Introduction to Plant Assets Financial Accounting

what are plant assets

Hence, we will calculate depreciation proportionately based on the useful lives of the plant assets. Do take note that freehold land should not be depreciated since they have indefinite useful lives. PP&E are assets that are expected to generate economic benefits and contribute to revenue for many years.

Understanding Property, Plant, and Equipment (PP&E)

This is especially important later because the depreciation recorded on the buildings affects reported income, while no depreciation is taken on the land. Depreciation expenditures, on the other hand, are the appropriate part of the cost of a company’s fixed assets for the time period. Depreciation is a non-cash expenditure that decreases the company’s net profits and is recorded on the income statement.

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Volatility profiles based on trailing-three-year calculations of the standard deviation of service investment returns. Each asset serves a certain purpose in how it helps a business, and it is more advantageous to focus on their functions rather than their relative worth as long as they serve entities well. Based on the purpose of depreciation mentioned above, depreciation should only commence when the asset is ready for use and is at the location that it is intended to be used. Let’s take another look at The Home Depot, Inc. balance sheet as of February 2, 2020. Below is a portion of Exxon Mobil Corporation’s (XOM) quarterly balance sheet from Sept. 30, 2018. This ensures that the value of the asset is accurately represented over its useful life.

what are plant assets

What is plant in asset in balance sheet?

In this article, we will talk about non-current tangible assets and, specifically the plant assets. The article will be all about plant assets, their recognition, depreciation, and differentiation from other asset classes. The non-current assets are the company’s long-term assets that last for many years and deliver economic benefit. There is a further classification of tangible and intangible non-current assets. Determining the cost of constructing a new building is often more difficult. Usually this cost includes architect’s fees; building permits; payments to contractors; and the cost of digging the foundation.


Any costs incurred after the initial purchase that enhance the asset’s future economic benefits are capitalised onto the balance sheet. In this article, we’ve explained the concept of plant assets in very detail. We hope you’ll know the difference between plant assets and other non-current assets and the accounting treatment. This method implies charging the depreciation expense of an asset to a fraction in different accounting periods.

Depreciation (cost and revaluation models)

Instead, they’re purchased, which is a cost, but then get an amount of depreciation every year that they’re expected to remain useful. What you’re left with are all the machines, land, equipment, and buildings used to produce your goods. Technically speaking, anything that is used to make money that has both a useful life of more than a year and doesn’t directly become part of the product itself is a plant asset. In this lesson, we’ll look at examples of plant assets, as well how accounting for them requires special attention. “What is a plant asset?” There are numerous plant assets examples that can be found on a business’s PP&E balance sheet.

Limitations of PP&E

Improvements should be done on a regular basis or when a scenario necessitates intervention to extend the life of assets and avoid future issues with their capacity to serve a business. Improvement for one company will very certainly differ dramatically from that of another. Plant assets are fixed, long-term assets that are illiquid which means they are difficult to turn to cash. Most other assets are either non-tangible or assets that can be liquidated quickly. If there is an indication that the carrying amount (ie the historical cost) of a plant asset might have changed, an impairment test would be carried out.

what are plant assets

Calculating PP&E

  • Property, plant, and equipment are also called fixed assets, meaning they are physical assets that a company cannot easily liquidate or sell.
  • Transportation is one of the most valuable plant assets, but also one of the most expensive the maintain.
  • Entities with property, plant and equipment stated at revalued amounts are also required to make disclosures under IFRS 13 Fair Value Measurement.
  • In the initial years of the asset, the amount of depreciation expense is higher and decreases as time passes.
  • Depreciation and amortization, or the process of expensing an item over a longer period of time than when it was acquired, are calculated on a straight-line basis.

In a way, depreciation can be conceptualized as the amount you need to pay if you did not have the asset. Assets such as equipment, machinery, buildings, vehicles, and more are assets commonly described as property, plant, and equipment (PP&E). PP&E is listed on a company’s balance sheet by adding its value minus accumulated depreciation. PP&E provides key functionality to help generate economic value to a company. For example, a company that needs to deliver its products gains value through the use of delivery vehicles, which would be considered PP&E.

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Businesses must be especially careful in making these investments since buildings and land are immovable and can’t be easily substituted. In the balance sheet of the business entity, these assets are recorded under the head of non-current assets as Plant, property, and accounting services for startups equipment. The assets can be further categorized as tangible, intangible, current, and non-current assets. It includes cash/bank, short-term securities, inventories, account receivables, etc. Plant assets are a specific type of asset on a company’s balance sheet.

  • It is important to note that regardless of the reason why a company has sold some of its property, plant, or equipment, it’s likely the company didn’t realize a profit from the sale.
  • If there is an indication that the carrying amount (ie the historical cost) of a plant asset might have changed, an impairment test would be carried out.
  • Let’s take another look at The Home Depot, Inc. balance sheet as of February 2, 2020.
  • The largest forms of business assets when it came to production were factory plants during this time.

The lessee gets to count the improvement value for the duration of the lease term. Investment analysts and accountants use the PP&E of a company to determine if it is on a sound financial footing and utilizing funds in the most efficient and effective manner. For example, due to a decline in market demand, the business determines that the manufacturing machine’s recoverable amount is now £90,000 (down from £110,000).

  • The depreciable amount (cost less residual value) should be allocated on a systematic basis over the asset’s useful life [IAS 16.50].
  • The key characteristics of plant assets are their revenue generation focus, tangibility usefulness, and how long an asset’s usefulness can last.
  • The importance of differentiating plant assets over other assets is for accounting practices, in particular for tax reporting and financial planning.
  • Making continual improvements and continuously reviewing the quality of assets is an important part of keeping a company healthy.
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  • They are considered to be noncurrent assets because they provide value to a company but cannot be readily converted to cash within a year.

For instance, a car that has been sitting in a garage for 20 years may be sold for $10,000, but the new owner will not be able to drive it because it is too old. You can, however, sell your land at a higher price and still get the same amount of money back as you would have received if it had been sold at its original price. For example, a new plant may be valued at $100,000, but if it is expected to last 10 years, it may cost $1 million to build and maintain. A plant with a 10-year life may have a value between $10 million and $20 million, depending on how long it will be used and how much maintenance is required to keep it in good working order.

Zachary Paul
Zachary Paul is an independent investigative journalist living in New York City.
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