Do I need an accountant?
Having an accountant might seem like a luxury, especially if you’re a start-up business with a tiny budget. But, what your accountant charges you in fees is more than likely to be worth it for what they save you in tax, time, and the inevitable stress of dealing with HMRC.
Remember, they deal with business finances and long-winded HMRC forms all day, every day. An accountant speaks the language, and has in-depth knowledge of the tax reliefs and allowances available to your business.
What can an accountant do for a sole trader?
You might be wondering if you really need an accountant as a sole trader. After all, sole traders usually only have one tax return to worry about each year, right?
Well, that’s not a bad place to start. A good accountant will help you claim for absolutely every allowable expense on your Self Assessment tax return. It can make a big difference to how much tax you’ll have to pay, usually resulting in a much smaller bill.
What surprises most people though, is that there’s more to accountants than tax alone. They can also do your bookkeeping, keep an eye on how healthy your finances are looking, and help you with financial forecasts to plan for the future of your business.
Plus, being a sole trader doesn’t exclude you from rules about VAT or payroll, which an accountant can also deal with!
Do I need an accountant for my limited company?
Accounting for limited companies can be slightly more complicated than it is for sole traders. As well as keeping records, and submitting tax returns and accounts for the business itself, the owner/director must complete a Self Assessment tax return too.
An accountant will work with you to meet all of your reporting and compliance deadlines, helping to avoid any unwanted penalties.
Beyond the compliance aspect, most limited companies find that having an accountant helps them to be more tax efficient, too.
The complicated tax rules which apply to limited companies and their directors makes it more difficult for non-experts to make the most of tax allowances available. Fortunately, accountants are pretty savvy about such things, and can help limited companies save money on their tax bill.