Santa Surprise! It’s time for self-assessment …

Christmas is a busy time for anyone, let alone when you have a small or medium sized business to run. We all have a lot on our plates; trying to source the perfect gifts, getting hold of a turkey (preferably one that doesn’t cost the earth), finding a decent tree and making time to decorate it, making sure that Grandma has enough sherry … but have you thought about self-assessment?

Self-assessment is probably the very last thing on your mind as excitement starts to build for the big day, especially if you have small people in the house. However you do need to think about it – the deadline for self-assessments is the 31st January, which is less than 12 weeks away! If you’re taking time off over Christmas, then you have even less time to worry about it.

What do you need to complete a self-assessment?

To complete a self-assessment, you will need:

  • any documentation of income and/or expenditure information for your company in the previous year, from 6th April to 5th April in the current year.
  • If you haven’t yet got yourself onto an electronic bookkeeping programme such as Xero or QuickBooks, this information can be organised in any folder or box related container (or maybe you’re really organised and have a spreadsheet!).
  • you will also need details of any personal investment or savings gains (except for tax free products such as ISAs or Premium Bonds).

When you have assembled your random container full of receipts, bills and bank statements, you are ready to sit down and complete your self-assessment. Unless, of course, you have to write out some Christmas cards, or help your kids with their homework, or remember to book a boiler service before Christmas (just in case – better to be safe than sorry!), or the million other things that could possibly distract you from doing what needs to be done. 

At this stage, you can make an important, executive decision; should you complete the self-assessment yourself or out-source this (possibly boring and onerous) task to a locally trusted bookkeeper?

A good bookkeeper is the gift that keeps on giving*, they will save you stress and worry and will also save you their own fee in your tax liability. Plus their fees are tax deductible, which is an extra special gift from Santa!

By not spending your time organising and completing a self-assessment (which doesn’t include the stress of getting it right), you can focus on what matters to you, your family and your business and just enjoy the festive season.

* Please remember that a good bookkeeper is for life, not just for Christmas!

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, from all of us at AT Accounts.