7 Reasons why your bookkeeper is your business’ best friend!

  1. Expertise – Now we’ve all heard of a ‘jack of all trades’, knows a bit of everything, is an expert in nothing, well why would you not hire an expert of their field. They know their numbers and they know them well. Because of this expertise they have when it comes to recording and managing your finances it consequently makes you look good right? Along with all of the advice they can give you regarding paying off debts and probability of future investment. Besides who doesn’t love a friend that does stuff for you?

office-pen-calculator-computation-163032 matrix-3109378_12802. Peace of mind for all you busy business men and women out there, from large to small and everywhere in between there is a lot going on in your mind. Even as you read through this you are thinking of that never ending list that continues to demand your attention. Well the beauty of a bookkeeper? There is one, very large box that can be ticked off on that weekly to do list for you!

stress-2051408_1280

  1. Clarity – it’s realising that for the last 20 years you’ve needed glasses and you FINALLY get them and everything once again becomes clear. You know your books are up to date with everything recorded and in the one place and not strewn everywhere. It no longer becomes a maze or as difficult to navigate like Sydney, yet more similar to Melbourne, straight, easy and direct.

 glasses-fluke-angel-therapy-glasses-glass-golden-53195human-3131802_640

  1. Because of the money of course! Taking the stress out of making sure everybody is paid on time. And oh the weight that is lifted off your shoulders knowing full well that it is taken care of by people who LOVE to be organised! Everybody has a thing and numbers and organisation is theirs! For some of your employees it is really important that they can rely on their pay to be processed on particular days, therefore knowing they get paid on time ALL the time makes them happy with you! Because we all know disgruntled employees do not make it an easy or happy workplace

pexels-photo-545065

  1. The dreaded tax time. That knock on the door from the tax man. A time of year, unlike those part-time uni students and Foxtel (who love their annoying EOFYS ads), the rest of us tend to fear. Just imagine that feeling of being stress free as you hear all these ads bombard you TV and radio, knowing the only thing that concerns you at this time of year is when to get your Foxtel installed.
  1. KPI’s. Targets. Objectives. Accurate books in combination with your new best friend makes for the best tools to measure your finances. Used to compare to your goals and objectives of your business to have an understanding of how financially successful your business has been over a period of time. Your bookkeeper can provide clear numbers of all transitions, making it a simple task to compare inputs to outputs and easier to make predictions regarding the financial future of your business.

 graph-3186077_1280

  1. Because who wouldn’t love another best friend!

LET US MAKE YOUR LIFE EASIER!

Call Superior Accounting to make your life less stressful, and leave your books in the hand of experts.

Let us show you what best friends are made of!

http://via GIPHY

 

The Bit Coin Breakdown

Bit Coin

Because why have a whole coin when you have a ‘bit’ of it?

So for those of you out there who may have been living under a rock and have never heard of the term ‘Bit Coin’, or simply have no clue what it is, I’m here to help.

achievement-bank-bitcoin-730567

Bit Coin is the world’s first decentralized cryptocurrency.

But if you’re like me and that sentence just confused you more, lets break that down a little.

So cryptocurrency isn’t a bank, cryptocurrency is an exchange.

It refers to the digital information that is exchanged in return for goods and services.

You remain anonymous. You are nominated an address, but when we say address we actually mean close to 30 characters that is you.

Its global, none of this snail mail. Location is no problem.

They say that the public key cryptography system they use to secure your information is more secure than Fort Knox, but if any of you have ever seen Die Hard with a Vengeance (debatably the best of the Die Hard franchise, I dare you to convince me otherwise) then I don’t know whether you’d call it impossible, (just ask Tom Cruise). But only you have the key. You as the owner of the private key of your address can send cryptocurrency.

http://via GIPHY

Bit Coin is only one of many different types of Cryptocurrency’s around on the big bad web. But it’s free for the taking, anybody can download it and start using it to exchange cryptocurrencies.

Once it’s gone its gone. Just like that text message you send to the wrong person. Once a transaction is confirmed there’s nothing anybody can do to save you. Not even Bruce Willis. And that says a lot.

