You’ve come to the end of your company’s first year and, hopefully, you’re feeling pretty skippy. As you stride confidently into year two, however, there are some important things you need to know.
HMRC and Companies House love hearing about your success – and reaping the rewards – and there are several points throughout the year where you will have to fill out forms, file tax returns or update them about your business progress. Here’s a timeline, based on forming a company on the 1st January 2015, that will give you an overview of what you need to file and when:
This nifty blog post will also help you decipher how, what and when you need to file.
So now that you are dreadfully aware of how much responsibility you have as a company director, how do you make sure you stay on top of it all? Faltering at any hurdle could incur your company significant fines and may even result in your status as a limited company being revoked. To ensure that doesn’t happen, here are a few tips to help keep you organised and on the ball throughout the year:
Manage your time
This is easier said than done. Looking after a business, a life, perhaps even a family, all at once isn’t easy. Luckily there are some great apps to help you. Here are a couple of our favourites for 2015:
This fruity little number combines your calendar, to-do list and “daily habits” in one central location and offers helpful suggestions about how best to use and manage your time. This is particularly useful in months when you have a lot to file and have to juggle these with the day-to-day tasks of running a successful business.
Staying on top of your time management also means being super organised throughout the year. If you keep an accurate record of all invoices and expenses as you go along, you will save yourself a lot of time and energy when it comes to filing your tax return.
As far as expensing apps go, this one is up there with the best. It’s easy to use and allows you to record all expenses on-the-go, report on what you have spent and categorise different expense types, making it much easier and quicker to file when the time comes.
Freckle is simple with almost no learning curve and combines time management with project management, invoicing and reports. Once your time has been logged, Freckle proves its worth, which will help you with your yearly business planning, as well as keeping you on the ball in the day-to-day.
This might seem obvious but you’d be amazed how many miss deadlines because they simply forget. At the start of the year, set reminders well in advance of each deadline, on top of the dates set in your calendar, this way you will be bamboozled with reminders and won’t ever miss a date.
Dueapp works separately from your calendar, which means you can set as many reminders as you need without clogging up your day-to-day planner. It’s designed to be as easy and quick to use as possible, much in accordance to your efficient working life.
Don’t leave it to the last minute
This is a well laboured point. For the sake of your sanity, and your business, never leave anything to the last minute. Missing any of the Companies House or HMRC deadlines could cost your company in the thousands and you could be at risk of losing your company altogether.
Filing early also gives you time to save for your tax bill. If you leave it all to the last minute, you could find you don’t have the extra cash required to pay the full amount outright, which will also incur you extra fines.
Don’t procrastinate – you could make money from being organised
That being said, HMRC will actually reward you for your timely submissions. You can pay your Corporation Tax 6 months and 13 days after the start of your accounting period and HMRC will pay 0.5% interest on it.
For example, your company owes £10,000 in Corporation Tax for the year ended 31 December 2013. This is due on 1 October 2014. If your company pays it on 1 February 2014, it’s entitled to credit interest on £10,000 from 1 February 2014 to 1 October 2014. This would be approx be £45 in credit interest paid by HMRC
Can’t argue with them apples.
Do you have any top tips and tricks to staying on top of your Director responsibilities? Leave them in the comments below or tweet us @teamcrunch.
All tax information included in this article is just a guide and is subject to change depending on your situation. For personalised advice, please call our advisers on 033 3311 8001.
Photo by Gabriel Rojas Hruska