Just like many other cultures and peoples of the world, us accountants too have our new year. While we may not celebrate with our drunken friends all holding hands singing Auld Lang Syne at midnight (although there may be a drink or two involved) we do celebrate one financial year ending and another beginning.
On the 31 March 2017, we said goodbye to the 2017 financial year and say hello to the 2018 financial year.
A new year is always a good time to reflect on the year that has been and to set goals for the year ahead. It also means that the Inland Revenue Department will come knocking to see how well you have done and remind you to pay your taxes.
We are full steam ahead with the preparation of 2017 financial statements and tax returns, but thought it timely to let you know there are a few things that you can be doing to make this process a lot smoother.
Here are some tips for you:
- Bank Statements
While Xero does talk to your bank and allow all those transactions to come through, it can on occasion get this wrong. A bank statement showing what the balance is at 31 March 2017 helps to ensure it is all correct.
- Loan Statements
If you have any business loans, some information is required: the total interest paid for the year and the closing balance of the loan at 31 March 2017. Depending on your bank, that may be a single page summary document, or it might require a few statements.
- RWT Certificates
If you or your business earns interest from your bank during the year, the bank should send out an RWT Certificate. This is essentially a letter that details how much interest you received from the bank and how much tax was deducted from this. Any interest received should be included in your tax return.
- Big Asset Invoices
A big asset or purchase is an item purchased for over $500. An invoice can be uploaded on to Xero when the transaction goes through, or sent to us directly.
If you are a business with stock, remember that the cost of stock on hand as at the 31st March 2017 is required. If you think your stock figures will be less than $10,000, last years figure can be used, otherwise a stock take would need to be completed.
- Home Office Expenses
If you are completing work from home, a portion of your home expenses can be claimed as a business expense. Common home expenses that can be used in this calculation are rates, home & contents insurance, power, internet/phone and rent or mortgage interest. You will also need to provide the total area of your house along with the total area of the space set aside for work related tasks. For more information about this, check out our previous blog Tax tips with MHCO part 1 – Claiming Home Office
- Complete your online Questionnaire
You will have received an email with a link to an online questionnaire which is done through Xero. We need you to complete this (and this is where you can upload all of the items above) before we can start your financial statements.
Remember, Maisey Harris & Co are not your typical accountants who focus on the past. We like to look forward to the future and what better time to do this than the start of a new year.
If you are excited about what new opportunities a new year can bring, we can help you look forward, be proactive and achieve realistic goals. We have a variety of different business development offerings. Check them out here.
Happy New Year!