The decentralised part of this cryptocurrency becomes important when we look at making international deals. There’s no fuss in regards to working out exchange rates and extra charges. Not to mention those pesky politicians don’t have a say in it. No interference on their part, no crazy hiking of interest rates. It’s independent and transparent.

gold-1013618_1920 bar-british-coins-business-50545

The block chain is what Bit Coin uses to store and track its transactions – a digital ledger of transactions if you will. It distributes digital information without copying it. No one single body can control it, and everyone can edit it. It’s your cryptographic key that keeps you safe! The block chain is like your wallet, and with it being decentralised you are the only one in charge of your funds.

blockchain-3277335_1280

Talk about a big database! It continually updates and is completely public. There is no central information to target to get access. It’s allowing all parties to view and edit the transaction without locking anything.

So what do you think?

Is it worth the investment?

Is this the way of the future?

http://via GIPHY

 

5 simple tips on how to save your money!

Here are some simple tips on how you can manage your money and achieve your financial goals.

  • Learn how to cope with stress without spending

You’re not alone, many of us spend more in stressful periods of our life! This may temporarily cause you to relax and focus on something else for a short period of time, however it doesn’t relieve stress in the long term. We know that reducing your stress levels is easier said than done, however little effort can be used in relieving your stress. Try starting a new hobby, research breathing techniques and in serious cases talk to a professional.

  • Say no to peer pressure

Don’t spend money that you don’t have just because the people around you are! A simple yet hardly completed task by most of us involves bringing your lunch to work, yes eating out can be a tastier and easier, buts it’s not the best option for your wallet. Always remember it’s okay to eat out and have fun here and there but if you’re struggling with money it’s okay to say no to an expensive night out and going out for lunch. If you find it hard to believe that eating out is causing you to be in a bad financial position, keep your receipts and add up the costs at the end of the week so you can find out how much one meal a day is really costing you.

Unfortunately now we will be getting into the serious stuff, as saving money can be a little more time consuming than just completing the above.

  • Make a budget

Look through receipts and bank statements to identify all your regular expenses and then deduct these from your income. Once you see the amount that you are actually left with after being paid, you will have a better understanding of how well you are doing financially. With the money that’s left over after you pay your bills, home loan etc. give yourself a goal of what you need to save each time as your pay check comes in, and transfer this amount into your savings. And always remember, don’t take this money out of your savings account unless it is absolutely necessary! After all it’s called your savings for a reason.

  • Don’t let your credit card control you!

Australia’s credit card debt is around $32 billion, and the interest you pay on these cards isn’t getting this number any lower. Rather than give you the obvious tip which is reducing the amount of purchases you make on your credit card, which we know is very difficult! Set up direct bank account and start paying of that debt, the quicker you pay it off the more at ease you will be and the less interest you will have to pay in the future.

  • Set goals for yourself!

Tell yourself that by the end of the year you want to have saved enough to a buy a new car, a house or even to be debt free from your credit card. Stick it on your wall or in your diary, basically anywhere that is visible to you because let’s be honest sticking to a budget isn’t easy and there will always be temptations out there. So it’s important to focus on that end goal!

Remember goals must be SMART!

Be Specific! Why do you want to save that specific amount and how you will save that amount?

Make sure your goal is Measurable! It’s as simple as attaching a number to your goal.

This flows through to ensuring your goals are Achievable! After having a look at your budget set a reasonable amount of what you want to save.

Are your goals Relevant! These are your financial goals, they should fit into your long term plan take your circumstances into consideration, such as if you are a caregiver or parent or soon to become one. It’s very important to be financially prepared for anything.

And lastly make sure your goal is Timely! Have an exact date of when you want to achieve your goal.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

7 signs of a good accountant

Communication 

It’s obvious when someone is handling your money you need to stay in the loop! A basic but tedious task for some but not all accountants, is answering their clients questions no matter how basic or long they are. A good accountant will not only ensure that they answer your queries within a short amount of time, they will also keep an eye out on your business and check on you to ensure all the questions and worries you might have are solved.

Strategic Planning

A reliable accountant will be one that keeps track of your financial position throughout the year.

You yourself may be one of those people that leave things to the last minute when it comes to lodging your tax return or other financial information, but that shouldn’t be your accountant. Think about it that’s someone you’re paying to be on top of your finances which means they need to be organised and on top of things!

Passing down key knowledge to you

Many of us never really learnt how to effectively budget, there was never an exam for it so it never really was on the top of our ‘to do’ list. However, this is an essential skill for everyone not only business owners. As someone who pays an accountant to aid in your business’s finances, it is expected of your accountant that they teach you and work together with you on how to develop an effective budget.

