The first thing to do when starting a new journal is to define the opening balances for your assets and liabilities.
An opening balance for an asset (a bank account with some money with it for example) is defined as follows:
2018/01/01 Assets:Savings:Rosetta $18000 Equity:Opening Balances
Stocks and properties
The opening balances for liabilities has a
- for its value. Liabilities has a negative effect on your net worth:
2018/01/01 Liabilities:Mortgage:Geppetal -$28000 Equity:Opening Balances
Typical sources for the opening balance information are the online portals of the financial institutions that you deal with.
It's your choice how comprehensive you want to be defining opening balances for your assets and liabilities. It is good to cover as many assets and liabilities as possible, it is best to cover all. Completeness is one of the core values that Prudent aim to deliver to its users because finances is one domain where completeness can make a whole world of difference in deriving insights or when making any decisions.