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Commercial Lending: Everything You Need to Know about Business Loans

Most people agree that it is easy to get a credit card or personal loan. The consumer culture in our nation has created an environment where financing for everything from a shopping spree to real estate is easily accessible for the majority of the population. Consumer debt is rising and it is common for people to feel that debt is a normal part of living. Even though personal loans are easy to come by, it might be a bit tricky if you are looking at options for commercial lending.

There’s no question that you need to manage the cash flow for your company. As a business owner, it can be a challenge to ensure that the money is available at the right times throughout the year. If you are struggling with cash flow right now, then you might be looking at options for a business loan to help you get through a dry spell.

How Will You Use a Business Loan?

What are the reasons why you should consider a business loan? Commercial lending can be beneficial for a variety of expenses:

  • Buying a real estate property for office space
  • Investing in more inventory of the upcoming busy season
  • Purchasing equipment that is necessary for the office or storeroom
  • Preparing for the future in case the cash is needed unexpectedly
  • Construction or remodeling costs
  • Business acquisition
  • Start-up expenses for a new company

These loans can be of various sizes, depending on the needs of your company. If you find that you need a business loan, then it is essential that you choose a reputable lender and understand the financing terms before jumping into the agreement. A poor choice with your business loan could cause financial stress and strain on your company in the future.

Don’t Wait for Commercial Lending

It is common for business owners to hold off on commercial loans until they are in a critical time when the cash flow is needed. But there’s no reason to wait for the application! Cash flow ebbs and flows depending on the season and economic changes, so you need to be sure that you have the money available before you reach a critical situation.

The timeframe for commercial lending takes a little longer compared to personal loans. Additionally, you need to have a good financial profile to be approved for the loan. For example, if your business is already burdened with debt, then it might be difficult to get approval on your applications. Instead, apply for the financing when your business is in good financial health so that the credit is available in the future when it is needed.

The right financing can be the saving grace that serves your business needs in the future. It is important that you are working with a great accountant every step of the way, so there are no surprises with cash flow, future costs, and more.

A Few Things You Need to Understand about Business Loans

The best thing that you can do is learn about your options so that you can get the financing that is needed. A little bit of information can go a long way to help you avoid common problems that might arise with financing. Here are a few things that you should keep in mind:

  • Time Frame: It usually takes a little longer to receive approval for a business loan. Even though most consumers can be approved for a credit card or line of credit on-the-spot, the business loan application process is a little more involved. Be prepared so that you have plenty of time to prepare for future financing needs. Sometimes, commercial lending can take as long as 60 to 90 days until the loan is closed and the money is available. The complexity and timeframe vary depending on the type of loan that you are getting.
  • Complicated Application: This application process is a bit more complicated than filling out some paperwork and waiting for approval. Be ready for an extensive screening and piles of documentation that might be required. Common paperwork requests include several years of tax returns, AR/AP reports, financial statements, and documentation for collateral that will be offered. You might also need to show a business plan so that the lender can understand how the money will be used for business needs.
  • Payback Ability: As with all types of financing, the lender wants to see that your company will have the ability to pay back the money that is provided. Your lender will be evaluating your cash flow to determine how you will be able to handle the required payments. The Debt Service Coverage Ratio (DSCR) will be evaluated, which looks at the operating income of the company as well as the current and anticipated debt obligations that need to be paid in the future.
  • Financing Fees: Anytime commercial lending is offered, you can expect that fees will need to be paid. Ask about the fees that need to be covered up front, or if these costs will be bundled into the loan. Understanding the fee structure will help you know the amount of money that you are spending for the financing that is offered. Don’t forget to ask about pre-payment penalties in case you decide to pay off the loan early.
  • Collateral Requirements: When you are getting a personal credit card, there isn’t usually a need to offer collateral. But, the lender often requires collateral for bigger business loans. If you are providing collateral and the applicable documentation, it is common for the lender to require that the loan is 80% of the value of the collateral. So, you will need to come up with 20% cash before you can be approved for the financing. Banks calculate this Loan to Value (LTV) to minimize risk in case you default on the loan.
  • Structure of the Loan: The timeframe and payment requirements vary depending on the type of loan that is acquired. It is important that you understand your options and compare the payment details before settling on financing for your company. For example, some loans are less than 5 years and have an aggressive payment schedule. Other loans can be spread out over 20 or 25 years if needed. Additionally, you should look at options for fixed or revolving loans based on the way the money will be used.

Types of Business Loans

What type of financing is needed for your business requirements? These are a few options that you might consider:

  • Line of Credit: Small businesses often obtain a line of credit so that funds are available on an as-needed basis. Usually, there is a cap on these funds. This type of loan can be an excellent solution for managing unexpected costs and ongoing cash flow.
  • Working Capital Loan: Sometimes daily operations need to be financed, and you might consider this type of loan for these anticipated costs. These loans are ideal when you need to manage the fluctuations that occur due to seasonal changes or other variables that affect your cash flow throughout the year. This type of loan is usually unsecured.
  • Small Business Loan: Whether you are getting a start-up off the ground or you are looking at options to expand, a small business loan might be the right solution. The structure of the loan will vary depending on the lender, and might be secured or unsecured. Interest also varies depending on the terms of the loan.
  • Small Business Administration Loans: If you are searching for a low-interest loan, then don’t overlook the benefits of a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan. The SBA guarantees the amount, making it possible for the lender to offer the most favorable terms when it comes to interest rates and repayment schedules. These loans are usually between $30,000 and $5 million.
  • Accounts Receivable Financing: This money is available based on the amount of Accounts Receivables on your books. When your customers send payments, then that money goes to pay down the AR line.
  • Business Credit Cards: Sometimes the simplest solution to qualify for a loan is by getting a business credit card. But, you need to use this strategy as a short-term solution because the credit cards usually have high interest rates and can pose a liability to your company. If you are going to spend money on a small business credit card, then look for perks like cash back or 0% interest for 6 to 9 months. These bonuses will help to offset the cost of the card.

Do you have questions about your business cash flow or financing options? At Easier Accounting, we’re here to help you create the right financial strategy for your company. If you are considering commercial lending, then we can help you with the reporting and documentation that is needed so that you can qualify for the financing that is required.

Our team specializes in ongoing services for small business accounting and bookkeeping. Easier Accounting is a leader in the industry and offers flexible packages to accommodate the needs of every company. Call today to see how we can help with your business efforts: (888) 620-0770

Avoid These Accounting Strategies that Just Don’t Work

Staying current with your accounting system is essential so that your business can keep up with the growth that is happening. But, it is important that you are careful to avoid common mistakes and pitfalls that often happen in the accounting industry. The right accounting strategies can be crucial to help with potential success. On the other hand, the right financial strategies could be the downfall of your company.

You can find many resources about accounting and bookkeeping tips for small business owners. While there are helpful resources in the industry, it is hard to know which strategies are applicable to your industry and business. Instead of guessing your way through the systems and processes, you need to tap into the expertise that only comes from someone working “in the trenches.”

Hiring an accounting team might be the best decision that you will ever make for your company. Not only will these accounting strategies give you insider information about the processes that are working in today’s economy. But, you can also learn about the techniques that are applicable based on your personal circumstances.

