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When to appoint an accountant for your franchise business

You may believe that a new franchise isn’t established enough to need an accountant. However, unless you’re an expert in accounting and tax you may find a steep learning curve awaits.

Appointing an accountant can provide your new venture with some essential advice and ongoing support that will steer you through that tough first year and beyond.

A good accountant will help you set up a bookkeeping system to keep track of your invoices and your receipts. This could range from an Excel spreadsheet to a cloud based bookkeeping system.

More importantly, you may need your accountant to help with registering for PAYE and VAT and the procedures involved should you need this. It is common for the initial franchise fee to consist of different components and we can advise on how to get as much tax relief as possible, all whilst staying within the rules.

Your accountant can provide the service of being an additional business adviser. Ahead of any funding applications, an accountant will be able to give advice on a business plan and the tax considerations when registering a new business.

Should you operate as a sole trader, Partnership or Limited Company? An accountant can discuss the benefits of each structure and the tax implications, and also go through what is right for your circumstances, needs and plans.

Managing your business as it grows

Whether you are a growing business or starting up, an accountant can advise you on the best way to arrange additional finance without putting your business at risk.

When your funding is in place, there needs to be a layer of control to ensure your business grows in the right way. Many of your concerns may be financial – adequate working capital, good stock control, invoicing and so on – an accountant’s advice will be invaluable in such matters.

The tax bill should be covered by the business and an accountant will review and look to optimise your tax position and make sure you’re operating as tax-efficiently as possible. More importantly an accountant can help you plan to put aside any possible tax so that a large tax bill doesn’t arrive out of the blue, putting your business at risk.

This article was written by Jo Nockels FCCA, FMAAT, Senior Training & Technical Communications Manager for TaxAssist Accountants.  For further information on TaxAssist Accountants click here

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