Best Church Accounting Software of 2024

Whether your congregation is large or small, you’ll want church accounting software that can accurately record, track and report on donations and tithes in addition to typical accounting functions.
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Written by Karrin Sehmbi
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Your church has an important mission, and doing your bookkeeping shouldn’t get in the way. Using the right church accounting software helps you get your church bookkeeping done quickly and accurately, so you and your administrative staff can get back to the things that matter most to your ministry. Here's all the info you need to choose the best accounting software option for your church.

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The Best Church Accounting Software
ProductStarting atPromotionLearn more
QuickBooks

QuickBooks Online

NerdWallet Rating 
5.0
Learn more

on QuickBooks' website

$30/month 

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $60, $90, $200.

50% off 

for first three months or free 30-day trial.

Learn more

on QuickBooks' website

Xero

Xero

NerdWallet Rating 
5.0
Learn more

on Xero's website

$15/month 

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $42, $78.

30-day free trial 

or monthly discount (terms vary).

Learn more

on Xero's website

Zoho Books

Zoho Books

NerdWallet Rating 
4.5
Learn more

on Zoho Books' website

$0 

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $20, $50, $70, $150, $275.

14-day free trial 

of the Premium plan.

Learn more

on Zoho Books' website

Wave

Wave Accounting

NerdWallet Rating 
3.5
$0 

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $20, $50, $70, $150, $275.

N/A 
PowerChurch

PowerChurch

$40/month 

for two users. Additional two users (per month): $25.

N/A 
Aplos

Aplos

$79/month 

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $99, $189.

15-day free trial 
Realm

Realm

N/A 

Quote-based.

30-day free trial 

or monthly discount (terms vary).

PowerChurch

Best overall church accounting software
PowerChurch
PowerChurch

PowerChurch

Starting At 

$40

for two users. Additional two users (per month): $25.  

  • $39.95 per month (for two users) for PowerChurch Online.

  • $25.00 per month (for each additional two users) for PowerChurch Online.

  • $395.00 one-time fee to download PowerChurch Plus.

Why we like it: Founded in 1984, PowerChurch is one of the most established church accounting software programs on the market. PowerChurch Plus is a desktop-based church accounting software, but the company also has an online option: PowerChurch Online. Unlike QuickBooks where the desktop and online versions of the software differ considerably, PowerChurch Online is an actual installation of PowerChurch Plus on PowerChurch’s servers and can be accessed from any device with an internet connection.

The PowerChurch user interface isn’t anything fancy, but the software includes many features specific to the accounting and membership management needs of a church. You can create various modules to store contact information, attendance and visitation records for thousands of families within your congregation; record and track pledges and contributions; manage the books with tools for payroll, accounts payable and accounts receivable; organize and maintain records of sermons, equipment inventory and library items; and schedule and manage church events. If you need more functionality than the core program offers, you can purchase add-ons to handle attendance and check-ins or mass mailings, for an additional cost. The software assumes a basic understanding of double-entry accounting, so the learning curve may be a bit steep for someone with no prior accounting knowledge.

Pros

Both online and desktop versions of the software are available.

Designed specifically for church accounting and membership management needs.

Long list of church-specific features.

Add-on features for attendance and mass mailings are available.

Cons

PowerChurch Plus only works on Windows PCs.

User interface is outdated.

Learning curve may be steep if you have no prior accounting knowledge.

QuickBooks Online

Best customizable, straightforward accounting solution
QuickBooks
QuickBooks

QuickBooks Online

NerdWallet Rating 
5.0
Starting At 

$30

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $60, $90, $200. 

  • $30 per month for the Simple Start plan.

  • $60 per month for the Essentials plan.

  • $90 per month for the Plus plan.

  • $200 per month for the Advanced plan.

Why we like it: With a library of more than 750 app integrations, you may be able to build the full church management system you need around QuickBooks’ reliable and ubiquitous accounting software. If you've already covered the extras — like church attendance tracking, congregation communications and mass mailing capabilities — and just need straightforward accounting software, you can count on QuickBooks to deliver. Unlike some other options on this list, QuickBooks has not built a specific tool for church accounting and management. Rather, the Plus and Advanced QuickBooks Online plans offer features that would be most relevant to your church accounting needs, including automatic bank account syncing to monitor cash flow, fund tracking, customizable reports and tax compliance features. Read our full QuickBooks Online review.

