Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Truth About Tax Freedom Day

For years we’ve been lead to believe in “Tax Freedom Day”; the day of the year when we stop paying our percentage of taxes owed to the government, and are able to “keep” the rest for ourselves.  Well, in this video Candice Malcolm from the Frasier Institute, gives everyone the ugly truth!  Watch this:

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Big HST Rebate for Real Estate Buyers

Here’s an interesting video for anyone who has real estate interests.  You’ll want to see this.  You could be eligible for a huge HST rebate!  Click on the pic. 

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Monday, May 16, 2016

BEWARE: the Latest Canada Revenue Agency Scam



Image courtesy of Stuart Miles
at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
There is a new scam that Canadians across the country are falling victim to. There are some unscrupulous individuals who are phoning people and claiming to be Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) agents. They will tell you that you owe CRA a great deal of money and if you don’t pay that they will issue a warrant for your arrest. You may have heard about this already as it’s been in the news. One senior lady from BC had $8,000.00 stolen. Another from Calgary had around $20,000.00 stolen

To prepare you in case you get one of these calls please take note that:
  • CRA will very rarely contact you by phone, and never by email, to ask for personal information. They will send you letters in the mail.
  • CRA will always call you by name. These scammers often don’t know your name when they first call you. They trick you into giving them information about yourself.
  • CRA will never threaten you with jail or losing your home.
  • CRA will be professional in their interaction with you. They will not use inappropriate language.
  • CRA is always willing to work with you to get your situation straightened out and to work out a payment schedule.
  • Sometimes these scammers have managed to find some details about you before they call. Do not take this to mean that it is really CRA calling you. It just means that the scammers are good at what they do and did some research on you before they called.
  • Don’t fall for questions such as “Can you confirm your address/phone number/Social Insurance Number?”. Say to them, that “you already have that information on file from previous tax returns. Please repeat it back to me.” If they cannot, hang up.
  • If you are in any doubt, please contact CRA or myself to give you the true status of your income tax account.
Friends, please be aware, and be cautious, that you don’t inadvertently give out personal information to others.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

How to Stop Living Pay Check to Pay Check

by Guest Writer Ron BurgFreeDigitalPhotos.net - ID-10053900

Putting all your effort into your job only to see the money disappear is stressful and can be extremely disheartening. If you feel like you are in a seemingly endless cycle of living pay check to pay check, you aren’t alone. More than 25 million Americans are living pay check to pay check. Here are some ways that you can break this cycle:

1.  Make a Budget (and Stick to It)

It seems like common sense, and most Americans do actually have household budgets. However, far fewer Americans end up sticking to them, which is where they run into problems. Apps such as Mint can help you keep track of your spending habits and alert you for bill payments. In addition, you can look back at your past purchases and see where you are excessively spending.

2.  Get Professional Help

Some people aren’t great with money, and others just have confusing circumstances that require professionals. Small business owners, in particular, can benefit from hiring trusted professionals such as Precision Bookkeeping to help manage their books. If you aren’t sure about this decision, plenty of professional bookkeeping services offer free consultations to see if you can benefit financially from their services.

3.  Have an Emergency Fund

You may be wondering how you can have an emergency fund when you are already living pay check to pay check. Not having an emergency fund could land you further in debt when you need to take out loans to pay for emergencies. An estimated 62 percent of Americans have no emergency savings for things such as trips to the emergency room or car repairs. Not having an emergency fund only makes it more difficult to dig your way out.

4.  Cut Out Luxuries

Even things you may not consider luxuries are luxurious to someone who is struggling even worse than you are. This means making temporary sacrifices. You can do things like cut your cable and switch to Netflix, or skip the gym membership and run outside instead. These small changes will make a huge difference in your budget and will give your finances some breathing room.

5.  Eat Simple Foods

You don’t have to be an extreme couponer for this to work, but paying attention to sales for groceries and being conscious of what is in season can dramatically reduce your food bill. There are plenty of ways to eat healthfully while staying within your budget:

  • Skip the pre-packaged goods and buy them from scratch instead.
  • Buy spices from bulk bins.
  • Stock up on potatoes and beans—potatoes only cost about 30 cents apiece, while beans are roughly 50 cents for ½-cup serving.
  • Buy fruits and vegetables frozen. They won’t go bad so quickly.
  • Cut coupons and sign up to get deals directly from the store.

The Key to Financial Freedom

Getting out of the endless cycle of living pay check to pay check isn’t easy, but it can be achieved. Paying close attention to what you are spending, making a budget, and cutting unnecessary costs are the first steps toward financial freedom.


