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Bookkeeping Services For Your Southern Utah Business

“Deciding what not to do is as important as deciding what to do.” – Jessica Jackley, founder of the global micro-lending company Kiva.

The hallmark of a flourishing business is delegation. It’s about reserving your time for what you do best, maintaining the big-picture vision and day-to-day workings of an enterprise, while handing off other responsibilities.

If you’re ready to take some financial gruntwork off your plate but don’t have the budget for an in-house bookkeeper, you don’t have to look far for help. With offices in the Southern Utah cities of St. George and Cedar City, accounting professional Adrian D. Anderson, MAcc at AA Tax and Accounting Services is ready to crunch the numbers and attend to the paperwork piling up on your desk.

Whether you’re at the helm of a small startup or burgeoning corporation, a professional bookkeeper can assist you with a number of operational functions. These include

  • Accounts Payable
  • Accounts Receivable
  • Balance Sheets
  • Bank Reconciliations
  • Bookkeeping Cleanup
  • Customized Bookkeeping Reports
  • General Ledger Management
  • Income Statements

A Bookkeeping Service Can Help Business Owners Let Go

If you’ve founded your own business, chances are you’re a creative type rather than the proverbial “bean counter.” Unless you majored in accounting, your educational and life experiences may not lend themselves to the legal and organizational intricacies of business bookkeeping.

It’s all too easy to make errors in your calculations, miss paying bills or lose track of invoices. Over time, even small missteps can harm your business through consequences like late fees and loss of credit or income.

Even if you manage largely error-free bookkeeping, you may be investing an inordinate amount of time and worry into the job. Few things have a greater negative impact on your family life than spending all your time at work or carrying job stressors home with you.

Some people avoid sharing the financial responsibilities of their business out of mistrust or a fear of losing control. The greatest way to lose control, however, is through the chaos that ensues when you are over-extended.

Outsourcing your bookkeeping can let you focus on the countless other demands of your business, including marketing, strategy, funding and employee performance and relations. You’re also free to put out the inevitable fires that crop up, dealing with the minor crises that characterize any business undertaking.

Along with saving time, and your eyes, your professional bookkeeper can lend you an outside perspective on money matters. There are many pressing questions to consider regarding your business including

  • Is your spending threatening to exceed your earnings?
  • Are you being frugal enough, taking advantage of small ways to save that add up?
  • Are you making decisions that are “pennywise and pound-foolish”? There are many instances when a larger initial cash outlay can bring you long-term savings.
  • Are you maintaining the appearance of professionalism and fairness in your financial dealings? Clean and above-board accounting is key when it comes to maintaining the trust of business partners, vendors, clients and employees.

Time is money, as the saying goes. Why spend your greatest asset on routine tasks that are difficult, lengthy and boring when there are skilled and efficient bookkeepers who enjoy the left-brain puzzle of making operational ends meet?

 

Cedar City Nonprofit Organizations: Donating to The Happy Factory Inc.

When you incorporate giving into your budget, you reap significant benefits. The greatest reward is knowing you’re making a difference. It’s important to note, however, that there are also potential financial compensations. Your donations can make a noticeable difference in the size of your tax return, particularly if you’re guided by tax accountant specialists like those at the Cedar City-based accountant Adrian D Anderson, MAcc.

With countless nonprofits welcoming your tax-deductible donations, it can be hard to choose where to direct your resources and attention. You might want to start by taking bang-for-your-buck into consideration. Will your contribution go directly to a worthy cause or be funneled into bloated administrative salaries?

If you’re looking for a nonprofit with a streamlined overhead and a dedicated all-volunteer staff, there’s a local charity sure to put a smile on your face.

At The Happy Factory, Helping People Is Child’s Play

Cedar City may not be the North Pole, but it is the site of a workshop where a merry team of “elves” oversees the construction of homemade toys to be given to the boys and girls of the world.

Meet The Happy Factory, a Cedar City nonprofit that has shipped a staggering 1,495,481 toys to children across the globe.

