Today is tax day in America! You got your stuff all settled?
Luckily (I guess) my business is still teeny teeny tiny, so I haven’t had any need for a 1099, or giant estimated taxes or other big headaches throughout the year. But my husband also has a small business (that has not yet made money) and a freelance career with a ton of expenses. And we don’t even know what all we can claim as expenses. And we have a mortgage and 401ks and an IRA and all. And my brain hurts.
Many of you know I quit my day job last June (!!). At that point I was making enough money outside of my day job to cover my expenses. Enough – but not more. I’m not rich. I have debt. I am not a trust fund baby. There’s a reason my husband still has a day job.
I am not an expert at this.
Here’s the thing about small business taxes and monies: I have very little idea what I’m doing. So I ask for help.
I am still working on this. Paperwork and stuff. But even just using my PayPal account JUST for Lemon and Raspberry stuff has been SO helpful! I can keep track of exactly which transactions are work-related and which are personal. It helps in sorting receipts and all, as well. I don’t have a *ton* of transactions so I can go through and sort once a quarter or so instead of daily or weekly.
I’ve been recommended Citibank for a small business account, but let me know if you have another recommendation.
You must keep track throughout the year. You don’t really want to do it all in January, right?
I use an online bookkeeping program; originally called Outright and bought by Go Daddy it is now GoDaddy Bookkeeping. There’s a very basic free version, but I pay $99/year for the more advanced option. It imports all the income and expenses that go through your other accounts (right now I have it only attached to my PayPal) and allows you to categorize each income and expense really easily. It gives me estimated taxes I should be paying each quarter as well as lets me run specific reports from all the transactions of a specific category to who my best customers are.
This is basic enough to be easy to use, but detailed enough to be useful. I’m sure there are other options, but this is what works best for me.
I’ve been meaning to find an accountant for a couple years. Between our full-time day jobs + my (very) part-time job + our multiple teeny businesses our annual taxes have just gotten more and more complicated. I asked a couple small business owner friends for recommendations and a week or two ago we met with Jay Kim of Robert Hall & Associates. He totally took care of us, helped us think about more expenses and details that we may have missed and gave us suggestions for the next year. He is my new favorite and I can’t believe it took us so long to hire a professional.
If you are in the Los Angeles area and end up using Robert Hall & Associates, make sure you tell them I referred you. I think you’ll get a discount.
Good luck! I hope you made a lot of money last year!!
What are your best tips for taxes and monies?
P.S. Anyone know the reference for “monies”? Full quote: “Ms. Bitterman? I want to work for monies”