Happy New Year to you all, we hope you’ve had a lovely Christmas. It’s the New Year but some things remain the same, and that’s the deadline of 31st January for Self-Assessment returns.

 

Self-Assessment is a system HMRC uses to collect tax. For people who are self-employed, with their own business or others who make additional income. 

The dates for Self-Assessment is 

1st April 2016 to the 31st March 2017. With online returns needed to be submitted by

31st January 2018 and paper returns to have already been submitted by 31st October 2017.

 

The best way to keep the tax bill down is to have your paperwork organised. You will need the actual receipts to claim as expenses. Collate your receipts and keep together as HMRC can ask to see evidence at any time. Another great way is to utilise the ISA savings as any interest received is tax-free. You’ll keep your savings on a tax-free basis for as long as you keep the money in your ISA accounts.

 

Higher rate tax payers benefit from additional tax savings when they contribute in to pension schemes and give to charity.

 

An example of a list of records you will need are;

  •          Business and personal bank statements
  •          Records of income
  •          Records of purchases
  •          P60/P45
  •          Rental Income
  •          Interest Income
  •          Child Benefit and Income Support

 

You need many other records to keep, here at Cross Accounting we give our clients a more in detail list of records which we require from them to complete their tax return. This also includes a reminder of approaching deadlines to ensure not to be penalised. HMRC fine £100 for anyone who misses the 31st January deadline.

 

HMRC have revealed a record number of people are filing for self-assessment this year as the numbers are north of eleven million. If you’re a couple of years behind, then do not worry as you’re not alone, we have taken on a number of clients in this situation, and have supported them and brought them up to date. If you’re not sure if you need to submit a self-assessment or you need to complete a return, you can call us on 02920 653 995 or visit our website on www.crossaccountingservice.co.uk to see how we can assist you. 

Welcome to our latest blog. Christmas is around the corner and it’s our favourite time of the year here at Cross Accounting. It’s the time of giving and is there any other way to give your business a boost a grant to get your finance in place.

 

A business or an individual will be given a sum of money for a specific project or purpose. A grant usually covers only partial costs involved. Grants are given depending on your business activity, the amount of jobs that will be created due to this investment or if you are in a specific industry sector. Sometimes grants are linked to geographic areas. Such as those areas in need of an economic transformation.

 

Business Wales can support in finance, take a look at their finance locator to see if grants and other finance your business may be eligible for at https://businesswales.gov.wales/zones/business-finance/funding-search-tool-form

 

You should ensure that you meet the requirements of the scheme before applying for grants and finance. You’ll have to ensure you are ready to put up some of your own money as grants only cover partial costs. You’ll also need to have a detailed description of your project or purpose and a work plan with full costings. We can assist with a budget and full detailed cashflow to secure the finance you need.

 

The application process for grants can sometimes be time consuming and there usually is a lot of competition but on the plus side, most grants don’t have to be paid repaid giving your business that extra boost.

 

If you’re looking for that push to reach some New Years goals, the Development Bank of Wales can support to get the finance your business needs to succeed. Visit https://developmentbank.wales/ to get you ready for the New Year.

 

You will need to have a polished business plan at the ready.  If you would like us to look at your business plan, then you can book in for a free one-hour consultation where we can discuss how to start the New Year strong. Visit our website on www.crossaccountingservice.co.uk or call us on 02920 653 995. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

There has been a change in the VAT Flat Rate Scheme since April 2017. The government are concerned that some businesses are using the scheme to pay less VAT than appropriate. Read our blog to be reminded of the rules and regulations.

 

The Flat Rate Scheme is designed to simplify your records of sales and purchases. It allows you to apply a fixed flat-rate percentage to your gross turnover to arrive at the VAT due.

 

The scheme is for businesses with a turnover no more than £150,000 a year, excluding VAT. The Flat Rate Scheme is a simpler method of working out the VAT you have to pay to HMRC. The flat rate percentage you use depends on your business sector. The correct sector is the one that most likely describes what your business will be doing in the coming year. Click here to find out your sector percentage https://www.gov.uk/vat-flat-rate-scheme/how-much-you-pay

 

From 1 April 2017 the flat rate changes if you’re a limited cost business. The flat rate percentage will be 16.5% regardless of your sector if you are a limited cost business. You’re a limited cost business if the amount you spend on relevant goods including VAT is either, less than 2% of your VAT flat rate turnover or greater than 2% of your VAT flat rate turnover but less than £1000 per year.

