# Calculating double-declining balance depreciation for tax purposes in Excel using the variable-declining balance function

This involves accelerated depreciation and uses the Book Value at the beginning of each period, multiplied by a fixed Depreciation Rate. You can easily compute for this value using this double declining depreciation calculator, or you can compute it manually. Let’s assume that a retailer purchases fixtures on January 1 at a cost of \$100,000.

The “double” means 200% of the straight line rate of depreciation, while the “declining balance” refers to the asset’s book value or carrying value at the beginning of the accounting period. The Double Declining Balance Method (DDB) is a form of accelerated depreciation in which the annual depreciation expense is greater during the earlier stages of the fixed asset’s useful life. The DDB function is used for calculating double-declining-balance depreciation (or some other factor of declining-balance depreciation) and contains five arguments. The first four (cost, salvage, life, and period) are required and the same as used in the DB function. The fifth argument, factor, is optional and determines by what factor to multiply the rate of depreciation.

No depreciation is charged following the year in which the asset is sold. Since public companies are incentivized to increase shareholder value (and thus, their share price), it is often in their best interests to recognize depreciation more gradually using the straight-line method. The prior statement tends to be true for most fixed assets due to normal “wear and tear” from any consistent, constant usage. By accelerating the depreciation and incurring a larger expense in earlier years and a smaller expense in later years, net income is deferred to later years, and taxes are pushed out. Mary Girsch-Bock is the expert on accounting software and payroll software for The Ascent. See the screenshot below for the formulas used in the spreadsheet and the results of the MACRS half-year depreciation calculations.

## Double Declining Balance Method vs. Straight Line Depreciation

The fixed percentage is multiplied by the tax basis of assets in service to determine the capital allowance deduction. Capital allowance calculations may be based on the total set of assets, on sets or pools by year (vintage pools) or pools by classes of assets… Since double-declining-balance depreciation does not always depreciate an asset fully by its end of life, some methods also compute a straight-line depreciation each year, and apply the greater of the two. This has the effect of converting from declining-balance depreciation to straight-line depreciation at a midpoint in the asset’s life.

• The double declining balance method of depreciation is just one way of doing that.
• Sum of the years’ digits depreciation is another accelerated depreciation method.
• At the beginning of the second year, the fixture’s book value will be \$80,000, which is the cost of \$100,000 minus the accumulated depreciation of \$20,000.
• The beginning of period (BoP) book value of the PP&E for Year 1 is linked to our purchase cost cell, i.e.
• Accelerated depreciation is any method of depreciation used for accounting or income tax purposes that allows greater depreciation expenses in the early years of the life of an asset.
• In the end, the sum of accumulated depreciation and scrap value equals the original cost.

Depreciation rates between the two methods of calculating depreciation are similar except that the DDD Rate is twice the value of the SLD rate. In the depreciation of the asset for each period, the salvage value is not considered when doing calculations for DDD balance. The composite method is applied to a collection of assets that are not similar and have different service lives. For example, computers and printers are not similar, but both are part of the office equipment. Depreciation on all assets is determined by using the straight-line-depreciation method. Your basic depreciation rate is the rate at which an asset depreciates using the straight line method.

## Sum of the years’ digits depreciation

This is most frequently the case for things like cars and other vehicles but may also apply to business assets like computers, mobile devices and other electronics. In contrast to straight-line depreciation, DDB depreciation is highest in the first year and then decreases over subsequent years. This makes it ideal for assets that typically lose the most value during the first years of ownership. And, unlike some other methods of depreciation, it’s not terribly difficult to implement.

Since the assets will be used throughout the year, there is no need to reduce the depreciation expense, which is why we use a time factor of 1 in the depreciation schedule (see example below). For reporting purposes, accelerated depreciation results in the recognition of a greater depreciation expense in the initial years, which directly causes early-period profit margins to decline. There are various alternative methods that can be used for calculating a company’s annual depreciation expense. However, using the double declining depreciation method, your depreciation would be double that of straight line depreciation. These eight depreciation methods are discussed in two sections, each with an accompanying video.

## Example of Double Declining Balance Depreciation

The salvage value is what you expect to receive when you dispose of the asset at the end of its useful life. Typically, accountants switch from double declining to straight line in the year when the straight line method would depreciate more than double declining. For instance, in the fourth year of our example, you’d depreciate \$2,592 using the double declining method, or \$3,240 using straight line.

In the second year, only 4/15 of the depreciable base would be depreciated. This continues until year five depreciates the remaining 1/15 of the base. The four methods described above are for managerial and business valuation purposes. See the screenshot below for the facts of the asset we will depreciate using the variable-declining balance for the MACRS half-year convention. In year 5, companies often switch to straight-line depreciation and debit Depreciation Expense and credit Accumulated Depreciation for \$6,827 (\$40,960/6 years) in each of the six remaining years. Depreciation in the year of disposal if the asset is sold before its final year of useful life is therefore equal to Carrying Value × Depreciation% × Time Factor.

## Example of DDB Depreciation

For example, the depreciation expense for the second accounting year will be calculated by multiplying the depreciation rate (50%) by the carrying value of \$1750 at the start of the year, times the time factor of 1. The depreciation expense recorded under the double declining method is calculated by multiplying the accelerated rate, 36.0% by the beginning PP&E balance in each period. Download the free Excel double declining balance template to play with the numbers and calculate double declining balance depreciation expense on your own! The best way to understand how it works is to use your own numbers and try building the schedule yourself.

## The drawbacks of double declining depreciation

These two functions have the same syntax, but AMORDEGRC contains a depreciation coefficient by which depreciation is accelerated based on the useful life of the asset. You can access the two accompanying videos here and here and a workbook with examples of using the various depreciation methods. Instead of recording an asset’s entire expense when it’s first bought, depreciation distributes the expense over multiple years. Depreciation quantifies the declining value of a business asset, based on its useful life, and balances out the revenue it’s helped to produce. The group depreciation method is used for depreciating multiple-asset accounts using a similar depreciation method. The assets must be similar in nature and have approximately the same useful lives.

But before we delve further into the concept of accelerated depreciation, we’ll review some basic accounting terminology. Continuing with the same numbers as the example above, in year 1 the company would have depreciation of \$480,000 under the accelerated approach, but only \$240,000 under the call for papers advances in accounting elsevier normal declining balance approach. Using the steps outlined above, let’s walk through an example of how to build a table that calculates the full depreciation schedule over the life of the asset. Let’s examine the steps that need to be taken to calculate this form of accelerated depreciation.

## What is the Double Declining Balance Depreciation Method?

This is classically true with computer equipment, cell phones, and other high-tech items, which are generally useful earlier on but become less so as newer models are brought to market. An accelerated method of depreciation ultimately factors in the phase-out of these assets. Some systems specify lives based on classes of property defined by the tax authority.

Hence, our calculation of the depreciation expense in Year 5 – the final year of our fixed asset’s useful life – differs from the prior periods. The steps to determine the annual depreciation expense under the double declining method are as follows. With the constant double depreciation rate and a successively lower depreciation base, charges calculated with this method continually drop.

You can drag this formula down to period five without making any changes as long as you use absolute references. Just because you may need to calculate your depreciation amount manually each year doesn’t mean you can change methods. It has a salvage value of \$1000 at the end of its useful life of 5 years. Therefore, it is more suited to depreciating assets with a higher degree of wear and tear, usage, or loss of value earlier in their lives. Instead of multiplying by our fixed rate, we’ll link the end-of-period balance in Year 5 to our salvage value assumption. However, the management teams of public companies tend to be short-term oriented due to the requirement to report quarterly earnings (10-Q) and uphold their company’s share price.

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