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Get Your Books in Order

 

Get Your Books in Order

Get Your Books in OrderNo matter the type or size of your business, the tax man will come knocking on your door when tax season comes among us. It is always best to have your books in order and up to date when that time comes. We are aware this may seem like a hassle to keep up with yourself, but by following our tips below you will be on your way to better, more organized accounts this year and a more successful business.

1. Stay Organized

Becoming and remaining organized is incredibly important when it comes to keeping your finances in order. The good news is, this doesn’t have to be a difficult task. Keeping up with basic spreadsheets showing all of your funds received and funds paid out is a simple way to track your finances. At the end of every month, check to make sure your records all align with the money in your bank account to ensure balanced accounts.

2. Hire an Accountant

We understand that handling your financials is not the easiest task to take on by yourself, which is why we always recommend hiring a professional accountant in your area to take care of the dirty work for you. Through hiring a professional, you can rest assured knowing your accounts are in good hands and you are up to date with all rules, laws, and aren’t missing out on any tax allowances. Through hiring an accountant, you can put all of your attention on growing your business.

3. Separate Personal & Business Finances

There are many benefits when it comes to separating your personal and business finances. Not only will it make your business look more professional, but it will make it much easier to separate personal and business expenses when tax time comes. Depending on how your business is set up, it may be required by law to have separate accounts. Ask a local accountant in your area if you are curious if this is required for your business or not.

Clock - Don't wait to get books in order4. Don’t Procrastinate

Waiting until the last minute to get your finances in order is never a good idea. Procrastinating this task usually leads to additional issues down the road and by then, it is too late to have sorted out. Staying on top of your receipts and invoices will make it easier for you and your accountant to get your accounts sorted out in a timely manner. And not to mention, will help your overall business run more smoothly.

By following the four tips above, you should be on your way to better, more organized accounts. The more you keep track of and have up to date, the easier it will be when tax season comes along. If you are looking for additional help with your finances or have any questions about getting your books in order, contact a professional accountant in your area. David Mills CPA LLC provides expert accounting and financial services to both small and medium businesses, as well as to individuals across Peoria, Morton, and the rest of Central Illinois. If you are looking to get your books in order this year, feel free to contact us here.

8 Reasons You Should Outsource Payroll

8 Reasons You Should Outsource Payroll

Are you a small business owner who is handling payroll processing yourself? While payroll may seem like something that you can operate on your own, there are many demands that come along with handling payroll including keeping up to date with payroll laws, tax deposit rules, and filing state and federal mandated forms on time so you are not penalized for missing a deadline. Outsourcing payroll not only takes care of all of these functions, but it allows the business owner to focus on aspects of the business that directly affect its future. Through outsourcing payroll, multiple benefits come along such as the following.

Outsource payroll1. It saves you time.

Operating payroll services requires a lot of time that many small businesses do not have. From entering data to researching new laws or updates, the amount of time that payroll takes up is not desirable to many business owners. With being able to outsource this service, you and your employees can offer their full attention to the direct needs of the business.

2. It saves you money.

Through outsourcing payroll, you will not require the need to hire someone that is specialized in this particular service, reducing the cost of overhead. Besides the need to hire someone in this field, you will be saving money by saving time. All of the hours of time that go into payroll accounts for hours of work employees will need to be paid for. All of this can be avoided by hiring an affordable full-service provider.

3. No need to worry about payroll tax filing.

Payroll is a complex and risky business operation, especially if you do not have an expert in this field who is handling tasks. Federal, state, and local payroll tax laws are becoming more and more detailed. Without having the time to research, learn and apply these updates, you run the risk of calculating or filing your payroll taxes incorrectly or late. By outsourcing payroll, you never have to worry about these issues again.

Payroll security4. You eliminate security risks.

Through having an employee operate payroll tasks, you run the risk of tampering of company records, embezzlement of funds, or identity theft. Even with the most trusted employees, it is something business owners need to be cautious of. The use of in-house payroll software is also something you need to be careful with and do your research to see how secure your payroll data really is. Through outsourcing payroll with a reputable company, you can rest assured that your confidential payroll data is secure at all times, as it is a huge part of the service provided to clients.

