Maisey Harris & Co

Xero for Beginners – Training Webinar

When: Wednesday, 20th July 2022 Time: 10:00am to 11:00am Cost: Free Description: Xero has been a game changer for businesses over the last 10 years! Whether you’re wondering if Xero is right for you and your business, you’re just getting started with Xero, or, looking for a refresher of the basics – this is for you! In this webinar we will cover:• What Xero is, and what all the fuss is about• A high-level overview of all parts of Xero• How you should be using Xero, day-to-day• Reconciling your bank account, including accounting for deposits, part-payments and pre-payments• Some tips & tricks that will make you even more efficient! Presented by Taylor Harvey, Accountant and a Xero Expert at Maisey Harris & Co. Registration link:

Xero’s Customer Success Story – Enduring Relationships

In April 2018 Xero NZ invited us to feature in a Customer Success Story. In this promotional campaign, Xero invited us and our client Ken Sines, business owner of Made In Metal, to feature in the success story. Naturally, we accepted and participated in a few days of photos and video at our respective premises. Xero now use the case study and videos to promote on their website and across social media. You can read the full Customer Success Story and see the videos over on the Xero NZ website here:

The Traits of Success – Discover the Three Freedoms

What makes up success is something we’ve had to think a lot about. At Maisey Harris & Co, helping businesses become successful is what drives us in what we do. But we’ve learned that success isn’t as easy to define as simply having a profitable, growing company. If you ask what success means to people, you are likely to get a wide range of answers. Or you’ll find out that they’re not actually sure, that they haven’t thought about it. It is important to know what success means to you.  If you don’t understand what drives you, you will pour time and energy into things that give you no return. You need to know what will leave you feeling like you’ve accomplished something at the end of the day, not leave you frustrated and dissatisfied. Luckily, it isn’t so hard to find out what success means to you. Because, though the question may bring a myriad of responses, in the end, we’ve found that it generally boils down into three concepts: Freedom of Mind. Freedom of Time. Freedom of Money. For some people, it is simply achieving a well-oiled machine that defines success for them. It is being able to go to bed each night and not be kept up by stress. For them achieving freedom of mind is what makes them feel successful. Where they no longer have to constantly be worrying about the next bill payment, or the next issue that may arise. They want to know their business is running smoothly. For others it is being able to walk away from work and spend their time doing other things. They want to have a shorter work week, and see more of friends and family without being called away by their business. Success would be having freedom of time. And then, for the rest, it is seeing their business become profitable that drives them. Watching their bank balances rise, and seeing the cash come in from their hard work. It is knowing they have enough money to pay off all their bills. That they don’t have to worry about an emergency happening, or stress about how tight their cash flow might be. Reaching freedom of money is what leaves them feeling successful at the end of the day. Make sure you identify which freedom calls to you. Knowing what it is will help you guide your business’s direction. It will allow you to set and achieve goals that leave you feeling good, rather than ones that leave you dissatisfied. We’ve learned that, when helping clients create business plans, or set quarterly goals, we need to figure out what success means to them first. Because there is no point working harder to create more cash flow when it is having the ability to step away from your business, and spend more time with your family, that actually means something to you. So take a moment and consider what you think success looks like. And if you want help reaching that, feel free to reach out! We are always here to help, whether it’s numbers that you’d like taken care of, or business advice that you need. Thanks, the MHCO team.