Accounting Mistakes that are Costing You Money

These are some of the biggest mistakes that we see in the accounting industry. Shining a light on these poor accounting strategies can help you avoid some of the problems. Learn from other people’s mistakes so that you don’t have to harm the success of your business:

  • Profits = Cash Flow: Just because you close a big deal, doesn’t mean that the full contract amount can be chalked up as profits for your company. It is easy to see the money that is coming in and assume that the cash is available for other purchases. But, business owners often make mistakes with the way the money is handled. Then, they run into issues when the cash isn’t available for taxes or payroll. Whenever money hits the bank account, it is a good idea to set a portion aside in a savings account that is dedicated for taxes and other expenses.
  • No Emergency Account: Most companies experience ebbs and flows in the way the money moves through the bank account. Instead of being surprised when there isn’t enough cash to pay the bills, look ahead and make sure that you always have an emergency fund to cover the gaps when needed. The best solution is to have 3 to 6 months of cash flow in an account that is left untouched until an emergency situation This strategy protects your company from going under if the economy slows down or you experience normal seasonal fluctuations.
  • Procrastinating Bookkeeping and Reporting: It is essential that you are recording everything that moves through your business account. No matter the size of the transaction, be sure that you are keeping records of both large and small costs and invoices that come through. Proper categorization for your accounts is essential for tax deductions and future financial strategies. Many business owners find it difficult to implement a good accounting system. So, the best solution is to bring in an outsourced accounting team to help with the business strategy and application of the systems.
  • Improper Tax Filings: Did you know that a mistake on your tax filing could cost your company thousands of dollars? Don’t let yourself be fooled into thinking that you can handle DIY business taxes. If you don’t have experience working on business tax filings, then you need to outsource these services to a team that understands the best methods for your company and industry.
  • Blurry Lines Between Contractors and Employees: Understand the legal requirements that separate employees and contractors so that you are handling the taxes correctly. There are major accounting consequences that can occur if mistakes are made with worker classifications. So, never make assumptions about the way the person is classified without consulting with an industry professional. You need to understand the difference between employees and consultants so that your accounting records are accurate to match the business relationship with each person.
  • In-House Financial Services: When new skills are needed, or the team is overworked, then it is common for a company to hire in-house employees. There can be benefits to having an accounting on staff. But, you need to consider the financial impact that will affect your profit margins. When you own a small company with low revenue, you probably can’t afford to pay for the in-house services that are needed. Not only do you need to cover the cost of the accountant’s salary, but you also need to pay for benefits, office space, equipment and more. Plus, in-house accounting could result in problems with accuracy, tax deductions, and more. The best solution is to choose an outsourced accounting team that can help with everything from payroll to reconciliations.
  • Outdated Accounting Systems: If your tax deductions are tracked on sticky notes, and you are still managing invoices in a spreadsheet, then it means that you are behind the times. Manual accounting was a great strategy back in the day. But, newer systems have changed the industry and improved the options that are available for small businesses. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t take advantage of an automated computer system that is managed by a team of accounting experts. Implementing the right system can have a profound impact on your company, helping you keep up with the trends that are happening in our modern digital age.

Why You Will Love Outsourced Accounting Services

If you want to improve the accounting strategy for your small business, then outsourced services are likely your best option. Bringing in a professional perspective is a great way to ensure that you are staying on the right track in the way your company is being managed.

You can offload the busy work that is associated with financial management. When the accounting team takes over these tasks (such as payroll processing, transaction categorizations, auditing, reconciliations, and more), then you can dedicate your time and efforts to other tasks that are needed for your company.

Too often, business owners get caught up in the busy work required for bookkeeping and accounting. If you are spending your valuable hours going through transactions or calculating payroll, then it means that you are likely missing out on opportunities that could help with the growth of your company in the future. How much will your sales improve if you spend time working on new marketing strategies or product development, instead of crunching the numbers for the monthly financial reports?

Outsourcing these services to an accounting team means that you can enjoy the benefits of accurate financial information and a clear picture of the financial health of your business. But, you don’t have to waste your time when you are already carrying many other responsibilities to keep the company running. Invest a little money into accounting services so that you can focus your efforts and attention on other things that will leverage your results in the future.

Making the Best Decisions for Your Company

One thing to consider is the potential mistakes that could be made if your financial reports aren’t managed properly. For example, if there are issues with your accounting system, then it means that you are likely using inaccurate information when it is time to make big decisions relating to the future of your company.

These accurate reports are essential when you are looking at hiring options, equipment purchase, inventory replacement, business development and more. You need to know how much cash is available right now, as well as the cash that will be needed for the future. Staying ahead of this financial information will help by reducing your stress related to cash flow problems.

What Accounting Strategies Do You Need?

Now that you can see the importance of hiring the right services to support the needs of your small business, it is time for you to choose the services that are required for your company. The advantage of working with a concierge team, such as Easier Accounting, is that these services can always be catered based on your requirements.

We are always looking for solutions to personalize your business systems. Our team has been working in the accounting industry for many years. During this time, we’ve built the right experience to ensure that you always receive the best services that are available. We understand the importance of specialized accounting services, which is why you should choose our team. We’ve focused our experience on small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Learn About the Accounting Services that are Available

How should you get started if it is time for you to learn more about accounting services? You can read information online, but nothing beats a personal conversation with an industry expert. Right now is the time to take action, so we invite you to call our team to learn more about the services that are available.

Easier Accounting is leading the industry by offering innovative solutions for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Call us today to see how we can help with your business needs: (888) 620-0770

Tips for Securing Your Business Financial Information

Technology has made it an amazing time to be a small business owner. There are many options to improve your business by leveraging the use of software, computers, the internet and more. Computers and software programs can make your daily tasks easier. You can automate transactions and organize information related to the management of your company. It is obvious that digital business management makes things easier for you and your customers.

Many business owners use online budgeting tools, payment processing systems, websites, mobile apps and more. These tools are great to reduce the time that is required on busy work such as banking, accounting, and bookkeeping. At the same time, you might be putting yourself at risk due to databases that aren’t secure.

With the benefits of technology comes potential risks as well. Since we live in a digital world, there are many scammers and hackers looking for ways to exploit information that can be accessed online. As a result, it is important that you are proactive to secure your business financial information to protect your company and your customer information

Risks of Financial Exploitation

Why does it matter if you have the right security systems in place? If your financial information is hacked, then it could be a devastating problem for you and your company. Not only can the hackers steal your information, but you could lose money and time as a result of the stolen information.

In some situations, you know about the problems immediately. For example, you might find unexplained charges on your credit card. Or, a hack could cause your bank account to be drained. But, there are other times when the exploitation isn’t noticed until the issue has grown into a bigger problem, such as identity theft. These serious scams could cost thousands of dollars to correct the problem.

Tips to Protect Yourself and Your Company

Just because there is a risk to your business financial information, doesn’t mean that you need to stay in the stone-ages and use paper and pencil to track your business accounting. Instead, you can implement a few effective tips to protect yourself and your business finances. Here are some of the essentials that should be considered by every business owner:

