This post is also featured at Intuit’s Small Business Help Center!
I always look forward to the start of a new year. It’s exciting to think of new possibilities and set new goals—it gives me new energy and enthusiasm for the year ahead. I usually have at least one resolution that looks something like this: “This year will be the year I finally get around to [insert something I have been procrastinating on for a long time].”
I know I’m not alone in this, because every single January, I get at least a few calls and emails from people who have resolved to finally deal with their backlog of undone bookkeeping and are asking for help. Some business owners begin panicking when they are only a few months behind in doing their books, but I have worked with clients who had literally done no record-keeping whatsoever for six or more years.
If this sounds like you, don’t stress. No matter how far behind you are, 2015 can be the year that you finally catch up, get your taxes filed and fix all those problems you’ve been avoiding.
I’d like to offer four practical suggestions for any entrepreneur who has made a New Year’s resolution to improve their business finances, catch up on undone bookkeeping or deal with unresolved issues. Continue reading
I wanted to provide a few details about the contracts we sign with our clients, and the reasons behind the way we set up our relationships. Continue reading
Backyard Bookkeeper is constantly looking for new talent to join us, and we invite you to apply! Continue reading
Occasionally we get calls from tax preparers on behalf of their clients, asking about our services–checking in to make sure we really know our stuff. Well, we do! Here are a few examples: Continue reading
A common trap that business owners fall into when cash flow is tight is not paying their payroll taxes. Most bills we pay are directly linked to something we need on a regular business–utility bills, for instance, or a subscription to online advertising. If we don’t pay it, we stop receiving the service or lose access to the product. It’s a little harder to see the connection when it comes to payroll taxes, especially when it may take the IRS months or even years to notice that you haven’t paid. Continue reading
“Annual Withholding Reconciliation Not Filed or Incomplete”
Every fall, the USTC sends out hundreds, possibly thousands of notices to employers around the state that they owe $1000 for neglecting to file their TC-941R for the previous year. It may sound like a government scheme to trick extra money out small businesses, but it’s not. It is simply a way to spur employers into action.
Last year, the renewal notice never arrived in the mail. Instead, we just got a postcard from the Division of Corporations in early October that our business registration was now late for 2011. It wasn’t that big of a deal; the renewal costs $15/year and the late fee was only $10, but it was irritating that they wouldn’t give us any leeway when we didn’t even receive the first notice. In an informal survey of clients and companies we’ve worked with, it seems like that first postcard goes missing as much as 50% of the time.
As the holidays approach, are you thinking of your employees and how wonderful they’ve been? Have you been thinking about how you would like to give them a bonus, but you are unsure how to account for it in the books?
Now that we’ve been in business for over two years, we’ve run the gamut of client-bookkeeper relationships. Backyard Bookkeeper has helped in several situations where a previous accountant or office assistant defrauded, stole from, or otherwise messed up the books of the business. We have also dealt with some difficult situations of our own. Based on these experiences, I’d like to make a couple observations and offer some advice for dealing with your own bookkeeper or clients, as the case may be.