It’s now June and the perfect time for ensuring all of your finances from the past financial year are in order and ready for your tax return.
Often people leave submitting their tax return until as close to the January deadline as possible, but remember this is your deadline for paying your tax bill. If you submit your taxes nice and early you then have a much more reasonable time frame to pay your tax bill in.
Here are our four top tips on how to keep your business finances organised to make the end of year tax process easier, quicker and more manageable.
- Start early
As we mentioned above, don’t leave filing your tax return until the last minute. Not only does it give you less time to pay any tax owed, but if you leave everything to the last minute you are more than likely going to make mistakes in the rush, and the process is going to be much more stressful. Your mind will also be more in tune with the past financial year, the closer to it that you complete your tax return; so don’t procrastinate and start early!
If an accountant manages your accounts, ask them to submit your tax return sooner rather than later. All accountants get ridiculously busy around the tax return deadlines so make sure you get yours sorted earlier in the year when your accountant isn’t under pressure.
- Use accounting software
Accounting software helps to streamline your business and ensures you have access to all the information you need readily to submit your taxes and make key decisions on the goals of your business.
Accounting software can help businesses of any size or scale save time, and money, by making everything digitally accessible. As tax returns are submitted online, and online system will help with this process. Furthermore, if an accountant manages your tax return, having digital accounting software in place ensures the information your accountant needs is remotely available making the process much quicker for you both!
- Keep all your information in one place
Your tax return deadline is approaching and suddenly you need to find Client A’s invoice and the receipt from Costco, but they are nowhere to be seen! An accounting task that should have taken a couple of hours turns into a couple of days whilst you hunt for the information needed to process your tax return.
It’s a nightmare situation but unfortunately, it’s one we hear of too many times here at Surrey Accountancy Limited. Our key tip is to store all your information in one place that you can refer to. Do not leave receipts in pockets or invoices in random drawers; put them all together in a folder or safe space and collate your evidence naturally over the course of the financial year.
If you have digital accounting software, you can scan receipts there and then. The system stores the image for you and adds it to income/ outgoings, as necessary. Your online system can be your “one place” to store things; although we never recommend then discarding the invoice/ receipt you have to hand. Still find a safe place to keep hard copies of anything that you need for your tax return in case the tax man comes to check in.
- Ask for help!
The biggest and most preventable problem we come across as accountants are clients who have tried to do their tax return by themselves for too long. If you’re a natural number cruncher and enjoy submitting your tax return then it’s a great thing to carry on with, but if it causes you stress and there are aspects of the process that you do not understand, delegate the task to someone who does.
We all have our strengths and it’s important to recognise when something is hindering what we do, rather than helping us.
If you find self assessments and tax returns stressful, ask for help. It may be that you just need some training, or that there is a small error you are making that is causing everything to seem more confusing than it is. Whatever the problem, our dedicated team of accountants and advisors are on hand to help you with your accounting queries; no matter how big or small.
If you would like information or advice on accounting services for your business please do get in touch with our team at Surrey Accountancy Limited.
For more information on the training in accountancy software service we offer click here.
For more information on self assessment tax return click here.