  • Set a Schedule: It is important to change passwords regularly, especially on your sensitive financial accounts. But, many people don’t think to change the passwords until it is too late. Mark your calendar so that these passwords are changed Even though it takes a little time to update the information, it is worth the time investment so that you can protect your company.
  • Use a Password Manager: Storing your passwords on a notepad in your desk drawer is one of the biggest mistakes that could cost your company money. Even though you assume that you can trust everyone in the office, there is a possibility that someone might make a poor decision when they find an easy opportunity. You shouldn’t keep your passwords in printed or written form without putting those papers under lock and key. If you have hard copies of this information, then they should be stored in a safe or locked filing cabinet. Better yet, choose a good password management system such as Roboform or Lastpass so that you can keep all of your passwords in one digital location. These password managers have great reputations and offer the encryption and security that is needed to protect your financial interests.
  • Manage Your Computer: If you open up a bank account or other financial account on your computer, make sure to log out and clear the cookies after you are done with the session. Leaving your online banking data open in the browser could increase the likelihood that someone will access your information. Also, consider adding a password to access your computer so that you can protect the offline files that are stored on your hard drive.
  • Choose Reputable Software Companies: Don’t make the mistake of trying to save a few bucks by choosing a new software company. The best solution is to pick a software program with a great reputation in the industry. You can rest assured to know that your information is protected when the software program offers the encryptions that are needed to avoid hackers and information theft.
  • Set Up Notifications: Do you know when someone accesses your bank accounts? It can be helpful to set up notifications so that you are alerted when someone is trying to access your information. Also, consider adding transaction limits or transaction notifications. For example, choose a dollar amount that would be an unusual transaction so that you are notified immediately if anything looks suspicious in your account.
  • Check Your Bank Account Regularly: Are you aware of the financial transactions that are moving through your bank account and credit cards? Regularly monitoring of these accounts can be helpful so that you can quickly catch any issues if something comes up. Consider utilizing the services of an outsourced accounting team so that you have regular audits of your financial accounts. These services are essential to detect potential fraud and scams.
  • PCI Level 1 Compliance: If you receive credit card transactions from your customers or clients, then you need to be sure that you are keeping up with PCI Level 1 compliance. Most business owners don’t understand the ins and outs of these compliance requirements. So, the easiest solution is to choose a reputable merchant processing company that ensures the details of the compliance requirements that need to be met. For example, your payment processing service can take care of encryption and good stewardship of all of the data.
  • Two Factor Authentication: When someone accesses the password to your bank account or email account, then they can do a lot of damage in a short time. Make it hard for hackers to access these accounts by adding two-factor authentications on your accounts. This means that you need to enter a password when accessing the account. Then, you will receive a text message or email with a one-time use access code. Most of the time this access code is only good for 60 minutes, helping to lock down the time that you can access the account.
  • Turn on Activity Tracking: Some software programs allow you to turn on tracking activity. For example, on your email account or accounting software, you can view an activity log that shows all of the logins and the activities that are completed. This information helps with the audit trail so that you can see the source of problems if things aren’t adding up.
  • Update Your Software: All software programs need to stay updated at all times. Sometimes, hackers find weak points in the software code that can be used to access information. So, software updates are designed to patch the identified issues. Not only do you need to maintain updated software on your computer and cell phone, but also keep the software updated on your websites, accounting software programs, and anything else that might provide access to sensitive information.
  • Use Cloud-Based Services: If something happens to your office or computer, then it can be a tragedy to lose all of the information that was stored on the hard drive. Use a cloud-based accounting software so that you can still access the relevant information in case your hard drive fails or your computer is stolen. These cloud-based programs are encrypted to secure your information. Plus, you can provide secure access to trusted, remote service providers, such as your accountant.
  • Check Your Credit Report: A regular review of your credit report can be helpful to ensure that your credit hasn’t been tampered with. Look at this information a few times a year to see if any unexpected credit lines have been opened. If you find any errors or suspicious activity, then you can file a dispute with the reporting company as soon as possible to clear up the mess. Also, consider the benefits of credit monitoring services. Sometimes, you can find package deals that include credit reporting information and credit monitoring. Each time activity happens on your credit report; then you will receive an alert notifying you of the activity.
  • Be Careful about Social Networks: Most people use social networks on a daily basis, but you need to be careful about the information that is posted on these sites. Quizzes and fun games are designed to pull information that might be related to security questions, such as your mother’s maiden name, phone number, birthdate, or your pet’s name

Other Tips to Protect and Improve Your Business Financial Information

The best thing that you can do to protect your business finances is to tap into the services offered by an experienced accounting team. At Easier Accounting, we’re here to support the financial health of your company. If you are looking for support to improve your business systems, then we encourage you to call us right away to learn more about how we can help. Contact us at: (888) 620-0770

Tax Deductions to Consider for the Last 3 Months of 2018

This year has flown by, leaving many people surprised that we are nearing 4th quarter. How did your business perform during the first three quarters of the year? What are the tasks that need to be addressed before you finish up 2018?

As we start into the fourth quarter, it is a great time to assess your business efforts and identify areas of improvement. The best thing that you can do is tap into the resources that are offered by business professionals who can help with your goals.

What Support Do You Need in 4th Quarter?

Here are a few ideas of outsourced professionals that can help you end the year on the right note:

  • Accountant: Evaluate the books to determine any expenses that should be covered before the year closes. Look at potential tax deductions to help with the management of your tax burden for the year. We will discuss this in more depth later in this article.
  • Lawyer: Is it time to restructure the business? Whether you are changing the way the entity is structured or you are looking for ways to improve your contracts, don’t hesitate to bring in the services of a legal team. You can find a local lawyer who can assist with your efforts. Or, look at online services such as Legal Zoom and more.
  • Business Coach: Sometimes, goals are just out of reach because you are having a hard time seeing things from a different perspective. A coach can be a valuable asset to help you identify systems that are no longer working. Changing a few of your habits and systems can make a big difference to boost your profits during the holiday season.
  • Marketing: If you want to maximize sales when consumers are shopping for the holidays, then make sure to utilize the services of an experienced marketing team. There’s no reason for you to spend time trying to figure out the best strategies. Instead, tap into the services that are offered to bring more customers to your website.

As you can see, there are many different focuses that you might choose for the last four months of the year. There’s no question that the financial health and organization of your company should be the top priority. Once you have the right financial system in place, then you will know how much cash flow is available to support the other services that are needed to help your company grow.

Why Tax Write-Offs Before the End of the Year?

It is common for business owners to procrastinate tax strategies until the tax deadlines are looming. But, the truth is that right now is the best time of year to evaluate your situation so that you can manage your spending before the year ends.

For example, if you’ve had strong sales numbers in 2018, then it means that you might be facing a higher-than-normal tax bill when Tax Day rolls around in April. While it is great to have high numbers for the year, it can be debilitating to face the expensive taxes that need to be addressed. Work with your accountant to find the right strategy that might offset the taxes that are due.

One of the best strategies is to invest money into things that are needed for the business. If that transaction goes through by December 31st, then it can be used as a deduction for 2018. You shouldn’t be spending money for no reason. But, with a good strategy, you can get access to the equipment and services that are needed for your company, while managing your tax bills at the same time.

Overview of Business Taxes

The most effective strategy to ensure that your taxes are filed correctly, and on-time is to hire an experienced accounting team to handle the work. You should be spending your time on other business activities, instead of trying to decipher tax law and crunch the numbers. Outsourcing these services can be a powerful way to boost your long-term results. The key is to make sure that you hire an experienced team who understands the most effective strategies to use for your business.

Tax planning should be an ongoing process, which means that you need to talk to your accountant more than once a year. Not only do tax laws change regularly, but it can be a burden to keep up with the rules and regulations that apply to your industry. Even though you will be spending money on the accounting services, you will actually save money in the long run by reducing your tax burden.

There isn’t one flat tax that needs to be paid by your business. Instead, a variety of taxes need to be evaluated. Your accountant can talk to you about the paperwork and calculations that are required for all of your financial needs:

  • Personal Taxes: You need to pay income tax on the money that comes into your household. If your business is structured as a sole proprietor, then your personal taxes will be completed along with the business deductions and income. Other applicable taxes include those associated with your personal property and your house. These taxes need to be considered on a local, state, and federal level.
  • Self-Employment Taxes: In addition to the income tax calculations listed above, there are a few things that need to be considered for self-employment taxes as well.
  • Business Income: If your company is structured as an entity, then there might be business taxes assessed by the federal government. Talk to your accountant and lawyer about the structure of your company and how to determine the taxes that apply to your circumstances.
  • Payroll Taxes: When you have employees on payroll, there are specific taxes that need to be managed with payroll processing. Not only do you need to calculate the right deductions from the employee paychecks, including Medicare and social security. But, you also need to calculate the company’s burden as well. Then, regular payments need to be made to the government. The timing of these payments varies on the size of your company and the number of employees.

Possible Tax Deductions for Fourth Quarter

If you experienced higher than anticipated profits this year, then an effective tax planning strategy is to speed up the timeline for purchases that are scheduled for next year. Shifting the timing of these purchases can help to offset the tax burden in the current calendar year, giving you more time to figure out your strategy for 2019.

On the other hand, if your revenue was lower than anticipated, then you might hold off on certain expenses until the New Year. Since your tax burden will be lower than normal this year, it might be beneficial to wait until January before putting money into equipment and other costs that might be needed for your company.

Keep in mind that a dollar spent rarely equates to a dollar that is saved on your tax bill. So, it doesn’t always make sense to come up with artificial expenses in an effort to reduce your tax burden.

