Often our accountants hear from small businesses around Southampton who are still slightly sceptical about what we can do for them. This is perfectly understandable. After all, if you’ve traditionally handled everything from your payroll to your VAT returns in house, you might think that consulting chartered accountants simply isn’t worth the time. That’s why, on this page, we’ve elaborated on how some of our most popular services can help improve your cash flow and lend a hand in getting your business off the ground, or to the next level.
Self-Assessment – If you are registered as self-employed then you are require to submit a self-assessment tax filing every year. These days, they can be filled out either online or sent through the post. While many in Southampton find they do not require the assistance of accountants to complete self-assessment, we urge you to consider the benefits that professional help can afford you.
Firstly, accountants can help you identify any tax relief that you qualify for, and also the many different things you can write off as expenses, some you may not be aware of. For example, if you work from home then HMRC will accept a £2 per week office deduction (equating to £104 per annum). You can also offset the cost of a new computer, and claim a proportion of your phone/Broadband bill. But these are just a few examples, our chartered accountants can help you locate every opportunity you might be missing to minimise your self-assessment bill. In many cases, our advice saves clients significant amounts of money, far above the sum they pay for our services.
Secondly, you don’t have to spend your valuable time pouring through statements and receipts. We’ll do it all for you. Likewise, we’ll handle any communications with HMRC, which can be tedious beyond belief in many circumstances. Add to that the peace of mind you’ll have knowing that your filing will be 100% right and won’t come back to haunt you. Not many self-employed people around Southampton can afford to spend time and money dealing with fines (if something is completed incorrectly), or having to refile their return. So bring in our chartered accountants, who pride themselves on being able to turn a time of the year that people look forward to with the enthusiasm of a filling at the dentist, into something that isn’t in anyway troubling whatsoever!
VAT Returns – Southampton businesses of all shapes and sizes are required to submit VAT returns every three months. These will detail your total sales and purchases, the amount of value added tax you owe, the amount you can reclaim and the amount that will be refunded by HMRC. Much like self-assessment, certain businesses, usually those with little VAT to pay or reclaim, find that filling out VAT returns can be handled in-house.
But enlisting the veteran accountants at Roger Smallman & Co Ltd to take on the responsibility on your behalf can help ensure you don’t spend a penny too much. While you may eventually be refunded anything you overpay, the process can be slow (HMRC is not well known for its speed and efficiency). This isn’t helpful when margins are tight. When it comes to running a small business in Southampton, which can be an incredibly competitive area for certain industries, even small amounts of cash can be vital in keeping you operational, and fuelling periods of expansion.
Another reason to have accountants handle your VAT returns is it can save you time that can be better spent on the day-to-day running of your business. Is it important that the “ground level” of your business has your full attention whenever possible, as hands-on leaders have been proven time and time again to be more successful than absentee ones who spend their time solely crunching numbers. Also, unless you’re one of our accountants, filing VAT returns and pouring over numbers doesn’t likely fill you with excitement. On top of this, you’ll never forget VAT returns and be subject to a fine, as our records will show when you are due so everything gets filed in time. A fine or two when money’s tight can make the difference between being able to invest in your business immediately, and having to wait a few months.
Payroll Management – If you only have one employee, who isn’t paid over the PAYE threshold, we wouldn’t recommend hiring our chartered accountants for payroll management. Businesses of this size can usually make-do with handling payroll themselves. However, we are on hand if you decide you don’t want to. For larger Southampton businesses, properly managing payroll can be a tricky process. When paying employees over the aforementioned threshold, you are obliged to set up a PAYE system with HMRC, which can be a confusing process for those who haven’t done it before.
Even once you have PAYE up and running, you still have to ensure that everyone on your payroll, from self-employed contractors you might work with, to suppliers and firms that provide “one-off” services for you (neither of which will be paid via PAYE), are paid the right amount and on time. There are many mistakes you can make when it comes to payroll management, like not keeping your records up-to-date or accurate, paying contractors too much, or sending an incorrect invoice. Not only can this result in accidental losses or a poor relationship with an essential supplier, but it could mean you fall foul of taxation legislation. Allow our Southampton accountants to manage your payroll on your behalf, and you won’t need to worry about any of this!