Consider coffee company Mega Coffee, which is ready to expand into its new office headquarters. The company is considering investing in the latest available computers in order to make sure that its business runs smoothly. xero vs wave In the second full year of the asset’s life, the amount of depreciation will be $40,000 (4/15 of $150,000). In the third full year of the asset’s life, the depreciation will be $30,000 (3/15 of $150,000).

However, the depreciation expense in the sum of the years’ digits goes down in the linear line instead of the curve line like those in the declining balance method. After all, the calculation formula of the sum of the years’ digits depreciation is different from that of the declining balance depreciation. Companies typically use accelerated depreciation to minimize their taxable income because it allows for greater depreciation expense deductions in the earlier years of the equipment or asset’s life. Accelerated depreciation methods could also be seen as more accurate, as they assume that an asset loses a majority of its value in the first few years of its use. In effect, the annual depreciation expense recognized on the income statement is greater in earlier periods, causing the reduction in the book value of the fixed asset on the balance sheet to also be higher early on.

Sum of the years’ digits depreciation method, like reducing balance method, is a type of accelerated depreciation technique that allocates higher depreciation expense in the earlier years of an asset’s useful life. Under the sum of the years’ digits method, the depreciation rate is higher in the earlier periods of the fixed asset’s economic useful life relative to that in the latter periods. Straight-line depreciation recognizes the same amount of depreciation each period over the useful life of the asset. On the other hand, accelerated depreciation methods recognize a larger percentage of the total depreciation in earlier periods. Where an entity has a policy of calculating depreciation on full years basis, sum of the years’ digits depreciation can be calculated as above. Accelerated depreciation uses decreasing charge methods, including the sum-of-the-years’ digits (SYD), providing higher depreciation costs in earlier years and lower depreciation charges in later periods.

- For calculating depreciation for the asset’s first year that ends on 30 September 2021 (Year 1), we will count the remaining useful life of 4 years.
- The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers a list of useful lives, referred to as recovery periods, by classification of asset.
- Under the sum of the years’ digits method, the depreciation rate is higher in the earlier periods of the fixed asset’s economic useful life relative to that in the latter periods.
- Beth purchased a display shelf for her bakery costing $10,000 on 1 January 2020.

The implicit assumption of the sum of the years’ digits depreciation method is that the fixed asset (PP&E) is more productive and provides more near-term value in the periods immediately post-purchase. For example, on January 1, the company ABC buys a machine that cost $52,000 in order to https://www.wave-accounting.net/ use for the day-to-day operation. The machine is expected to have 8 years of useful life with a salvage value of $2,000. Due to the nature of the machine, the company ABC decides to use the sum of years’ digits depreciation method to allocate the cost of the machine over its useful life.

## What are the disadvantages of the sum of years digit method?

This rate is a fraction, in which the numerator is the number of years remaining in the asset’s life at the beginning of the year and the denominator is the sum of the digits of the asset’s useful life. Beth purchased a display shelf for her bakery costing $10,000 on 1 January 2020. The has a useful life of 4 years after which it is expected to have no residual value. To find the delivery truck’s remaining useful life, we need to count it from the start of each year rather than the end. This may seem strange to you at first, but you will get the hang of it soon with practice.

From a conceptual perspective, these methods are most suited for assets that give up a greater portion of their benefits in their early years. As with the double-declining-balance method, the sum-of-the-years’ digits method allocates more depreciation in the early years and less in later years. The advantages and disadvantages of this method are more or less the same as the declining balance method.

## Sum of Years’ Digits Depreciation

The sum of the years’ digits for this particular fixed asset (PP&E) comes out to 10 years. Therefore, the depreciable basis amounts to $40 million, i.e. the cost basis of the fixed asset purchase minus the salvage value. The SYD function is helpful to a financial analyst when building financial models or creating a fixed asset depreciation schedule for analysis. Hence, for an asset that has a useful life of 4 years, the un-depreciated useful life to be used in calculating depreciation shall be 4 years in the first year of depreciation, 3 years in the second year and so on. The sum of years method uses the expected life and adds the digits for every year to give the final depreciation expense amount.

## Advantages of Sum of The Years’ Digits Depreciation Model

Sum of the years’ digits depreciation uses the assumption that the benefits that the company receives from the fixed asset will go down through the passage of time. It is similar to the declining balance depreciation in which the depreciation expense in the sum of the years’ digits method will go down as time passes making the last depreciation expense the smallest. To calculate depreciation charges using the sum of the years’ digits method, you’ll need to first get the depreciable base, which is the cost of the asset. Second, you’ll calculate the salvage value of the asset, which works the same for both the SYD and straight-line depreciation methods.

## Double-Declining Balance Depreciation Method

For example, if you buy an asset for $100,000 and it can be sold for an estimated $10,000 at the end of its useful life, the balance subject to depreciation is $90,000, and the salvage value is $10,000. Next, calculate the applicable percentage of depreciation for each year of the asset’s life. Under accelerated depreciation methods, like the SYD method, the percentage of the total depreciation expense is weighted more toward the start of the fixed asset’s useful life.

Mega Coffee believes that at the end of the computers’ 5-year useful life, they will be worth $200,000. The company decides to depreciate the assets using the SYD method as it faces a fairly harsh tax environment. Also, there is a high probability that the computers will become obsolete before their useful life is up. The useful life is how long you expect the asset will be useable before it is fully depreciated. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers a list of useful lives, referred to as recovery periods, by classification of asset.

After all, the company should try to match the expense coming from the depreciation of the fixed asset with the benefits that it provides to the company. Depreciation is the process of the allocation of fixed assets cost over their useful life. However, the company needs to properly allocate the cost so that the depreciation expense charged to the income statement matches the benefits that the company receives from the fixed assets. This is so that the recognition of the depreciation expense in the company’s account is properly in compliance with the matching principle of accounting. The two most common accelerated depreciation methods are double-declining balance and the sum of the years’ digits. Here’s a depreciation guide and overview of the sum of the years’ digits method.

The same asset, using straight-line depreciation and zero salvage value, would be depreciated at $5,000 per year for five years ($25,000 ÷ 5) until the asset depreciates to zero value. The same company, with the exact same assets, would appear to be earning different amounts of profit and have assets carried at different values on the balance sheet, depending upon which depreciation method was utilized. While all the methods of depreciation would lead to the same result, the only variation is the time taken for depreciation recognition. The straight-line method may take much longer to calculate the depreciation expense. The method facilitates the calculation when the asset performance is at its highest. Without this accelerated calculation offered by the sum of the years’ method, the earnings may get distorted.

The fourth year depreciation will be $20,000 (2/15 of $150,000), and the fifth year will be $10,000 (1/15 of $150,000). Remember that the total amount of depreciation during this asset’s useful life should be $150,000. The best examples or scenarios where applying this method is fruitful can be automobiles, computers, mobile phones.

Depreciation charges for the first two years of the asset are $45,000 and $30,000 respectively (refer the solution of the example above in case of confusion). Deskera is an all-in-one software that can overall help with your business to bring in more leads, manage customers and generate more revenue. At the end of its useful life, the components are expected to have a residual value of $5 million (i.e. scrap value), which reflects the sale proceeds the manufacturer could hypothetically earn from selling those used components.

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