Accountants can sometimes be seen as too expensive, or a luxury only needed for bigger companies, but there are a number of ways in which accountants are helpful for even the smallest of businesses.
I was speaking to a business owner recently who had prepared his own accounts and tax return for a number of years. He was comfortable using HMRC’s website himself and so felt that it was an unnecessary expense to pay an accountant to submit his return.
It was only on speaking to a member of our team socially that it was noted he was not claiming tax relief for a number of different expenses – saving him over £1,000 in tax each year.
The old adage of ‘an accountant will save you more than their fee in tax’ isn’t always true, but it’s certainly worth checking in once in a while to see if there are any expenses that you are not treating correctly.
Peace of Mind
An accountant won’t always give you good news about extra ways in which you can save tax, businesses will also come to us where they have claimed for expenses that should not be allowable – often on the advice of a friend.
With an accountant you can be comfortable that you are not putting yourself under unnecessary risk of an enquiry or investigation, and you also know that if HMRC do ask to look into your affairs, your accountant will be able to advise and assist in the process.
I met a new client recently who had prepared her own tax return for her rental properties; after the meeting she forwarded multiple emails between her and HMRC spanning over 3 months. She confessed that the stress of the enquiry led her to considering selling up entirely.
Planning & Advice
Whilst there are elements of standard tax planning advice, such as capital expenditure before the year end or the timing of drawing money out, a good accountant will be able to give much more tailored advice.
Setting up a limited company isn’t just about tax; registering for VAT can actually save you money; pensions aren’t only useful when you’re retired.
If you’d be interested in how an accountant could help your business, please feel free to contact us on 0116 242 3400.
Matt Smith, Client Manager