Be Aware of “Ghost Assets”
Ever heard of a ghost asset? Didn’t think so, but chances are you have a few haunting you right now… A ghost asset is an asset or inventory item that “Cannot be accounted for because it is physically missing or rendered unusable.” Huh? Don’t worry, here is an article that explains what you just read. Luckily, if you’re a service based business, you probably have a lot fewer ghost assets if any at all, but this is still something that can come back to haunt you, pun intended. If you discover that you do have ghost assets, make sure to focus on a better inventory management system in 2017 to avoid future problems.
The age of software is here, use it!
As a Handlr user, you’re already ahead of the curve and taking full advantage of the amazing benefits software can give your company. Have you taken the same approach with your accounting? Why burden yourself with all the complications of doing your own taxes or accounting tasks? There are so many great companies offering tax and payroll software these days. While Quickbooks has been the long-time tried and true favorite, you have many options. Explore what is right for your business and use these tools to save yourself a huge amount of time and headache. But be careful; don’t use tax software as an end-all-be-all. Having your own business accountant is still highly recommended. But having all of your data already in an easy access system will help your accountant give you the best returns and deductions possible.
Don’t forget about your retirement!
Just because you own your own business doesn’t mean you should neglect a proper 401K or IRA. Especially considering that these are both tax deferrable, meaning you dont pay taxes on them until you begin to withdraw from the account. This is a great way to reduce your yearly tax payments. Make sure you discuss with your accountant how much you should be putting away and what kind of fund is right for you. We know that running a small business can take up all of your time and energy, but don’t forget why you started the business; someday you’ll want to cash out and buy that boat!
Deduct, deduct, deduct!
Handing over your hard earned cash to the man each year instead of handing it out to employees, spending it on the business or treating yourself can be a hard pill to swallow. Remember that among all of the tax rules and regulations there are a ton of reasons to deduct from what you owe, making that pill a bit easier to get down. Work with your accountant to make sure you make the most of your potential deductions. Car expenses, home offices, travel and even meals can all be cause for deductions if used for business. Did you realize that your startup costs can also be deducted? Deductions can be easily overlooked and are often purposely hidden. Having a good accountant will undoubtedly lead to more deductions. Take advantage!
Tip for next season; Prep as you go!
Prepare as you go. Don’t wait until the last minute to tally your expenses or review your financial records or receipts. Every year you think to yourself “If only I had kept better track of all of this”. You’re probably digging through a shoebox of receipts thinking the same thing right now. Recording business expenses related to travel, meals, gas, mileage, etc will go a long way at this time next year. But don’t just stuff receipts in your pocket, carry a small notepad and jot down your expenses as you go. At the end of each week input them into your trusty accounting software and be done with it! You’ll be so glad you did a year from now! Remember that life is about rewarding the future you!