Computers have enabled us to become more efficient and productive. Individuals and businesses throughout South Tampa put computers to work everyday to do everything from bookkeeping and accounting to sending birthday greetings. As commonplace and helpful as computers have become they can still drive us crazy sometimes.

Is Granny a Nanny or Not?

Many families, when confronted with the need for child care or elder care turn to family members rather than strangers to care for their loved ones. The logic being, if I have to pay someone to provide care I would rather it be a family member who would benefit from the additional income.

Accounting and financial advisors in the Tampa Bay area and throughout the country have once again been pushed to the limits of their patience by Congress and their inability to compromise. From South Tampa to Clearwater and beyond, the issue for accountants is not one of right or left but one of right and wrong. It is not acceptable to hold our client’s hostage to endless political maneuvering.

Now that Congress has made some decisions on 2013 taxes, let’s take some time to review what has changed for individuals and businesses throughout the greater South Tampa and Clearwater area.

First, as everyone has noticed, the employee portion of the Social Security payroll tax has increased. The temporary lowering of the rate to 4.2% has not been extended and has reverted to 6.2%. Employers and bookkeepers should expect some questions from employees about the sudden change in take home pay.

Among the choices new businesses in the Tampa or Clearwater area have to make is one about which accounting method to use. Like many of the choices a new business makes this decision will affect the way you work for the life of your business.

Learning the difference between the Cash and Accrual accounting methods will help you make an informed decision as to how to set-up your company's bookkeeping and accounting system. New business owners often ask which is best and the answer is they both have advantages and disadvantages with the Cash Basis Method being most common.

Retirement Savers Credit – Save for Later and Get the Benefits Now

For lower income South Tampa residents who contribute to your own retirement accounts the IRS provides a benefit you may not already be aware of, the Retirement Savers Credit. A credit differs from a deduction in that it gets counted after you determine how much tax you owe as opposed to a deduction which reduces your total income.

Anyone familiar with the best selling book The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People can tell you that first habit is to be proactive. What does it mean to be proactive versus reactive? Proactive is planning ahead and addressing problems before they occur and reactive is waiting for a problem to happen and then reacting to fix it. When it comes to your accounting and your business waiting can often mean being too late.

The majority of new small businesses in the South Tampa and Clearwater fail or change hands in the first 3 years. The harsh realities of starting a business are that the chances of success are small and the Tampa area is no exception. This is why smart business people make sure they always have the most accurate financial information available. A new or disorganized business should always hire a good bookkeeper or accountant at the start.

I would like to thank everyone for all the comments, advice and input on my new website over the past month.  I updated my website with several of the suggestions and have an ongoing list of all the continued emails I get.  Thank you again.

Thank you for taking the time for visiting my new website!  My new website is built upon the Joomla platform which will allow it to be found easier by search engines on computers, tablets and mobile phones.  The new website gives me the capability to make blog posts, easily add content, share great articles, links, videos and my thoughts with everyone.  Please come back weekly to check out all the updates!