Author Bio

Precision Bookkeeping Solutions Inc., based in Lawrenceville, Georgia, provides a full range of tax preparation, accounting, and bookkeeping services, either at your facility or at our location. Whether you are just starting your own business, an established company, or a CPA firm, we are dedicated to helping your organization cut costs, improve business processes, and increase search engine rankings for your website. Our mission is to provide the highest quality bookkeeping services in the industry for our clients and help them understand what their financial reports reveal about their business. We have put together a team of bookkeepers, internet marketing advertising experts, and client care associates that work hard every day to bring you results.

Photo Credit

Calculating the Household Budget” by Stuart Miles from Free Digital Photos.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

My Business Start Up Story - What Did it Really Cost me?

by Carla Cooper1446153_67635331

A lot of people dream of having their own business; being their own boss.  There are advantages to being self-employed.  That list could be another blog post in and of itself.  When I first decided that I wanted to start my own business, the idea, though exciting, seemed to be a daunting task.  I mean one needs money, and lots of it to get a business off the ground; right?  Wrong!  Granted it depends on the business, but in the case of a service offered business, it doesn’t have to be something that will break the bank. 

Here are the steps and challenges that I faced in my journey to get my business off the ground.  In my case, I was blessed to have a good friend give me the software I need to do bookkeeping for my clients.  I already own a computer, which is more than sufficient to use as a personal as well as a business computer.  I will be operating from home, so there will not be any office overhead. 

Then I needed some equipment.  First, a multi-function machine (color laser printer / fax / copier / scanner).  For this, I waited until a discontinued model went on sale at Staples.  I got it at a fantastic price.  It’s not a large sized model, so it’s perfect for a small office like mine.  Secondly, I needed an adding machine.  I got a moderately priced model, also at Staples

Then I needed some basic business supplies, which doesn’t have to cost much either.  I got a case of paper for my new printer at Costco, which is a much lower price than at Staples.  Some other basic supplies I got at the dollar store; things like staples, tape, file folders, notebooks, clipboards.  I purchased some self-printing business cards, designed my own, and printed them on my new printer. 

I got a new business phone line installed.  I called my cable and internet company and got their lowest priced basic home phone service.  I had an old answering machine packed away in a storage bin, so I am using it instead of paying for a voice mail service with the phone company. 

I already had a couple of small filing cabinets for personal file storage, so I weeded out some old files files, and shredded them, to make sufficient space for some client and business files. 

I registered my business for GST (Goods & Services Tax) / HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) in Canada; a free service.  Also, an expected expense that didn’t occur in the end was when I called the City of Barrie to get a business license and was told, that I didn’t need one. Go Barrie!

I considered opening a business bank account, but decided against it after reading the “Guide for Canadian Small Businesses” by the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency).  As a sole-proprietor operating under my own name instead of a registered business name, I don’t need a business bank account that has high service fees. 

Next, I registered with a company called Square; for the service that allows me to accept credit cards from clients for payment.  It is the perfect service for small businesses.  It allows you to accept credit cards from clients with the use of a small card reader that you plug into your smart phone.  The fees are very low at only 2.75%.  That’s only $2.75 on $100.00.  Very acceptable expense for a small business. 

The next thing that most businesses need these days is an online presence.  I created this basic website thanks to Blogger.com.  They have very user-friendly templates that you can use and create your own website/blog for free.  Plus, there’s no monthly hosting fee either. 

Next, I created a Facebook page for a social media presence; also a free service. 

Finally, I needed a logo.  I’m pretty good with computer things, and design, so I sat down one day and played with some shapes and colors until I came up with a logo that I liked. 

With all the basics in place to begin all I needed was some advertising.  My first choice was to put an ad on Kijiji; also a free service.  As a result of this ad, 411.ca saw my ad, called me, and offered me a wonderful low-cost deal on advertising with them.

Some final notes to think about are:  Many people, when starting their own business, want to start with a professionally prepared business plan; which is a fantastic idea.  However, this can cost thousands of dollars, and for me, it just wasn’t in the budget.  Plus, if you have a business where you are selling products you will need money for inventory as well.  For example, I am also an author.  I have to buy my books at cost, so I can sell them to customers.  This requires money for my inventory of books. How much this will cost you, depends on what your inventory is and how much you want to buy to start.

This is my business start up story in a nutshell.  I am a small-business sole-proprietor, who operates part-time.  It didn’t cost me a lot of money.  I am flying by the seat of my pants in regards that I don’t have a business plan, but it’s working anyway.  So you see, it doesn’t have to cost you much to become an entrepreneur; to be your own boss; to set your own hours.  It’s worth it, even if you choose to just have a part-time business.