Essential Bookkeeping Tips

Love it or loathe it, keeping on top of your paperwork as a small business owner is a necessary evil, to know exactly where your business is up to. But each year many small businesses fall into the familiar trap of leaving everything to the last minute.

If you fall into this category and are tired of struggling to trace all the necessary paperwork to start your self-assessment tax return or year-end accounts, then here are a few steps to follow so you can meet your tax deadlines with some confidence:-


Treat your Personal and Business Accounts Separately

And never the twain shall meet, right from the beginning keep your business account separate from your personal account. Simple advice, we know, but you would be surprised, how many small businesses  don’t do this. Keeping both accounts separate will make it so much easier to reconcile whereas mixing accounts may allow you to miss important expenditure which you could have otherwise claimed. You will also save time because you only have one set of statements for bank and credit card accounts to compile.


Get into Good Habits

Establish a regular routine to collate and file your expenses and incomings; daily, weekly or monthly, to a regularity that suits your business. By introducing this easy discipline, you will save a great deal of time, not to mention stress by keeping on top of your paperwork. Another simple piece of advice but this is a huge issue for many small businesses, causing unnecessary pressure when you could be working on your daily business goings-on.

If you do not keep regular track of your expenses by reconciling your cash or debit and credit card purchases, you will not be on top of what you’re spending which is fundamental to any business, particularly in the event of unexpected expenditure or opportunities that may arise.

Give each invoice a unique number, an easy numbering system will flag up quickly any missing invoices.


Don’t Forget to Save Cash Receipts

Cash expenses, if they are not reconciled as a regular discipline, can present problems as there are no bank or credit card statements to fall back on, if you lose receipts. Also, keep a record of all petty cash receipts, use the number system and make a note of what it’s for. As a rule, don’t throw away any receipts.


Online Software to Help You

There is a vast array of online accounting software out there to help small businesses. Packages typically include simple statements and invoices, bank reconciliation, easy recording of all income and expenditure, to name but a few features. And the great thing is, this allows all your financial information to be in one place.

As part of our service, we offer excellent online accounting software completely FREE of charge which is perfect for small businesses. It has the added benefit for us to work with you through the software, exchanging information in real time.

However, the best software in the world is only as good as the information that it receives, so everything that we said before certainly still applies.


Save Time and Call the Experts

Keeping track of money coming in and out of your business is vital to managing your cash flow but when you’re busy building your business, you may not always have the time and resource. Outsourcing your bookkeeping, could be one of the best investments you ever make.

If you are thinking of outsourcing your bookkeeping requirements, we have years of experience and specialist knowledge. If this sounds of interest to you, please call us on 01253 899989 or you can book a free consultation.



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