Living above the Line – Understanding O.A.R.B.E.D

Ownership. Accountability. Responsibility.                                                                                                     Blame. Excuses. Denial. Which side of the line do you live on? The acronym O.A.R.B.E.D is one that MHCO has striven to live by for a number of years now. For within it are very important reminders for how each and every one of us should try and shape our actions. But why is O.A.R.B.E.D so important to us? A business thrives on a strong team, and we believe team and client relationships are massively important to success. The quality a business provides is essential, but more and more people are looking for more than just that. Just as employees are looking for more than just a job in a field that interests them – for millennials, it is now the workplace environment that means the most to them. So how do you create a strong team that works and plays well together? How do you create relationships with your clients that they can put their trust in? By always making sure that everyone lives above the line. That we all pick up the oar to guide our way, and acknowledge how important the above attributes are. For O.A.R.B.E.D is more than just another catch phrase to quote for a while, and then forget once its novelty dies down. It is a way to guide our actions, to ensure that we don’t slip below the line every day. So how do we make sure that we use O.A.R.B.E.D? By understanding it, by looking at our own behaviours, and recognising whether they embody above the line traits, or slipping below it instead. Ownership. Accountability. Responsibility. If a job is given to you, rise up to meet it, and take ownership of it entirely. Work hard on it, and strive to do your best on it. By making yourself accountable for the quality of the work produced, you become invested in the job. You challenge yourself, and hold yourself responsible for the end product. The hard part of this is acknowledging that where things go wrong, this also falls on you. But it is this awareness that will cause you to strive harder in order to avoid failure. It is not easy to clasp hold of the oar and take full responsibility of where the boat goes. But whether team member or client, you will earn respect from those around you, as well as encouraging them to do the same. Blame. Excuses. Denial. Three simple words that have a very large impact. Any time behaviour slips towards them, trust and respect is lost, eating away at the relationships that have been built up. Passing blame, always having an excuse on hand, or just straight denial, is all a way of shifting responsibility to someone else. And in a team this can easily shatter goodwill and break the team apart. As for clients? It won’t be long till they are looking to go elsewhere. Where they can get what they need, along with honest, upfront communication with people they can rely on. Focusing on personal growth Over all, O.A.R.B.E.D reminds us to look inwards, at our own actions, rather than outwards at everyone else’s. And that is one of the reasons we like it so much. We don’t want to spend time focusing on what other people do, or trying to pull them down just to make ourselves shine a little bit brighter. We’d rather remain focused on bettering ourselves, and our business. To acknowledge where we may have weaknesses, and work to fix them. Living above the line means all round positivity, growth, and happiness. Don’t you want to join us there? Thanks, the MHCO team

Understanding Tax: Use of Money Interest (UOMI)

Last time on our blog we discussed Terminal and Provisional tax. The fun is not yet over… this week we thought we might tackle Use of Money Interest, or for short, UOMI. So what is UOMI? Use of money interest is the IRD charging you interest on the tax you have underpaid, effectively trying to discourage you from using them as a bank. In their eyes, you have had the use of the money when you shouldn’t have had it, and as such it stands as an outstanding payment with them. When does it get charged? This question is a little bit trickier. Let’s look at our fictitious company, The Mad Scientist again. Remember how, for example one, in their second year they still had terminal tax to pay? They’d paid provisional tax of $29,400, but their total (residual) tax to pay for the year was $42,000. This meant that they still had $12,600 in terminal tax to pay. Well, in the IRD’s eyes, this means that they’ve had use of that money, when they shouldn’t have had. They believe that the company should have kept an eye on their profit, and adjusted the provisional tax they were paying as the year went by. For companies, if their residual tax for the year is $2,500 or more, and they have terminal tax to pay, then they will get charged UOMI on that amount. For individuals, the IRD is not quite so strict. If your residual tax to pay is under $50,000, and you were not aware you should be paying provisional, or you have paid the provisional tax that was calculated automatically from your previous year’s tax return, then you won’t be charged. However, if your residual tax is over $50,000, or you have estimated your own provisional tax and it was not enough to cover your residual tax, then you will also be charged UOMI. How do they calculate UOMI? Let’s again use The Mad Scientist as the example. As already discussed, as they have terminal tax to pay of $12,600 within their company, they will have UOMI to pay on that amount. The IRD calculates UOMI by saying that the total tax should have been paid throughout the year as provisional tax. This means that in their eyes, The Mad Scientist should have paid $14,000 at each provisional tax date. However, they only paid $9,800 on each of these dates, so the IRD charges interest at 8.27% (changed on the 8th May 2016) on the leftover amounts, from the dates it should have been paid till when it is paid. Let’s assume this is the terminal tax due date of the 7th of April the next year. For example: Provisional Tax Dates 1/3 of Residual Tax ActuallyPaid Leftover Days Overdue UOMICharges 28th August 14,000 9,800 4,200 587 $558.60 15th January 14,000 9,800 4,200 447 $425.37 7th May 14,000 9,800 4,200 335 $318.79 Totals: $42,000 $29,400 $12,600 $1,302.76 For smaller companies that may not be earning so much these charges may not amount to much. But if your company is starting to grow their profit, UOMI can be an unwanted sting. So how can you avoid UOMI? The best way to do this is to keep an eye on your profit as the year goes on. Also, UOMI works both ways. So if you happen overpay and end up with a refund at the end of the year, you will get interest back on it as well since the IRD has had use of your money. Of course, the interest rate is much lower when the IRD owes us – 1.62% in comparison to 8.27% – but at least it’s something. But if you don’t want to make wild stabs in the air as to how much provisional tax you are paying, talk to your accountant. Not only can they help advise you on this as the year goes by, you will also have a better idea on how your business is going, and be building a stronger relationship with your accountant. According to Xero’s research, this is a very good thing. Their research suggests that having a strong relationship with your financial adviser is good for your business. We agree. Here at MHCo, we strive to create, and maintain, strong relationships with all our clients. After all, their success is our success. So stop worrying about tax, and UOMI, and come talk to us. We’ll do our best to make tax easier to understand, and take the weight of not knowing off of your shoulders. Thanks, the MHCO team.

