As a self-employed contractor, you’ll know how tough it is to stay in business. If you’re not busting your guts working on a project for one of your clients, you’re looking for your next job, and if you’re not looking for your next job, you’re doing your bookkeeping at the end of the Tax Year. But if accounting gets you down or causes you unnecessary stress, you should consider handing over the responsibility to someone else. Below, we outline your options…
Bookkeep as you go
Rather than leaving your bookkeeping to the end of the year, consider making it part of your weekly routine so that you’re always up-to-date. We recommend using a spreadsheet or an app, and filling out your incomings and outgoings every Friday. That way, you’ll never miss a payment or invoice and at the end of the tax year, you’ll be able to hit “send” with no stress.
Hire an accountant
Perhaps the most obvious way to avoid doing your own bookkeeping is to hire an accountant to do the hard work for you, but bear in mind that this can be expensive. Depending on the work you do, the number of transactions on your books, and the expertise of your accounting firm, you can spend hundreds or even thousands per year instructing an accountant, so be sure you’re happy with the one you choose before you sign on the dotted line and pay up!
There are so many choices when it comes to accounting software nowadays – in fact, the hardest part is settling on a solution that works for your needs. We recommend that you explore your options and weigh up the pros and cons of different applications and packages until you find an app that you think is user-friendly and affordable. Alternatively, you can look at YouTube reviews from real users who work in the same industry as you to get a feel for it.
Become an employee
If accounting causes you sleepless nights and endless stress, you might want to consider the benefits of umbrella services offered by companies like Evolve Contract Solutions. As a contractor, you can effectively become an employee of a company and have your PAYE tax and national insurance contributions deducted every month before you’re paid, meaning every penny that hits your bank account is yours to keep. Not only is this more convenient than doing your own accounting but it saves you so much time – no more Self Assessments!
Finally, if you simply have to do your own books or don’t want to hand over the responsibility to someone else, give yourself a reward when you’re done. That could be taking your wife out for a meal, treating yourself to a new watch, or going on a weekend getaway. If you have an end-goal in mind when you’re slaving over your books, you’ll feel comfortable getting the job done, knowing there’s something to give you a boost at the end of the short-term pain!
Do you have any tips for entrepreneurs who hate doing their own accounts? Let us know on social media and check back for more advice on being a successful businessman soon.