Pros

Easy to share information with your accountant and to find QuickBooks experts and online resources if needed.

More than 750 app integrations, including live, in-house bookkeeping.

Robust feature set includes thorough record-keeping, comprehensive reporting, excellent invoicing and inventory management, plus a capable mobile app.

Daily phone support and 24/7 chat support in all plans.

Cons

Lacks industry-specific features.

Limited account users with each plan.

» MORE: QuickBooks not right for you? Check out these top QuickBooks alternatives

Aplos

Best for relationship management features
Aplos
Aplos

Aplos

Starting At 

$79

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $99, $189. 

  • $79 per month for the Aplos Lite plan.

  • $99 per month for the Aplos Core plan.

  • $189 and up per month for the Advanced plan.

Why we like it: Aplos is another product built specifically for churches and nonprofits (it was built by a CPA who is also a pastor), and its software contains features that extend far beyond simple accounting. In addition to helping you manage your church finances with tools for fund tracking, bill paying, check printing, invoicing and online payments and more, Aplos also offers features to enhance the giving process, keep your congregation safe and connected, simplify mass communications, streamline event registration and even build a custom website for your church.

Aplos’ software pricing scales as your church grows, meaning you won’t overpay in your church’s infancy or outgrow the platform as your church matures. An Advanced accounting option for larger churches is available starting at $189 per month, but the team will also work with you to create a custom church accounting software solution, which is quote-based. If you’re looking for church accounting software with payroll, Aplos does not include payroll services in its software, but it does integrate with Gusto for seamless and stress-free payroll management.

Aplos is the only all-in-one software on this list that offers a free trial period, so consider taking advantage of that.

Pros

Designed for nonprofits and churches.

Tools to build and host your website, plus the ability to accept online donations and tithes.

Donor database collects information like giving history and lets you create groups.

Fund accounting features for tracking how gifts, grants and donations are used.

Cons

Accounting features like budgeting and recurring transactions require a plan upgrade.

Realm

Best for customer service

Quote-based.

Why we like it: Realm, like a few of the other church accounting software solutions on this list, is a platform designed to help you manage all aspects of your church, from events and communications to accounting and administration. Realm has built a robust tool for online giving and offerings that integrates with the rest of its software features, so you can easily encourage donations, give members the freedom to pay online anytime, track and report on donations and more. More tech-savvy church staff may also appreciate Realm’s mobile app, which enables easy online giving and communications between the ministry and congregation.

One of the company’s standout features, however, is the support and assistance it offers to its customers. From a support team that’s available by email and phone to additional training services and webinars, Realm is committed to helping you make the most of its software.

Pros

Software is designed specifically for churches.

Customer support is available by phone, email and chat.

24/7 support available (with additional cost).

Includes a free mobile app (iOS and Android) for church staff and full congregation.

Cons

Accounting features are considered an add-on to any plan and come at an additional cost.

Plan pricing is not listed on the website.

Xero

Best for easy-to-use software
Xero
Xero

Xero

NerdWallet Rating 
5.0
Starting At 

$15

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $42, $78. 

  • $15 per month for the Early plan.

  • $42 per month for the Growing plan.

  • $78 per month for the Established plan.

Why we like it: If you’re in search of simple, straightforward accounting software but find QuickBooks’ plans and pricing intimidating, Xero is a strong alternative to QuickBooks. Xero’s pricing plans max out at QuickBooks’ entry point, and all plans include the option to add a payroll integration with Gusto (starting at an additional $40 per month). As for accounting features, Xero’s least expensive plan will enable invoicing, daily bank reconciliation, and cash flow tracking. Upgrading to the highest tier plan will give you additional functionality such as expense management and advanced reporting. Read our full Xero Accounting review.

Pros

Unlimited users in all pricing plans.

Integrates with more than 1,000 third-party apps.

Feature set includes an excellent mobile app and suite of reports, capable invoicing features, plus automated bill and receipt capture through Hubdoc.

Simple layout and easy to use.

Cons

No phone number for customer support listed.

Entry-level plan limits bills and invoices to five and 20 per month, respectively.

Zoho Books

Best for multilingual churches
Zoho Books
Zoho Books

Zoho Books

NerdWallet Rating 
4.5
Starting At 

$0

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $20, $50, $70, $150, $275. 

