For many people the thought of filling in their tax return will bring them out into a cold sweat. But it doesn’t have to be a tedious time consuming task. Keeping on top of your finances and knowing where you are at with your business is very important. Here are my top tips for staying on top, getting ready and completing your tax return!
Date of submission
Make sure you know when the deadline for submission. Sounds simple enough but many people will forget until the last minute and then have a mad panic in trying to get it done. This is when you are more likely to make a mistake or even miss the deadline altogether. Plan ahead and get the date in your diary, with a plan to complete a month or so ahead of time. If you’re busy this gives you a little leeway if you do have to postpone, but try to avoid this as it could get forgotten.
Throughout the year keep a folder, document wallet, anything that you can carry around with you and have to hand to store all of your receipts and invoices. It is so easy for them to disappear from your pockets and bag so make sure they are kept in a safe place and together.
Keep a tracker of your expenses. I have an outgoing and incoming expenditure report that I complete at least once a month. It includes details of all my finances for my business. It is also a great way to see where you are at with your sales target. By keeping a log means you have all the information ready and gets you into the habit of keeping on top of your finances.
Get online with HMRC
Get online and register with HMRC’s Online Service. Not only will everything be done electronically but it also will automatically calculate as you go along! You can then save and dip in and out when you need to.
Remember to save a copy of your submission as well as the receipt you will receive. You should ideally keep your tax return for at least two years.
It’s not something we want to be doing but it is something that has to be done. The key is planning ahead and getting into good habits to prevent the meltdown and mad dash around the deadline.
If you need help logging your finances or help with submitting your tax return then why not drop me a message at email@example.com.