The Dreaded Tax Return

tax time

We all want the refund but never the complications and hassle of completing the tax return. There are a couple of useful tips to make the completion and submission slightly easier.

Firstly, always keep all your business receipts in one place – a box or a folder – somewhere they are always put. This reduces, if not, eliminates the hurried panic of trying to find them all when tax time comes around.

If you can afford an experienced bookkeeping service then take advantage of it. They can find allowances and benefits you may not know about. Remember bookkeeping is not a regulated industry.

Ensure you have copies of all your invoices with the date of payment received on them. The same goes for invoices you receive. At a glance you can see if there are any outstanding payments. Monthly statements assist in this tracking too.

Don’t leave collecting all your relevant business paperwork together to the last minute. Take time to organize it all at least a month before the tax return deadline. This enables you to find or track down any missing items.

Remember to put aside a percentage of your income every month (or per job) and put it into a high interest account. This applies to any GST/PST or your countries tax amounts you collect as well.

TaxReturn

Do you have any tips or information to share?

Links: http://www.forbes.com/sites/learnvest/2014/03/18/a-guide-to-tax-deductions-for-freelancers/#727045bb38df

http://www.canadianliving.com/life/money/income_tax_tips_for_freelancers.php

 

 

 

Freelance Task Schedule

schedule

I am often asked how I manage to ‘juggle’ all my writing projects. The simple answer is – I write when I have time and then schedule. For example for my author blog I am posting three times a week this year. Monday, Wednesday & Saturday – each day has a different theme and requires research. When inspiration strikes I use it to create a blog post and then utilize the schedule feature to ensure the post goes out at the time and date I require.

For my freelance clients I make out a monthly schedule for the tasks they require me to complete. Each client is colour coded so at a quick glance I can see what I am doing on any particular day for each client. I also highlight deadlines to ensure work is completed prior to that date.

For example this week:

8th Feb: 3 facebook posts per day for 2 clients and a personal blog post

9th Feb: Board meeting for writing group. Create agenda.

10th Feb: 3 facebook posts per day for 2 clients and a personal blog post

11th Feb: Usual assistance at publishers (evening)

12th Feb:3 facebook posts per day for 2 clients, a specific blog post for another client and a personal blog post

As I have ‘free’ days I can create, submit and schedule most of these tasks. Another client only requires articles once or twice a month so these are easily accommodated.

How do I find the time? Well as I work full time I have to utilize ‘downtime’ i.e. early morning, lunch, and evening to make certain the articles, posts and freelance paperwork are taken care of. Once I have finished a project I create an invoice and detail the work done. If I am invoicing my client weekly or monthly I list each task, time tracked and cost so when the invoice is mailed out it is completed.

With ‘spare’ time on my schedule it is easy to slot in another project, knowing I am not going to be overwhelmed. Of course as the business grows the balance between full time work and freelance work will alter and I will have to devise a more structured system. However, for now it works for me and allows me to edit and revise a manuscript for my new novel.

How do you keep up with your work load?

workload

 

Cooperation or Bartering with Other Small Business

barter

I have found that word of mouth is a powerful tool when it comes to gaining new clients. Part of that success is due to the numerous small local businesses in my area. By utilizing each others strengths, skills and knowledge, we are able to sometimes barter services rather than invoice between ourselves.

With a strong social media management skill, I offer tri-weekly schedules of multiple posts per day on my clients chosen format. Blog posts, articles, newsletter and website content is tailored to each clients needs and are scheduled per instruction. For these services, I gain website links and the added benefit of extended coverage to other businesses. It also gives me access to companies whose services may help me with other future projects.

There are a number of organizations, such as your local Chamber of Commerce or Better Business Bureau that enhance your business profile and give you vital links to your local services and business owners.

Bartering is not a new concept of course but it can help when your small business is cash poor – see link:http://www.forbes.com/sites/jimblasingame/2013/09/25/sometimes-barter-is-better-for-your-small-business/#2715e4857a0b46e304c83b6d

For a small or fledging businesses bartering can aid cash poor companies while they build their client base and retain funds for vital supplies and services. Mutual respect and cooperation are the foundation for this business compromise.

Have you bartered for services?

Tell us your experiences.
group business