Does my business even need bookkeeping?
A: All businesses benefit from a bookkeeper, even the simplest of businesses. We usually recommend that when a business owner is planning their business, they include bookkeeping and accounting fees right away in their projected monthly expenses.
A good bookkeeper will help you sleep at night, knowing that you have an expert on your team. They will also save you money in the long run - catch-up bookkeeping is expensive!
How much will it cost?
A: It depends on what you want out of the experience.
If you are a regular monthly client, your bookkeeping will likely start around $250/month.
If you require a bookkeeper weekly, or on-site, then your bookkeeping will likely start around $800/month.
If you would like daily access to a bookkeeper for your questions and for various bookkeeping tasks, your monthly rates will start around $1500.
Things that can make your bookkeeping more expensive include payroll, remitting taxes, having multiple bank and credit cards for the business, and using multiple payment processors (i.e. Square, PayPal, Stripe, Moneris/First Data).
Clean up packages usually start at $1000 and can get expensive, depending on your organization and how many years are needed to catch-up.
Is there a way to make my bookkeeping cheaper?
A: Yes, there is! Some bookkeepers give discounts for super organized clients. Some examples:
What do bookkeepers actually do?
A: In short, we track your money in, money out, money saved, money owed, and money invested in your business. We are highly organized folk who help to keep business financial documents organized, and maintain compliance. We take the messy papers off of your desk, organize and enter them into a bookkeeping system that works for you, and then give you reports that you can used to understand and grow your business. A good bookkeeper can also offer consulting and business advice. We help business owners sleep at night knowing that their finances are accurate, organized, compliant, and available.
Can I get a bookkeeper to come to my office?
A: Yes, but it's more expensive. It's also very convenient, and it allows your bookkeeper to understand what your company is all about.
Can I just do my own books?
A: Your bookkeeper is trained to know how to track your money for compliance as well as for your own requirements. It's just like a house DIY project - can you do it? Yes. But, a professional can do it faster, with more skill, and they already know the details so you don't have to spend your valuable time researching. Not to mention, some DIY projects end up needing extensive (and expensive) repair.
A good bookkeeper will be certified by a professional bookkeeping association, and will be required to update their skills yearly by attending conferences and training sessions. This keeps them current and knowledgeable.
Is there anything else I should know?
A: Yes. There is bookkeeping etiquette that is important to follow. Your bookkeeper is a professional, and so they appreciate it if you contact them only during regular business hours. If you want your bookkeeping completed well and in a timely manner, you will need to submit all your documents in a timely manner.
If you have questions about your books, ask! If you don't get the answers, then you may need to switch bookkeepers - it's important to feel comfortable with your bookkeeper and to feel like they are getting you the info you need to understand your business fully. And, it's okay if you discover that a certain bookkeeper isn't a good fit for you or your business. There are lots of different kinds of bookkeepers out there.
And finally, many bookkeepers are requiring payment before services, due to too many clients not paying on time, or at all. Bookkeepers have families, lives, and financial requirements too, and they are offering you their time and expertise. Please pay your bookkeeper promptly!