Founders Charles and Donna Cooley started by donating wooden animal toys to the Primary Children’s Medical Center in Salt Lake City back in 1995. Following an enthusiastic response and a large donation of hardwood scraps, the Cooleys increased their efforts.

Charles started making small cars, which Donna painted. Soon the couple was also making toy deliveries to Shriner’s Hospital and the Humanitarian Center, a charitable arm of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. It was through the latter organization that they learned there are some 500 million children in the world without any toys.

Rather than taking this heartbreaking statistic standing down, Charles and Donna created The Happy Factory, named after the joyous smiles of children who receive the nonprofit’s toys.

Volunteers signed on to help and The Happy Factory expanded shipments to needy recipients in the United States and Beyond. The nonprofit delivers toys to young victims of natural disasters and to Native American organizations as well as to children at crisis centers, shelters, churches, schools, medical clinics and orphanages.

Full Steam Ahead

Next, The Happy Foundation began creating large homemade wooden steam shovels that kids can sit on, using the manual controls to manipulate the bucket. These have proven to be invaluable for disabled children, who gain motor skills and confidence through “steam shovel therapy.” To date, 2,610 steam shovels have been delivered to kids around the world.

How You Can Help

If you’re moved by the mission of the Happy Factory, you can help with a financial donation of any size.

The Happy Factory is an all-volunteer organization and wood for the toys is donated. Still, money is needed for wheels and axles and to support factory operations. A little goes a long way, with a $5 donation funding the construction of roughly 10 toys.

You may also want to offer hands-on help, joining a robust task force of volunteers who have collectively donated 82,000 service hours to the nonprofit over the years. Helpers of all ages, from kindergarteners to senior citizens, are welcome to contribute, whether their efforts include toy-making, toy delivery or organizational tasks.

For more information on supporting this winning nonprofit, visit happyfactory.org.

5 Ways A Tax Accountant Can Make Your Job Easier

Tax Filing for Your Small Business

If you’re a business owner, have a complex financial portfolio or just get the jitters at the thought of Tax Day, you could greatly benefit from the services of a tax accountant.

People who engage a tax accountant find life easier for many reasons. Let’s discuss five of the biggest benefits.

1. A Tax Accountant Can Give You Peace of Mind

Business owners and individual taxpayers alike tend to stress over taxes, wondering whether they’ve dotted their I’s and crossed their T’s. The combination of paperwork, math and a looming deadline can be overwhelming. And there’s always that fear. Will this be the year you get dinged?

With stress comes procrastination. Some 20 to 25 percent of Americans put off tax preparation until the last 14 days before deadline. This last-minute cramming causes even more worry. It’s a vicious cycle, one that can be broken by bringing some fresh perspective into the picture.

A tax accountant approaches your taxes with expertise instead of dread. While you take taxes personally, they know that processing your return is just business as usual for the IRS.

They also have some reassuring information. Most of us owe no taxes and, in fact, eight out of ten refunds filed in 2013 yielded a refund, according to IRS data. Auditing fears are also largely unfounded. Only 1.1 percent of individuals who filed tax returns in 2010 were audited, and these were typically millionaires or very high-earning business owners.

A good tax accountant won’t put off preparing your taxes, because they know the outcome is likely to be in your favor. They’ll certainly never miss deadline, given their work life revolves around April 15!

2. A Tax Accountant Can Bring You Savings

A good tax accountant, like those at the Cedar City-based AA Tax & Accounting Services, LLC, knows exactly what you can use as a tax deduction or business write-off. In fact, if you’re a business owner, you can even write off the money you pay for tax strategy or tax preparation services.

Provide your tax accountant with thorough financial records and they’re likely to find expenses you never knew you could write off. Did you know, for instance, that you can write off any dry-cleaning fees you rack up during a business trip?

3. A Tax Accountant Can Create Clarity

Your tax accountant can help you navigate complex financial dealings. If you own a business or rental properties, or have a “side hustle” like driving for Uber,” you’ve likely moved beyond Turbotax territory. A tax knows how to depreciate business or real estate assets so as to decrease your tax burden.