Here are some of the expenses that might help with your deductions this year:

  • Computers, Cell Phones, and Other Electronics: Staying up-to-date with your equipment is essential so that you don’t run into problems due to outdated electronics. You might watch the Black Friday sales to find discounts on laptops or cell phones for your office staff. Everyone will be glad to have the upgrades for their equipment, and you will be glad to take advantage of the write-off before the end of the year.
  • Retirement Contributions: Certain retirement accounts allow you to set money aside tax-free. Talk to your accountant about potential retirement strategies that can be used.
  • Furniture: If your office furniture is outdated, then it might be time to invest in a new style. First-impressions matter when customers come to your office. So, you should always be sure that you are creating a good impression with interior décor that is trendy and welcoming.
  • Office Supplies: Are you running low on printer paper or pens? Put in your order at the local office supply store before the end of the year. Also, look at other expenses that might be needed, such as a new printer, filing cabinets, and more.
  • Software and Digital Subscriptions: We live in a digital world, making it hard for any business to avoid ongoing subscription services. The truth is that these tools can be helpful when you find the right services needed for your company. Don’t be shy to invest money in training courses as well as monthly subscriptions that are necessary for your business model. Examples include accounting programs, design software, stock photos, and more.
  • Insurance Coverage: A good insurance policy can go a long way to protect your company in times of emergency. Review your insurance coverage to see if anything needs to be changed to increase your coverage.
  • Travel and Entertainment: If you are thinking about attending an industry conference, then right now might be the perfect time to book the flights and hotel rooms. A portion of these expenses can be written off on your taxes.

What questions do you have about your business tax strategy? Talk to us at Easier Accounting for personalized recommendations. We are here to answer your questions: (888) 620-0770

9 Tips to Create a Modern Bookkeeping and Accounting System

Is your company keeping up with the trends in the bookkeeping and accounting industry? Or, are you stuck in the past with outdated financial systems? If you haven’t stepped into the current business trends with online accounting and financial software systems, then right now is the best time to talk to an experienced team for personalized advice.

Yes, the transition to a new bookkeeping and accounting system can be painful in the beginning. Anytime you are making major changes to your business systems; you will experience growing pains and other adjustments that need to be addressed. But, these changes are worth the effort because of the long-term benefits that are available for your company.

Benefits of Modern Bookkeeping Systems

Why does it matter if you update your financial systems? Here are a few benefits that you can expect when you implement some of the latest advances in the industry:

  • Easy financial tracking
  • Reducing busy work
  • Automated reports
  • Digital access from any location
  • User-friendly solutions
  • Security for financial records
  • Simplified payroll processing

These are just a few benefits of implementing a modern bookkeeping and accounting system. As you adjust to the new processes, you will find that there are countless benefits that can support your business goals.

Strategies to Improve Your Bookkeeping and Accounting Processes

So, what are the changes that need to be made to improve your bookkeeping and accounting system? Here are a few things that should be considered for your small business:

  1. Eliminate the Paper: The digital world allows you to keep online records for everything in your company. Eliminating the paperwork can reduce the clutter in your office. Not only will you save time on filing, but you don’t have to stress about shredding all of the documents after you are finished. Going paperless means that you have an online, cloud-based accounting program that can be used to manage all of the transactions that move through your account. You have the freedom to access the accounting information from any location, making it simple to keep up with the day-to-day bookkeeping tasks that need to be addressed.
  2. Simple Invoicing and Tracking: How often do you delay payments received from customers because you don’t keep up with invoicing and payment tracking? It is easy to be distracted by other responsibilities in your business. But, invoicing is an important thing that shouldn’t be delayed or overlooked. Implementing a new, digital bookkeeping and accounting system is the best solution so that you always send invoices and payment requests on time.
  3. Separating Financial Accounts: One of the problems that small business owners encounter is the overlap that happens with personal and business finances. Even if you run a home-based business, you need to be careful about creating a distinction between money that is spent for business purposes and money that is used for personal transactions. A digital accounting and bookkeeping system can help you reduce the complications that occur when these expenses are comingled. This step is essential if you want to help your business grow in the future.
  4. Tax Calculations and Preparations: A poor financial tracking system can make it difficult to set funds aside to cover upcoming tax payments. There is no way to avoid tax burden, and you could be facing big issues if you aren’t prepared to make the payments when the deadlines approach. An automated system helps with these tax calculations. At the same time, you can implement a transfer into a savings account to ensure that the funds are available when the tax payments are due.
  5. Easy Bank Reconciliation: Keeping up with the daily and weekly transactions is good. But, it is essential that you are consistent to schedule monthly reconciliations as well. Not only will these reconciliation efforts help you identify potential errors in the transactions and processing. But, you can also find patterns that could indicate possible fraud or theft in the industry. Mistakes will be made at times, but these issues are easy to fix when you have a good reconciliation system in place.
  6. Improve Cash Flow: Is the money always available when it is time to pay for overhead expenses or business costs that are necessary to keep the company running? Cashflow is the lifeblood of your company. If you are struggling with cash flow, then you might be headed to a path that goes nowhere in the future. The best thing that you can do is implement the right system that helps you keep track of cash flow. Then, you can sleep easy at night knowing that the money will be there when it is needed for upcoming payments.
  7. Reduce Cash Transactions: While it might be convenient to have cash in your pocket for small expenses, the use of cash can increase the risk of errors and mistakes with the financial system. It’s hard to know how much you are spending if all of the transactions are managed with cash. Instead, implement a digital system so that you have a paper trail that shows the transactions and categories for your spending.
  8. Boost Tax Write-Offs: If transactions are overlooked during the year, then there is a risk that you might miss out on potential tax write-offs that are available for your company. A digital bookkeeping and accounting system is a good way to ensure that you don’t oversee some of the important payments that can be used as tax deductions.
  9. Integrated Systems: Not only do you need a good way to track the bookkeeping information, but you need to be sure that your new system can integrate with the other tools that are used in your business. For example, make sure that the software can sync with your point of sale system, website sales, and payroll processing. These integrations might seem small, but they can have a significant impact on the simplicity of your future business processes. Put together the right program now so that you can save the stress and headaches in the future.

The Right Services to Implement a Good Accounting System

Paying for an accounting software might seem like a success for your company. But, you won’t reap all of the benefits unless you have a good accounting team to offer recommendations and advice on how the system will be best used for your needs. The right setup and implementation are essential to ensure that you are starting on a good foot.

It is helpful to have ongoing accounting and bookkeeping services to make sure that you are staying on-track going forward. Your accounting team will keep up with the transactions that are moving through the computer program. Any time you need additional information about the financial success of your company, you will find it easy to run a report and see the overview and cash balances.

There are many opportunities available to improve your bookkeeping and accounting systems. But, it is hard to know the best solutions for your company if you don’t have a lot of experience in the industry. Instead of assuming that a specific software program is right for your needs, it is important that you talk to industry professionals for personal recommendations.

Choosing the Right Software Program and Accounting Team

In most cases, you will be making a premature decision by choosing a software program before discussing your options with a professional accounting team. Instead of navigating the financial industry by yourself, consider the advantages of talking to an experienced accounting professional who can offer personalized recommendations.

Not only can you tap into the hands-on experience of someone who has been working in the business for many years. But, you can also benefit from selecting an accounting service that specializes in businesses that are similar to yours. For example, if you are an entrepreneur or small business owner, then it is best to find an accounting team that works with other small businesses. Don’t make the mistake of hiring an accounting firm that specializes in big corporate bookkeeping.

Easier Accounting is Here to Help

We understand the challenges that you face when you are working on business financial systems. If you are ready to upgrade your bookkeeping and accounting systems, then we are here to assist with anything that you need.

Our team has many years of experience helping small business owners with some of the most challenging aspects of running a company. By creating a strong financial foundation, you can rest assured to know that your business is set up to succeed in the future. We can help with these plans so that you don’t have to worry about the transaction management and other bookkeeping details that need to be addressed on a regular basis.

For more information, it is time to talk to our team of experts at Easier Accounting. Not only do we offer general bookkeeping and accounting services, but we are here to assist with customized financial services based on the needs of your company. Contact us right away to see how we can help: (888) 620-0770

Guide for Business Owners: When to Hire an Accountant

As your business grows, how do you know the right timing to hire an accountant? Many business owners struggle with the commitment to outsourcing. It makes sense that you need the additional help. But, the cost of the service is often the reason the decision is delayed.

