Worried about getting your books cleaned up by the end of the year? The Number Works can help!

Clean Up Your Books Before the End of 2021!

Are you already thinking about buying presents for the holiday season? If so, you should probably be thinking about your books too!

When you’re a small business owner, a year can pass in what seems like the blink of an eye. One moment, you’ve just finished cleaning up your books at the end of the year, the next moment… hey, it’s December! Time to do it all over again!

If you’ve only just realized how far behind you are at preparing your books for the end of the year, don’t worry, there’s still plenty of time to get everything in order!

Keep Your Accountant in the Loop

If you work with a professional to maintain your books, then it’s vital they have every important financial document in their possession by the end of the year.

Here at The Number Works, we work very hard to ensure that our clients’ books are in top shape year-round, but that’s only possible if we are in constant communication.

If you only speak to your accountant once a year, they might be missing vital documents they need to do their job. A professional accountant or bookkeeper should always keep you in the loop about your business’ financial health, but it’s up to you to supply the documents they need to determine it!

The upside of keeping in close communication with your accountant is that if there are any problems with your finances, they’ll know immediately and can handle the situation quickly and professionally.

Generally, your accountant should have:

  • Your financial statements for the year.
  • A full copy of your bookkeeping records.
  • Payroll records.
  • All office expenses (including home office).
  • Vehicle information.
  • Income tax assessments.

If your business is a sole proprietorship or partnership—or your accountant also handles your personal taxes—you should also include your T4, T4A, T3, and T5 slips.

Hire Someone to Help

Of course, if you don’t already have an accountant working for you, finding one this late in the year could seem like a stressful task. Not so! In fact, it could be a perfect time.

Most people start to panic and look for an accountant or tax professional in the first quarter of every year. That tends to be a busy period for accountants. Everyone is looking for help with their income taxes, so we field many calls around that time. By contacting The Number Works in the fourth quarter of the year, you could also ensure that you’ll be set up for the tax season in a few months!

Set Up Quickbooks Online

The best way to make sure that your books are entirely in order by the end of the year is to maintain them as you go. And the easiest way to do that is to use an online accounting program.

We find Quickbooks Online offers small businesses an excellent level of flexibility matched with ease of use. Basic accounting features, like invoice and bill tracking, can keep all of your financial documents in one place, streamlining the organizational process at the end of the year.

While we’re big fans of many of QBO’s more advanced features, they aren’t usually necessary for many small businesses. With that in mind, you can often pick a less expensive subscription that will supply your company with everything you need to keep track of your finances at an affordable price. And if you do want to get into the more complicated QBO features, we’d be more than happy to teach you everything you need to know!

Another plus of QBO is all of the financial information contained within is easily shareable with your bookkeeper or accountant. If they already have access, you may not even need to lift a finger to get them what they need.

With gift-giving, big to-do lists, and general holiday stress, the end of the year tends to be one of the busiest possible times. For small business owners, that’s compounded by the panic of needing to get their books in order. So hiring a professional accountant or learning QuickBooks for yourself is the holiday gift that just keeps on giving! Getting that problem off your plate will instantly relieve much of the holiday stress and help you get your small business’ finances into great shape for next year.

Feel free to contact The Number Works today, and we can help you finish off your 2021 finances and set your small business up for future success!

Getting Started with Quickbooks Online for Your Small Business

Getting Started with Quickbooks Online for Your Small Business

Does the daily management of your small business’s finances ever give you a stress headache?

The reality of being a small business owner is that everything is on your shoulders. You don’t have a boss; you ARE the boss! While that can be incredibly gratifying, it can also be very stressful. There’s no one else to blame if things go wrong. If there are any mistakes when it comes to managing your finances, it’s entirely on you.

As a small business owner, the smart thing to do is put a comprehensive system into place to monitor and maintain your business’s financial health. For some small business owners, that can involve hiring a bookkeeper or accountant. However, many new small businesses don’t yet have the resources necessary to bring on such professionals. In this case, they need to have an easy way to make sure that their financial data is at their fingertips at all times. Enter QuickBooks Online!

Why Go for QBO?

While there are many online accounting programs out there, QuickBooks Online is our favourite here at The Number Works. Not only does QBO offer an impressive suite of financial management features at an affordable price, but it can also be learned by just about anyone!

As a service, QBO can grow with your business. When your business is just starting out, your financial management needs might be simple, but after a year or two of growth, you’ll need something a little more comprehensive. That’s one of the strengths of QBO—you can delve into its more complex features as needed, while also maintaining the brilliant simplicity of the overall system.