4. A Tax Accountant Can Help You Reach Your Goals

Are you planning to sell some real estate? Your accountant can help you minimize the taxes you pay on the proceeds from property through mechanisms such as like-kind exchange.

If you want to put aside money for your children, either through a 529 plan to fund their education or through a trust, your accountant can help you decide the best methods for tax-deferred or tax-free saving. As an example, your tax accountant can help you categorize expenses charged to the trust fund in a way that nets the greatest tax benefit.

5. A Tax Accountant Can Help You Navigate Life Changes

Filing your tax return may have become relatively easy for you over the years. Divorce, however, can change a lot. A tax accountant can help you move from joint filing to individual, and incorporate any payments or expenses like alimony and child support. If you receive an inheritance after a loved-one’s death, your tax accountant can also help you work with the intricacies of settling their estate.

Whatever your portfolio and whatever your situation, there are countless ways a tax account can help you navigate your dealings with the IRS. Consider consulting an expert whose know-how can replace stress with success.

Tax Code Updates: Pass-Through Entities

The majority of business in America are structured as pass-through entities as pass-through business entities can be anything from a sole proprietorship to an S corporation. As such, these businesses need to understand how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts will affect their tax preparation.

Pass-Through Business Entities And Qualified Business Income

The most important change for pass-through entities is the 20% qualified business income (QBI) deduction that business can use while filing their upcoming taxes. However, that 20% QBI deduction is not guaranteed.

Pass-through business can receive 20% QBI deduction if it is lower than the taxpayer’s business or trade. They potentially receive a different deduction, such as:

  • 50% of the total W-2 wages which the pass-through entity paid to employees.
  • 25% of the total W-2 wages and add 2.5% of the original purchase cost of the business’ actual property.

This deduction method can be difficult to visualize. To help you visualize how these deductions may affect your business, below our accountant has provided an example.


The bolded amounts are the appropriate deduction for each of the example companies.

Limitations For The New Tax Code QBI Deduction

There are some limitations when it comes to what qualifies as QBI. The types of income which don’t qualify as QBI are:

  • Annuity payments
  • Capital losses or gains
  • Payments to partners for services
  • Interest and dividends
  • Foreign currency losses or gains
  • Business owner compensation

For those pass-through entities which operate their businesses in the service industry, there are income limitations to receiving the 20% QBI deduction.

  • Consulting
  • Actuarial Science
  • Health
  • Law
  • Financial Services
  • Performing Arts
  • Athletics
  • Brokerage Service
  • Accounting

These service-oriented businesses begin to receive less of a QBI deduction when the income hits $157,500 for an individual filer and $315,000 for joint filers. There is no QBI deduction for individual filers who earn $207,000 or for joint filers who earn $415,000.

Another key limitation for pass-through entities to remember is that the deductions discussed above will only last until the end of the 2025 tax year.

It can be complicated for a small business to grasp all the tax changes and appropriately apply them to their pass-through business. To receive high-quality accounting assistance for your business, contact us to work with our accountant.

Bookkeeping For Nonprofit Organizations

Bookkeeping for a nonprofit has different requirements than for a for-profit business. An experienced accountant can easily provide bookkeeping services to a nonprofit as well as a for-profit.

Bookkeeping Needed For Nonprofit Financial Transparency

As nonprofits enjoy IRS tax-exempt status, they are required to have a very high level of financial transparency. Accurate bookkeeping is necessary to achieve this transparency, which can be difficult for a nonprofit to provide as they may not have the skilled professionals on staff.

It is not uncommon for nonprofits to outsource their bookkeeping to efficient accounting services which provide nonprofits their bookkeeping and tax return assistance.

Tracking Expenses And Renevue For Nonprofits

Part of the bookkeeping necessary for nonprofits is the tracking of expenses and revenue. Expenses made by a nonprofit may be reported by several different departments, such as:

  • Program
  • Fundraising
  • Management
  • Operations

As the information is coming from various sections of the nonprofit, it can be difficult for an inexperienced bookkeeper to stay on top of all the financial information. This becomes especially difficult as a nonprofit bookkeeper attempts to track the revenue. Some sources or revenue that nonprofits receive are:

  • Membership dues
  • Investment income
  • Fundraising events
  • Donor contributions
  • Grants
  • Program fees

Required Nonprofit Financial Statements

Nonprofit bookkeepers need to not only perform the day-to-day tasks but they also will need to provide tax preparation support and financial statements.