 

You will also get a 1% discount if it is your first year as a VAT registered business. If you’re unsure about your VAT and would like to discuss, then please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Summers out and its back to business

 

Summers out and schools are back in. Those 6 long weeks of entertaining the children are over and it’s truly back to business. As summer comes to an end and we prepare for darker evenings, the new season is the best time to plan for your business.

 

The lead up to Christmas is best to note down and plan for the next couple of months. Its best to hand in your paperwork for self-assessment and year end to your accountant so that you can fully concentrate on the build up to Christmas and New Year. There will be no stress on your behalf to meet HMRC’s deadline, leaving you to focus on what matters most, your business.

 

Since everyone is back from holiday, it is a good opportunity to go out networking. This will build connections and get your business name out there. Meeting new people and old familiar faces will keep your business from being forgotten.

 

Get your cashflow and budget up to date, this will help you plan for the seasonal events to come. Having an idea of your businesses ins and outs can shape your business for the busy Christmas and New Year period. There will be a lot of people spending during this period, so make sure your business is always on its ‘A’ game.

 

As mentioned earlier, note your plans down, as it is better to have something written down and in front of you than in your memory. This will help you achieve your goals and remember planning is key!

Methods of Finance

 

In our latest blog, we talk about the best methods of finance for your business. Sometimes it’s great to have that extra push to take your business to the next level. To attract the best funding for your business, you will need a business plan. We are experts in the field of preparing a cashflow and a business plan and can assist you in achieving the best method of finance for your business.

 

Finance Wales

Finance Wales are set up to aid in funding. They offer bespoke debt and equity investment packages designed to boost your business and accelerate growth. They offer three types of packages, micro loans under £10,000 have an easy two-day process. Have a look at their website, 


http://financewales.co.uk/business-finance-/growing-a-business/micro-loans-under-%C2%A35,000.aspx 


for more information.

 

Bank Loans

Bank loans are probably the most common types of finance for you and I. These types of finance are an amount of money borrowed for a set period with an agreed repayment schedule. The repayment amount will depend upon the size and duration of the loan and rate of interest. The terms and price will vary between bank providers. There isn’t just one type of loan, there are many different types, which I will look in to and describe the differences.

 

·         Working Capital Loan – This type of loan is usually required at short notice or emergency situations. This will usually incur the highest percentage of interest.

·         Fixed Asset Loan – For buying assets, where the asset itself is used as a security for repayment.

·         Factoring Loans – This type of loan is based on money owed to your business by customers or clients.

·         Hire Purchase Loans – For long term purchase of assets such as vehicles or machinery.

 

It’s best to talk to your bank or bank manager, as they will let you know the exact amount you can get for finance. The bank managers love an excellent business plan and cashflow, so make sure yours is current and polished to get in the good books of your bank manager!

 

Overdraft

This method of finance is a sum of money extended to you as credit by your bank, set at a pre-arranged limit when your account balance drops below zero. Usually charged interest on any amount of overdraft you use. The terms and price, like the loans, vary between providers. This is a good source to manage cashflow, but it is probably not suitable if you’re looking for long term financing.

 

Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding, also known as crowd financing or crowd sourced capital is usually carried out online. This allows several investors to individually invest smaller amounts of money in to a business. The individual investments are then combined to help a business reach its funding target. Crowdfunding is an excellent option for businesses that struggle to raise finance through loans or the conventional funding methods. Since crowdfunding is conducted online, you should make sure your idea is protected. In return of the funding, investors usually get a percentage of share of the business.

 

You can find more information by visiting http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/help/what-is-crowdfunding

 

Government Offers

Governments usually offer support to businesses in all different shapes and sizes. https://www.gov.uk/business-finance-support here you can find from funding and finance, to grants and to mentoring for your business.

 

Caerphilly council are offering a business development grant. This grant can provide up to 45% of eligible expenditure to a maximum of £2,000. Business must be based in Caerphilly and be in the manufacturing or service to the manufacturing sector, or have a minimum of 60% business to business. For businesses in the Caerphilly area, please look at this link http://www.caerphilly.gov.uk/Business/Business-grants-and-funding/Business-development-grant to get more information.

 

Remember the key to accelerating your business in the positive forward thinking way to get that extra push is to have a business plan and cashflow in place. We offer a one hour no obligation consultation, where we can sit down with a cup of coffee and discuss your business. 


Visit our website on www.crossaccountingservice.co.uk or call us on 029 20 653 995 to see how we can assist you.