Residual Inventory Value- Complete Guide

the Residual inventory value

Residual inventory value refers to the estimated worth of the remaining inventory at the end of an accounting period. It is the value of inventory that has not been sold or used up during the accounting period. Calculating the residual inventory value is important for companies as it helps them determine the cost of goods sold (COGS) and the value of inventory remaining at the end of the period. This information is used in financial reporting and analysis, which helps companies make informed business decisions.

Any estimated value of a certain fixed asset at the end of its lease term or useful life is known as the Residual inventory value. In the condition of the lease, the lessor utilizes the residual value as a part of its primary methods used for the determination of how much the lessee pays within the periodic lease payments. Generally speaking, the residual value is low if the useful life or the lease period of an asset is longer.

What is the Residual Value

One has to understand that the residual value formulas are different for different industries. But the basic meaning- that remains always remains constant. Usually in capital budgeting projects the residual values directly reflect how much an individual can sell the asset for after it has been used once by the firm or once the asset-generated cash flows can no longer be predicted accurately. As for the sake of investment, the residual value can be calculated as the difference between the profit and the cost of the capital

When it comes to accounting the equity of the owner is the residual net assets after the liabilities have been deducted. As for the ‘mathematics aspect’ of it, and when it comes specifically to the regression analysis, one can find the residual value by subtracting the predicted value from the measured or observed value.

Read More-: How to Reconcile the Premium Tax Credit

The Residual Value Calculation

The calculation of the residual value comprises two major components: the estimated salvage value and the cost of asset disposal. The net proceeds that are received by the dispositions less the cost of disposal are the residual value.

Residual Value = Salvage Value - Cost of Asset Disposal

One has to be mindful of the assets that have a low salvage value and high cost to be disposed of. Also, it is completely possible to acquire a negative residual value. This essentially, implies that it will result in the liability for a company to get rid of the asset by the end of the useful life. One of the strong examples is that the assets need to adhere to the regulatory requirement of disposal in order to remove the waste without any environmental contamination. 

One of the major difficulties in the calculation of the residual value lies in the fact that both the salvage value and the cost to dispose of the asset might not be truly known until the disposition. Hence, it is expected of the management to make the right kind of estimate for both. This is the reason that the companies oftentimes rely heavily on comparable transactions or assets, that have occurred in the past to be able to better understand the financial implications of their items. 

Likewise, the management needs to periodically reevaluate the value estimate of the assets as asset deterioration, obsolescence or this can result in changes in the market preferences and hence reduce the salvage value. Additionally, the cost to dispose of the assets might also become more expensive with time due to government regulations or inflations.

The Application of the Residual Value

If a car is leased for three years its residual value is the estimate of its worth after three years. Usually, the residual value is determined by the kind of bank that issues the lease and is also based on the previous models and future predictions. Together with the interest rates and taxes, the residual value is considered to be an essential factor used for the determination of the car’s monthly lease payment. 

Likewise, let us consider the example of the business owner who owns a desk with seven years of useful life. Hence the worth of the desk after the end of the seven years is its residual value, this is also known as the Salvage value. The information is quite useful for the management as it allows them to know about the kind of cash flow it can receive after the desk has been sold by the end of its useful life. 

The calculation of Amortisation and depreciation: Amortization and depreciation are two major aspects of accounting purposes. Here the residual value is one such important value that is used by the companies in the calculation of their yearly Amortization for the intangible assets along with depreciation figures for tangible purposes. Here, the companies have to factor in the residual values of their assets as and when they calculate the total depreciable sum that can be used within their depreciation schedule. 

Ideally, the companies need to calculate the assets’ residual values by the end of the year. As and when the residual value changes, the change needs to be recorded accordingly. Also, bear in mind that companies owning various costly fixed assets like vehicles, medical equipment and other heavy machinery might consider purchasing value insurance. This is the insurance type that helps minimize asset-value risk by assuring the post-useful life values enjoyed due to proper maintenance.

Use of the Residual Value in Depreciation Calculations

Let us start by understanding the Depreciation Formula:

  • Straight Line Depreciation Method = (Cost of an Asset – Residual Value)/Useful life of an
  • Asset Diminishing Balance Method = (Cost of an Asset * Rate of Depreciation/100)
  • Unit of Product Method =(Cost of an Asset – Salvage Value)/ Useful life in the form of Units Produced
  • Double Declining Balance Method = 2*(Beginning Value – Salvage Value)/Useful life

The above are the facts that are essential for the calculation of the assets depreciation expense. The depreciation valuation can be done in the following ways:

  • The residual value is essentially an Ending value of an asset. Hence it is subtracted from the initial value to acquire the total amount. 
  • This offers the depreciation amount. 
  • With the help of the ‘Straight line Depreciation’ method, the amount is later divided by the assets’ useful years. Hence, we get the annual depreciation expense every year.

