Common Questions About Managing Your Business Expenses

Common Questions About Managing Your Business Expenses As a small business owner or self-employed individual, you must stay on top of your business expenses—both to ensure your bookkeeping is up-to-date, and that you have a clear picture of where your money is going. Below are some of the common questions about managing your business expenses. Can You Use Your Credit Card Statement Or Bank Statement As Proof Of Purchase? Although your bank statement or credit card statement will clearly state that you made a $200 purchase at Office Depot—that is not adequate documentation for tax purposes. While it may seem obvious that purchases from Office Depot would be for office supplies, Office Depot also sells shipping and handling supplies, and cleaning supplies that you may want to include on a different line item in your PNL. Not to mention the fact that Office Depot also sells personal supplies like food and DVDs that are not a qualified business expense. While you may only be required to get into the specifics during an audit, it is better to be safe than sorry. How Often Should You Perform Bookkeeping? This answer varies depending on the size of your business, number of account receivables and account payables. For example, if you are a freelance writer who works from home, and has minimal expenses, inputting your expenses once every 1 to 2 weeks may be sufficient. However, if you are a small business owner who processes payroll on a weekly basis—you may need to perform bookkeeping on a daily or weekly basis to ensure that you have enough in the bank for payroll....

Quick Tips For Saving A Little More Money Each Month

Quick Tips For Saving A Little More Money Each Month Regardless of your hourly wage or annual income, there are many benefits gained from learning how to save more money each month. This could be to save for retirement, vacation, education, or to ensure you have more set aside in savings. As a Certified Public Accountant, I have had clients come to me over the years believing that there was little to no room for improvement in their budget. Below are a few ways to save just a little bit more here and there. Skip Your Daily Coffee Run If you go to a local coffee shop each day before work, or during your break at work, you could be saving a significant amount of money each month. Instead of going to the coffee shop each day, reserve your Café coffee as an occasional treat. To ensure you get your caffeine fix, invest in a gourmet coffee maker—many of which are small enough to keep at your desk at work. Bundle Your Cable, Internet And Phone Cable, Internet, and cell phones are a monthly expense that have become a larger portion of the monthly budget over the last 15 years—so take the time to inquire about reduce costs related to bundling these services together. Also inquire about all of the packages available. For example, when you call to set up your cable, you are most often quoted for the most popular package—but not the least expensive package. With the ability to stream and watch TV and movies online, you may be able to invest in a less expensive monthly...

School Related Tax Breaks All Parents Should Be Aware Of For The 2014 Tax Year

If you are setting aside money for your children’s secondary education, or are helping to pay for your child’s secondary education—the tax breaks below may provide a bit of much needed financial relief. To determine which of these tax breaks apply to you, reach out to a Roanoke, VA tax professional. American Opportunity Education Tax Credit This tax break is available through 2017, and may provide you with up to $2,500 per student who is obtaining secondary education. The credit is designed to help offset school supplies, books and other fees typically associated with schooling. To qualify, single parents may not make more than $80,000, and married couples must make no more than $160,000. Lifetime Learning Credit If your child will not be attending a traditional college, and will instead be attending a vocational school that provides a certification opposed to a degree—this credit may apply to you. The maximum benefit for the Lifetime Learning Credit is $2,000, and it cannot be applied during the same calendar year as the American Opportunity Education Tax Credit mentioned above. 529 Plan The 529 Plan may be of benefit to you if you are putting money away in your young child’s college education fund. If eligible, the 529 Plan allows for tax-deferred college savings—opposed to a standard deduction. You must work with your tax professional to ensure that you are not over contributing to the 529 Plan. This plan is available to both parents, as well as grandparents who elect to contribute to their grandchildren’s college savings as part of their estate planning. Determining Your Eligibility For The Above Tax Breaks To...

Roanoke VA Tax Services

3 New Tax Obligations New Entrepreneurs Must Manage Congratulations—you have decided to launch a new business in Roanoke, VA! Before you go too much further, you must learn the new tax obligations you must manage—above and beyond obtaining your required business license, certifications, and Tax ID number. Keep Professional Spending Separate There is a lot of initial spending that goes into starting a new business, and it is imperative that all of your spending come directly from your business bank account—and business credit cards. This may become a hard habit to get into, but is essential for keeping your taxes well organized. Track All Incoming And Outgoing Expenses Not only must you keep your professional spending separate, but you must create a weekly and monthly Profit and Loss Report (PNL)—that allows you to see where  your money is coming from—and where it is going. To make this process easy, utilize PNL software that both you and your tax advisor agree upon. File And Pay Quarterly Taxes If this is your first entrepreneurial endeavor, you may be unaware that you will now be required to pay estimated quarterly taxes. Your tax advisor will work with you to determine what to pay each quarter, so it is essential that you are setting money aside. Keep in mind that the amount you pay in the first three quarters is an estimate—so if you did not pay enough, or overpaid—it will drastically affect your fourth quarter payment. These are just a few tax obligations that new entrepreneurs may be unaware of. Your Roanoke, VA tax advisor will assist you with others that you...

Why you should not use online tax services

Rethink Filing Your Taxes Online This Year Just because you can file your taxes online, doesn’t mean that you should. While online tax services make identifying tax codes easier to determine than doing your taxes by hand—there is nothing that can compare to working directly with a Roanoke, VA tax advisor. Before you file online this year, consider the 3 factors below. An Online Tax Service Cannot Ask You Specific Questions If you have ever used an online tax service, then you are familiar with the prompts and follow-up questions that populate as you fill out your form. While an online tax service may alert you to the most common tax credits and deductions you are eligible for—it simply cannot alert you to them all. An Online Tax Service Cannot Identify Your Areas Of Opportunity When you work with a licensed and certified tax advisor, they will not only calculate and file your taxes—but will alert you to your areas of opportunity. This could be anything from deductions that you qualify for and should begin tracking, to credits you may be eligible for in the upcoming year. An Online Tax Service Cannot Address Your Long-Term Financial Goals When you select a tax advisor who is a CPA, you can also turn to them for your long-term financial planning. Regardless of your age or occupation, it is essential to consider your long-term financial goals. Your relationship with your CPA can be an ongoing one that you utilize throughout the year—not just at tax time. Filing online may sound more convenient, but a tax advisor will provide you with a wider...