Due to the transparency requirements nonprofits have, they need to have yearly financial statements available for all to view. The key required financial statements are:

  • Statement of Functional Expenses
  • Statement of Financial Position
  • Statement of Cash Flow
  • Statement of Activities
  • Notes to Financial Statements

Outsource Your Nonprofit Bookkeeping

Above are just the basics of nonprofit organization bookkeeping. Nonprofits still labor under many of the bookkeeping needs of a for-profit business, such as:

  • Payroll
  • Bank reconciliations
  • Bill pay
  • Deposits
  • Invoicing

Nonprofits organizations have a mission to accomplish and dedicating time and resources to track their bookkeeping is not always the most effective use of their valuable resources. Yet, by outsourcing their bookkeeping, nonprofits can fulfill their legal obligations for financial transparency, enjoy the professional handling of their bookkeeping, and allow the nonprofits to focus on their mission instead of financial matters.

AA Tax & Accounting Services LLC is able to provide top-quality bookkeeping services to nonprofit organizations. Depending on your nonprofit’s needs, our accountant can tailor what services are offered. Contact us for a consultation with our accounting firm and see what we can do for your nonprofit.

6 Accounting Tips for Small Businesses

Small businesses can be made or ruined by their accounting. To help you master some of your business’ accounting needs, Adrian Anderson, MAcc has six accounting tips every business should be utilizing.

Allot Time To Work On Business Accounts

Many small business owners don’t enjoy working on their business accounts and tend to push off the task whenever possible. This can leave the business owner unaware of issues that only their accounts can reveal as well as other issues.

You should allot time at least once a week to work on your business accounts. Even if you aren’t sure you have anything to look at, stick to your allotted time so you stay in the habit of taking care of your business accounts.

Be Accurate And Diligent In Your Recordkeeping

As you go through your business records, you can do several things to ensure that they remain accurate.

  • Log expenses and profits regularly
  • Track and file invoices
  • Double-check payroll disbursements
  • Keep clear records of inventory

Depending on the industry your business is in, you may have different things you need to track for your records. Also, the more accurate your records are, the easier it will be to file your taxes.

Keep And File All Business-Related Receipts

Aside from keeping your regular expense receipts, be sure to keep and file any receipts which are attached to your business. Some business-related purchases you may make outside of your normal operating costs are:

  • Training seminars
  • Item replacements
  • Office upgrades
  • Business lunches

Perform Regular Profit And Loss Assessments

Beyond just tracking your profits and losses, you should make periodic assessments of your business by creating profit and loss statements. These statements will allow you to gain a broader perspective on your business and see more clearly how it is performing.

Depending on your business size and the volume of business you perform, there are different intervals where you will want to perform these assessments. Most small business owners would benefit from monthly profit and loss assessments as well as a 6-month overview.

Keep Personal And Business Expenses Separate

Some small business owners are not as strict with keeping their personal expenses and business expenses separate. This can especially create issues when you need to have your taxes done, as the tax breaks small business owners can receive do not apply to your personal needs.

Outsource Your Accounting Needs

By choosing our accounting services, you can tailor your accounting needs to suit your business without you needing to micromanage your accounts. That way, you can focus on your business operations while our accountant manages your accounting needs.

To consult with our accountant on what your business may need from an accountant, contact us today.

Cedar City Non-Profit Organizations: Donating To Chrysalis

To help our clients find the best local nonprofits to build up our community in Cedar City, UT, AA Tax & Accounting Services has chosen to highlight several nonprofit organizations. For this month, we have chosen Chrysalis as a potential nonprofit for you to support for your next tax benefit.