Understanding Tax: Terminal vs. Provisional

Tax. It’s the dirty word all business owners flinch at. Newcomers stress about that second year hit, and everyone winces when the lump sums leave their bank accounts. But how many business owners understand tax? And how many newcomers know what to expect? We thought we’d put together a blog breaking down some of the basic facts about tax. That way, maybe, when you next hear the word you feel a little more prepared to face it. The Second Year Sting How many business owners have been warned about the tax hit, come their second year of business? In their first Financial Statements meeting we’ve heard many express their worry over it. After close to a year of trading without worrying about tax, suddenly the shadow of it looms over them and they can’t focus on anything else.  How well their business is going, or how they could improve upon it, falls on ears deafened to all but tax. But what causes this second year sting? Terminal + Provisional Tax If trading has gone well, a new company will have a full year of profit to be taxed. On top of that, if they have done well enough, the IRD now also expects them to make instalments towards the tax they are going to have to pay for the coming year. This means that effectively they are paying two full years of tax in one. For the year that’s just been, they will be paying terminal tax. For the year that is still happening, they will be paying provisional tax. Terminal Tax Terminal tax is the wash-up tax, based on the tax return detailing the final profit for the year just been, the last tax instalment for a finished financial year. In the first year of trading it is the total tax to pay on that profit. But in other years the terminal tax is the leftover tax to pay on the total profit after provisional tax is accounted for. Provisional Tax Provisional tax is tax that the IRD asks you to pay for this year based on your historical profit as the year progresses. You are only required to pay provisional tax when your total tax to pay for a year is greater than $2,500. When this happens, the IRD estimates that for the coming year your profit will grow by another five percent, and instead of waiting for a full year for you to pay that tax, asks you to pay the tax on your profit as you earn it – PAYE for your business in a sense. Let’s break it down further. To do this, we’ll use an example of a fictitious company, The Mad Scientist Limited. In this example we will ignore Use of Money Interest, but please keep watch for our next blog post! The Mad Scientist Limited – First Year The directors at The Mad Scientist have had an excellent first year in 2016. After hunting down every opportunity they have ended up with a profit of $100,000 in their company. This means that the total tax they have to pay on their profit for that year is $28,000. As they have not paid any tax so far, this full amount is due as terminal tax on the 7th of April 2017. Because their total tax to pay is over $2,500, the IRD now expects them to begin paying provisional tax as they go while they are still earning their profit for the year – much like PAYE is paid as a salaried worker earns their wage. However unlike those on a salary, the IRD won’t know till the end of the year when the company’s tax return is filed exactly what the profit is. Instead, the IRD assumes that The Mad Scientist will grow by another 5% to earn $105,000 profit the next year. Based on this profit the total tax to pay would be $29,400, and the IRD splits this into three equal amounts during the year for you to pay, $9,800 on the 28th August 2016, 15th Jan and 7th May 2017. The Mad Scientist Limited – Second Year Example One: Let’s assume that The Mad Scientist completely exceeds the IRD’s expectations, and manage to increase their profit by 50%, earning $150,000 in their second year of business. This means that the total tax to pay on that profit for 2017 is $42,000. Remember that they have already paid $29,400 in provisional tax for 2017. This means that they only have $12,600 left to pay in tax, and this is called Terminal Tax to pay for that year. Once more, provisional tax is calculated based on a 5% increase on $150,000. Then $44,100 in tax is divided into three payments of $14,700 during the coming year. Example Two: But what if in the second year of business The Mad Scientist flounders? This year their profit doesn’t even break $100,000, and they only make $80,000. Based on this, their total tax to pay is $22,400 for 2017. However, due to Provisional tax, they’ve already paid $29,400. What happens now? As they’ve overpaid their tax by $7,000, they will receive this amount back as a refund. This means that for their second year of trading they won’t have any terminal to pay at all. They will still have provisional tax to pay however for the coming year, and this will be based on $84,000 in estimated profit. To Conclude Terminal tax is the wash-up of the tax for the year just been. Provisional tax is paying for the profit you are currently earning. As for Use of Money Interest? I think we’ll leave that till our next piece! Thanks, the MHCO team.