Your First Steps with QBO

The first step to using QBO is determining which package is best for your current business needs.

If you have a small business, you likely won’t need QBO’s most comprehensive services right off the bat. Your options include EasyStart, which provides for all of the basics; Essentials, which allows for multiple users, bill and payment management, multi-currency support, and time tracking; and Plus, which adds project profitability and inventory tracking.

Once you’ve picked your ideal package, you can start setting up QBO for your business. Importing your business’s bank accounts, credit cards, and other financial information into the system should be your next step. Once added, they’ll automatically update, importing up-to-date information regularly. This will save you a ton of time manually inputting financial data.

After this, it’s time to start setting up how you want QBO to organize your information. You can create accounts within the program for different line items in your financial statements. For example, QBO automatically gives you “Expenses” and “Revenue” accounts. That’s fantastic if your expenses and revenue are only coming from single sources, but if you have multiple sources of income, you might want to create some personalized accounts to make it easier to keep track.

Delving Into More Complex Features

QuickBooks Online setup can be a relatively easy, though somewhat time-consuming task. The real trick is learning the more complex parts of the program.

There have been many small business owners who, once they start with QBO, only use a small portion of its features. This is often the case even for business owners who could tremendously benefit from deeper integrations of the software into their business. It’s understandable, but unfortunately, it means that there are many additional benefits of QBO that they’re missing out on!

The best solution to this problem is to hire someone who can teach you all of the details of QuickBooks Online and show you how it can specifically benefit your business. At The Number Works, we can teach you all of the ins and outs of QBO. Our experience with this program and small business owners means that we know exactly the places where you can get the best bang for your buck!

Learning how to use QuickBooks Online is an investment into yourself and your small business. Once you understand how the software works, you can do your own bookkeeping to stay on top of your business’s financial health at all times!

Being a small business owner can be stressful, but the financial management side is always much more manageable when all your financial data and records are in one place that you can readily access. QuickBooks Online will keep things organized and give you an excellent view of how your business is operating. Even better, if you decide to hire a financial professional to take care of your taxes, everything will be ready to send to them, making tax season so much easier!

If you want to learn all about QuickBooks Online, The Number Works is prepared to help! Contact us today, and we can get you and your small business set up for success!

Money-Saving Hacks for Small Businesses

Money-Saving Hacks for Small Businesses

Do you ever look up life hacks on the internet?

There are countless websites out there, all offering life hacks that are guaranteed to change the way you do things. We’re sure that you’ve seen tips like these before:

  • Pour cola into your toilet to make it spotlessly clean
  • Put pancake mix into an empty ketchup bottle for a perfect batter pour
  • Use your car’s seat warmer to keep your pizza box hot on the way home

But when you’re running a small business, you don’t need life hacks; you need money-saving hacks. Unfortunately, these are usually less fun than life hacks. But if you implement these simple hacks at your small business, you could see some significant changes to your bottom line!

Revamp Your Advertising

If you’re a small business (especially a newer one), most traditional advertising and marketing methods simply won’t work for you.

Reaching out with big newspaper ads or TV spots casts too wide a net, not to mention that both marketing methods are costly. If you’re a small business, we encourage you to think about targeted advertising, so you are reaching out to the exact audience you want to capture.

This method is often much cheaper as well, as you can use digital marketing strategies to massively narrow the focus of your campaign. For example, Facebook Ads allow you to specifically pick the audience you want to target, in terms of both demographics and locations. You can also choose your exact budget, guaranteeing that you won’t go over budget.

You can also utilize free marketing platforms like YouTube. By creating a few fun YouTube videos advertising your business, you will have content that you can share on all of your social media profiles!

In other words, when it comes to your marketing, don’t think “big.” Instead, think “targeted.”

Utilize Remote Work

Remote work has become more common than ever. But have you ever considered how powerful it could be to hire remote workers for your business?

We’re not necessarily talking about full-time employees here. If you have repetitive tasks that take up a ton of your time every week, you might want to look at hiring a virtual assistant to help you out part-time. You usually only need to pay them for the time they spend on a task, making them extremely cost-effective for targeted work.

Other reasons to hire remote workers like virtual assistants are that you often don’t need to spend money or time to train them and you don’t need to pay them benefits. If you’re a small business that needs some extra hands, but you can’t afford to bring on new employees, then remote workers might be the way to go!

Review All Your Expenses

Okay, this might not sound like a hack. But you would be surprised at the number of small businesses out there that never look closely at their books to see where they can cut back on expenses.