Tax Benefits For Choosing To Support A Nonprofit

As our accounting firm works to provide you with the best information on financial matters, a common question we receive is how supporting a nonprofit can be a tax benefit. With the recent changes to the tax laws, how this can benefit your tax preparation has changed.

Cash deductible donations to a 501(c)(3) were previously restricted to only allow 50% of your donation to be in cash. Now, you can make 60% of your donation to a nonprofit be in cash.

Another change, the raising of the standard deduction, may make it difficult to itemize your charitable donation. Be sure to consult with our accountant to ensure that your charitable donation can become tax-deductible.

Support Organizations Encouraging Self-Sufficiency

When choosing a people-focused nonprofit to support, many people prefer to support organizations which help improve the self-sufficiency of the recipients of the charity’s aid. If you are of this mindset, then Chrysalis is a nonprofit you may want to consider as a recipient for your next charitable donation.

Chrysalis’ mission is to support and provide opportunities to individuals in Cedar City, UT, who are living with disabilities, that way these individuals can become more fully integrated parts of their community. The services this nonprofit offers are:

  • 24-hour supervised home care
  • Behavioral services
  • Therapy
  • Financial management assistance
  • Personalized individual planning
  • Medical care

For more of their services, be sure to refer to Chrysalis’ services information page. Many of the services we have mentioned are on their 24-hour Residential Care page, so be sure to check through all their offered services to be sure this is an organization you want to support.

Have Your Donating To Chrysalis Incorporated Into Your Taxes

It can be tricky to prepare your taxes correctly to ensure your charitable donation is properly included into your taxes, especially with the tax law changes. If you want to feel more confident in your tax filing, you will want to work with AA Tax & Accounting Services, LLC, to prepare your taxes. Contact us for an appointment so our accountant can help make sure your tax deduction is properly applied to your set of filed taxes.

Bookkeeping For Your New Business Adventure

At AA Tax & Accounting Services, LLC, we can help make your new business adventure smoother. Whether or not you have chosen to take advantage of our startup company planning service, we highly recommend you outsource the bookkeeping for your new business.

Focus Your Energy On Your Business, Not Bookkeeping

When you are in the process of building up a new business, there are so many things which require your attention. From the marketing of your services to the management of business growth, business owners have a lot on their hands.

Bookkeeping can cut into not only your valuable time but also your energy. Many business owners find it draining to sit down and struggle with their business accounts, especially when there are so many other things which need their attention.

So, instead of dividing yourself between the task you are passionate about (your business growth) and the one you feel you have to do (the bookkeeping), outsource your bookkeeping to our accounting firm and save yourself the energy you used to give to bookkeeping.

What Our Bookkeeping Services Include

Our accountant offers extensive bookkeeping services to business in Cedar City, St George, and the surrounding areas. Some of these services are:

  • Specialized finance reports – There are many specialized financial reports which can help you determine how your business is performing. We provide income statements, cash flow projections, balance sheets, and more.
  • Account reconciliations – Our accountant can monitor your various business accounts to make sure that they accurately reflect your current balance and transactions and correct any errors which may occur.
  • General ledger management – Daily monitoring and maintenance of your business’ financial state is available when you work with our accounting firm. This will ensure that your business accounts always reflect the correct financial state of your business.
  • Tax preparation and filing – Preparing and filing your business’ taxes can not only be incredibly time-consuming but also has the potential to cause difficulties for your business if they are filed improperly. Our bookkeeping includes our tax preparation service, which can alleviate you from needing to do this stressful task.
  • Accounts receivable and payable – Ensuring that not only your business is paid for its services but that your bills and vendors are paid, can be a difficult task. Instead of struggling with the invoices on your own, our bookkeeping services can take care of it for you.

If you feel like your new business venture can benefit from these bookkeeping services, then contact us. Our accountant will work with you to determine what services can best help you build up your business and you can leave the bookkeeping to the experts as you focus your energy on other aspects of your work.

Cedar City Non-Profit Organizations: Donating To Canyon Creek Women’s Crisis Center

Providing a helping hand to those in need is an act that pays on both ends. Helping others helps you value your own life more, but can be tricky if you feel you are not in a financial position to contribute. With the assistance of accountants at AATAS, you can find a way to reach out to others without risking your own financial welfare.