Forecasting: Focusing on Your Business’s Future

Previously on this blog we discussed Profit vs Cash Flow. However, here at MHCo we don’t just look at what your business is doing but also where it is going. The new era of accounting is here, and looking forward is the new black. So don’t hesitate to reach out if you want to know more! MHCo is excited to now be able to offer this option to you. But why should you worry about forecasting? Is it worth it for your business? Listed below are a few reasons we think forecasting is the next step to take.  Outlining the Future As a company sometimes we can feel like we are fumbling into the dark, just focusing on taking one step at a time. Though forecasting isn’t a crystal ball it does allow us to shed some light on what could be coming our way. Now, we can plan the steps we want to take further down the line, and sidestep obstacles that potentially could set us back. Having an idea what the future could hold allows us to plan for it. A lot of our business decisions are based on cash flow. This means we need to know what we will have in the future, not just what is in the bank short term. Money may be looking healthy now, but what about that slow spell that is probably hitting in six months? Will you still be able to afford the repayments on the new business car then? Is business busy, but you think you can’t afford a new employee? What is the cost of not being able to take on extra work in the next few months; is that revenue worth a tight belt on your budget for the short-term? Your forecast is based on prior performance. So as time goes on, how is your business matching up to the trend it has been showing? Forecasting is a good way to keep you accountable, and to challenge yourself. Underperforming? Pinpoint the catalyst that has caused this change. Sales picking up? Identify why – has your marketing finally reached the right ears? Is it word-of-mouth? Or is it a social trend causing it to take off, and how can you make the best of this while it lasts? Does your forecast not show the growth you were expecting? What area is slowing you down and what can you do to minimise its impact? Maybe it is simply not having enough cash on hand to prepare for a period of high demand, and so not being able to deliver. Or is it that you are under-pricing your services, and suffering because of it? Forecasting allows you to see the long term consequences of problem areas you may not yet be aware of.   Financing Your Future Before loans for large sums of money can be arranged, banks and other entities require you to provide a forecast for your business. They need to know you will have the means to pay off what they lend you, and that they are not pouring their funds down the drain. So if you need finance for whatever reason, talk to us about preparing a forecast for your application. And just remember… Debt doesn’t have to be a bad word. Forecasting doesn’t mean just showing you one future. As we all know, the future is unpredictable and many things can change it. If you are thinking about employing another person, see what it might do to your cash flow. What if you want to pay that loan off a bit faster? Can you afford it, or does it put too much stress on your funds? And could a cash injection, from an investor or a loan, be what your business needs? Or is the growth from it not enough to justify the risk? Run through different scenarios, and go into the decision with a little more insight. When you get into business you do it because you’ve got plans for the future. But in the day-to-day slog, it’s easy to get caught up in the short term problems, and forget where you want to go. Forecasting brings your gaze back to the future. It reminds you why you are in business, and what the over-arching goal is. And in our eyes? That re-focusing is one of the most powerful benefits of forecasting. Last, but not least, who doesn’t want to sleep a bit easier, knowing they have a better hold on where their business is going? Not knowing what is coming is stressful. It wears you down, drains your enthusiasm, and haunts you with all that could go wrong. Forecasting means you can have a plan of attack, and a plan is the best way to combat stress.   If you still aren’t sure whether forecasting is for you, talk to us about it. We’re more than happy to go through the pros and cons of it with you! Thanks, the MHCO team