Bookkeeping Basics – Getting Started
Bookkeeping as a full time career or part time job is a perfect way for people to earn money working at home. You can take up a bookkeeping career from home without having to buy any expensive equipment or worry about planning consents or increased insurance for your premises. Bookkeeping is not difficult, anyone of average intelligence who can do basic arithmetic can learn to do bookkeeping. If you are tidy and methodical and enjoy bringing order to chaos, a career as a bookkeeper could be ideal for you. If you are prepared to study, you can obtain a bookkeeping qualification studying from home or taking a part time course at a local college.
Many people who have no formal bookkeeping training do bookkeeping work from home quite successfully. Indeed, many small business owners who are sole traders do their own bookkeeping at home for their annual tax returns. To do bookkeeping for a small business, it is necessary to know and be able to apply the various rules of taxation etc. and keeping a clear accurate record of all income and expenses of the business. Doing basic bookkeeping for others as your own small home based business can be financially rewarding but, if you are ambitious and want a well-paid career from home as a freelance bookkeeper, you should first study to gain a bookkeeping qualification.
Bookkeeping Law And Tax
Every business, large and small, is required by law to keep books of accounts. This involves the recording of all financial transactions of a business. This can be done manually using ledgers, or by entering the figures into spreadsheets on a computer or by using dedicated bookkeeping software.
As well as the legal requirement for a business to keep books, the bookkeeping records are needed by the business owners for them to know exactly how profitable the business is and if there are areas that need financial adjustments. A vital element of bookkeeping is ensuring that the correct amount of tax is paid at the appropriate time in order to avoid financial penalties.
Bookkeeping In A Shoe Box
There are millions of small business owners (sole traders in particular) who rely on manual bookkeeping. For a large number of these traders, bookkeeping means saving invoices, estimates, receipts, utility bills and odd scraps of paper in a shoe box. When tax time comes around, the shoe box is handed over to a bookkeeper who will (as if by a miracle) transform the mess into a neat record of the business’s financial dealings. Many small business owners prefer to wokr at their business instead of spending time preparing their own accounting records to go with their collection of receipts.
If a small business owner hands the shoe box straight to an accountant, the basic bookkeeping tasks will be charged at the accountant’s hourly rate. For this reason a good bookkeeper, who will charge a more modest hourly rate, will always be in demand to write up the books and collate the paperwork (even by owners of limited companies who need the services of a qualified accountant to file their annual accounts).
Many businesses (even quite small concerns) use bookkeeping software to keep their books because the software is inexpensive and easy to use. The use of bookkeeping software does not replace the need for a bookkeeper, it merely makes the bookkeeper’s job easier: The software cannot do the job of a human brain. Bookkeeping software needs human intervention to work properly, a software program won’t know for itself things like what items can legitimately be offset against tax.
Bookkeeper As A Career
People of any age and background can become bookkeepers and work from home as freelancers. Many are mothers wanting a well-paid career running a bookkeeping business from home whilst bringing up their family. Some are older people who want part-time work to keep them occupied and to supplement a pension. For young persons looking for a good career, a bookkeeping professional qualification can be the first step to becoming a qualified accountant and this opens doors to all sorts of well-paid career opportunities.
Bookkeeping classes are available at most local colleges or you can choose to follow a distance learning program. Taking a bookkeeping course online is a very convenient way to study alongside other commitments. Taking a bookkeeping course on the Internet is a highly flexible way of obtaining a professional qualification while working at an existing job or looking after children at home. You can study during any hours that suit you and, provided you meet the deadlines, you can complete the assignments when you like.
In the USA information regarding certification can be obtained through the American Institute Of Professional Bookkeepers and in the UK through the Institute Of Certified Bookkeepers.