  • $0 per month for the Free plan.

  • $20 per month for the Standard plan.

  • $50 per month for the Professional plan.

  • $70 per month for the Premium plan.

  • $150 per month for the Elite plan.

  • $275 per month for the Ultimate plan.

Why we like it: Zoho Books is another recognizable and reliable brand of accounting software. Its benefits include multiple plan tiers that let you scale your software as your church and congregation grow, along with a suite of Zoho tools for CRM, people management and more that seamlessly integrate with its accounting tool.

The free plan includes accounting basics such as bank reconciliation, a chart of accounts and expense tracking, plus helpful invoicing features. In particular, church staff may appreciate the ability to schedule recurring invoices for donors who give regularly and the ability to send donation receipts and thank yous.

One of the most noteworthy features of Zoho Books, however, is that you can access the software in 10 different languages, including Chinese, Japanese and Spanish. Churches with multilingual staff and congregations may find this particularly appealing. Read our full Zoho Books review.

Pros

Less expensive than some competitors; free plan available for businesses with less than $50K in annual revenue.

Email support in free plan; phone and chat support in paid plans.

Rich feature set includes excellent invoicing, inventory management, workflow rules and a capable mobile app.

Add accounting widgets to your phone’s home screen; track time using your Apple Watch.

Cons

Fewer third-party integrations and reports than some competitors.

No plan includes more than 15 users (can add additional users for a fee).

Wave Accounting

Best for free church accounting software
Wave
Wave

Wave Accounting

NerdWallet Rating 
3.5
Starting At 

$0

Additional pricing tiers (per month): $16 

  • $0 for the Starter plan.

  • $16 per month for the Pro plan.

Why we like it: If your church is brand new or working to build back a thinning congregation and therefore light on funding, then you may be interested in free accounting software for your church. Wave offers free accounting and invoicing software (and the option to upgrade to a reasonably priced paid plan for additional functionality). You’ll likely find Wave Accounting is light on some of the features you’d find in paid software like QuickBooks Online, and it certainly won’t offer the bonus tools and features of a complete church management platform like Realm or Aplos. But if you simply want to cover the accounting basics for your church at no cost, Wave may be the right fit for you. Read our full Wave Accounting review.

Pros

Free plan available.

Intuitive, customizable invoicing capabilities compete with those of more robust accounting solutions.

Cons

Lacks features that quickly growing companies need, like audit trails.

Must subscribe to Wave’s Pro plan or other paid services (payroll, payments, advisor, etc.) to receive customer support from a human

No third-party integrations, mileage tracking feature or ability to accept in-person card payments.

Why your church needs a dedicated bookkeeper

Choosing the right church accounting software is important, but it’s only one part of the equation. Nonprofit accounting differs from general business accounting, and so it’s crucial to work with an accountant or bookkeeper who understands nonprofit accounting in general and church accounting in particular.

Even if a member of your congregation is a nonprofit accountant or bookkeeper, engaging a specialist to help with your church’s bookkeeping will likely be a financial investment. But prioritizing this investment can benefit your church in several ways:

  1. Your church’s leadership team and administrative staff will be able to focus on the church’s mission instead of its bookkeeping.

  2. You'll be able to reassure your congregants that their tithes and donations are being used as intended. When members know their donations are used wisely, they're more likely to continue donating.

  3. Your church will be able to manage the accounting tasks associated with programs like preschools and fundraising, ensuring these programs — and your ministry — are a success.

Billie Anne Grigg contributed to an earlier version of this article, which was first published on Fundera, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.

Methodology

NerdWallet independently reviews accounting software products before determining our top picks. We collect the data for our software ratings from products’ public-facing websites and from company representatives. Information is gathered on a regular basis and reviewed by our editorial team for consistency and accuracy.

NerdWallet’s accounting software ratings favor products that are easy to use, reasonably priced, have a robust feature set and can grow with your business. The best accounting software received top marks when evaluated across 10 categories and more than 30 subcategories. Learn more about how we rate small-business accounting software.

These ratings are meant to provide clarity in the decision-making process, but what’s best for your business will depend on its size, growth trajectory and which features you need most. We encourage you to research and compare multiple accounting software products before choosing one.

NerdWallet does not receive compensation for any reviews. Read our editorial guidelines.