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7 Ways an Accountant Can Save You Money

In today’s competitive business world, it is not uncommon for people to do their own bookkeeping and accounting. There are many reasons why this is done – the most common being that you can save money doing so. Of course, saving a couple of hundred pounds is an enticing prospect, but there are actually many more ways in which hiring the services of one will help you make money instead. Here are 7 ways an accountant can save you money:

1) They free up your time

Time IS money, so the more time you free up doing your bookkeeping, taxes, and financial statements, the more time you can dedicate to the tasks that will actually generate money for your business.

Not to mention that it will take you a lot longer to do all your finances than a professional anyway. Why would you waste your time when you could be doing what you do best and what you actually enjoy?

2) They help you be more tax-efficient

Accountants can help you save money by being more tax-efficient. This means claiming what you can, obtaining loans if you are entitled to financial support, and maximising the tax deductions you are entitled to.

3) They help you avoid fines and penalties

You need to file your taxes correctly and you need to do this on time. With legislation changing all the time, this isn’t easy, and you could be leaving yourself vulnerable to penalties and charges, simply because you didn’t know.

By hiring an accountant, you can always be reassured that you’re filing on time and that your taxes are correct. You can have peace of mind that you won’t get a surprise letter from HMRC and you don’t even have to deal with them at all if you don’t want to.

4) They identify opportunities for growth

Accountants keep your records up-to-date so you will always know the figures of your business. At a glance, you’ll be able to see how you’re performing, what’s coming in and what’s going out, and also your liquidity.

There is power in data! For example, your accountant can help you ascertain how long you could survive if there was a recession, where you can cut down expenses to save money, and where you should be delegating most of your budget if you want to grow.

5) They assist in gaining funding

It takes a lot of time to secure financing from banks and as we said previously, time is money. Your accountant can help you secure loans and financing really easily from creating a business plan and helping you budget to applying and assisting you in the loan process.

6) They advise on investments

If you’re interested in investing, an accountant can help you understand different investment options. From stocks and money markets to real estate and investment vehicles, they can show you how you can grow your money and which opportunities are the best for you and your business.

7) They offer invaluable business advice

As well as accountancy, accountants can offer business guidance to help you increase your chances of success. They can help you build a business from the ground up; they can help you with goal setting and planning, budgeting and forecasting, and pricing to increase your profit margin. This isn’t even everything that’s included in their advisory services so make sure to take advantage of their knowledge.

Spend money to make money

While you can save a couple of hundred pounds doing your own books, you won’t save as much with an accountant and you could actually end up losing a lot more. With an accountant on your team, you can save both time and money while having the reassurance and peace of mind that you’re making sound business decisions for your future.

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What finance is available for small businesses in 2021?

Just thinking about how much the government has forked out during the COVID-19 crisis is scary; never mind hearing the numbers (it was £284 billion at the end of 2020, just FYI). But the funny thing about the economy is that you have to borrow to build.

Small businesses have relied on government-backed financial support this past year, with schemes such as the Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme keeping them afloat. However, the time has come to tighten eligibility, so these came to end as of March 31st.

The wounds of the pandemic are still being felt for many, so the question is then, what help is available to get through this next stage?

What are your needs?

Before you look at the options available, it’s worth thinking about what will be the most beneficial to you. Do you need immediate short-term support or medium-term financing? Will a one-off payment be enough or will you need finance again at some stage in the near future?

Once you know what your needs are, you can look at what new financial support schemes are available and choose the one that suits you best.

Financial support

  • The Recovery Loan Scheme – replaces the loan schemes that have just closed, and the government will guarantee up to 80% of loans from £25,000 to £10m. The scheme is open until 31st December 2021.
  • Restart Grant Scheme – a £5bn fund set up for non-essential retailers and hospitality and leisure businesses. If eligible, they could receive grants of up to £6,000 and £18,000 respectively, per premises.
  • Business rates relief – businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year. Check eligibility here.
  • Self-Employment Income Support Scheme – to claim the fourth grant, you must be a self-employed individual or a member of a partnership. You also have to show evidence that supports a reduction in business activity, capacity, demand or inability to trade due to Coronavirus between 1st February 2021 and 30th April 2021.