Keeping up with the times!

From time to time tax laws change and new and effective ways of using financial information are developed, for example we at Superior Accounting Group adopted the cloud some time ago so we could improve our service for our clients. So, in saying this you should expect that your accountants are proactive in keeping up to date with the latest laws and technology.

Time management pro

Meeting deadlines is imperative in the accounting world, they not only have to meet your deadlines as a client but your accountant also must abide by the deadlines set out by the ATO.

Trust

Focusing on getting a ‘smart’ accountant can often lead to forgetting the importance of choosing an accountant that is trust worthy. After all they are dealing with your money! Like any good relationship having trust is vital.

Proactive 

There will always be better ways of completing tasks and an accountant that thinks outside of the box will ensure that they are continually coming up with new solutions to the everlasting problems you face.

Thanks for reading!

 

Thinking about expanding your child’s investment knowledge?

Saving money is great and teaches teens important traits such as self-control, responsibility and independence. However, in this day and age where there is so much opportunity to make good and bad investment decisions online and offline the key to a successful financial future depends on one’s ability to ‘grow their money’.

Forbes magazine found that children are more than capable of understanding investing concepts.

One tip in particular which is quite a simple one is to speak their language! Investing can be tricky in itself so there’s no need to over complicate it, start basic and build their knowledge from there. This can be done by using simple and current topics, for example, explain how and why the same house valued 15 years ago is worth much more now, these basic steps can be a building block for a wealth of knowledge anyone can acquire.

A good way to motivate children is to explain the difference between saving and investing, we all know that the interest you earn in your bank account is not much compared to your potential earnings through investments. However, it is also very important to address the risks and costs associated with any investment and that thorough research and planning is vital before investing.

Although the above information mentioned does sound a bit technical it is necessary, but it’s also important to make investing sound fun! This can be done by through games that are concerned with the stock market, these games can be downloaded on your phone and computer.

Even though these are just a few ideas, there really is no harm in introducing this topic to your children. There’s a world full of knowledge, get kids to embrace it!

Thanks for reading!

Benefits of a Self Managed Super Fund

Do you know where your money is?

A Superfund is your money, a forced saving, but do you really know what’s happening to it? Week after week we receive our pay packets, notice the superannuation section and just shrug it off. But what if I was to tell you that you can do MORE with it! What if you could take charge of it and not only watch it grow, but see it skyrocket!

Well the answer for you then is a Self-Managed Superfund. This means YOU get control of your super, and YOU get to decide where it’s held and how it’s invested.

As with any investment opportunity risks are associated, this includes the fees of running a self-managed super fund to making a secure investment.

Let’s have a look at the benefits of a SMSF:

  • Control

Control over your investments and your money and to take upon an opportunity that arises.

  • Flexibility

The ability to respond to market changes with your investments.

  • Growth

Growth of your super and of your investments! With the ability to garner a loan of up to 70% of the value of a property (for property investment) it now allows you to have the ability to make a larger purchase and investment for a higher return!

  • Tax Reductions

Personal investments come along with a 15% tax on all profits earned, however investments where the income is asset based and supporting a pension income stream may have significantly reduced tax dependant on your situation.

  • Combine Super Assets

A self-managed super fund trustee may combine their super assets with up to 3 other members to purchase assets and investments that you may not have been able to purchase solely.

  • Planning

Self-managed super fund members have a greater say regarding the execution of death benefits and how they are to be paid, and are not binding similar to traditional superannuation funds.

There’s a lot that goes into managing a self-managed super fund, but you’re not alone, we’re only a phone call away!

How strong is your super?

Where could your super take you?

Thanks for reading!

Which accountant is your glass slipper?

Alike many industries accountants can often be specialised.

For example, when we look at the trade industry, you don’t exactly want to hire a plumber to put in a new light socket for you… may not end well.

Or you don’t want to go see a podiatrist for your nose job.

They’re all deemed tradies and they’re all deemed doctors, but it’s all about finding which one best fits you.

And accountants are the same, whilst a lot are multi-skilled, or work within a company that offers the variance, it’s important to discuss your needs to find your perfect fit! After all we don’t want to be walking around in uncomfortable shoes forever do we?

