The key to easier bookkeeping is to keep good records. Keeping on top of your records will not only make your life a lot easier but could cut the fees you pay for bookkeeping and accounts preparation.
As a Chartered Accountant, here are my top 10 basic tips for keeping good records. Some may sound obvious but it’s amazing many people do not follow these essential guidelines.
- Keep receipts for ALL business payments regardless of the amount.
- Try to avoid making personal payments from business accounts, it only complicates matters.
- Make sure each receipt shows the date and method of payment whether cash, cheque (with cheque number) or card (specify which card).
- Keep receipts together in a safe place (a spike, tin, folder) – do this on a daily basis to avoid losing any receipts.
- Keep all bank statements together by account and in chronological order.
- Make sure all cheque stubs are completed with date, amount, purchase details etc and keep all cheque book stubs in a safe place.
- Keep all delivery notes, this is particularly important as you near your year end.
- Keep tight controls over the petty cash tin, all income and payments need to have back up.
- Keep a running total of the petty cash and make sure this ties into the actual cash in the tin, do this on a monthly basis.
- Invoices should be properly numbered and kept in chronological order.