As we interact with small business owners, the answers to this question vary depending on the size of the company, the recent growth, and anticipated trends in the future. Often, some specific events or situations triggered the idea to hire an accountant. So, it is important that you talk to a finance professional to see if the services are needed for your company right now.

Why Business Owners Delay Accounting Services

Finances and cash flow are a foundational aspect of the future success of your company. So, why do many business owners delay accounting services? Here are some of the common reasons why people procrastinate this service:

  • Costs: Many startups require bootstrapping, which means that business owners wear many hats throughout the day. Instead of hiring professionals for the services, it might make sense to handle everything in-house in the beginning. It isn’t unusual to find a start-up founder staying after hours to pay the bills or process invoices that need to be sent. These strategies help to minimize startup costs. But, eventually you will need to take the leap to bring in the professionals to help with the services that are needed.
  • Cashflow: Another concern lies in the amount of money that will be spent on the accounting services. Can you afford to spend the cash on these services? The real question is whether you can afford NOT to hire an accountant. Even though you will pay for the services, there are many financial benefits that are available for your company: better financial decisions, tax deductions, and more. In fact, it might be costing you money if you delay the decision to start with outsourced accounting services.
  • Control: If a business owner has a micro-managing personality, then they might want to oversee the way the transactions are entered. Even though there are limited hours in the day, you might have a hard time delegating some of the busy work. Just because you did the books when the business started, doesn’t mean that you need to continue these tasks as the company grows. Look for ways that you can outsource tasks that are taking up your time. By handing off these tasks, you can free up your day to focus on other activities and responsibilities that are more important.

What is your excuse for not hiring an accountant? If you don’t already have someone to help with the finances of your small business, then right now is the perfect time to change your mind and implement a new financial system.

Opportunity Cost of NOT Hiring an Accountant

It is easy to see why business owners get stuck on the amount of money that will need to be spent on accounting services. But, these costs are minimal compared to the potential financial benefits that are available from an accountant. Bringing in a financial professional might be one of the best things that you can do to help your company grow.

An accountant will be able to optimize your financial system, helping to eliminate redundancies or things that are costing you money. This process can be essential to tighten down the overhead expenses, resulting in lower costs that need to be paid each month.

Accounting services can also be beneficial to ensure payments from your clients. It is easy for overdue invoices to slip through the cracks. You need a team that can watch the transactions to make sure that you receive timely payments from your customers.

Additionally, these services are essential to help you maximize the write-offs that are available for your company. Are you leveraging all of the tax breaks that apply to your industry? Only an experienced accountant will know the right places to look to find other options to minimize tax burden. It is common for business owners to find that the accounting fees are recovered in the tax savings alone.

Finally, you need to consider the opportunity cost that you are missing when you are spending your limited time on bookkeeping and accounting tasks. Instead of looking at product development or employee management, you are dedicating your time to busy work. If you keep your head in the books, then you will miss out on potential opportunities to help your company grow. It makes sense to outsource these services so that you are setting your company up for success.

Signs that You Need to Hire an Accountant

Here are a few sure signs that it is time to hire an outsourced accountant:

  1. You Don’t Have Experience with Accounting: If you are sick, then you schedule an appointment with an experienced medical professional. In the same way, it is important that you find someone with hands-on experience to help with your business books. If you are confused by financial reports and you have a hard time keeping up with the transactions, then it is time to hire an accountant. A small business accountant will sift through the information and provide the information in an easy-to-understand format to help you make better decisions for your company.
  2. You are Too Busy to Keep the Books Current: Is there a stack of invoices and transactions sitting on your desk? If you can’t keep up with the paperwork, then it is a sign that you need to outsource these tasks. Even if you can carve out a few hours a week to handle the bookkeeping, consider the other tasks that are neglected within your company. It doesn’t make sense for you to waste your time managing the books. Instead, dedicate that time to connect with new clients or work on your marketing strategy.
  3. You Don’t Know the US Tax Code: Do you stay up-to-date with the changes that happen each year with the tax code? If you aren’t working in the tax industry, then it is likely that you will miss changes that are applicable to your company. Failing to pay the right amount of taxes can result in fines and penalties for your company. An accountant is helpful to identify the right tax strategy, ensuring that you can maximize deductions while staying within the guidelines of the law.
  4. Your Company is Going Through a Rapid Growth Phase: You might have been able to keep up with the bookkeeping when the business started. But, if you are experiencing rapid growth, then the accounting tasks will grow as well. Not only are you facing more paperwork and reports that need to be analyzed, but the increased income can also affect your tax strategy. Make sure that you hire an accountant who can help you move through the growth patterns with ease.
  5. You are Struggling to Maximize Profits: Some companies find that their revenue is increasing, but they are having a hard time keeping money in the bank. If you don’t see that the profits are going up, then it is time to hire a financial expert to analyze your cash flow, expenses, and more. Your accountant will help you identify areas where you can reduce expenses, helping to increase your profit margins.
  6. You are Being Audited: A notification from the IRS about an upcoming audit can be one of the most stressful things that a business owner might face. There’s no way around the messy process that is required for an audit. If you want to protect your company, then don’t make the mistake of trying to navigate the audit without professional accounting services. An accountant can save you time and money, guiding you through this experience.
  7. You are Preparing to Merge or Sell the Company: Whether you are looking at an acquisition or you are preparing to retire from the industry, you need to make sure that you have an accountant to help with strategy. These efforts will maximize the price that you can get for the company. At the same time, your accountant can offer recommendations to decrease the amount of taxes that you will pay from the proceeds of the sale.

As you can see, there are many reasons why you need to hire an accountant. If you aren’t already using professional accounting services, then right now is a great time to learn more about the benefits. For more information, you need to talk to an accounting team that specializes in small business accounting.

There’s no doubt that accounting services are essential for every small business. Instead of risking the future of your business, we invite you to call us at Easier Accounting. We will discuss your needs and determine if our services are a good fit for your company. Our team understands the unique challenges that are faced by small business owners. So, we are always looking for ways to improve our services to match your needs. Call for more information: (888) 620-0770

Tips to Overcome the Most Common Problems Faced By Startup Companies

Even though you have an unbeatable idea for your new business, certain problems are seemingly unavoidable for start-ups. Whether you are preparing to launch the company or you are a year or two into your business efforts, it is essential that you are proactive to minimize the impact of these common issues that are faced by startup companies. A little bit of strategy and problem-solving can go a long way to keep your company moving forward.

Become a Problem-Solving Expert

As an entrepreneur or business owner, problem-solving can be one of the most valuable skills that you can develop. You need to have a clear vision of your goals, as well as a deep understanding of the day-in-day-out practices and tasks that need to be accomplished.

Not only do you need to face big decisions that will influence the future of your company. But, you also need to be ready to think on your feet so that you can solve smaller issues when they pop up. These decisions can impact customer satisfaction, company culture, product quality, business development and more. Even when you are facing a seemingly insignificant problem, these small issues can compound to create a ripple effect for the future.

You are capable of tackling the problems that are holding back your success. As you face these issues head-on, you will gain the skills and knowledge that will prepare you for other problems that might come up in the future. Instead of feeling overwhelmed or pushing the decisions to the backburner, you need to be in the mindset of finding solutions that will create the results that you desire.

Cashflow Difficulty

Most business owners will agree that cash flow is one of the biggest concerns that they face on a regular basis. In fact, a large percentage of small business failures happen due to a lack of cash to keep the company going. Even if there is a potential for a strong profit in the future, you can’t keep the doors open without money to cover overhead costs this month.

Some of the biggest companies started out with limited resources. Research the roots of large tech companies and product developers, and you will see that many of these business ideas hatched in home offices, basements, and makeshift work areas in the garage. As the business idea takes hold, then it is possible to get the funding that is needed to launch the company.