Monitoring your expenses has become even more critical as we move into a post-pandemic world. Small expenses, like paper supplies, can be a significant drain over the life of your business. It might be time to think about creating a paperless office, especially if you are now working from home!

And if you’ve already transitioned your small business into a home office environment, maybe you should consider staying that way. Not only will it save you big bucks in office rent, but you could also likely write off a part of your mortgage or home rent. We can help you find those savings!

It can also be a challenge to identify these savings if your books are not well-organized. If you have excellent bookkeeping, then finding these expenses should be a piece of cake. In fact, one of the best ways to make sure all of your finances are organized (besides hiring a professional bookkeeper) is our next hack!

Learn to Use QuickBooks Online

Here at The Number Works, we are huge fans of QuickBooks Online. This cloud-based accounting software has entirely changed the game for countless small businesses, including many that we have worked with directly.

In many cases, we take the lead on the management of your finances, but what if you want to do it yourself? Then you need to learn all the ins and outs of QBO! It may sound easy, but it can be trickier than you think. While it’s simple enough to learn the basics, things can get complicated when you get into many of its more advanced financial management features.

That’s why we think one of the best money-saving hacks you can try is getting QuickBooks Online training. It’s one of the reasons why we offer this service to small business owners. It can save you money on hiring an accountant, and it will also deeply immerse you in the financial health of your business. You’ll know exactly what is going on in your business at all times!

Save on Office Supplies

Remember what we said about saving on paper? What if you need paper at work? Well, it might be time to look at your office supplies supplier and see if someone else can offer you a better deal.

You might want to look for savings in places where you would typically pay a premium. For example, how much do you spend on “genuine” ink for your printer? If you use toner, it can cost you hundreds of dollars a year. You can always look into third-party ink or toner cartridges. Just make sure to do your research first, ensuring that they are guaranteed not to damage your printer or copier. But using off-brand products like these can save you a massive amount of money!

Life and small business hacks are fantastic, but nothing beats solid financial management strategies when it comes to saving money. If you want to set yourself up for success in managing your business finances by learning QuickBooks Online, contact us today to ensure that your small business’ finances are always well taken care of!

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Bootstrap Your Business By Learning to Manage QuickBooks Yourself

Bootstrap Your Business By Learning to Manage QuickBooks Yourself

Have you ever heard the phrase “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps?”

Nowadays, the phrase has become synonymous with self-reliance and entrepreneurship. The idea is that if you want to succeed, you don’t need any help. You can do it yourself!

But here is the thing about that phrase: it originally meant something was impossible. Pulling yourself up by your bootstraps is literally an impossible task. If you put on a pair of shoes and try to lift yourself by pulling on your shoelaces, you aren’t going to get very high.

The bottom line is that everyone needs a little help, even entrepreneurs and small business owners. But sometimes that help doesn’t come in the form of a person or a business. At times, it’s in the form of software!

In our experience, some of the best help that a small business owner can get comes from using QuickBooks Online. This comprehensive and accessible piece of software can completely change how you handle accounting at your small business.

It’s Cloud-Based

One reason to start your own business is the freedom to work whenever and wherever you want.

If you are sitting in your home office and need a change of scenery such as going to the park to do some work over your lunch break, you can have it! Well, you can if you use cloud-based software at your work.

QuickBooks Online is entirely cloud-based. That means you can access your account on whatever device(s) you currently have, so long as you have an internet connection. Want to check something quickly on your phone? No problem. Taking a tablet with you to get some work done on the fly? Just log into QBO, and you’re all set.

Another reason why a cloud-based accounting solution can be so valuable is that your entire team can access it wherever they’re located. If you have some remote employees or have an accountant/bookkeeper, you can give them access to your QuickBooks account. Since nothing is stored locally on devices, it’s an ideal solution for decentralized businesses.

Flexible Pricing

Another reason why QBO is an outstanding option for recently-founded small businesses is that you can pick a feature package that is the right price for you. There are currently three pricing packages for QuickBooks, each offering progressively more comprehensive services.

The EasyStart package allows you to track your income and expenses, capture and organize your receipts, invoice and accept payments, track taxes, and much more.

The Essentials package gives you everything in the EasyStart package, but also allows for multiple users and time tracking. It also helps you manage and pay your bills.

The Plus package is their most comprehensive, and includes everything above, plus the ability to track your inventory and project profitability.

No matter the current size of your business, QuickBooks Online offers a package that will give you what you need at a price you can afford!

Financial Management

If you choose one of the more comprehensive packages, you will get access to a variety of valuable financial management features that can help you grow your business.