Types of accounting include:

  • Financial Accounting

This is your more traditional accountant, the one that follows your financial transactions as closely as your prep grade buddy followed you when you were in year 6.  This includes your incomings, outgoings and liabilities to then having the ability to determine the financial position of the company. After school, they then grew up to be the people in university that would go through 3 pens in one lecture noting down everything the lecturer said, detailed and meticulous.

  • Management Accounting

We like to think of this type of accounting as those teachers, specifically maths teachers who just LOVE report writing time and the feeling of completing beautifully colour coordinated graphs and charts. They specialise in tracking a company’s financial position, using past indicators to also predict into the future. They use these graphs, charts and reports to make predictions to put your company on a path for financial security in line with your business objectives.

  • Tax Accounting

Now I like to think of the tax accountant as the one to play by the rules. The taxation laws are their best friends and they know them like the back of their hand. Now their job is to minimize your tax liability, but to make sure you’re doing it by the book. These are the ones that could have been lawyers in another life.

  • Forensic Accounting

Now this accountant was the one that loved playing Cluedo as a kid and always wanted to grow up to be a crime fighting superhero or detective, until they realised their laser vision just wasn’t coming through. So, they went to the next best thing to being a super hero, a forensic accountant! They can sniff out anything dodgy a mile away! Using their super power of analysing financial evidence they detect for fraud and embezzlement. They often analyse information for use in legal proceedings.

  • Social Accounting

The one at school that always had a bag full of Tupperware containing their lunch, without an ounce of glad wrap to be seen. One of the newer branches of accounting. This is the discipline measuring a business’ social and environmental performance by incorporating their impact of these factors in conjunction with traditional accounting methods. This has become key for many businesses as it is often a selling point as these factors become ever so increasingly important in today’s society. It’s the old with a new twist!

And so, the list goes on!

Hopefully you don’t have to kiss too many frogs before finding your Prince Charming who has the perfect glass slipper just for you!nature-3056347_1920

ATO WARNS: SCAMMERS ARE GETTING INCREASINGLY CUNNING

This week’s blog will be focused on providing you tips to improve your financial security. With technologically becoming a part of our everyday life it is imperative that we become aware of the crimes that can be committed while using it.

A range of tricks are used to make scams appear authentic. For example:

  • including a legitimate-sounding message at the start of a call, such as the call is being recorded ‘for training purposes’,
  • sending emails that appear to have come from the ATO, which when opened or downloaded infect your computer with malicious software.

These scams are then investigated by the ATO and other government agencies as appropriate, including the Australian Federal Police.” The ATO states that if you are in doubt about an interaction you have had with someone claiming to be from the ATO, or you think you have fallen victim to an ATO Impersonation scam, then it is imperative that you call the ATO on 1800 008 540 between 8:00am–6:00pm Monday to Friday to verify.

The ATO won’t email, text or ask you the following on social media:

  • update or provide personal information, supply your TFN, credit card or bank details
  • send you downloadable files or tell you to install software.

However, the ATO will email and text you if they need to contact you by asking you to contact them by phone in order to:

  • provide additional information for a BAS or GST enquiry, tax return or an application you have lodged
  • verify changes to an account.

What you need to look out for to avoid being scammed!

  • The ATO states that scammers can use Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) phone numbers to make and receive calls from anywhere in the world
  • spoofing phone numbers to make phone calls and text messages appear to come from Australia
  • sending pre-recorded voice messages (robocalls) to large numbers of people asking for an immediate call back
  • sending copycat emails with attachments or links that
    • take you to fake login screens or web pages to trick you to downloading malicious software or giving them your personal information
    • contain programs that record your computer key strokes to get your personal information or login credentials
  • sending ransomware (malicious software) that stops your computer working until you pay a fee – often by Bitcoin
  • spoofing websites or login pages to get your personal information
  • accessing your public profile on social media to learn about you so they can meet proof of record ownership or break your passwords.

For more information visit the ATO website.

Thanks for reading!

 

Purchasing a property with leverage in a SMSF

As property investors ourselves, we continually look at ways to enhance and propel our own wealth. As a Superior Accounting Solutions client, you too benefit from this vigilance because we always consider these opportunities from our clients’ perspective and how they might benefit you.

Many of our clients are active property investors, so we feel it is important to bring to your attention that Self-Managed Super Funds can be borrowed to purchase an investment property. We have already assisted many of our clients to purchase property in a Self-Managed Superfund.

HOW CAN SUPERIOR ACCOUNTING SOLUTIONS ASSIST?