Even if you have a savings account or investor funds to use, startup budgets are often focused on the best-case scenario instead of looking at the worst things that could possibly happen. While it is good to be optimistic about the potential profits, you also need to be realistic about issues that you might face.

As a result, it is smart to err on the side of having too much start-up cash in the bank, ensuring that you can keep things going while you are building the brand. It is hard to predict sales and cash flow in the early stages of the company, so you need to build in an emergency fund in case you encounter problems.

Finding a Balance Between Work and Home Responsibilities

Not only are you trying to launch a business from your basement, but you also need to carry the ongoing responsibilities with your family and home life. It takes a significant time commitment to make a startup successful. So, many startup business owners find it hard to create a balance between the long work hours and quality time spent with the family.

Set a schedule for your work tasks and draw boundaries when it is time to focus on your family. These relationships are important and shouldn’t be neglected! Taking a little bit of time for your spouse and kids can reduce the stress at home, which will have a positive impact to improve your business results as well.

Weak Marketing Strategy

Just because you have a good business idea, doesn’t mean that customers will come flocking as soon as the products are available. It is common for startup companies to rush into product manufacturing and business development, without dedicating much time or money for marketing efforts. Poor marketing strategy could leave you with a basement full of inventory and no funds left to connect with your target demographic.

Be strategic with your marketing efforts. Instead of rushing into expensive sponsorships, radio advertisements, or television commercials, consider the advantages of online marketing to dial in your ad targeting. You need to start with a clear picture of your target demographic, to understand where these people are spending time each day. For example, it doesn’t make sense to spend advertising dollars on Snapchat ads if you are targeting a demographic of middle-class retirees. These people probably don’t use Snapchat, but you might have better success targeting them through Facebook advertising instead.

Gathering market data makes it easier to optimize your marketing budget in a way that helps you connect with people who are interested in the product or service that you are offering.

Do you know who your target market is? Consider the problems that these people are facing and look for ways to cater your products to solve these common problems. If you are having a hard time finding your target market, then it could be beneficial to spend some of your start-up cash to bring in an expert to get you started with an effective online marketing campaign.

Poor Pricing Structure for Products and Services

You need to find the right balance when determining the prices for your products and services. If it is a race to the bottom to win customers over with the lowest prices, then you will never create the profit margins that are needed to help the company grow. On the other hand, over-inflated pricing can scare away your target demographic.

Focus on the quality of the materials and products, as well as great customer service. Excelling in these areas ensures that your customers will leave raving reviews about your company. As you establish a good reputation and show the benefits that you offer to your customers, then you can set higher prices to improve profit margins in the future.

One of the keys to ensuring success for your business: focus on solving your customer’s problems and establish value in the way your products will solve their issues, which will help to solve your business problems. This strategy gives you a stronger basis to increase your prices because customers will see that they will benefit from the purchase. It is a win-win situation when you are looking for ways to support your customers and overcome the common startup issues at the same time.

Jack of All Trades, Master of None

Business owners wear many hats throughout the day. Not only are you trying to figure out issues when they arise, but it is common to take a DIY approach to minimize the outlay of expenses for professional services. There is a saying that if someone is a “jack of all trades,” then they will be the “master of none.” If you are spreading yourself thin with the administrative tasks and busy work, then your top-level problem-solving abilities will suffer.

Instead of letting your time be overtaken by these smaller tasks, you will see that your results and productivity increases if you are strategic with outsourcing and delegation. Plus, hiring the services will give you a team of experts who can offer advice to help you overcome the problems that you face in your company.

For example, if you are dealing with cash flow issues and you don’t have formal accounting experience, then it might be a challenge to keep up with the books and prepare your company for future expenses. Instead of trying to manage these big financial decisions by yourself, it is better to hire outsourced accounting services to manage your books. You can lean on the professionals to improve your tax strategy and avoid common bookkeeping mistakes at the same time.

You don’t need to handle all of the operations of your startup by yourself. Trying to do everything on your own isn’t an effective use of your time or resources. Make sure that you have an accountant and a lawyer to answer questions along the way. At the same time, consider the advantage of hiring a few employees or contractors to assist with the ongoing tasks and services that need to be addressed.

As you free up your time by assigning important tasks to other people, you will be in a better position to give your full attention to the problems that might come up each day. Then, you can be strategic in your decisions to ensure that you are on the path to boost potential success in the future.

At Easier Accounting, we understand that it takes a lot of time and resources to get your new business off the ground. We specialize in accounting services for startup companies and small businesses. Call today to learn how we can support the growth of your startup. Our team is here to help with the implementation of a solid financial and tax strategy, making it easier to keep up with the cash flow that is needed to help your company grow. Call today to learn about the services that we offer: (888) 620-0770

The Serious Consequences of Bad Bookkeeping on Your Small Business

There are many things that you need to worry about as a small business owner. Not only are you evaluating cash flow to make sure that you have enough money for payroll, but you are also carrying the burden of overseeing employee management, budgeting, business development, customer service, marketing, and more. These responsibilities can add up, making it easy for important tasks to slip through the cracks. Certain tasks can be handed in the future, but don’t procrastinate financial matters resulting in a situation where you are facing bad bookkeeping practices.

Bookkeeping and accounting encompass all aspects of the financial side of running a business. It is essential that you are tracking the money that is coming in and going out so that you have detailed information for tax filings, profit and loss reports, and more. Without the right financial tracking, you are setting your business up for failure.

Some small business owners attempt to manage bookkeeping in-house. If you have professional experience as an accountant, then you might have the skills to handle these responsibilities. Even though you have the skills, there are advantages to outsourcing these tasks. For example, it can be a challenge to keep up with the changing tax laws and other factors that impact your finances. Plus, most business owners don’t want to spend their free time crunching numbers.

What Do Accounting and Bookkeeping Encompass?

Many aspects of your business fall under the umbrella of bookkeeping and accounting. If money or value is changing hands, then these details need to be addressed by your accountant. These transactions can include everything from payments and earnings to purchases, sales, and receipts.

The goal of your financial system is to track the money that is flowing in and out of your business. Every penny needs to be accounted for to ensure that you are making the right decisions to support the future of your company. This information is necessary to help you with tax calculations. Additionally, you need accurate reports so that you can calculate your profits and make good decisions regarding the spending and business plan for your growing company.

Are There Problems with Your Financial Records?

Jotting down a transaction on a piece of scrap paper isn’t good enough for your financial tracking. Instead of “getting by” with unproven systems, right now is the perfect time to implement an effective accounting and bookkeeping program. This step will help you overcome some of these common mistakes that happen when an inexperienced person handles bookkeeping for a company:

  • Lack of consistency where transactions are recorded
  • Hand-written accounting, instead of using a computer system
  • Only using manual calculations
  • Overlooking small transactions
  • Missing tax payments and paperwork
  • Lack of communication with a bookkeeper or accountant
  • Organizational problems causing lost invoices and paperwork
  • Falling behind on data entry
  • Failing to complete regular audits and checks
  • Hiring an inexperienced person to do the bookkeeping

Tracking your financial records might be the most important thing that you can do to support the future success of your company. If you let these tasks fall to the backburner, then you will face big challenges that need to be overcome before you can lead your business to the goals that you desire.

Why Do You Need a Bookkeeping Professional?

It seems easy to hire a secretary to oversee the financial transactions. Isn’t it easy to do a little data entry from the receipts and sales invoices? Yes, a low-level employee can oversee some of these tasks. But, they need the training and understanding to make sure that they aren’t missing important parts of the financial tracking.

In addition to the daily data entry, it is also important that higher-level strategy is used to plan for the future. Not only do you need to assess cash flow and profit/loss reports, but you need to be prepared for tax filing. Correct information on your financial reports will have an impact on the taxes that you pay and the amount of money that you can save due to write-offs

An experienced bookkeeper could cause a domino effect that impacts many aspects of your business. Even though a missed transaction or mathematical error might seem minor, it can play a big part in the accuracy of your reports in the future. When it comes to finances, it is essential that you have an expert team overseeing every detail. Hiring a professional accounting and bookkeeping service not only ensures the accuracy of your reporting, but it also helps with the long-term success of your company.