5. Being able to simply understand reports.

Payroll operations can be a difficult subject to learn and understand. Receiving payroll reports tailored to your specific company is a huge benefit when looking to outsource payroll. This way, you will have all payroll information explained in a way your company will clearly understand. Looking into a full-service company who also prepares union reports and others as needed is something to consider for your business.

6. Online payroll processing is available.

Make sure you are hiring a company who can also provide online payroll processing. With online payroll processing, your employees will have 24/7 access to their information such as current payroll stubs or last year’s W-2 forms. This allows the employees to be able to request changes to their withholdings, etc., without having to take any time away from running your business.

7. Reporting issues are taken care of.

If any reporting issues come about with child support audits, Worker’s Comp audits, 1099 processing, W-2, and Wp3 processing, preparation of federal and state registration forms, or any other issues that may arise, the full-service company will be able to take care of it for you. This will also save your business additional time and energy.

Payroll professionals8. The expertise of hiring the professionals.

Hiring professionals who have expertise in payroll will put your mind at ease knowing that they will take care of every last detail with payroll processing. With operating payroll comes many complexities that only take your time and money, ultimately hindering the business itself. Being able to take over the tasks that come with payroll is what a professional company is trained to do and is part of the service they provide to you.

If you are considering outsourcing payroll, consider all of the benefits that come along with it such as saving time and money, securing your data, and allowing you to no longer worry about handling payroll functions and all of the complexities that come along with them. David Mills CPA, LLC provides expert accounting and financial services to both small and medium businesses, as well as to individuals. Our CPAs can assist you with a multitude of accounting services in Peoria, IL, Morton, IL, and the rest of Central Illinois. If you are interested in payroll services or any other financial services, you can contact us here.

Understanding Identity Theft or Identity Fraud

How Common is Identity Theft?

identity theft in Peoria, Morton, ILIdentity Theft (also known as identity fraud) is a type of crime where an individual uses someone else’s personal data to deceive and it typically is for financial/economical gain. It’s more common than we would like to think. In a recent story on NBC News sites a study that says 1 in 5 Americans identify themselves as a victim of identity theft or fraud. The researchers of the study estimate that means this crime has hit 44 million people. That number is eye opening, or it should be. So what can you do to protect yourself from such theft?

1. Know the common types of identity theft: There are multiple ways people can steal your identity. They can watch you from a nearby location (also called shoulder surfing). They can listen in on calls where you give out personal information. They can steal your information off of pre approvals from credit cards that you discard in the mail without shredding, or use email “spam”. They can also use computer technology to steal large amounts of personal information.

2. Take steps to protect personal information: Taking advice from USA.gov, you should protect your information. For example, only give your social security number out when completely necessary. See the complete list on their website located here: https://www.usa.gov/identity-theft

3. Sign up for free credit reports using annualcreditreport.com or creditkarma.com. Also sign up for alerts to changes in your credit reports through these companies.

What if you are a victim of identity theft?

First and foremost, stay on top of your credit and bank accounts and watch for changes that don’t seem normal. You can get your credit information for free via websites like www.creditkarma.com now. If you notice changes that aren’t normal, take action immediately.

1. Contact your bank and your credit card companies. Check for a fraud department and inform them of the problem. Close and freeze accounts, change any logins or passwords associated with any of your financial accounts. If there are PIN numbers associated with any of your financial accounts request they be changed as well.

2. Alert all of the major credit report companies to the fraud. Here is contact information for each of the main credit reporting companies:

Experian.com/fraudalertProtect your financial future in Peoria and Morton, IL
1-888-397-3742
TransUnion.com/fraud
1-800-680-7289
Equifax.com/CreditReportAssistance
1-888-766-0008

3. Report the fraud to the police.

4. File a report with the Federal Trade Commission. You can go to their website IdentityTheft.gov or call 1-877-438-4338.

If you need advice on this topic you can contact the team at David Mills CPA in Morton, IL. We are here to help the Peoria area including Washington, Morton, Germantown Hills, East Peoria and the rest of Central Illinois with all their financial concerns. Identity theft is a growing problem in our country. It’s important to stay on top of your own financial situation to be aware of identity theft the moment it happens.