bUnless you are an accountant, bookkeeping can prove not only utterly boring but could also take away much of your precious time. Even scarier is the fact that the hectic nature of some people’s lives might make them forget to make their tax returns in time and the consequences could be catastrophic. Whether yours is a sole proprietorship, a small business or even a large corporation, bookkeeping can take plenty of your time. Even when you have employed staff to do this task, the fact is that you did not set up the business to do accounting and the staff you employ to do this could be better employed performing tasks that are core to your business. Bookkeeping errors can be costly in various ways and all attempts should be made to avoid them. For starters, such errors make you fail to fully understand the direction in which your business is going with the result that you could end up losing money. Bookkeeping mistakes could get even costlier if you were to get in trouble with the tax authorities. Penalties for such mistakes vary but in some cases they might lead to imprisonment. When the service is outsourced, the risk of errors and mistakes is virtually non-existent and should any mistakes be made they fall squarely on the accountant. Tax authorities are generally in favor of outsourcing bookkeeping services. The reasoning by such authorities is that since the people conducting the services are independent contractors, there is little risk of doctoring records as sometimes happens when this service is carried out in-house. Moreover, outsourcing saves the business money since this service is an accepted tax deductable expense. When the service is conducted in-house, it is not an allowable expense and it therefore increases your tax liability. Perhaps the main reason that should make business owners outsource their bookkeeping services is the fact that it is very easy to forget the dates when specific returns are due. Should you find out that the time is almost due, you might find yourself doing the accounts in a hurry thereby increasing the risk of making costly errors. When the service is outsourced, there is no such risk – the accounting firm you have contracted does bookkeeping as a full-time job and have a thorough understanding of the due dates of all returns. Remember also that changes in legislation tend to be rather frequent and people outside the accounting profession might be unable to keep up with all the changes. Bookkeeping could be challenging for non-professionals and rather than let it waste your valuable time it is best to outsource it to the professionals.
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Whether you like it or not, the months from March to April are the busiest times for us Tax Preparers. Even after the 15th of April we can’t help but stay pretty busy for our customers who pay us to do daily book-keeping and hundreds and hundreds of Payroll. It’s quite a relaxing moment unlike the busy tax season months; however, it’s also kind of busy enough to make that short staycation really short. If you are a true Bookkeeper, you will definitely be looking forward to a sweet day at the beach knowing that the busy season is only 8 months away.
During a busy tax season, as Tax people, we constantly have to deal with never ending tax returns and scheduling partnerships or S Corporations to start an individual return on a daily basis. This kind of task usually leaves us Tax Preparers in a tight spot because we will have to wait for the partnership’s return due date until the 15th of April is the same with the individual return’s due date so that it would match. By altering the due dates of the returns, it would be easier to clean up the process of preparing and filing the same returns and the same due dates. We wouldn’t be experiencing headaches if our customers would just file for an extension on their returns. But our customers usually think that this will lead to more problems because most people hate extending their returns. Furthermore, the Congress makes it a little bit harder for us to understand the returns.
Okay, let’s not get too over complicated around here folks. Simply put, taxes are just taxes and they can’t do you harm unless you do something really messed up. If you try your best not to cheat the system, then you’re in good hands. I’m not scaring and stressing you out just because I’m terribly stressed out too. No, there’s no need for you to worry about it at all. Actually, all I want to do at this moment is thank our HVAC maintenance company for doing a great job in making sure that our Air Cooling and heating systems doesn’t bog down especially when it comes to peak busy seasons. Having a well ventilated work place keeps us work in a fast pace, and enables us to keep up with the demands of the hectic Tax Season. I have actually seen days where I experienced hardships when our Heating System in the office screwed up. Thankfully, we we have a reliable heating and repair company to go too. They’re only a call away when you want them to check up your heating system. Checking in for regular maintenance saves you a lot of trouble. And if there is really a need to fix a damaged heating machine, you’ll be surprised at how quickly they are able to get things up and running. This is why I still find it convenient to work despite the busy, stressful tax preparation months. If you’re interested in how to find them just do an online search, something like this: “Furnace Repair Spokane” or “Air Conditioning Spokane”
Then write their number down for the next emergency.
I want to start off by welcoming our newest client “Dependable Carpet Cleaning” – They are a Carpet Cleaning Spokane Company. Servicing the entire Spokane area with outstanding service. Check out their awesome reviews on Facebook.
We also have a new sponsor for our city’s youth baseball team “Wall2Wall Cleaning Service” They are a St. Louis Pressure Washing Company. It’s company’s like theirs that keep shirts on our pee wee baseballers.
TAX SEASON IS OVER
I hope that everyone had a smooth tax season as it’s been a couple months since it ended. We look forward to making your life easier when it comes to all tax preparations next year. You may be thinking what are my tax people doing now that their season is totally over. I’m sure they are basking in the Hawaii sun counting all the money they made during the busy time. Now it’s just all down hill until the beginning of 2017 right?
Boy I wish it was that easy for us. Believe it or not, yes the months March and April are very busy times for us but even after April 15th we stay pretty busy. We have hundreds of customers that pay us to do their day to day book-keeping and Payroll. It’s definitely not as busy as the tax season months, but busy enough to cut that Hawaii vacation short. With the busy season only 8 months away you can guarantee if there is a beach vacation to be taken we are on it.
Let’s talk about the 15APR individual returns. You will need Schedule K1 from any partnership or S corporation in order to start the individual returns. These are called the “pass through” entities where the individual holds some ownership interest. Because partnership returns weren’t due until 15APR, the same date as the individual returns – Tax preparers were often left in a tight spot.
C-Corps on the other hand aren’t the same, they are not flow through entities. They usually pay their own taxes. Congress over the last couple years made a couple tweaks to the system to make it easier on everyone. By changing some of the due dates it would clean up the process of trying to prepare and file some of the same returns by the same due date. This change will take effect in 2017 the due dates will be as follows:
Partnership – 15MAR
S-Corp – 15MAR
C-Corp – 15APR
Individual – 15APR
You are probably thinking why change all of this when you can file for an extension? There are two major problems with doing this:
- People hate extending their returns
- Congress is the worstThe first one is pretty simple to understand – A client gets a date in their mind and they expect the tax return to be done by then. If the extension comes from the client not having all the information ready that’s one thing, but if they have done their part to get the tax preparer all the correct information, then the tax return is extended, well this just doesn’t go over very well with the client.The second one is a little harder to understand – What does congress have to do with my tax return and whether it’s extended. We will talk more about this in one of the following blogs. This may take a while.
Without making anything too complicated listen folks – taxes are only taxes. Try your best, don’t cheat the system and you’ll be fine. No need to get stressed out or scared over any of those sometimes offensive words.