What Will Happen if You Have Bad Bookkeeping Practices?

If you don’t know a lot about accounting and bookkeeping, then it is possible that you don’t understand the serious implications of bad bookkeeping. Here are a few consequences that you might face:

  • IRS Audit: Resulting in time, stress, and money for accounting services to work through the audit. If incorrect information is discovered on your tax filing, then it is possible that you will be facing expensive fines and fees that could negatively impact your current cash flow. The best solution is to have an experienced accountant who will help you follow the rules and avoid the risk of an audit.
  • Cash Flow Problems: What will happen if it is time for payroll and you don’t have enough money in the bank to pay your employees? Costs come up every month for business development, payroll, office supplies, and more. If you aren’t tracking your inflow and outflow, then you might be caught in a difficult situation where there isn’t enough money to pay the bills. These problems can be avoided by hiring a good accountant who will track the records and help you avoid cash flow problems.
  • Poor Business Decisions: How can you make accurate decisions for your company if you don’t understand the current financial health of the business? When you are facing decisions about hiring employees, business development, or marketing costs, you need an accurate picture of the financial health of your company. This information is essential so that you can run financial reports and then make decisions based on the current financial trends that you are experiencing.

Important Principles of Good Bookkeeping and Accounting

So, what should you be looking for when you are ready to hire someone to help with bookkeeping and accounting? First, make sure that you find a team with many years of experience in the industry. You need an accountant with hands-on experience working with other small businesses. For example, you will get better results hiring an accounting team that focuses on small business services, instead of hiring someone who usually does personal tax filings.

Next, it is important that your accounting and bookkeeping team has a good system that is implemented to track financial transactions and generate reports. Everything should be done using a software program, instead of using hand-written records or manual tracking on a spreadsheet.

The system needs to be able to categorize expenses so that you know how much you are spending on various things. Breaking down these details can help you see where you are spending the most money on unnecessary costs. You can also evaluate the most profitable aspects of your company, helping you maximize cash flow by focusing on the activities that are bringing in the money.

A good accounting system needs to account for every penny that moves through the company. There are also taxes and other things that need to be accounted for as well. For example, sales tax, quarterly tax payments, and other details need to be tracked and paid along the way.

Finally, it is important that your accounting team offers a reconciliation of your bank accounts. Even if you are consistent with data entry for the transactions, there are times when the numbers are off, and everything needs to be adjusted. These small discrepancies can be identified if regular reconciliations are happening. This effort is basically a small audit to make sure that all of the accounts match up and everything is in alignment.

Don’s Stress Over DIY Accounting

There is no reason why you should be handling the stress of managing the accounting for your company. As the business owner, you have enough to worry about for the business development, employee management, and more. Let a professional team of accountants and bookkeepers oversee the financial tracking for your company, freeing up your time to focus on other activities that will help your company grow,

DIY accounting is often a bad idea because it results in many problems with inaccurate reports and missed transactions. Instead of making a mistake by handling the accounting in-house, it is better to hire an outsourced team to help.

The Easier Accounting team is experienced in all aspects of small business accounting and bookkeeping. If you need a trusted team to help with your company, then we invite you to call us today to learn more about the services that we offer. We are here to help with the financial success of your company: (888) 620-0770

Is it Better to Hire a CFO or Outsource Your Small Business Financials?

How many people are employed by your company? If you need to bring in a specific skill set to help with your business goals, then the first inclination is often to post a job opening and hire another employee. While there’s nothing wrong with hiring employees, it is important that you consider the needs of your business and all of the options that are available.

Not only will you take on the financial burden of one more salary to pay, but you also need to oversee the in-house management of an additional person. So, you should evaluate your motivations for hiring another employee, and also consider the benefits of outsourcing if it makes sense.

Today we are going to compare the options that you might be considering if you need help with your business financials: in-house bookkeeper or accountant, hiring a CFO, or outsourcing the tasks to an experienced team.

Be Prepared if You Hire Another Employee

If you are hiring an employee to help with business financials, then you probably need someone to assist with basic bookkeeping tasks, such as tracking transactions and cutting paychecks. On the other hand, a high-level executive can be helpful if you need assistance with bigger financial decisions.

It can be a hassle to go through the process of finding the right employee that will fit the scope of work that you need. Plus, you will need to ensure that a good onboarding program is in place to help the employee learn more about the in-house practices that you are using.

On top of the logistics of bringing another employee into the office, you also need to think about the monthly costs that will need to be covered. Most small business owners only think about the salary that will be paid. But, you shouldn’t overlook the additional costs that come with employees: employment taxes, benefits, office space, equipment, and more.

The salary is just the starting point… with many other cost burdens that will need to be carried by your company. These expenses go up exponentially if you are hiring a top-level executive instead of an entry-level bookkeeper. You will spend more money for an experienced CPA or CFO compared to the costs for someone who is only looking after the books.

Outsourcing for Efficiency and Affordability

In comparison, outsourcing gives you the access to the skill sets that are needed without the hassle of bringing another employee onto the team. You can hand the financial tracking responsibilities to an experienced team. But, there is no need to pay the costs of a full-time employee or benefits.

Many small business owners see the benefits of outsourced accounting. These services are growing every year, giving you more access to the best in the industry without the need to hire an employee. It is a win-win situation: accountants and bookkeepers love the freedom of self-employment, while small business owners can minimize costs and maximize profits.

What Skills Do You Need?

Whether you are hiring an employee or choosing an outsourcing team, you need to consider the tasks that should be addressed and the skills that need to be provided. If you don’t know a lot about business finances, then it can be hard to know if you should hire a basic bookkeeper, accountant, or CFO.

Here are a few questions that you can ask to help you identify the skill set that will fill your needs:

  • Do You Need Someone to Manage the Invoices and Paperwork? In some cases, business owners already have an accountant to handle tax filings. But, it can be a challenge to keep up with the invoices that come through the office each day. If you are looking for a person to oversee the filing and data entry, then a bookkeeper might be the right solution. There’s no need to pay someone with more experience if you won’t be using their services for financial analysis or tax preparation.
  • Are You Looking for Help with Tax Preparation and Strategy? Then, you will be best served to hire a CPA to oversee these tasks. A CPA knows the current tax laws and they can help with the strategy of minimizing your tax burden. Their job is to make sure that you are staying in compliance with the various state and federal regulations. In most situations, a CPA will keep the financial records and perform regular audits to ensure the quality of the reports. At the same time, they also take care of the reports and paperwork necessary for tax filing. If you face an IRS audit, then a CPA will assist with the proceedings.
  • Do You Need an Expert to Forecast the Future and Design a Financial Strategy Around Your Business Plan? Then, a CFO might be the right answer. CFOs don’t handle the busy work like invoice data entry or payroll processing. Instead, they are looking at the way the numbers are working out to anticipate the future of your business. A CFO can help with the capital structure of your company, as well as assisting with fundraising and relationships with investors. The goal of a CFO is to help a company sustainably reach peak performance levels, helping to improve company profits.

CPA vs. CFO

The benefits of hiring an accountant are if you need someone to oversee your business finances to ensure that the reports are accurate and you are maintaining compliance. A CPA can also assist with clarification of tax law, as well as preparing and filing the tax paperwork. If needed, these skills might encompass other financial tasks such as bookkeeping, payroll preparation, and more.

On the other hand, a CFO is needed if you require higher-level financial analysis. Don’t hire a CFO if you just need help with tax preparation! Instead, a CFO offers the skill set to bring insight and top-level strategy for the operations of your company. CFOs focus on the future of the business, forecasting, anticipated cash flow, and long-range planning to help the company grow. In comparison, CPAs are usually focused on reporting and accuracy of historical data.

One of the biggest mistakes that growing businesses make is hiring an accountant and assuming that they will get the full long-range strategy and business plan designs that should be coming from a CFO. Accounting services are perfect if you need tax strategy services. But, you need to tap into the expertise of a CFO if you need forecasting and financial strategy.