Keep yourself informed & seek advice

2021 is looking better than 2020, but it’s still a rough road ahead. Especially for businesses. To help plan for an uncertain future, always keep up to date with announcements, check the website, and always consult your financial advisor for advice before applying for a scheme.

lady with tablet in factory

Self-employed Income Support Grants Extended

In line with the further extension of the CJRS furlough scheme for employees the chancellor has also set out further support for the self-employed. We had been waiting for the details of the calculation of the fourth SEISS grant covering the period to 30 April and we now know that the support will continue to be 80% of average profits for the reference period capped at £2,500 a month and can be claimed from late April. There will then be a fifth SEISS grant covering the 5 months to 30 September.

The chancellor has also bowed to pressure to extend the scheme to include certain traders who were previously excluded. Thus, those who commenced self-employment in 2019/20 will now be included provided they had submitted their 2019/20 tax return by 2 March 2021. This is potentially a further 600,000 traders.

Conditions for the fifth grant will be linked to a reduction in business turnover. Self-employed individuals whose turnover has fallen by 30% or more will continue to receive the full grant worth 80% of three months’ average trading profits, capped at £2,500 a month. Those whose turnover has fallen by less than 30% will receive a 30% grant, capped at £950 a month. We are awaiting further details of this fifth grant.

What are the new business support schemes for covid-19?

What are the new business support schemes for covid-19?

Yesterday the government announced more support for businesses and the self-employed. This blog takes you through the announcements and what it means for your business.

On the one hand, it is great to see the government making available this help. But this probably means we will see fairly strict lockdown conditions between now and March 2021. We hope we are wrong about this, but in your contingency/scenario planning, particularly in regard to cash, please extend this 4-week lockdown until the end of March. If you need help with your business planning, please get in touch.

Here are the full details from the Government’s announcement.

The Self-Employed Income Scheme

On 30th November you will be able to claim a grant for up to 80% of your profits, to cover you for Nov – Jan 2021. This is capped at £7500. They also declared there will be one more grant which will cover the period Feb – Apr 2021. Details are yet unknown of when this will be paid or for how much.

To receive these grants, you need to have received the previous grants.

The ‘Furlough scheme’

This has now been extended to the end of March. Which in effect means that we are unlikely to see the Job Support Scheme operational… You can Furlough any member of staff, as long as they were on the payroll before Oct 30th 2020. And the government will pay up to 80% of their wages, capped at £2500 per month.

As a result of extending the Furlough scheme the planned Jan 2021 ‘Job retention bonus’ of £1000 for any employee you Furloughed who you still employed has been deferred. Until when? Who knows?

Help with cash flow

If you haven’t taken a Bounce Back Loan or didn’t take the maximum amount available to you, you can now top this up. And you will be able to take out a CBIL or Bounce Back Loan now until the end of Jan 2021.

Mortgage payment holidays for those who haven’t taken a payment holiday will be available for 6 months, without this being noted on their credit files.

Remember that for many businesses the deferred Q2 VAT payments, general tax and self-assessment tax is now becoming due in the next few months. Please get in touch if you haven’t already identified how you will manage your cash to make these payments. We can put you in touch with finance providers or help you organise a time to pay agreement with HMRC.

What support is there for my business in lockdown 2?

Last night the prime minister addressed the nation and announced a month long lockdown for England. Something we never considered happening in our lifetimes is now happening twice. Businesses all over the country are being forced to shut once again, and people told to stay home and save lives. If you own a business, the question now is ‘what support is available to help my business survive?’.

Firstly, we need to apologise as details are still very sketchy. Indeed, the government’s own website on the job retention schemes have not yet been updated after the Prime Minister’s announcement on Saturday evening. For more details about the support for businesses announced yesterday see the government’s press release here

This is what we are aware of at the moment:

  • The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme or ‘Furlough’ as it has come to be known will be extended for another month on more favourable terms.
  • The replacement for Furlough, “The Job Support Scheme” due to start today, starts in early December after the Furlough scheme officially finishes.
  • A grant available to self-employed people affected by COVID-19 has also been doubled to 40% of profits, with a maximum grant of £3750 over a 3-month period.

There are still grants available for businesses with rateable premises who are forced to close due to local or national restrictions.

The good news for small business owners (if there can be a silver lining) is that now the government will put in the full 80% of wage costs, up to a max of £2500 per month, for furloughed employees, with employers only needing to cover the pension and NI contributions. And similar to the scheme rules from July, you can have your furloughed employees working part-time under the scheme.

You will be able to furlough anyone who has been on the payroll by 30th October 2020. And they don’t need to have been furloughed before. And similar to how the scheme has operated, you will make your furlough claims with your payroll submissions.

