Alrighty, Entrepreneurs! The end of the year is fast approaching. To help get your books ready to send to your tax preparer, here is a checklist that will help you stay organized in the most hectic time of year. Keep in mind that every business is different therefore this list is meant to only give you some guidance. Most of the items on this checklist need to be completed prior to December 31st. This list is not the end-all-be-all thus when in doubt, reach out to your tax preparer or an accountant.
- Receipts – First you’ll want to uncover the receipts for items you intend to claim as business expenses when filing taxes. It is important for you to have a record of what you are claiming as business expense that way you are able to classify and claim it accordingly plus have it handy just in case you got audited. One of the best ways to track your expenses is using an accounting software like QuickBooks. Otherwise, you’ll have to spend an afternoon digging through filing cabinets, glove compartments or wherever else you may keep your receipts.
- Personal vs. Business Accounts – Hopefully you keep your personal and business accounts separate and you never use one account to pay for the other. However, that typically isn’t the case so you’ll likely need to spend some time looking through your personal and business banking statements to identify charges to your personal account that should’ve been charged to your business account and vice versa. Compile a list of these occurrences and share them with your tax preparer or accountant.
- Bank Reconciliation – You need to make sure that your bank statements reflect your accounting records. Prior to filing taxes reconciling your bank is important to ensure that your records match.
Check Invoice Records – Make sure that your customers are up-to-date with payments for products delivered or services performed. Follow up with customers who still owe you money. You can send past due balances and contact collection agencies if necessary.
- Inventory Balance – Your accountant or tax preparer needs to know what your inventory balance was as of the beginning of the year, how much you spent on inventory throughout the year and what your remaining inventory balance is as of December 31st.
- Fixed Assets – Collect records regarding any large purchases made throughout the year for your business. This would include vehicles, equipment, furniture etc. Your accountant or tax preparer needs a list of any fixed assets sold or purchased throughout the year as well as accurate records of the depreciation value of those assets.
Mileage – For 2017, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car (also vans, pickups or panel trucks) is 53.5 cents per mile for business miles driven.
- Collect W-9’s – Your tax preparer or accountant will need W-9 forms from contractors or vendors paid over $600.00 to prepare their 1099s.
- Lastly, Don’t Forget to Back-up! – Make sure to back-up all of your records so that you don’t lose your hours of hard work
Contact 7M Business solutions for all of your bookkeeping needs. During the most hectic time of year, we’ll make sure that you get your business taxes filed correctly and on time. You can reach us by phone at 405.202.3723 or email Ben at ben@7Mbusinesssolutions.com. Let us take care of your bookkeeping so that you can focus on what really matters. Your business!