Give A Gift To Your Community and Receive Tax Benefits In Return

Donating to a non-profit can be a stretch if you can’t find space in your budget or time to give. Qualified accountants at AATAS in your local Cedar City community can find a way to help you serve others by filing your tax-deduction for donating. Not only will you be helping those in need right here in your community, you will also be rewarded financially for your wise investment.

The Canyon Creak Women’s Shelter Is A Great Local Charity

A worthy recipient of your donation is the Canyon Creek Women’s Crisis Center. Not only are they a strong force for good in the community, they are also a place that offers safety and security to those fleeing life-threatening situations. Their facility:

  • Is equipped to help and protect survivors of domestic abuse
  • Provides toiletries, clothing, and other essential amenities for those breaking free from dangerous and abusive situations.
  • Accepts donations put towards necessary supplies, transportation, housing, relocation and education of victims.

They provides safety, help, and education on breaking the cycle of abuse in the community. Their mission to protect those affected by domestic abuse can only be continued through your generous donation.

Donating To A Non-Profit Makes Taxes More Worthwhile

With tax season approaching it is difficult not to get anxious at the thought of carefully combing through your finances while trying to stay organized. Not only will your donation to a non-profit benefit your community, it will also serve you as you prepare your taxes. Seeking an accountant will allow you to finally feel confident about your tax return. Not only will you be able to smile about the service you have done, you will also get to breathe easier knowing your taxes will be deducted.

What AA Tax and Accounting Services in Cedar City Can Do For You

AATAS offers high-quality accounting services to help you get the most out of your finances. Not only will they help you file your tax-deductions for donating, they will also ensure the accuracy of your return. These accountants have served the Cedar City community as well as surrounding towns for many years. They have your best interest in mind. Donating to a non-profit, the Canyon Creek Women’s Crisis Center, will help you and those struggling in your community. Let AATAS help you find a way to donate today.

Tax Code Updates: Will St George Business’ See Tax Cuts In The Near Future?

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, sometimes called the Trump Tax Reform, passed several tax reforms that will impact businesses in St. George. To see how the tax reform will affect our local businesses, our accountant has brought together a basic overview so you can clearly see the changes.

Tax Changes For Pass-Through Businesses In St George

The majority of American businesses qualify as pass-through businesses. Because of this, the tax changes which affect pass-through businesses have been some of the most heavily scrutinized. On the surface, the changes seem fairly straightforward. A 20% tax deduction is now applied to all pass-through business entities. But there are several different business aspects which may affect that 20% tax deduction.

  • Service-based business – If your business relies on you providing a service such as medical, accounting, consulting, or other services (except architect and engineering services) your business will only receive the 20% deduction if you make less than $157,500 a year as a single taxpayer. Married couples who own service-based businesses will receive the 20% deduction if they make less than $315,000.
  • Qualified business income – The base of a qualified business income is the net income your business generates. Under the new tax reform, say your income is $60,000 and qualified business income is $50,000. With the 20% tax deduction, you can deduct $10,000 from your taxable income. As all this is below the deduction threshold, you will not need to make any more adjustments to your qualified business income.

This formula is also affected by qualified properties, W-2 employee wages, business equipment purchases and more. Our accountant is well versed in business accounting and can help you understand how these changes will affect your particular business.

Be Aware Of These Corporate Tax Changes

One of the more dramatic changes in the tax laws was the change of corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%. Lawmakers said this was to attract corporations bring work to the United States. Another large change was the elimination of the corporate alternative minimum tax.

As more financial analysts dig into the new tax laws, more changes become apparent. Some things such as business entertainment expenses and employee benefits, which have been previously 100% deductible have changed. These changes apply to both pass-through business and corporations. There are many other such changes which may or may not apply to your specific business venture.

To receive advice on the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, set up an appointment with our accountant. He can help you determine your eligible tax deductions and help you decide how to best utilize your business so you will receive the biggest benefits from the new tax laws.

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