One also has to keep in mind that when calculating the depreciation in the balance sheet the Salvage value of the asset needs to be subtracted from the initial cost in order to determine the total depreciation over the useful life of the asset. Essentially, depreciation measures the gradual loss of value of the asset over its useful life hence measuring how much of the asset’s initial value has undergone erosion with time.

The Difference Between Residual Value Vs Resale Value

These are the two terms that are used during the purchase of cars and leasing terms. When it comes to the example of leasing a car, the residual value is the car’s estimated value by the end of the lease term. This value is used for the determination of the monthly payment amount for a lease and the price that the person holding the lease is required to pay in order to purchase the care by the end of the lease period. 

Oftentimes, the residual value of cars is generally expressed as a percentage of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price-MSRP.

For Example, the residual value may be expressed this way: $30,000 MSRP * Residual Value of 50% = $15,000 value after 3 years. So, a car with an MSRP of $30,000 and a residual value of 50% after three years would be worth $15,000 by the end of its lease.

Likewise, the resale value is a similar concept. However, this refers to the car that has been purchased instead of leased. Hence the resale value refers to the value of the purchased car after depreciation, mileage and also damage. However, the residual value is predetermined and based on the MSRP, and the resale value is pre-determined and is based on the MSRP, the resale value of a vehicle can change according to the current condition of the market.

Note:  In case you decide to lease or buy a car the price of the car is the residual value along with any additional fees.

Calculation of the Depreciation/Amortization with the Help of the Residual Value

The main application of the Residual Value is used by the Companies to figure out the depreciation or amortization. For instance, a new software program has been acquired by a certain company in order to track the internal sales order. As the initial value of the software is $10000 and the useful life is about five years. To calculate the amortization for accounting purposes, it is required by the owner to know the residual value of the software, along with its worth at the end of five years. 

Let’s assume that this value is zero and a straight-line method is used by the company to amortize the software. Hence the company needs to subtract the residual value from the initial $10000 initial value divided by the complete useful life of the asset of five years to arrive at its yearly amortization which is about $ 2000. In case the residual value was $2,000, the yearly amortization would be $1,600 ($10,000 – $2,000 / 5 years). 

In the case of tangible assets like cars, machinery, computers and such, the business owners will need to use the same calculations. However, in this case, instead of amortizing the asset over its useful life, he would instead depreciate it. Here the ‘Depreciable base’ is referred to the initial value minus the residual value.

The Meaning of a ‘Good’ Residual Value

Generally speaking, the residual value is used in the context of the leases for the car. This is the value that one acquires at the end of the lease term. Hence, a residual value is somewhere between 55%-65% of the retail price suggested by the manufacturer-MSRP. 

As for the other assets, the companies aim to acquire a residual value that is as high as possible. This is because not only do they wish to utilize the assets over their useful life, but also that they get to recover the funds for the assets after they have used them.

Also Read-: Federal withholding Tax issue after 2023 Update


Overall speaking, the Residual value is one of the most important aspects of calculating the terms of a lease. This refers to the future value of a good. This is typical, the future date when the lease comes to an end. However, when the context is the car lease, then the residual value can be calculated using various factors like market value, seasonality, product lifecycle, and consumer preferences over time. In the case of accounting, the residual value refers to the remaining value of the asset after its complete depreciation.

Accounting Professionals & Specialized Experts

Want quick help from accounting software experts? Get in touch with our team members who can install, configure and configure your software for you. Proficient in fixing technical issues, they can help you quickly get back to work whenever you encounter an error in Sage software. Our team is available 24/7 365 days to assist you. To get in touch.

💠Frequently Asked Questions💠

What is meant by the residual value in statistics?

The difference between the observed value of the dependable variable and the predicted value is known as the residual value in the case of regression analysis. Here. every data point has one residual.

How does one calculate the Residual value?

In order to determine the Residual value of an asset, one needs to consider the estimated amount earned by the owner by selling the asset. This is minus any costs that might be incurred during the disposal. Oftentimes, this value is used when referring to the used car. Here the residual value of the car is the estimated value of the car by the end of the lease. Here, the residual value is calculated by the bank or the financial institution. It is generally calculated as a percentage of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price- MSRP.

What is the difference between the residual value and a Buyout?

Here, the residual value and the Buyout are quite different from each other. A lease buyout is an option which is contained within the same agreement that offers to you the option to buy your leased vehicle at the end of your lease. This price is based on the residual value of the car.

Related Posts

Further Reading