Businesses required to close in England due to local or national restrictions will still be eligible for the following:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £1,334 per month, or £667 per two weeks;
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants to be £2,000 per month, or £1,000 per two weeks;
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per month, or £1,500 per two weeks.


If you are based in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, you will have money made available to you to replicate a similar grant scheme for closed businesses.

Let’s not forget….

We’ve all been here before. We know that it is a tough time for business owners. And there are no guarantees that this lockdown will stop after the 2nd December. However, we are here for you and have got your back.


Business meeting

New Grants To Boost Recovery Of Small Businesses

Thousands of smaller businesses in England are set to benefit from £20 million of new government funding to help them recover from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government has announced.

Small and medium sized businesses will have access to grants of between £1,000 – £5,000 to help them access new technology and other equipment as well as professional, legal, financial or other advice to help them get back on track.

The support will be fully funded by the Government with no obligation for businesses to contribute financially and the support will be fully funded by the government from the England European Regional Development Fund and distributed through local enterprise partnerships (LEP) Growth Hubs, embedded in local areas across England.

LEPs are voluntary partnerships between local authorities and businesses, set up in 2011 by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to help determine local economic priorities and lead economic growth and job creation within the local area.

Activities supported through the £20 million can include:

  • One-to-many events providing guidance to respond to coronavirus,
  • Grants (£1,000 – £5,000) to help businesses access specialist professional advice such as HR, accountants, legal, financial, IT and digital, and to purchase minor equipment to adapt or adopt new technology in order to continue to deliver business activity or diversify.

We will provide further details on how to apply for these grants in due course.

Watch this space!

Please see:

Business bounce back loan - boy on trampoline

Business Bounce Back Loans

Business Bounce Back Loans – what are they and should you apply for one?

Since the scheme launched in May 2020 (just 3 months ago), more than 860,000 bounce back loans have been issued. This means that thousands of small businesses who are struggling due to the coronavirus have applied for and received financial help; help of which will hopefully get them through this turbulent time. So what are bounce back loans? Here is what you need to know about them including a list of questions to help you decide whether you should apply for one.

Business Bounce Back Loans

While there has been a lot of financial support being dished out due to the impact of the Coronavirus, there are small businesses that can’t access this funding quickly enough; self-employed people who don’t qualify for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, and limited company directors who have fallen through the cracks.

For these businesses and individuals, the ones who aren’t covered by other schemes, bounce back loans are a saving grace.

So what are bounce banks loans?

Bounce back loans are 100% government-backed loans which include the following:

  • Loan amount from £2,000-£50,000 or 25% of your annual turnover (whichever is lower)
  • No interest charged in the first 12 months (the Government covers the first year)
  • No repayments needed in the first 12 months
  • After 12 months, all banks charge a fixed 2.5% interest rate/year
  • 6-year loan with no early repayment charges
  • Straightforward application and quick access to funds

Obviously, your business will always remain responsible for the repayment of the whole debt amount, but bounce back loans will provide you with significant support over the next 12 months.

Should I apply?

To help you decide whether you should apply for a bounce back loan, here are some questions for you to consider. If your answer is yes to a number of these questions then you are eligible to receive support.

  • Am I a UK-based business that has been impacted by Covid-19?
  • Was my business established before 1 March 2020?
  • Is this the only support that I am applying for (with the exception of personal support)?
  • Do I need financial help in addition to the self-employment income support grant and universal credit?
  • Do I need to repay existing finance, i.e. lenders?
  • Do I need help to pay investments or working capital for the business – including bills, running costs and wages?
  • Do I need capital immediately (within 24 hours)?

Things to note

If you would like to apply for a bounce back loan, all you have to do is contact a bank directly and fill in a short online application. You will need details of your annual turnover, your account number, the amount you wish to borrow, a copy of your tax return, and proof that your business has been negatively impacted by Covid-19.

In terms of repayments, there are no interest or repayments in the first year but after those 12 months, you will need to make 60 repayments of the amount borrowed. Unlike a personal loan, however, you won’t have fixed payments. Each month, you’ll repay 1/60th of the capital plus the interest that has accumulated that month. This means that the amount you owe will decrease over time and in turn, your repayment amount will decrease too.

If you would like to know more about the Business Bounce Back Loans book in a no-obligation free meeting TODAY!

sole traders to get second grant


Sole Traders to get second grant from the Government.

