Capitalization Cost

Capitalization Cost Definition

Capitalization Cost is an expense that is made by the company to acquire an asset which they will use for their business and such costs are shown in the balance sheet of the company at the year-end. These costs are not deducted from the income but they are depreciated or amortized over the period of time.

Explanation

  • Capitalization is done for assets that are to be shown in the fixed asset in the balance sheet. Then they are depreciated over a period. It is an expense that is made to acquire the asset to put it to use in the business. There are several expenses which a company incurs.
  • Suppose a company makes a payment of $ 10000 on paying salaries to their employees or for paying rent of the business premises, then it is not a capitalization cost. It is a normal expense which a company will incur.
  • However, suppose the company makes a $10000 payment to buy a machine that it will use in the business. It is a capitalization of the cost of the company. It will get depreciated over the useful life of the asset. Therefore, whenever the company invests money to acquire an asset that will be useful for the company, which is considered as a capitalization cost.
Capitalization Cost

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Source: Capitalization Cost (wallstreetmojo.com)

Examples of Capitalization Cost

  • Material is to be used for the construction of the asset, which is capitalized over the years.
  • Labour Expenses for the work of completion of the construction of the fixed asset.
  • Interest Expenses are also an example of capitalization if the interest is associated with the loan element, which is used to purchase the asset.
  • Trademarks, Patents are also capitalized because the amortization will be calculated and deducted from them every year.
  • An Asset that is being purchased by the company and will put that to use.
  • Installation Cost associated with the asset, if any;
  • Research and Development Cost in the later stages of the software development company.

How to Calculate Capitalization Cost?

  • The asset is purchased for the company and will be put to use in the business.
  • Determine the approx useful life of the asset or the duration of the asset in which it can be used.
  • Consider the salvage value of the asset as per the market condition and the condition of the asset.
  • Add up all the expenses associated with the asset to make it useful for the organization, for example, maintenance, repair, oiling expense, etc.
  • Calculate the entire interest element associated with the loan if taken to acquire the asset.
  • Now we can calculate it by subtracting the profits with the cost associated with the asset.
  • We calculate it as a percentage of the total cost, and from there, we can determine the present value of the asset.

Journal Entry

We treat it as an asset for the company, which will be depreciated over some time. In the books of accounts, we have to debit the asset with the purchase amount and credit the account, which paid for the asset, i.e., Cash or Bank a/c.

Advantages

Disadvantages

  • It is not that beneficial when it comes to capitalizing on the interest cost of the loan to get the asset. The company cannot reduce the tax obligation since the interest payments get deferred over the period. The taxes levied may harm the income of the organization. The company will not be able to enjoy the tax benefit out of that transaction.
  • The company sometimes makes too much capitalization of its assets. It has been witnessed in the software companies that the management decides to capitalize on the entire software cost related to the research and development of the software. Whereas the early-stage research and development should be expensed off and the rest can be capitalized, but they show the entire research and development cost in their balance sheet and not in their statement of profit and loss account.
  • The companies invite the manipulations when it comes to a decision making whether the cost is to be expensed off or should be capitalized, and thus, they end up making wrong accounting treatments.

Conclusion

It helps the organization when it comes to investment, which the company makes in big assets, and that asset, if, qualifies the criteria should be capitalized. Still, on the contrary, the company should take extra care while finalizing its accounts because all big expenses related to the assets cannot be considered as Capitalization Cost, and that has to be expensed off during the period it is incurred.

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