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Being an entrepreneur or a small business owner can often mean that you have to be a finance expert as well. When you set up a business as a contractor, sole-trader or limited company, you may have great expectations about the success of your business however are you ready to take on the bookkeeping and accounting too?
What is an accountant?An accountant is a qualified individual who is trained in bookkeeping and the larger picture of finances, including the analysis and reporting details behind it. Their duty will include preparing financial reports, tax returns and help in budgeting and forecast planning on behalf of a company or organisation.
Therefore, if you are starting out in business or currently running your own limited company and do not have a head for figures, it may be worth considering hiring an accountant.
What are the benefits of hiring an accountant for a small business?
ExpertiseAlthough you may ok with figures and organising your finances, are you on top and up to date with the latest legislations and laws? Are you able to dedicate time to keep your skills up to date when software changes or new rules are introduced? To manage this well takes up more valuable time. The benefit to hiring an accountant will mean having an expert look after your finances and the peace of mind that everything will be in accordance to latest tax laws and legislation. If you are self-employed, an accountant will be able to advise if you would be better off becoming a Limited company and will be aware of the different legal structures associated with being self-employed. An accountant will keep up to date with everything they need to in order to keep your business running smoothly. Their job is to be the expert so you don’t have to be!
Completing forms, on time and accuratelyIt’s easy to think that if you’re a small business or sole-trader you don’t have a need to fill in many forms when it comes to your tax returns or other forms that may require completion. However, it’s one thing to complete them, it’s another to do it accurately and on time! If a return is sent late, HMRC will issue a fine - another expense to add to your business costs and one that could definitely be avoided.
Maximise your tax billIf you’re completing your tax returns yourself, you may not have the knowledge about the tax benefits that you are entitled to or how to claim them. Planning throughout the year with business finances will help maximise your tax advantages and benefits. When working with an accountant, they will be able to advise throughout the year of best practice and the best ways to work your business in order to benefit from tax advantages. It’s not a case of completing a tax return at the end of the year and hoping for the best - it’s about prep and planning and allowing your business to grow through all means possible.
Grow your businessAt the end of the day, a good accountant will be there to help you grow your business. They will be on hand to advise and guide where they can and to help you achieve the best financial results as possible. Most accountants allocate a dedicated account manager to each of their clients, so the client has one point of contact that they can build a relationship with and know they can ask for help when they need it. It’s in the accountants’ interest to get to know and understand how your business works, so they can can take pride when your business grows. It’s a partnership where two parties are working together to achieve results.
Every penny counts, and whether you are a freelancer, limited company contractor or sole-trader, hiring a good accountant can make the difference to any business looking to grow and see longevity.