3 Great New Year Resolutions if you are a Contractor or Freelancer
Each New Year after the festivities we often sit and think about how we are going to better ourselves for the following year, what our New Year Resolutions will be.
Usually we are feeling particularly guilty after Christmas about the amount of turkey, chocolate and other goodies we have scoffed. We might also cut out the booze after the increased intake as well as hit the gym for the first few to get started on that ‘New You’. Thousands of people take this opportunity to give up smoking too.
I’m sure 2013 will be no different for our Contractor and Freelancer Clients (as well as the team here at FW Accounting), and so we thought it would be fun to look at some New Year resolutions that could be put in place for a Limited Company or Sole Trader business – these 3 Business New Year Resolutions are perhaps easier to uphold for the full year, and not just our usual January and February stint at the gym…
[dropcap type=”square”]1[/dropcap] Be Prepared for the Personal Tax Return.
Our number 1 Resolution for Contractors and Freelancers in 2013 to ensure you are organised and stress free come January 2014 whether you are a Limited Company Director, or Sole Trader. You can do this by collating your information of all of your personal income before the end of April.
We see it every year, people full of good intentions to get their information to us in advance of July for their Personal Tax Return well in advance of the January 31st deadline each year.
However there is often a flurry of people pulling together their personal income information just before Christmas, a busy and rushed time for everyone.
Personal income includes any drawings you have taken (if you are a Sole Trader) from your business. It includes Salary and Dividends you may have taken out of your Limited Company.
It may also include other income you might include, such as bank interest, personal assets, pension payments received, and any income you may have made from renting out a property. The earlier in the year you have this information collated, for the period April 2012 to April 2013, the happier you will be in December 2013, we guarantee it.
[dropcap type=”square”]2[/dropcap] Keep hold of your business expense backups.
So many business expenses, such as travel, hotels, and business purchases are done online these days therefore email expenses are common. Why not make a separate email folder purely for business expenses, and even some sub email folders for specific types of expenses. This should make it easier when you come to either process this yourself or send them to your Accountant to process. At FW Accounting, we process our client’s expenses on their behalf when they send them in.
But what about those pesky paper business expenses? With the majority of us having smart phones with cameras these days, why not take a clear picture and email it to this same email address? This will save you holding on to that receipt for months on end. HMRC are happy with online kept back up documentation, as long as it’s kept for the full 5 years.
[dropcap type=”square”]3[/dropcap] Try and get your Work Life Balance sorted; Outsourcing.
You might be one of those lucky people who already have their work/life balance set at just the perfect degree.
Work Hard/ Play Hard. Home on time. See your kids as much as you would like. Catch up with your friends as well as prosper in your career. Some manage it all.
However, if you are one of those people who struggle to fit in everything you want to do, because you are busy doing the admin side of running a Limited Company or Sole Trader Business, it might be the right time to outsource this to an Accountancy Specialist (like FW Accounting).
This resolution could work for all tasks that you could outsource for a cost that is less your own hourly rate. Have you been spending too many hours on something you hate, that takes up your valuable time in 2012? This could be the key to unlocking the awesome potential of 2013.
Whatever your own New Year Resolutions are for 2013, we wish you a happy festive season and an enjoyable and prosperous New Year.
All the best from all of the team at FW Accounting.