For example, invoicing can be a pain, especially when you don’t want to keep reminding people to pay. QuickBooks Online does that for you automatically while also automatically tracking all online payments. When your client gets your invoice and pays it, QBO will confirm that the payment has been received. This automation works for many payment methods, including credit cards, bank transfers, and electronic payments.

Paying bills is another area that can take up a ton of your time, but QBO streamlines the entire process. You can pay them directly from QuickBooks, meaning that financial information will be put automatically into your records.

Additionally, you can integrate QuickBooks Online with several online services that might be essential to your business. If you use PayPal or Shopify on a daily basis, these integration features can make your life dramatically simpler! Everything will be automatically tracked and kept in a single location.

The big side benefit of all of these features is that all of the information you need for your taxes will be in a single place. No more annoying shoebox full of receipts to organize!

Learning Everything

The only real issue with QuickBooks Online is that there are so many valuable features that it can be overwhelming. If you aren’t experienced using an online financial management tool, it can seem very difficult to learn to navigate it all.

Thankfully, we have you covered! One of our services here at The Number Works is teaching small business owners everything they need to know about QuickBooks. You don’t need a background in finance to quickly become an expert on the interface. With our guidance, you’ll be taking care of every financial aspect of your business before long!

At The Number Works, we are big believers in helping small business owners grow their businesses and reach the success they’ve always dreamed of. Picking yourself up by your bootstraps might be impossible, but with just a little bit of help, you can rise even higher, bootstraps not necessary! Contact us today, and let us lift you up!

Does Your Business Need a Financial Checkup

Does Your Business Need a Financial Checkup?

When was the last time you went to the doctor for a checkup? Maybe it’s also time for your business to have a financial checkup!

As you get older (and wiser), you start to realize the wisdom of taking care of yourself. You eat better, start exercising, and pay more attention to your overall health. This can include heading to the doctor for regular checkups, as nerve-wracking as they can be. Sometimes, getting a checkup can make the difference between illness and a thriving life!

In many ways, this is similar to how you should be running your small business. Just because things look like they’re going well doesn’t mean there can’t be something on the horizon that could negatively impact your success. That’s why you must regularly give your business a financial “checkup” to confirm everything is “healthy!” There are a few ways you can go about this.

Using a Bookkeeper

Having a bookkeeper take care of your business’ finances is a little bit like wearing a smartwatch with health monitoring features. It will constantly keep you informed about how your body is doing, reporting your heart rate, amount of exercise, health goals, and more.

When you are working with a professional bookkeeper, they will be keeping an eye on every financial aspect of your business. Your profits, expenses, income, invoices- everything will be monitored by a professional who will make sure they are properly accounted for.

If you don’t currently have a bookkeeper, you could also hire one to do a one-time check through all of your financials to get a better idea of how your business is currently doing. This is very similar to heading to the doctor for a checkup. You might walk away having discovered that you’re in excellent health. Or you could find something that needs to be addressed immediately. Either way, a health checkup will leave you with peace of mind, as will financial checkups for your business.

Using QuickBooks Online

Going through all of your finances used to be a time-consuming experience, especially if everything wasn’t fully organized. You’d need to go through individual invoices, bills, and much more to check up on your business’s health. But that’s not the case anymore!

If you use a comprehensive online accounting program, such as QuickBooks Online, all of your financial information will be “accounted for” at a glance! Rather than needing to dig through records, all of your financial info will be right there, ready for you to go through.

Even better, you won’t need to keep an eye on it every day. QuickBooks Online can automatically generate financial reports that give you a quick checkup on your business. You can set these to be created at regular intervals (we’d usually recommend weekly to keep fully informed). And if you find that you don’t have time to go through these reports, we’d be happy to take over the financial monitoring of your business for you!

Cloud-Based Features

Online checkups with doctors are becoming increasingly common because you can do them anywhere, at any time. You don’t need to take off an entire afternoon to head into the doctor’s office. Instead, you simply sit down at your computer (or on your phone or tablet) and get the attention you need.

Thanks to cloud-based features in QuickBooks Online, you get the same level of convenience when you are checking up on your business. You can access your information from anywhere you have an internet connection. Even better, it offers 128-bit SSL encryption with multi-factor authentication to ensure your financial information’s security. As a bonus, all of your information is stored in the cloud, so you never need to worry that your financial data could be stolen if you lose one of your devices.

Flexible Pricing for “Checkups”

Thankfully, something that we (for the most part) avoid in Canada is insane fees for everyday medical expenses like checkups. Fortunately, there is something similar in place for QuickBooks Online!

