Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Receipts a mess? Don't know which way to turn and it's almost April 15th!


I am in a bind and don't know where to turn. We have purchased your book, Self-employed Tax Solutions , but don't have the time to fully read and figure everything out before we have to turn in our taxes.

I've tried to put all of our expenses into QuickBooks so we can turn over our information to an accountant to do our taxes, but have only ended up with a royal mess and a lot of frustration and tears.

Like your book says, we have a big bucket of receipts...and I don't know what to do now. I don't know where to turn and I don't know who to trust to help us maximize our deductions and make sure we don't get audited. Are you taking clients? How much would you charge to help us sort out our information and help us file our taxes? Or conversely, is there someone you would recommend that we could use locally in the Raleigh, NC area?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you, Emily

Hello Emily,

First: Slow down. You do not have to file your return by the April deadline. You might want to read
Extensions: Relax ... there's no need to file by April 15th on my website at .

In the Most Simple System section of my book there is a complete explanation of keeping records manually. It tells you what to do -- simply and easily -- with your "bucket of receipts."

So, if possible get rid of Quickbooks. I don't like the program. It is too difficult. If you want to do your recordkeeping on computer, rather than manually, then use Quicken.

FOUR STEPS, available from my site as a PDF, will walk you through the setup of Quicken for an indie business. But don't go to FOUR STEPS or any recordkeeping method until you've had time to read my book. [Note added April 15, 2011: Four Steps is currently out of print.]

Next, you can never be sure that you won't be audited. What you can be sure of is that you'll be prepared for an audit if it were to happen. Self-employed Tax Solutions tells you how to do that.

Yes, I am taking a few new clients. And I have several in NC. I'll send you a separate email on how I work with new clients, but first, take your time and think about what I've written here. There is no need to panic or worry. It'll just take some time and patience and some reading on your part, to get to the next step.

How's that sound?

Best regards,
June Walker


John said...

I also bought Quickbooks, only to find myself wasting a lot of time trying to figure out how to customize it to my business. It may be right for larger businesses, but as a Sole Proprietor, I found your book to be Very helpful.

This is my second year using Self Employed Tax solutions as a guide, and all I can say is "Hooray!", and thanks. :0)

As to the "bucket of receipts", I suggest sorting them out into categories, and storing them in labeled envelopes. I use the categories from Schedule C, and write the line numbers from the tax forms to make things even easier.

Record Keeping doesn't come easy to me, but it is a habit well worth developing.

Thanks again, JOHN :0)

June Walker said...

John, you are most welcome!
Thanks for letting me know.