Category Archives: Accounting

7 Things You Should Never Do To Your Accountant

Most articles concerning accountants offer advice on financial or tax issues. We’re not much different than the norm… until now. This time around we’re going to talk about what you should do for accountants… by not doing the 7 things we list below. Helping accountants help you; what a concept!

1. Never ask your accountant to lie for you

fake check

A common occurrence is having someone show up in an accountant’s office in some kind of financial trouble and offering all sorts of money for them to lie to whomever they’re in trouble with. This is a twofold problem for both the accountant and you.
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You Need To Be Honest With Your Accountant

Accountants and accounting firms are there to help businesses with their finances, predictions, taxes, and in some circumstances help them grow. They can make recommendations on people to talk with to help get you out of financial difficulty. They make recommendations on the types of people you should talk to when you want to invest your money. They can even help you by offering ideas of services you should ship out to others so you can concentrate on your business and career.

J Davis Studio At Work: Jake
Creative Commons License JDavisStudio via Compfight

With that said, as is pretty much true with almost everything else, an accountant’s effectiveness is only as strong as the information they get from their clients. What we’re talking about is being as honest as you can about what’s going on with your business and your finances.
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4 Reasons To Use A Small Accounting Firm

T. L. Wall Accounting and Tax Corp is a pretty small, local accounting company located in North Syracuse, NY. By small, I mean it’s mainly myself and another accountant for most of the year, along with an office assistant. During tax season I bring in a couple other people to help us get through all the extra work but mainly it’s just the 3 of us year round.

We do pretty well for ourselves, all things considered. We’re certainly never going to challenge companies that have hundreds of employees for all clients but there are many benefits that bring clients to us instead of them.
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Operating At A Loss Even When You’re Making Money

Whether you’re a small or large business, sometimes your business runs at a loss. Many times that’s the sign of growing pains and potential long term problems with a business, and it pays to have an accountant helping you figure things out.

However, there are times when your business might actually be making pretty good money and you might think your business isn’t running at a loss and yet it really is. Those are the times when it’s even more important to have an accountant helping you along the way because it could end up saving you lots of money when it comes to taxes, including not owing anything at all, and only your accountant will understand all the nuances.

For instance, if your business runs at a loss in one year the IRS allows a carryover into the next year. If you run your business at a loss multiple years in a row, you get to apply it to future years as long as your revenue and income doesn’t overly supersede your expenses.

You may also incur a lot of expenses in your business even if you’re making pretty good money. If you’re some kind of corporation and the expenses are high enough you might find yourself officially running at a loss, even if things are looking up. If you’re traveling and paying your own expenses you can pretty much write everything off, even if you might not get 100% credit for it, such as for meals.

It’s a very complicated business trying to figure it all out and there’s no reason to try to take it upon yourself. That’s what accountants live for, helping other businesses find ways of protecting their businesses and themselves. The little bit of money you’ll pay your accountants could save you thousands on the back end.

The Difference Between Bookkeeping And Accounting

To some people, the role of bookkeepers and accountants are pretty much the same. People in both professions can track the way individuals and businesses spend their money. They can both tell you whether you’re in the black or the red. Those are pretty simple functions though. Once you need more than that, an accountant is the way to go.

One thing and accountant can do is tell you about your taxes. An accountant can tell you whether you need to make quarterly payments and how much. An accountant will find ways to minimize your tax liability if possible. It’s possible you can get that from a highly trained bookkeeper, but it would be uncommon.

An accountant can consult you on business purchases and other taxable expenses that you can save on. Bookkeepers might know some of that, but there’s no way they would know as much as an accountant will know since it’s their job to know that. If you needed to spend a particular amount of money to offset your income, an accountant can tell you that. If there are certain trips that you take which you can write off on your taxes, an accountant will know that as well.

This is not to negate bookkeepers by any means. A good bookkeeper can help you figure out how to budget your money so that you can get your bills paid. A good bookkeeper will know how to categorize your spending and your income so that your records are clean when you have to give them to an accountant to do your taxes. There should be a great symbiotic relationship between bookkeepers and accountants, while realizing that an accountant’s skills and knowledge have to go beyond those of a bookkeeper. It’s like the relationship between a doctor and a registered nurse. Registered nurses know a lot about medicine, but doctors have to know more and spend more time learning it.

T. L. Wall Accounting works with both companies and their bookkeepers when it’s tax time. Bookkeepers understand how to keep expenses as well as receipts in a proper format so that accountants don’t have to spend more time than necessary getting taxes completed. Of course it doesn’t hurt having an accounting firm that does your taxes also handle your books, but this decisions should always come down to the comfort level of the consumer.