QBO offers three pricing packages to suit you and your business, so you don’t need to pay more than necessary for your financial checkups. The EasyStart package gives you the basics, and can be a perfect entry point if you’ve never used online accounting before. The best part is that if you decide that you need more features, you can upgrade at any time without being under contract. If you aren’t sure if you need the Essential or Plus packages for the size of your business, we’d be delighted to help you figure it out!

QuickBooks Online is one of the best ways to keep fully informed about the health of your business. If you aren’t sure how to get started using it, we invite you to contact The Number Works today. We can get you up-to-date with all of QBO’s features in no time. This will give you the tools and knowledge you need to make sure your business’ finances are the pinnacle of good health!

Should You Manage Your Own Bookkeeping

Should You Manage Your Own Bookkeeping?

Do you enjoy managing every aspect of your small business?

As a small owner, your time is precious. You might have so much on your plate that time management isn’t just a good idea, it’s a necessity. Crossing anything off your to-do list probably results in you feeling a lot less stressed out!

This is why we usually suggest small businesses move their bookkeeping and financial management over to professionals. Not only will it save you some panic around tax time, but it will also ensure that your finances are properly maintained year-round. However, many small business owners out there prefer to take care of their own books. They want their finger on the pulse of their business’s financial health all the time.

So, should you manage your own business’s bookkeeping? Here are some things you may want to consider:

How Much Time Do You Have?

When you’re a small business owner, just about everything boils down to time.

You need to manage your employees, work with your customers or clients, do your social media marketing, sell your products and services, and also maintain a healthy work-life balance. That’s a heck of a tall order!

If you find that you have some free time in your week, taking care of your own bookkeeping might be a fantastic idea. It will not only help you keep a close eye on your business’ finances, but also help you develop skills that could pay off in the future. Speaking of skills…

Do You Have Bookkeeping Experience?

If you’ve done bookkeeping for organizations in the past, then doing your own bookkeeping probably makes a lot of sense. You’ve already got the skills!

Bookkeeping is a learned skill set that anyone can pick up. If you have a head for numbers and organization, then taking care of your own books could be a fantastic way to keep your business on track. The more experience you have, the less stress you’ll have to deal with!

Of course, that’s assuming that you already know how to use Quickbooks Online (QBO).

Do You Know How to Use QBO?

Having knowledge of how bookkeeping software works can often mark the difference between feeling confident in taking the reins of managing your finances and feeling intimidated by the prospect of doing your own bookkeeping.

While there are many excellent kinds of accounting software out there, our recommendation is Quickbooks Online. It offers a fantastic mix of advanced features and accessibility, perfect for small business owners looking to do their own bookkeeping.

Additionally, Quickbooks Online is cloud-based! This means you can access your finances anywhere you have an internet connection. There’s also flexible pricing, so you can save money by picking a plan that matches the size of your business.

All of that said, QBO can still be very complicated to use if you don’t already have familiarity with accounting programs. One way that we can help at The Number Works is by providing you with Quickbooks Online training. After we’re finished, you will know the ins and outs of Quickbooks almost as well as we do!

Does It Make Financial Sense?

Taking care of your own books can be an excellent way to save some money early in the life of your small business. However, once your business has grown to a certain level, doing your own bookkeeping could be a mistake.

The more successful your business, the greater the demands your bookkeeping will have on your time. If you want the freedom you need to continue growing your business, you can’t spend the same amount of time doing administrative tasks as when you first started out. At that point, doing your own bookkeeping doesn’t make much fiscal sense.

Additionally, the larger your business, the more chances there are of mismanaging your books. Having a professional accountant or bookkeeper taking care of your finances will guarantee that your financial information is always kept in tip-top shape without you needing to worry. This can be invaluable at around tax time, and can possibly even save you lots of money!

If you’re thinking about doing your own bookkeeping, but you don’t yet know how to use Quickbooks Online, feel free to contact The Number Works today. We would be delighted to help you get started, teaching you everything you need to know to manage the bookkeeping needs of your small business!

What Does Reconciling Your Books Mean?

What Does Reconciling Your Books Mean?

When was the last time you reconciled your books?

While bookkeepers and accountants have many important jobs, spotting errors in your books is probably the most important. Keeping accurate accounts is an essential part of maintaining good financial health, both personally and professionally. One small mistake can create further mistakes, resulting in your finances becoming a complete mess.

