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Ev1 30th November 2012 02:19 PM

Advice On Taxes & Accounting In My Small Business Revamp
Greetings! :imnew1:

I am new around here, but I am in need of some consultation and this community appears to have some helpful folks so here I am.

My father has operated a custom home decorating small business (faux finishing, and decorative painting) since 1995. He has had limited success and that is because he is NOT a business person, but an artist and creator at heart. His business has displayed many instances of success, but it is all about replicating that success and having a proper structure to back it, he has had issues with taxes etc for years because he lacks business skills and the willpower to keep proper books etc.

This is where I enter the picture.

While I had limited interest in my father's business for years, it took me getting out on my own and figuring out my strengths to realize I have an entrepreneurial spirit, and I am a pretty decent in sales, marketing, and general business ideas. Getting into a big retailer in a strict commission environment selling appliances, mattresses, and furniture gave me a great inner view into the workings of a relatively large company ( 1billion in gross sales).

It began to dawn on me that I have a large passion for art and design, and now armed with capable sales skills, and a penchant to learn everything business I have been working on his business revamp for several months, and we are ready to initialize my marketing plan and make some necessary purchases for the business.

I have generated a basic budget and balance sheet off of a pretty good template I found online and I have studied some book keeping methods, and feel confident in the upkeep and processing of the books. Where my questions lie in how I should structure the business in order to claim taxes in the most efficient method and how do I go about claiming taxes on the budget sheet in terms of calculating business tax.

We are located in Ontario, Canada. We never plan on having a team larger than 7 employees probably maximum as we are a business that sells high quality in lesser quantity. We are able to produce enough at our asking prices to reward everyone involved rather handsomely and quality cannot be risked by hiring more people and churning out more production. Even if the leads allowed us to, it would be risky to expand operations beyond a tight knit core.

Should I be listed as a full partner and operate as a partnership, or should we restructure as an LLC?

Is there any small business software you would reccommend?

I am looking for general help from people with tax, accounting, and finance backgrounds to just help me clarify a sound method in keeping everything accurate and efficient. Your input is of high value to me and I thank you for your valuable knowledge in advance :)

Kind Regards,


Sum Bookkeeper 17th January 2013 02:35 PM

There are a lot of advantages to incorporating. Naming a couple, you can determine when you pay yourself, it allows for income splitting, there is limited liability. If you have an accountant, which you should, they can help you a lot with this.
Make sure you have an efficient bookkeeping system and that you do really have the time to keep on top of it. There are many software programs out there but they do tend to be more complicated than simple. Have you looked at outsourcing. It is less expensive and can really save you time.
I think sitting down with an accountant or a business consultant would really be beneficial as they can give you some clarity and direction that will be most beneficial for you and your business.

jgbreeden 21st January 2013 11:39 AM

Definitely create some kind of entity, whether an LLC or corp. Ask your accountant which is better for tax purpose for a company your size.

I like using an online service for payroll. Calculating payroll taxes stresses me out, so to me the processing fees are worth it just to have the tax handled, and they prepare all the W2 and other forms at end of year.

The most popular small business software is Quickbooks, and most accountants are familiar with it, so it is the easy answer, but not necessarily the best. You may want to use an online service for basic accounting (QB has an online version but I don't think it is as good as their desktop version). The challenge is finding and evaluating them, since there are so many choices. You might find something suited to your niche--do lots of googling.

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