Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Post Election Budget 2010

June 23rd, 2010
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Our summary of what was in the post election Budget yesterday, 22 June 2010, is now available to download. Should you wish to discuss anything with us, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Post Election Budget 2010 (1302)


Budget 2010 – our views

March 25th, 2010
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Our summary of what was in the Budget yesterday, 24 March 2010, is now available to download from our website.

The Budget didn’t contain any real surprises. There is some help for smaller businesses included in the budget but how many small businesses spend their £50,000 annual investment allowances for 100% tax relief, never mind the £100,000 now available?

Businesses are also facing an increase in the small business rate of tax to 22% from April 2011 as well as increased NI costs by 1% from April 2011.

The good news comes for clients wishing to sell their businesses. Entrepreneurs Relief which effectively reduces the rate of tax to 10% (from 18%) for all qualifying lifetime gains up to £1m is now extended to £2m for disposals after 1 April 2010.

Our feeling overall is that this was not a giveaway budget for most of our clients by any means as the measures taken to help small businesses through these difficult times aren’t enough to help the smaller businesses who really need it.


VAT Online

March 16th, 2010
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vat-van1If you are VAT registered, you have by now been bombarded with literature from HM Revenue & Customs regarding VAT Online. It essentially means that any business with a turnover of £100,000 or more has to file, and pay, their VAT online as from 1 April 2010.

The good news is that if you appoint us as your VAT agent, we do the online filing for you. You just need to make the payment to HM Revenue & Customs electronically by the due date or, alternatively, you can set up a direct debit instruction which allows the VAT man to take the amount you owe per your submitted return (and no more!) directly from your account. You also get a few extra days to pay this way, so an added bonus!

Blog, Value Added Tax

Pre-Budget Report December 2009

December 10th, 2009
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Please find a PDF document detailing the pre-budget report highlights below. If you have any queries regarding anything on the report, please do contact us.

Pre Budget Report 2009 (1062)

Blog, News

Get paid!

September 1st, 2009
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Credit control has never been more important. Here are a few tips to minimise your risk of a bad debt:recessionheadlines

  • Outline your terms of payment in writing with your customer before trading with them, and again on every invoice you issue
  • Consider doing credit checks and asking for trade references
  • Consider checking the company’s compliance with Companies House
  • Ensure you raise invoices promptly
  • Ensure that you chase invoices as soon as they are overdue and regularly after that – issue statements or pick up the phone
  • Consider offering an early payment discount
  • Consider stopping all work for the customer until payment is made in full
  • Consider accepting instalments from your customer, getting paid gradually is better than not getting paid at all
  • Use the Small Claims Court if all else fails, but sometimes, walking away and learning your lesson is more important


QuickBooks 2008 Pro

August 4th, 2009
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QuickBooks Pro 2008 for sale

I have recently had cause to use Sage in order to convert a client from Sage into QuickBooks as they now wish me to do their book keeping for them and my system of choice is QuickBooks.

Sage suits some people and some accountants swear by it, but personally I find it inflexible and difficult to run good easy to read reports. Add to that the lack of the ability to drill down to transactions from a report, it had me tearing my hair out after about an hour.

QuickBooks is designed for small businesses but I use it for a company with a turnover in excess of £1m without any problems at all. You are able to edit transactions, run a good range of well presented reports and you can drill down from a report or any screen down to the underlying transaction, be it a sales invoice, bill payment or cheque. It is easy to use. You can teach yourself using the demos with the software or I can offer you training at a very competitive rate. For most businesses, a training session of 2 to 3 hours split over two visits is usually ample.

If you’d like to buy a copy of QuickBooks 2008 Pro Edition, I have one (and only one!) copy for sale for £120 plus VAT. If you are interested, please e-mail me on [email protected] I will update this post once the item has sold.

UPDATE 11 August 2009 – The copy of QuickBooks 2008 Pro Edition has now been sold to Fast Forward Direct Limited, a courier and light haulage company based in Lincolnshire.


Summer is coming!

May 22nd, 2009
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I am really hoping that we have a decent summer this year – we’ve decided that travelling abroad with a child under 2 is just not viable, so the holiday abroad is being put off until next year.

The office will still be open whilst I’m taking a break from 28 May until mid June, but please do ring first if you are popping by to make sure that someone is in. By all means e-mail me with anything urgent as I will be checking my e-mails whilst I’m out of the office (can’t let go, I know!).

If the credit crunch is biting and you are looking for an alternative to the usual summer holiday abroad, don’t forget that you can holiday from home! Just make sure you get all the chores done before you start your holiday, get the food shopping delivered, allocate a budget of what you’d normally spend on days out and eating whilst on holiday, and then plan your break. There are lots of fabulous places to visit nearby, some of which are free.

And do try to forget about work – hard when you’re self employed I know!


Budget 2009 summary

April 23rd, 2009
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The Budget took place on 22 April 2009 and our comprehensive summary of the main points is available to view below.

Should you have any queries following the Budget, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


Welcome to our new website!

April 21st, 2009
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We are very pleased to launch our new website for both existing and potential customers.

Silver Birch Ventures Limited have designed the site and assisted greatly in both the content and look and feel of the site. In addition, we must thank Brace Design Limited for their work in providing images for use on the website.

We hope you like the new website. If you have any comments about the website or any suggestions as to how we may improve it, then please do get in touch using the contact us facility.


Here we go again – Budget 2009

April 21st, 2009
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BudgetThe much anticipated Budget for 2009 is to be held at 12.30 on 22 April 2009. With the recession showing few signs of ending, what can Chancellor Darling do to keep small businesses happy as well as safeguard and help the economy?

We will be posting a PDF of the main items from the Budget on our website as soon as it is available, so please visit us to get the full round up and analysis of the day’s announcements.