There’s an easy way to make sure that your books always accurately reflect your business’ financial health, and that’s by hiring a professional to do monthly reconciliations of your accounts.

What Does Reconciling Mean?

Reconciling your books simply means comparing your financial statements and records to those from external sources, such as your bank or credit card company. Your books should always match up with these external documents, confirming that every transaction you have recorded is complete and valid.

Why Bother Doing Reconciling?

The primary reason you want to reconcile your books regularly is to confirm that your financial information is accurate. By comparing your transactions and balances in Quickbooks Online with documentation from your bank, you can find mistakes, discover fraud or theft, avoid overcharged credit cards, and/or prevent overdrafts on your accounts.

Generally, we recommend reconciling your books once a month, usually when you receive your bank statement. That way, you can compare the information in your accounting program with the entries your bank has recorded. If you don’t have the time to do it yourself, hiring a professional to take care of monthly reconciliation for you can be a fantastic solution. Not only will it give you peace of mind that your accounts are in order, but it will also ensure that all of your financial information is correct for tax time!

How to Reconcile With Online Accounting Software

One of the best ways to reconcile your books is to use a program like Quickbooks Online that automatically keeps track of your savings, bills, invoices, credit card transactions, and much more.

Quickbooks Online offers some outstanding features that quickly allow you to compare the information in your Quickbooks account with that of your bank account, or whatever other accounts you wish to reconcile. Because all of the needed information is right there, it makes it incredibly easy—if a bit time-consuming—to compare it to your bank statements.

To start, navigate to the “Reconcile” page in Quickbooks, click on “Accounting,” and then click “Reconcile.” From there, you can pick which account you wish to reconcile. Once you select the dates that match your bank statement and your beginning and ending balances, you’ll go to a page containing all relevant transactions. Check them off as you compare them to the bank statement to confirm that everything matches. Once the “difference field” is down to zero, your accounts are reconciled!

At The Number Works, we love numbers—obviously—but even we have to admit that reconciling bank statements can be a bit of a tedious process! That’s why so many small business owners trust us to do it for them. We can reconcile all of your accounts on a regular basis to ensure accuracy and prevent any mistakes that could harm your business’ financial health.

If you’d like to hand over your accounting to us or would like some help learning how to use QuickBooks Online to reconcile your books yourself, please feel free to contact The Number Works today. Let’s make sure that your books are ALWAYS in impeccable condition!

Quickbooks Features & Benefits

Quickbooks Features & Benefits

Think fast: What’s your favourite program for managing your small business’s finances?!

For us, there isn’t even a question: It’s Quickbooks!

Though there are many excellent accounting programs out there, we believe that Quickbooks Online offers the most significant benefits to small businesses in Ontario. It was a fantastic piece of software when it was launched almost 40 years ago in 1983, and since then, it has only gotten better!

Here are some of the reasons you might want to consider using Quickbooks to handle your small business’s finances.

Cloud-Based Solution

Nowadays, almost everything is done in the Cloud, and Quickbooks is no exception.

Having an entirely cloud-based accounting solution is an invaluable benefit for small businesses across Canada. No longer do you need to worry about crashed hard drives or lost data. Instead, everything is safely kept in the cloud, eliminating the need for local backups.

With Quickbooks Online, you can access your financial data on just about any device and anywhere you can get an internet connection. Quickbooks offers 128-bit SSL encryption, multi-factor authentication, and other security measures to ensure that your data remains YOURS.

This cloud-based solution is also ideal in times of social isolation. With so many people working from home, you need a solution that they can access from anywhere. Your employees—and accountant/bookkeeper—will all have access to the same data, provided that you choose the correct services. That means that the person utilizing the program will always have access to the most up-to-date data.

Finally, if you use third-party online services in your business, such as PayPal, Shopify, or online banking, you can connect them to Quickbooks Online. This ensures that all of your financial data will be tracked and kept in a single location without needing to spend time cross-referencing and manually recording multiple sources to keep everything up-to-date.

Excellent Mobile Apps

Quickbooks has some outstanding mobile apps available for Android and iOS devices that can make your life way easier!

Imagine checking up on your finances with your phone while you’re lying in bed, or looking at some financial insights on your iPad while sitting on your comfy couch. Because Quickbooks is entirely cloud-based, you can access all available features on whatever device you want, wherever you want!

Financial Management Features

Quickbook is loaded with features designed to make your small business run smoother, and some of the best are their automation tools.

For example, sending out invoices and statements can be such a time-consuming process. But through Quickbooks, your invoices can be sent out automatically without you needing to lift a finger.