The government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme will be extended, giving more security to individuals whose livelihoods are adversely affected by coronavirus in the coming months, the Chancellor announced on Friday 29 May 2020. Rishi Sunak announced the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme will be extended – with those eligible able to claim a second and final grant capped at £6,570.

  • Individuals can continue to apply for the first SEISS grant until 13 July. Under the first grant, eligible individuals can claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering three months’ worth of profits, and capped at £7,500 in total. Those eligible have the money paid into their bank account within six working days of completing a claim.
  • Applications for the second grant will open in August. Individuals will be able to claim a second taxable grant worth 70% of their average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering three months’ worth of profits, and capped at £6,570 in total.
  • The eligibility criteria are the same for both grants, and individuals will need to confirm that their business has been adversely affected by coronavirus. An individual does not need to have claimed the first grant to receive the second grant: for example, they may only have been adversely affected by COVID-19 in this later phase.

Further guidance on the second grant will be published on Friday 12 June and we will keep you up to date with the details when we know them.


Time to claim your grant if you are self-employed.

The portal opens this week to claim your grant is you are self-employed. This is capped as a taxable lump sum of £7500. Once your claim is approved the money will be in your bank account within 6 working days.

To check whether you are eligible for this grant click hereDirectors of limited companies are NOT eligible for the scheme.

This is essentially ‘free’ money for sole traders whose business has been adversely impacted by Coronavirus. You will need to confirm to HMRC that your business has been adversely affected by Coronavirus. This could be because you have been unable to work, or Coronavirus has reduced the demand for your services/products.

We cannot make the claim on your behalf. (And that’s HMRC’s decision, not our decision) But we can help you decide whether you are eligible.

To make the claim you will need some important numbers:

  • Your self-assessment unique taxpayer reference number (UTR).
  • Your National Insurance Number

Click on this link to go to the portal

HMRC will then tell you if you are eligible, and the date you’ll be able to make your claim from.

If you can claim straight away, then you’ll also need your:

  • Government Gateway user ID and password (if you don’t have one of these you will be asked to create a gateway account when you check your eligibility)
  • UK bank details including:
    • Bank account number
    • Sort code
    • Name on the account
    • Your address linked to your bank account

At the moment we don’t know whether this scheme will be extended.

If you need any help please email

A bank building toy. New Loans for small businesses announced

New loans for small businesses announced

New loans for small businesses announced.

Sadly, lockdown doesn’t seem to be ending soon. This means that we are going to be seeing more pressure on the economy and the chances of this being a 12-week blip to the economy with a large bounce back are getting less and less as lockdown trundles on. Cheesy as it sounds, do remember that we are there to support you and your business through this difficult time.

In this blog I wanted to take you through some of the new announcements yesterday by the government, plus an update on what is happening with the financial package the government announced.

We are now seeing local authorities pay the £10,000 and £25,000 grants to small businesses and the first Furlough payments come through into our clients’ accounts.

Use this tool to see what financial help your business can access

The government has also put together a handy tool for any business owner to see what financial help they are entitled to or can claim or access. Go here to access.

Government announces ‘bounce back’ microloan scheme for small businesses

Piggy Bank

Yesterday, the government announced that small businesses will get access to 100% taxpayer-backed loans. This may have something to do with the fact that the CBIL scheme was struggling to get the money out to small businesses who needed it and the banks being reluctant to lend the money!

The great news is that the scheme opens next week and is said to have been simplified to an online form, which is 2 pages in length. And unlike the previous CBIL scheme, businesses only need to show they were a viable business before the COVID-19 crisis hit, and their business is negatively impacted by COVID-19.

Let’s look at the detail of the scheme which are available:

  • Loans of between £2,000 and £50,000 are available
  • The government guarantees 100% of the loan
  • No fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months (and the government pays the interest for the first 12 months)
  • The government is working with lenders to agree a low ‘standardised’ rate of interest for years 1-6 of the loan.
  • Loan terms will be up to 6 years
  • It launches formally on 4th May and the cash is believed to be available within days

Only businesses who haven’t accessed the CBIL scheme can apply. However, businesses with a CBIL loan of under £50,000 can transfer it into the bounce back loan scheme and have until 4 November to arrange this with their lender.

We are seeing reported that businesses will be able to borrow up to 25% of their turnover, however, have not been able to verify this on the government’s official announcements.

Full details of the bounce back scheme are here

If you would like to talk to us about accessing the bounce back loan scheme, please get in touch. We don’t yet know the full extent of the information which needs to be provided, but we would expect that your books would need to be up-to-date.