When you are a new business owner, it can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to preparing your company’s accounts and tax returns. Having a knowledgeable and experienced accountant can be a real asset to your business. But how exactly can an accountant help your business, and what can you do to make the year-end process of accounts and tax return preparation smooth? We will discuss that in this article.
How an accountant can help your business
The phrase ‘time is money’ is extremely relevant when it comes to running a business! With time being such a precious commodity in business, especially if you are a new business, it is vital that you save time where possible. That is where an accountant can come in handy. The time saved by using an accountant can be spent making more sales, networking or improving your product or service.
Accountants don’t just save you time on preparing and submitting your tax return, they are also extremely valuable for tax advice and answering questions you may have. For instance, if you had heard of a potential tax saving tip from a friend, and want to check if this would be relevant for your business, instead of spending hours researching it yourself and getting bogged down in jargon, you can simply ask your accountant, and they can recommend if it would be useful for you to implement this in your business.
Tax Savings and Advice
This is usually the main reason why a business owner would consider getting an accountant. Accountants, especially if they are experienced, have usually picked up many tax saving tips and advice that they can use to save you significant amounts of money! Obviously accountants won’t magic away your tax bill, however through simple tax planning, you will find that your tax figure will likely be lower than if you had prepared your own tax return without the input of an accountant.
I briefly mentioned it in the last section, but it’s worth mentioning here as well, that you can run any tax questions past your accountant. Now whilst this might seem obvious, it’s surprising just how many business owners make tax decisions without consulting their accountant first. This usually results in them spending more money. By having an accountant and asking them any questions you may have, you can get good tax advice that you can rely upon.
It’s not just advice on tax that accountants can offer. Now whilst it’s worth noting that most accountants aren’t business advisors, they have likely done the accounts for many different companies and usually have very good business knowledge. This can be extremely useful! If you are looking to expand your business, or maybe you want to reduce a certain expense to become more profitable, having someone who is knowledgeable when it comes to business to run some ideas past can be invaluable.
If you wanted to take this business advice a step further, you could consider hiring a management accountant, who will be able to offer regular reports and updates on how your business is doing, allowing you to see exactly what is working in your business and what needs changing to increase profitability.
Peace of mind
This is something that is more to do with you, than your business! When you use an accountant, you are paying for a professional service that can help you sleep easier at night knowing that your tax affairs are cared for and correct.
These are just a few areas where an accountant can help. So what if you already have an accountant?
How you can make the year end experience a lot easier
Keep your bookkeeping up to date
Keeping your bookkeeping together during the year saves a big rush at your company year end, it can also give you a decent idea of how much tax you will have to pay, which could potentially save you a nasty surprise!
If you are struggling to keep up with your bookkeeping during the year, it may be worth looking into getting a bookkeeper. I could do a whole article just about why getting a bookkeeper would be a good idea, so if you do find yourself stuck doing bookkeeping, it’s worth considering, and your accountant will definitely thank you for it, and may be able to recommend a skilled bookkeeper to you.
Keep paper records neat
It can be very easy when you get a paper receipt to shove it in your pocket and forget about it, however this makes the year end process much harder! Keeping all your invoices and receipts in order can make it a lot easier for you, because you won’t be searching around looking for missing receipts, and your accountant will be much happier preparing your accounts and tax return, as they know that everything they need is together.
If you wanted to be extra organized, you could even put all the invoices and receipts in date order, which again will speed up the entire process.
Get important documents together ready
Your accountant will need certain documents at year end, try to get them all together ready. These documents include any loan statements, hire purchase information and any tax numbers or authorization codes that your accountant doesn’t already have. Getting these documents together will save your accountant having to ask for them later and will save time in the year end process.
Responding quickly to any messages from your accountant
Your accountant will be keen to get your accounts completed as quickly as possible. They may have queries about certain transactions or may be requesting extra documents. Try to reply as quickly as possible, and answer all of the questions. Again, this will save time overall, make the year end process much less stressful and will save you missing important filing deadlines.
So there we have it, those are just some of the ways an accountant can help your business, and how you can speed up the year end process for preparation and filing of your accounts and tax returns.
If you would like a free quote for accountancy services, please feel free to email email@example.com or give Toby a call on 07717 691649.