Taking care of your annual accounts is an essential part of running a business. Whether you have an in-house accounting team, take care of your accounts yourself or use professional accountancy services, it’s crucial that you get them right.
Annual accounts not only help your meet your statutory objectives but also provide valuable information about your business performance. You can monitor how well you are meeting your objectives and use the data to inform your future decision-making.
Annual accounts can be costly, but there are good practices and other means to help those costs in check.
Keep good records
Good record-keeping is at the heart of good accounting practice. Not only can it help you reduce accounting fees, but it can also help to reduce your tax bill while limiting the potential for fraud.
Being well-organised and developing a comprehensive checklist will ensure that you’ve got everything at hand and in a logical order. Failure to do so can result in last-minute scurrying around to find important information or scrolling backwards through hundreds of emails to find the information that you need.
If you are working with an accountant, better records are easier to work with and can result in them spending less time on your accounts. This will be reflected in the price you pay.
Good bookkeeping makes it easier to compile your annual accounts. Bookkeeping is an essential part of your financial administration, providing reliable, timely and accurate financial information. This is a key component of accounting costs and good bookkeeping makes it easier for an accountant to find the information they need.
With fixed monthly costs, it can be cheaper to pay for fixed-price quality bookkeeping services rather than paying an accountant to fix bookkeeping errors.
Be clear about what responsibilities you want your accountant to attend to and what you will take care of yourself. If, for instance, you have time to complete your own self-assessment tax return, this can save you money if not necessarily time. Make sure that the bookkeeping you hand over to your accountant is in order and doesn’t need tidying up.
Working out what you can do yourself will help to reduce your accountancy fees while making it easier for your accountant to deliver the high-quality services you require at an affordable price.
Choose the right technology
There is a growing range of accounting technology available for businesses of all sizes. These can help improve and simplify your record keeping, making it easier for accountants to access the right information as and when needed.
There are numerous packages available and not all of them may be suitable for your particular business. Before investing in software you should be confident it has the necessary tools for your requirements.
How much should annual accounts cost?
The cost of annual accounts in the UK can vary considerably. Much will depend on the size and nature of your business, as well as the complexity of your accounts. Some accountancy companies will provide a basic, annual accounts service, perhaps for a set price, while others may have a more detailed fee structure.
As a very rough guide, an accountant performing basic accounting services will usually work for between £25 and £35 per hour. More specialist services like tax planning and business planning advice may be much more expensive, in the region of £125 to £150 per hour.
You may have been with your current accountancy service for some time but it’s always worthwhile finding out how much other companies charge for a similar service. Ask how charges are calculated, what extra costs may be incurred and how costs can be reduced. Be honest with them about your own budget and what you expect.
How Venn can help
At Venn, we make your annual accounting easy. We use modern techniques to help make the process more efficient and to ensure that costs are kept in check.
Our team of chartered accountants use up-to-date, cloud-based software to make accounting as painless and non-disruptive as possible. Our statutory accounts service ensures your accounts stand up to scrutiny and that you’re on track to meet your goals and objectives.
To find out more about how we can make your annual accounts simple while saving you money, speak to one of our experts today.