Similarly, Quickbooks can receive and automatically track all online payments. Once your client gets their invoice, they pay the invoice with a single click, and QBO will automatically confirm that the payment has been received. It also works for bank transfers, credit card payments, and other electronic payments.

All of this information will be super handy around tax time, and all of it will be ready and waiting for you in QBO!

Flexible Pricing for Your Business

Some accounting software comes with eye-popping pricing. But with Quickbooks Online, you can choose a solution that fits not only your needs but also your pocketbook!

At the moment, there are three different pricing packages available with progressive services. For example, there is the EasyStart package that will give you the basics. If you move up to the Essentials package, you’ll also get multiple user functionality, multi-currency support, and more. Finally, you could opt for the Plus package, which includes the ability to track your inventory and project profitability.

Depending on the size of your business and your current focus, you might be able to save some money by going with one of the cheaper packages. If you aren’t sure which is right for you, we’d be happy to help you figure it out!

While we’re big believers in using Quickbooks to keep your business’s finances on track, there’s one thing that can hold some small business owners back: QBO’s complexity. There are so many fantastic features, reports, and options that it can be overwhelming to learn how to use them all.

That’s where we come in! At The Number Works, we’d be delighted to help you and your employees to learn how to use Quickbooks effectively. You don’t need to have a background in finance to understand all of the available features and become an expert in their use! Or, we can set up everything for you and take care of your finances behind the scenes!

If you aren’t currently a client of The Number Works, we invite you to contact us today. Helping you manage and understand your small business’s finances is our passion!

2020 Tax-Filing Season – What’s New This Year

It’s everyone’s favourite time of year: tax season! Are you ready to file your 2020 taxes?

As a virtual accounting firm, we field many questions from our clients around this time of year. And in 2021, we’ve been getting even more tax questions than usual!

With the pandemic still a significant factor in our lives, many have asked how it will impact their taxes. The existence of the CERB and other emergency benefits have complicated things somewhat, but that’s why The Number Works is here to help!

Here are some of the things you need to know about filing your taxes in 2021.

Emergency Benefits

For many in Canada, the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and other programs, e.g. the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), were incredible lifelines to help them financially navigate the pandemic. With COVID-19 closing down many businesses, CERB provided more than $81 billion in payments to out-of-work Canadians—but how are you supposed to account for this money in your taxes?

The first thing you need to know is that taxes weren’t withheld when CERB or CESB payments were issued. That means you will need to account for those taxes in your upcoming return. However, unlike with CERB and CESB, 10% taxes were withheld at the source for many other forms of emergency assistance, including the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), and Canada Recovery Caregiver Benefit (CRCB).

If you received any emergency benefits in 2020, you should be receiving a T4A (issued by the CRA) and/or a T4E (issued by Service Canada) tax slip(s) in the mail. The information contained in these slips must be entered on your return. If you did not receive these slips in the mail, they should also be available in your online CRA account.

Depending on your situation, there’s also the chance that your emergency benefits might be exempt from taxes, or that you might be able to claim a refund. If you have any specific questions about how emergency benefits will impact your taxes, we invite you to contact us ASAP.

New Benefits and Support

With the significant changes to Canadians’ work statuses in 2020, the government has put new benefits and support structures into place that could impact your 2020 taxes.

For example, home offices have certainly become more popular in the last year. With this in mind, you might be eligible to claim home office expenses on your tax return. We can help you figure out the exact benefits you qualify for, minimizing your tax bill.

If you have any questions about other potential benefits, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!

Inaccessible CRA User Accounts

Due to online security concerns, the usernames and passwords of a number of CRA online accounts have been revoked. If you are among the people affected by this, you should have received a notification from the CRA informing you about your account’s status.

Please keep in mind that there are always CRA scams circulating, so if you receive a notification, do NOT share account information with anyone over the phone or through email. Instead, go to the CRA website directly to take steps to recover your account.

Fortunately, the current status of your CRA online account will not impact your ability to file your income taxes using a NETFILE-certified method. However, as your account can contain important tax information, such as your T4 slip, you should take steps ASAP to resolve the situation if you find yourself locked out of your account.

Important Dates

Here are some important dates that you should keep in mind:

April 30th: The personal income tax filing due date for those who are NOT self-employed. Taxes payable due for both individuals and those who ARE self-employed.

June 15th: The personal income tax filing due date for those who ARE self-employed. (Note: Taxes payable are due on April 30th.)

June 15th: Deadline to file GST/HST returns for self-employed annual filers with December 31st, 2020 year-end.

