs in a sole proprietorship or partnership typically use drawing accounts. This is because larger organizations frequently have many stakeholders, making it difficult to manage the logistics of enabling drawing. The question of who is eligible to what amount might get complex by different ownership levels. Large firms typically distribute their earnings by paying employees or issuing dividends.

Drawing accounts make more sense for small businesses because they typically have a higher direct owner involvement. Owner-operators, who run their own small business, may need to make business expenditures or borrow money from their company’s equity to pay for personal purchases. A drawing account can be the best option in certain cases.

Recording Transactions in the Drawings Account

A debit from the drawing account and a credit from the cash account make up a journal entry for the drawing account. A journal entry that closes the drawing account of a sole proprietorship includes both a debit to the owner’s capital account and a credit to the drawing account.

Also read: What is Journal in Accounting?

For instance, Eve Smith’s drawing account has a debit balance of $24,000 after an accounting year. Eve took out $2,000 every month for her own use. It debts her drawing account and credits her cash account for each withdrawal. Eve must credit her drawing account with $24,000 and debit her capital account with $24,000. It should be done as part of the journal entry that closes the drawing account.

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Small business owners should know the regulations before taking money or other assets out of their company. Owner draws serve as a means for business owners to pay themselves and can be useful. However, it’s crucial to remember that they are not regarded as business expenses, must be accurately recorded, and, if taken in excess, can financially undermine the company.


What are drawings in accounting?

Drawings in accounting refer to the withdrawals made by business owners from their own companies' funds for personal use.

How are drawings recorded in the accounting books?

Drawings are recorded as a debit entry in the Drawings account and as a credit entry in the owner's equity account.

Are drawings considered business expenses?

No, drawings are not considered business expenses. They are separate from the revenue and expenses of the business.

Why is it important to track drawings separately?

Tracking drawings separately helps maintain accurate financial records and distinguishes personal transactions from business transactions.

What is the impact of drawings on the owner's equity?

Drawings reduce the owner's equity as they represent withdrawals of personal funds from the business.

How are drawings treated at the end of the accounting period?

The balance in the Drawings account is usually closed by transferring it to the owner's capital account.

About the Author
Chanchal Aggarwal
Senior Executive Content

Chanchal is a creative and enthusiastic content creator who enjoys writing research-driven, audience-specific and engaging content. Her curiosity for learning and exploring makes her a suitable writer for a variety ... Read Full Bio