Understandably as a business owner there are A LOT of expenses to start and run your business. A common area entrepreneurs try to save a little is by doing their own bookkeeping. However bookkeeping is a vital process for a business and doing this wrong can be financially devastating! If you are going to be a DIYselfer avoid the following mistakes!
- Keep track of your personal contributions into the business! The money you invest becomes part of your cost base and one day you will need to know what this cost when you sell the business or die. Keeping track of your personal contributions into the business will also have an immediate tax impact when you want to withdraw money from the business.
- Missing eligible deductions! You don’t know what you don’t know and that could result in you missing eligible deductions or not maximizing the expenses you are claiming. So what? That means more taxes paid (or not enough loss recorded!). This is a hard one to learn on your own and some accountants or business development centers do offer courses on exactly this.
- Not preparing financial statements! If you are just using an excel spreadsheet and putting your expenses under the right column heading; unfortunately this is not going to be helpful. Yes you have a grand total at the end of the month, and you can use this to make an income statement, but what you are lacking is the ability to make a balance sheet. This will be of greater consequence if you ever need to ask for a bank loan, investors or want to sell the business – they will want to see a complete set of financial statements.
- Mixing personal and business finances. If you don’t separate the activities of the business from your personal activities it will be virtually impossible for you to truly understand how your business is doing. Did you spend that money investing back into the business… or did you spend it on personal activities? Plus if everything is combined the CRA then will access everything if they are auditing you. Treat the business – mentally and physically – as a separate entity and keep a proper paper trail of activities between business You and personal You.
These mistakes are by no means the full list of common mistakes. But each of these has a significant tax impact and business impact for you often immediately and in the future.
“Behind Every Great Business is a Great Accountant”
For more information on how to keep your business tax efficient, or to get a consultation on whether you are making all the right tax choices for your business, contact Dharna CPA. www.dharnacpa.ca. Info@dharnacpa.ca