Tag: Certified Public Accountant

DO YOURSELF A BIG FAVOR during tax season

     

Tax Season is upon us again. Please tell me that you have done your tax preparation. DO NOT let this task get the best of you yearly. It is really a shame to file late, or to panic and fill bags with helter-skelter receipts that you don’t even have a clue about.

Do yourselves a huge favor and buy a piece of software like QuickBooks. If you simply run a household, it will work miracles. ALL you’ll need are about 15 minutes per week.’

You enter EVERY penny you spend, as well as your income. That’s all. You are done.

Buy a few filing folders. Categorize them by the stuff you need to keep, which counts for your taxes.
A few folders should be: Home Insurance, Mortgage Payments, Postage-USPS/UPS, Automobile expenses (gas, service, and insurance), Medical expenses (should include your health insurance), Clothing, Bank account statements, Utilities (TV, electricity, water, gas, trash), Phones, and Charitable Donations. If you have a home office, then add a file for Office expenses (printer cartridges, paper, pens, etc.).

Enter everything into QuickBooks, including groceries, charitable donations, deposits and withdrawals to and from your Bank account.

THROW AWAY grocery receipts and anything that does not apply to your CPA’s needs. The rest, you need to keep for three years. Once you have collected three years’ worth of files, and then start your fourth year. On the fifth year, you throw away everything from year 1. In other words, you ALWAYS have in hand 3 past years and the current year of files with receipts and statements.

It is really simple. Teach yourself to get into this routine. You will feel so much freer, so much more organized that your CPA will thank you for it.

On January 1st, simply print out your last fiscal year, mail it to your CPA without any other papers and guess what? YOU ARE DONE.
If you are employed and receive 1099 or W2 forms, then you have to wait until January 31st to receive those, because you have to hand those to your CPA as well.
If you have a business, I am sure that you have a bookkeeper in your team, whose responsibility is to have all that in order for you and mails out all the necessary tax forms for your employees and independent contractors no later than January 21st, so that everyone can have their tax documents in order.

All it takes is some organizing, some determination and a piece of very helpful software.
If you take those very simple steps, you will breeze through tax season each year and avoid headaches, problems, stress and frustration.
If you need bookkeeping help, you can contact me through my page: www.facebook.com/MariellaStockmal1

Are you ready for the end of the year?

November is almost over, Thanksgiving is in a few days…. My clients complain about stress, loads of work to do, so little time….

Well, none of that is necessary if you know how to run your business efficiently. You have no excuse to be in a state of stress, unless it is the first year of running your business. You MUST know the highs and lows of your business, the busiest times, your inventory needs (if you are selling something), your staffing needs etc.
If you are selling any type of goods that tends to sell more during the Holidays, you absolutely MUST have a comparison chart to know which item sold more and when. You should expect orders to pick up starting September. Don’t wait until the end of August to start thinking about inventory needs. Besides, if you do place orders in the summer, your suppliers will thank you and will not be overwhelmed when everybody else is ordering all at once.

If you are offering services, don’t wait for October to start thinking about special offers to drive more business to your Company.

Black Friday, should be planned and thought out well in advance. If you want a piece of this huge pie, you better deliver to all social media pages, to your website, well in advance, with constant reminders that you’re there, that you have a great offer just for the Holidays etc.

I assume that you have at least Quicken if not QuickBooks running your business. A daily task of no more than 30 minutes, to keep your records straight is an absolute MUST. You can create invoices for your services and/or products, you can do your payroll, and keep up with your Banks, expenses, income etc.
You also MUST have a physical filing system with all your files corresponding to your QuickBooks categories. If you do this daily, there is no reason whatsoever that you will not be ready for your CPA by January. No more extensions, no more chaos, no more being disgruntled.

A little organization goes a long way. Do not rely on others to do your work for you. Do not leave something for tomorrow if you can finish it today. If you are organized, love your Company, and have some passion, all is possible.

Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Thanksgiving, can be a magical time, filled with tons of productive work, new customers, old but happy customers and joy to spread around. Do not be grumpy, do not let negativity enter this period. We all need a healthy economy. Let’s do our part and turn this around.