A nice, ergonomic wrapper of the Freshbooks API.

freshbooks, API
pip install avt-fresh==0.0.17


AVT Fresh!

This is a wrapper of the Freshbooks web API. It is far from comprehensive: It was created for the specific client- and invoice-related needs of Averbach Transcription. However, there are "band-aids" here to work around some of the API's shortcomings. For example, you don't have to deal with pagination at all. 🎉

Install it with pip install avt-fresh.

Here's how you use it:

from avt_fresh import ApiClient

client = ApiClient(client_secret="...", client_id="...", redirect_uri="https://...", account_id="...")

monster_invoices = client.get_all_invoices_for_org_name("Monsters Inc")

You can get and set the required arguments to ApiClient here. Well, all of them except FRESHBOOKS_ACCOUNT_ID, which you can see (there's got to be another way??) by clicking on one of your invoices and grabbing the substring here: https://my.freshbooks.com/#/invoice/<THIS THING>-1234567.

Don't tell anyone but redirect_uri can be pretty much anything! See Initializing below 👇.

The Goodies


client.get_one_invoice, client.create_invoice, client.send_invoice, client.update_invoice and client.delete_invoice are the bread and butter methods here.

The get... functions return some handy NamedTuple instances with helpful attributes, notably FreshbooksInvoice.lines which have Decimal values where you would hope to find them. Also some lookups for addressing the FreshbooksLines you may be interested in.

class FreshbooksInvoice(NamedTuple):
    lines: list[FreshbooksLine]
    notes: str
    client_id: int
    date: dt.date
    invoice_id: int
    number: str
    organization: str
    amount: Decimal
    status: str
    amount_outstanding: Decimal
    po_number: str
    line_id_line_dict: dict
    line_description_line_dict: dict
    line_description_line_id_dict: dict
    contacts: dict[str, dict]
    allowed_gateways: list

class FreshbooksLine(NamedTuple):
    invoice_id: int
    client_id: int
    description: str
    name: str
    rate: Decimal
    line_id: int
    quantity: Decimal
    amount: Decimal

Then you have helpers client.get_all_draft_invoices, client.get_all_invoices_for_org_name, client.get_all_invoices_for_client_id, and client.get_draft_invoices_for_client_id.

Create an Invoice

The signature of client.create_invoice is like so:

def create(
    client_id: int,
    notes: str,
    lines: list[dict],
    status: str | int,
    contacts: list[dict] | None = None,
) -> dict:


The dictionaries must contain entries for name, description, unit_cost, and qty. The values must be JSON-serializable, so no Decimals for example (all strings is fine).


Each of these dictionaries should simply be {'contactid': <contactid>}.


Status can be any of the v3_status values as a str or 1 or 4 (draft/paid).


client.get_all_clients, client.create_client, and client.delete_client are available here.

Once more the get... functions return NamedTuple instances with some helpful attributes, notably FreshbooksClient.contacts and a couple of related lookups (.contact_id_email_lookup and .email_contact_id_lookup).

class FreshbooksClient(NamedTuple):
    client_id: int
    email: str
    organization: str
    first_name: str
    last_name: str
    contacts: dict[str, FreshbooksContact]
    contact_id_email_lookup: dict[int, str]
    email_contact_id_lookup: dict[str, int]

class FreshbooksContact(NamedTuple):
    contact_id: int
    first_name: str
    last_name: str
    email: str

Then, client.update_contacts, client.delete_contact, client.add_contacts, client.get_freshbooks_client_from_client_id, client.get_freshbooks_client_from_email, and client.get_freshbooks_client_from_org_name.


When you first call one of the functions which touches the Freshbooks API, you'll be prompted in the terminal like so:

Please go here and get an auth code: https://my.freshbooks.com/#/developer, then enter it here:

If you don't have an app there, create a really basic one. Name and description can be whatever, and you can skip the URL fields.

Application Type: "Private App" Scopes: admin:all:legacy

Add a redirect URI, it can actually be pretty much anything. Well, preferably a URL you control since it will receive OAuth tokens.

Finally, once you have an app on that developer page, click into it and click "go to authentication" page. Freshbooks will pop open a tab and go to your redirect URI, appending ?code=blahblahblah to it. Grab the "blah blah blah" value and paste it into the prompt.

You should only have to do this once in each environment you use this library in.

OAuth Token Stores

By default this library stores OAuth tokens on disk in whatever working directory its methods are called from. As an alternative you can use Redis via the avt_fresh.token.TokenStoreOnRedis at instantiation of an ApiClient like so:

client = Client(
    connection_string="redis://..."     ,

As a further alternative, feel free to implement and inject your own! See avt_fresh.token.TokenStore for the API, but tl;dr simply inherit from TokenStore and implement get() and set() methods, the former of which should return an instance of avt_fresh.token.TokenTup.

Hardcoded Stuff / TODOs

Here are some quirks and TODOs. PRs are welcome!:

Only Python 3.10 is supported at the moment.

When it comes to invoice statuses, we're only using v3_status strings, not the numbers. What's more, when you create an invoice we're only supporting two possible statuses: "draft" and "paid".

The create, update, and delete functions return dictionaries rather than an instance of the appropriate NamedTuple. This would be a great improvement!

The docs need improvement for sure: For now, have a peek at the source code, which includes pretty comprehensive type hints at the very least.

There are no tests! However, this code has been used in production in at least one company with some success.