Debit Note: How to Make (with Samples & Templates)

A debit note is a commercial document used by a vendor to inform the buyer of current debt obligations, or a document created by a buyer when returning goods received on credit. The note can provide information regarding an upcoming invoice, or may serve as a reminder for funds currently due. There is always confusion between credit and debit notes. This is a major problem that one may face when writing.


Other challenges that one may face when writing are including the details that are supposed to be included or to omit important details. Using a debit note sample will make things easier, clearer and simple.

How to Make a Debit Note

Choose the writing format

A debit note is typically written in form of a letter. In such a case, you can opt to type or email the note. You can also handwrite it.

If you do not want to write it in letter format, you can take the form of a postcard or a payment slip similar to a post card.

Keep it formal

This is a formal note. To keep it as formal as it should be, use a professional tone; though you are informing the recipient about what they owe you, you should do it in a polite way. A formal letter is always straight to the point and so should a debit note. For example, you can tell the recipient that you are kindly reminding them about a balance they have or to correct a billing error.

Be accurate with figures

You don’t just remind the recipient about a debt. You also include all the calculations of what they owe. This should also include any interests or late fees. Make sure that the figures are accurate. Nothing added or omitted.

Give a description

Make sure that when you are righting the figures, you also mention the item or the services purchased for that figure. If it is applicable, also include the quantity and any other description that is important.

Be specific on the due date

Include the due date for the payment. It is also important to make sure that you indicate if there are any late fees that apply. Remember that this is a debit note and not an invoice. Leave out information about terms of payment or acceptable payment methods.

Include contact details

Give details about your contacts. That is the e-mail address, telephone number and mailing address.

Send the debit note on time

Sometimes people will prepare the note but fail to send or deliver it. Make sure that you send it on time or deliver it to the recipient on time. This way, you will avoid any delays. If the recipient does not respond in time, send another one.

Difference Between a Debit Note and a Credit Note

The seller and the buyer in day-to-day activities of sale use debit note and credit note. If you are not careful, you may never get to really know the difference and you may end up using them in the wrong way. Here are some features that show the difference between the two notes.

Debit note: the purchaser issues it at the time of returning the goods to the vendor, when his/her account is overcharged or when the he/ she undercharges the seller’s account.

Credit note: the vendor issues credit note to inform that he/she has received the returned goods or when the buyer overcharges the vendors account.

Debit note: it is prepared in blue ink

Credit note: it is prepared in red ink

Debit note: represents positive amount

Credit note: represents negative amount

Debit note: is updated in the purchase return book

Credit note: it is updated in the sales return book

Debit note: it is exchanged for credit note

Credit note: it is exchanged for debit note

Debit note: reduces receivable

Credit note: reduces payables