Tax: How to drive the devil out of the detail

They say knowledge is power – and there can hardly be a situation where it’s more powerful than when you sit down with a heavy heart to fill in a tax return. But there’s a way to make the task a walk in the park, and it starts at the very beginning of a tax year…

Tax is pretty much universal, no matter where in the world you live. Sure, the rules will be different, there are differences in who can claim for what, and similar kinds of allowances have different names in different countries – but one thing’s the same the world over; the authorities will always want detail, and lots of it.

And as the proverb tells us, that’s where the Devil is to be found.

Completing any country’s tax return is straightforward enough, so long as you have the details.  Do you know precisely how much you earned last year? Precisely, mind you, because precision is what the Tax Inspector is going to want from you. And if you don’t, do you know where to find the information? You may even know the answer to that, but be unsure of where to find the right scrap of paper or online file.

Expense ManagementPersonal income is only a tiny part of the equation for anyone in business, and for small businesses and one-man bands getting the detail right is crucial in making sure tax is neither overpaid nor underpaid. Those small firms are the ones where personal money is often used for business purchases and vice-versa; where receipts are lost, and legitimate claims slip through the net, simply because the business owner is a poor expense manager.

And how much time could be wasted in searching out lost data? That’s time that small firms should be using to work for customers and generate revenue – or even to relax and re-charge your internal batteries! No-one in business ever made much money from doing their own accounts at the financial year-end, and that goes for accountants too!

New year; new start
So here’s the best piece of advice you’ll get with which to start the new calendar year, and carry it forward into your next financial year too – get yourself one of the money management apps now available. There are a number to choose from, though we’d draw your attention to our own free-to-download Solo Expenses.

None will make you a better money manager, because they all need input from you, but here’s why we think our app will fit easily with your business and busy lifestyle, no matter if it’s catering or hairdressing, ski instructing or blog writing.

Solo Expenses records all of your business and personal spending, so long as you’re sufficiently-disciplined to input the data – but we’ve made it so simple, it’s intuitive and easy to do, taking seconds to record each transaction.

You can tap in the details, photograph the receipt, or even create a voice recording with all the detail. Invest just £2.49 a month and you can unlock other special features too, like creating a report that can be downloaded directly to your accountant at the flick of a thumb.

The benefits
Expense Manager AppBe diligent with your expense manager app, and great things will happen.

  1. You’ll never have to scrabble around the office again, driving up your blood pressure as you look for misplaced receipts, because they’ll all be there on your smartphone
  2. You’ll have more time to do more business, if you want, or relax if you don’t, knowing that your expense management is covered
  3. You’ll never miss a tax deadline again – and missed deadlines drive up costs because you’ll be fined for late payment
  4. You’ll never fail to claim a legitimate allowance, which will reduce your tax bill
  5. And when your business grows, you’ll be able to move up to Solo Expenses’ big brother Expense on Demand, which offers loads of extra expense management features which all kind of companies in just about every sector find really valuable, saving more time and money than they dreamed possible, and offering a swift and ongoing return on investment.

Companies in more than 70 countries use these products; when will you start to get a slice of the benefits for yourself? There’s no time like the present.