You may be a traditional property investor much like ourselves. As all investors know, the expense of holding an investment property in your own name comes directly out of your back pocket.

This is a fantastic opportunity which will provide you with the possibility of purchasing another investment property, where the expenses of holding the property does not come directly out of your pay-packet.

You may ask who is funding these expenses … by setting up a Self-Managed Super Fund to purchase a property, it allows you to utilise employer super contributions you are currently accumulating in an industry Super Fund.

We encourage our personal Tax clients to carefully consider the possibility of establishing your own SELF MANAGED SUPER FUND.

WHY?? Because you can:

  • TAKE CONTROL…. just as you have with all your other wealth creating vehicles, and become the motivational force to ensure that you achieve your goal of obtaining another rental property, thus securing your retirement future and that of your children, as you can incorporate them in the journey.
  • Potentially access much HIGHER LEVELS OF LIFE INSURANCE to cover your growing property portfolio, business etc., thus providing your family with greater security.
  • Have absolute discretion with regard to your INVESTMENT CHOICE.

SO WHY DO WE PREFER PROPERTY AS OUR FORM OF INVESTMENT?
Investing in property allows you the power of using OPM … Other People’s Money.
Let’s say you have $140,000 in your Super Fund: If you invested in Shares = You would have $140,000 worth of shares

Make the most of this fantastic opportunity to purchase an investment property, pay less tax than a traditionally purchased rental property, and significantly INCREASE YOUR RETIREMENT WEALTH!

Carrying on a business from home Part 1

As a general rule, expenses associated with your home are private and you can’t claim a tax deduction for them. However, if you operate a business at or from your home, you may be able to claim a deduction for some of the expenses relating to the area you use for business purposes. These expenses are divided into Occupancy expenses and Running expenses.

 Occupancy expenses are expenses related to your ownership, rental or use of the home and are not incurred because of your income-earning activities. In other words, you would have these expenses regardless of whether you were carrying on a homebased business.

Occupancy expenses include:

  • Rent
  • mortgage interest
  • council rates, and
  • housing insurance premiums

Running expenses are expenses related to using facilities within your home for business. Carrying on a business at or from your home means that these expenses may be higher than if you were not doing so.

Running expenses include:

  • cost of using a room (such as electricity and gas costs for heating, cooling and lighting)
  • decline in value of plant and equipment (for example, desks, chairs, bookcases, computers, lathes and grinders)
  • decline in value of curtains, carpets, light fittings, etc.
  • cleaning costs
  • cost of repairs to furniture and furnishings.

 Does the area set aside have the character of ‘a place of business’?

 The area must have the character of ‘a place of business’. While this will depend on your particular circumstances, an area of your home is likely to have the character of a place of business if it is:

  • clearly identifiable as a place of business (for example, you have a sign identifying your business at the front of your house)
  • not suitable for private or domestic purposes
  • used almost exclusively for carrying on your business, or
  • used regularly by your clients.

How much can you claim?

Rent, mortgage interest, insurance, council rates

If eligible to claim occupancy expenses, you can claim the percentage of rent, mortgage interest, council rates and insurance that relates to the area you use as a place of business.

Utilities (gas, electricity)

If the business percentage is based on anything other than the floor area (for example, on actual electricity use) you will need to clearly document your claim to show how you arrived at the amount.

Where you don’t have an area of your home set aside exclusively for business, you can’t claim on a floor area basis as this area is also used for non-business purposes. In this case, you’ll need to show how you arrived at the amount you’re claiming for gas and electricity.

You’re allowed a deduction only where you incur additional running costs because of your business activities. For example, if you work in a room where other family members are watching television, you would probably not have additional heating costs as a result of that work activity.

Furthermore, the business use of the home work area needs to be substantial and not merely incidental. For example, you couldn’t claim 34 cents an hour simply because your fax machine is on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to receive business faxes.

Phone

If you use a phone exclusively for business, you can claim a deduction for the phone rental and calls, but not the cost of having the phone installed. This is because the installation cost is considered a capital expenditure. If you use a phone for both business and private calls, you can claim a deduction for business calls and part of the rental costs.

Business plant and equipment

If you use plant and equipment solely for business purposes, you can claim the full amount of depreciation. But if you also use equipment (such as a computer, printer, photocopier, grinder, circular saw) for non-business purposes, you have to reduce the depreciation deduction by an amount that reflects this non-business use.