small business accountant

4 Telltale Signs That You Need a Small Business Accountant

By Chris Westin

A business venture comes with many pitfalls and obstacles to negotiate. While, you may be on top of your finances one day, you can quickly lose control the next, especially if you are trying to handle too many tasks at once. Although it may seem like admitting defeat, hiring a small business accountant can help significantly ease the burden of running your own business.

In the early months, your business will be in its most precarious state. This means that simple errors in bookkeeping or accounting could cost you dearly. Many companies will struggle on, oblivious to these flaws, and wind up in serious trouble. Some businesses need an accountant more than others and it’s important you spot the signs before it’s too late.

1. You’ve Made Critical Errors In Bookkeeping Before

Bookkeeping involves a lot of number crunching and a lot of time consumption. If you’ve previously made mistakes on tax returns, filed the wrong forms, or lost track of important documents, you could benefit from a helping hand. These mistakes might seem negligible, but the more you commit them, the more likely you are to end up in financial disarray. You could even be sanctioned with penalty fares for issues such as missed tax payments, which can seriously cripple your chances of growth.

A small business accountant is trained to handle all manner of financial affairs at once. Knowing that a consummate professional is dealing with your money can help take your mind off the bookkeeping process so you can focus on other aspects of your business instead.

2. You’re Wasting Time Creating And Filing Records

When your business first launches, everything can seem like a top priority. For this reason, you can often end up putting routine bookkeeping to one side in order to focus on customer relations or stock purchasing. At the time, it might feel like record keeping is the least of your worries, but it can soon come back to haunt you.

As any small business accountant will tell you, bookkeeping is the number one way to keep on top of your finances. Without detailed accounts of your business transactions, you face the chance of missing out on potential tax reliefs and returns. Getting swept up in the daily running of your business is easy and it pays to have someone working behind the scenes who can keep all your paperwork ordered and up to date.

3. Your Company Is Facing An Audit

During a company audit, the tax office will investigate all your accounts, expense records, and receipts. This is to determine whether the amount you’ve claimed on your tax return matches up with your actual assets. Audits can be a nerve-racking process for any fledgling company and will only be made worse by poor bookkeeping procedures.

Mistakes on your tax return, even honest ones, could see you facing criminal charges. The tax office is notoriously hard on tax evaders and will see any discrepancies as a deliberate attempt at fraud. The prospect of facing your first audit alone is a scary one, which is why hiring an accountant can be a great help. Having an expert check over your returns, correcting any errors and filing everything for you, can make the whole process a lot less stressful.

4. You’re Overwhelmed With Rapid Business Growth

Business growth should never be considered a bad thing. When your company finally starts turning a sizeable profit, it’s time to kick back and celebrate. However, once your business begins to pick up speed, it can suddenly become a very different project to handle.

A small business hitting the big time will quickly attract a lot of new interest. Investors will turn up at your doorstep, your customer base will triple overnight, and you’ll automatically find yourself with a lot less time to spare. Having a small business accountant on board during this initial period of expansion can help keep the rudder steady. Since growing your business equal growing accounts, it’s good to have someone around who can deal systematically with any new financial challenges that your business is confronted with.

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Chris Westin
Chris Weston is the director of Aston Black, a small business accountancy firm in Milton Keynes, UK. Chris has over 25 years experience in accounting and taxation, working with his small team of staff to provide quality advice for companies and freelancers up and down the country.

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