Please keep in mind that, unlike last year, tax deadlines have not changed, and there do not appear to be any plans for extensions. Therefore, putting off preparing your tax returns could result in late fees or penalties.

Working with The Number Works

We fully understand that dealing with your taxes this year might be significantly more stressful than usual. That’s why we are dedicated to making the process for our clients as smooth as possible!

If you are a current client of The Number Works, we ask you to fill out our Client Tax Questionnaire. Please include your full name and SIN in your answers. This questionnaire includes essential information related to COVID-19, so we must receive it as soon as possible. Submissions are due before April 15th so we can meet the April 30th tax deadline. If your questionnaire is not completed before this date, we cannot guarantee that your taxes will be filed on time.

If you aren’t currently a client of The Number Works, we invite you to contact us today! Whether you need help with your personal income tax or your small business, we’d be thrilled to help you get your finances in order and ensure you get every COVID-19 benefit and credit currently available to you!

Canadian Tax Season in a COVID-19 World

Are you ready for the upcoming tax season?

2020 was certainly a doozy of a year, and fortunately, it’s ALMOST over! Of course, 2020 has ended, but there are still some loose ends to tie up, as the 2020 tax season is on the horizon. Things might be a little more complicated when it comes to both your personal and business-related taxes this year, but with some guidance, we can finally close out last year for good!

Some Important Dates

There are many important dates that you need to keep in mind for the upcoming 2020 tax season:

  • Feb. 22: Canada Revenue Agency opens eFile for the 2020 tax year.
  • Mar. 1: Final deadline to contribute to your RRSP to apply to the 2020 tax year.
  • Mar. 1: Final deadline to issues all T4, T4A, and T5 slips.
  • Apr. 30: The personal income tax filing due date for those who are NOT self-employed. Taxes payable due for both individuals and those who ARE self-employed.
  • Jun. 15: The personal income tax filing due date for those who ARE self-employed. (Note: Taxes payable are due on April 30th.)
  • Jun. 15: Deadline to file GST/HST returns for self-employed annual filers with Dec. 31, 2020 year-end.

Tax Deadlines Currently Unchanged

As of now (end of February 2021), all tax deadlines are unchanged, and there do not appear to be any plans for extensions.

This marks a considerable change from the 2019 tax year when the pressures of COVID-19 pushed due dates and deadlines to later in the year. While we’re currently in a very different position than we were in March of 2020, there are still tremendous pressures on both individuals and businesses.

Theoretically, the continued crisis could result in a future announcement from the CRA about potential extensions, but as of now, this isn’t the case. Therefore, you cannot afford to put off your tax preparations, as that could result in late fees and penalties.

Of course, we’ll keep in full contact with our clients about any changes to this state of affairs in the near future.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

The CEWS is a program introduced earlier last year to help businesses that lost revenue cover part of their employees’ wages, retroactive to March 15th, 2020. It’s taxable for income purposes and must be included in corporate or partnership income tax returns.

Personal Taxes

If you took advantage of a program like the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), you need to know that amount is taxable. The CRA did not withhold taxes from the payment, so you will owe taxes on it. You’ll receive a T4A or T4E slip in the mail showing the total amount you collected from CERB in 2020. It will then need to be reported in your personal income tax forms.

If you switched over to one of the new recovery benefit programs after CERB ended (CRB, CRSB, or CRCB), you should know that all of these benefits are also taxable. Taxes were withheld at the source for these programs (10%), but they will still need to be reported in your taxes.

For all of these programs, repaid amounts are not included in your taxable income.

There are also many new benefits and tax credits for those working from home in 2020. If you want to take full advantage of these credits, we highly suggest connecting with us at The Number Works. We can ensure that you get every potential credit to make your tax bill as low as possible for the 2020 tax year.

Working with The Number Works

If you’re working with The Number Works to handle your 2020 taxes, there are a few steps you need to take.

If you are a current client, we ask you to fill out our Client Tax Questionnaire ASAP, including your full name and SIN. There’s new information included in the questionnaire related to COVID-19, so it’s essential that we have this information.

The deadline to upload the completed questionnaire is April 15th so we can meet the April 30th deadline. If the questionnaire is not completed before this date, we cannot guarantee that your taxes will be filed on time, as we’ll need to work on them in order of receipt.

If, on the other hand, you aren’t currently a client of The Number Works but want some help with your personal or small business taxes, we invite you to contact us today! We’ll get you set up so you can take advantage of every COVID-19 tax benefit or credit available to you. You don’t need to stress the tax season when you have The Number Works in your corner!