Whether you own a business or are a self-employed sole trader, managing your accounts is key to success. In the short term, you will need to plan for tax payments and check the cash flow of the business. In the longer term, you may want to invest in the business, add employees or new products and be certain you have the right financial basis for this. The contractor accountant is the person that can help you organise all of these areas.
Starting a business
At the start of the process, when a business is being formed, contractor accountants like Taxup can assist with the process. Some offer a service that includes registering the business with Companies House in the case of a limited business as well as helping to register you as self-employed for tax purposes. Another important job is finding the right business bank account as this is a requirement of being self-employed.
From the outset, it is a good idea to start an accounting system and a contractor accountant can assist with this. There are various online software options and some companies even have their own bespoke systems you can use. Whatever the option, you need to start keeping accounts from the beginning to avoid playing catch-up later.
Once the business is established, then there are ongoing tasks that can be completed at different stages of the year to comply with regulations and ensure the sound running of the business. A monthly payroll is one example, even if this is just for yourself. You may also need to send payroll details to HMRC if you have staff.
Annual jobs such as dealing with any statutory mail from Companies House and HMRC is also important and needs to be done within specified timescales. Quarterly reports are sometimes required and everyone has to complete an annual report to work out how much they need to pay in taxes. Company’s accounts need to be submitted and tax payments made.
A contractor account will also be around to help you with questions during the course of the year. You may want to sit down with them to see if the company’s financial position is healthy enough to take on extra staff or add a new product or service that requires initial investment.
Also, contractor accountants can help with matters including pension advice for you and your staff as well as bookkeeping tasks and an assessment of how the business is progressing financially. They can even provide accountancy references for mortgages and letting agencies.
Choosing an accountant
Working with the right person can be crucial to the ongoing success of your business. Be sure that the person is a genuine contractor specialists, used to working with small businesses or sole traders as these types of business have different requirements to large, national companies.
Also, look at their costs and see what you get for this. Cheapest isn’t always best so look for the experience of the accountant and the services they offer alongside the cost to help you make a good choice for you and your business.