Best Solution? Regular Accounting with Occasional CFO Services

If you are running a start-up or small business, then the highest priority is to make sure that you are maintaining regular accounting services to keep up with the daily financial tracking and reporting. Your accountant can oversee company assets and offer the technical financial knowledge that you need as you are making decisions along the way. Accounting services are also essential to make sure that you are current with internal auditing.

To sum it up, most small businesses need accounting services for tax preparation and more. But, not all companies need to bring on a CFO. Instead of hiring a full-time CFO, consider the benefits of occasional consultations until your company is strong enough to carry the costs of a full-time CFO. In the meantime, don’t harm the future of your company by cutting corners on accounting services. These regular financial skills are essential to make sure that you are staying on track and keeping up with the cash flow demands for your company.

Accounting Services Will Boost Your Results and Decrease Your Stress

Most business owners will agree that hiring an accountant is one of the best decisions they made for their company. Your accountant can take responsibility for the financial reports. Instead of crunching the numbers, you can turn your attention to the business development activities that will help your company grow.

If you want to expand your offerings and help your company grow, then it is essential that you hire a CPA to assist with your tax strategy and preparation. These services are key so that you don’t have to carry the financial responsibility on your own. Plus, you will make better business decisions when you always have accurate financial reports to assess the current status and anticipated cash flow for the year.

Is it time for you to bring in the accounting skills that are needed for your small business? Instead of spending the cash on a full-time employee, consider the benefits of outsourced accounting. You will have full access to an experienced team while saving money on your monthly cash flow at the same time.

Our team at Easier Accounting specializes in these accounting services for start-ups and small business owners. We invite you to call us today to learn more about the options that can support your business goals. We will cater the services to match the needs of your company, helping to create the long-term success that you are working hard to achieve. Call today to learn more about the services that we offer: (888) 620-0770

Hiring a Business Accountant? Look for These Important Qualities

It is easy to see the many benefits that you will experience when you choose to hire a business accountant. Not only will you save time on the daily financial tasks, but you can also tap into the skills that are needed to maximize the future success of your company. If you don’t already have an accounting team to help your small business, then you need to pick an accounting service as soon as possible.

Do You Need a Business Accountant?

The size of your company doesn’t matter, because you still need to track details such as payroll, expenses, sales, taxes, and more. Most entrepreneurs or small business owners don’t have the knowledge or experience to stay ahead of the numbers. So, they fall behind in the books and face a financial mess that needs to be cleaned up. Instead of getting caught up in these details, hire a business accountant who can track the financial information so that you can focus on other tasks that will help your company grow.

Not only will these business accounting services reduce your stress levels, but they also ensure that you are staying current with local and federal tax laws. You need to make sure that you are staying compliant with the laws to avoid potential fines and problems in the future.

Some business owners see the benefits of working with an accountant. But, they get overwhelmed with the task of choosing an accounting firm. Instead of over-analyzing the options, look for these important factors that will help with your decision:

Consistency and Reliability

When it comes to business financials, the details need to be looked at regularly. It is a bad habit to look at the numbers once and then neglect them for a few months. Instead, these details need to be managed all the time to ensure that reports and details are accurate when making big financial decisions.

Consistent service means that you talk to your accounting team throughout the year. If your current accountant only touches base when it is time to file your annual taxes, then you are missing out on many of the benefits of having a business accountant. Instead, you need to find a team that offers ongoing support and advice throughout the year. These services will ensure that you are staying on track with your business goals.

Look for an accounting team with a long history of success in the industry. This reliability will ensure that the accountants will stay consistent with the services that are offered for your business. You deserve an accounting team that offers timely, efficient services to support the needs of your company.

Industry Experience

Hands-on experience in the industry is much better than anything that can be learned in a book or classroom lecture. Choose an accounting team that has experience with other similar businesses. For example, if you are managing a start-up company, then it might not be the best solution to hire an accounting team that has been supporting large corporations with hundreds of employees. Instead, you will find more benefit by hiring a team that specializes in small businesses.

This industry experience will help you avoid some of the common pitfalls that new businesses face. Since the accounting team knows the potential problems that could come up, they will use proven systems to reduce the risk of these issues.

Systems and Organization

It is a red flag if you walk into an accounting office to see a mess of papers and files. If you are looking at an online accounting service, then you might be able to identify organizational factors in the way ongoing tasks and customer service are handled. Make sure that the team is staying ahead of the requirements, instead of missing deadlines and dropping important things that need to be addressed.

During your consultation with the accounting team, ask about checkpoints and reconciliation strategies that are used to ensure that nothing slips through the cracks. These details are important to ensure that your business receives the attention that it deserves.

Modern Tools

If you talk to an accounting team that suggests implementing a manual spreadsheet tracking system, then it is a good sign that you need to walk away and find another accounting service. Manual financial tracking is a thing of the past! There are so many great accounting software programs that will improve your results and maximize the future success of your company.

Using manual accounting methods means that you will miss out on important information that can be gathered from ongoing financial reports. It is hard to get a clear picture of the financial standing of your company if you are trying to crunch spreadsheet numbers or doing the math on a piece of paper!

The right business accountant will integrate a software program that will stay ahead of the reporting and reconciliations. This system will allow you to see real-time financial details. You have the opportunity to customize the analysis to match the needs of your company.

One benefit of the right account system is that you can avoid potential filing errors and reporting issues. This computerized program will systemize the process to reduce the risk of a manual error. As a result, you can maximize tax savings and avoid potential fines or fees associated with mistakes that could be made on the forms or tracking information.

Current Industry Knowledge

There is no doubt that the bookkeeping and accounting industry has become more complicated over the years. Business owners see the benefits of hiring an accountant because they are unable to keep up with the changing laws and trends in the industry.

So, you need to be sure that your accountant is proactive to pay attention to the changes in the laws and regulations. Tax laws change every year, and there are often small adjustments to employment tax rates, tax filing forms, and more. Unless you are focused on the accounting industry, you won’t be able to keep up with everything by yourself! Instead, you can lean on the expertise of your accountant to ensure that the team is taking care of the details.

Ongoing Strategy

Working with an accountant who focuses on the big picture can be a valuable way to help your company grow. This accounting advice is more than just basic information about how to fill out a tax form. You need a team who can assess the cash flow and current growth of your company, and then make recommendations to match your needs.

These accounting recommendations can be anything from tax advice to ways to changes that are needed for your financial system. Improving your daily habits and regular business practices can go a long way to boost your future success. For example, your accountant might help you see the way your company is struggling with cash flow, then make recommendations about the steps that can be followed to help you keep cash in the bank.

Many aspects need to be considered for future growth. Not only do you need the cash flow and investments to support growing inventory and workforce, but you also need to think about other overhead costs and maintenance. An experienced accountant will help you see the big picture so that you are prepared for any potential roadblocks that might be in the future. Managing the costs and income of your business will help you stay ahead of the trends so that you can take advantage of opportunities when they come along.

Personal Attention

You have unique concerns and requirements for your company, which means that you need personalized service from your accounting team. Choose a business accountant who is willing to have a conversation to understand your needs. Then, the services can be catered to match your business plan and requirements.

These personalized services are important to ensure that you aren’t getting a cookie-cutter approach that won’t work for your company. Instead, the systems will be designed to fit around your business goals, helping you achieve the long-term success that you desire.

Talk to the Leading Team in the Accounting Industry

If you are looking for a business accountant, then we invite you to talk to our team for more information. Here at Easier Accounting, we are working hard to provide the best small business accounting services that will support the needs of your company.

Before you decide to hire an outsource accountant, it is important that you learn more about the company that you would like to hire. As you research our business, you will see that we have built a solid reputation in the industry.

We understand the importance of a solid relationship with our customers. You can rest assured to know that someone is always available to answer your questions and offer the advice that you need. Not only will you receive honest, caring service from our company, but you will be working with a team that specializes in small businesses.

When you are ready for more information, talk to the experts in the industry: Easier Accounting. Call today to learn more about the ways that we can help your company: (888) 620-0770