On occasion, your perfectly behaved Xero bank rules will stop working. Not usually because of anything you have done, but often because the banks have updated their data export schemas or the supplier has changed one of the references on your payment.

Here is an example of a bank rule on our own accounts that worked perfectly well until it didn’t!:

Xero bank rules

Now, something has changed and the rule is not working as we would expect.

Find the bank statement item you can’t reconcile, and click on the ‘More’ button to see what information is being pulled through from your bank statement.

Xero bank rules

What has changed?

The most common issue is that one of the fields in Section 1 of the rule has changed. In this instance, the Payee reference has changed.

How do I fix it?

If I want my rule to work going forwards, either I need to:

  • edit the Payee reference to the new reference, or
  • change the rule so that it matches ANY of my conditions, or
  • I can delete the Payee reference completely, and just have the rule look for the description to contain ADOBE PHOTO.

Another example.

Here is another example of a rule that did work and is now failing:

The Dropbox reference used to come through in the ‘Reference’ field and now comes through in the ‘Description’ field.  I have updated the rule to include any condition that looks for the Dropbox in either the Reference or the Description field to make the rule as dynamic as possible.

Xero bank rules

And the rule now works again.

Xero bank rules


  • Rule option 1. Make use of the ‘Any’ function to allow for the text to be searched across multiple fields, make the rule flexible but not too loose.
  • Rule option 6. Make the rule active across all bank accounts so you don’t have to repeat the rule if you make a similar payment from a different account
  • Rule option 7. Give your rule a clear and simple name. ‘Dropbox > 463 – IT Software’ tells me what text my rule is looking for and where it will post the transaction, so I don’t have to check each time.

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