One common type of bookkeeping journal is a log book with a hard cover and lined blank pages inside. Columnar books and pads are similar to log books, but their pages feature several columns for recording item number, item name and numerical amounts. Some bookkeeping journals offer organization by the month and include a daily calendar. Notary public journals are large and designed for recording notary transactions. Some bookkeeping pads have hole-punched sides that are convenient for filing in binders.
Accountants can turn any bookkeeping journal into a specialty journal for recording sales, cash receipts, cash disbursements or purchases. In addition to specialty journals, a general journal is used for recording all types of financial transactions. For example, a real estate bookkeeping journal might include columns for asset sales and depreciation, which are financial details left out of a specialty journal. Journal entry listings are typically listed by date of the transaction, and debit and credit columns are part of its standard format. This style of bookkeeping is called double-entry and the debit amount is always listed first, followed by the credit amount.
It's common for bookkeeping journals to have unique identification describing its contents, which is for easy reference. Assets and liabilities are commonly types of journal entries. Assets are either fixed or current while liabilities are current or long term.