It’s that time of year when most of us are focused on the holidays … office parties, wrapping gifts and getting ready for a joyful season. That’s great, but you also should devote some of your time to what I call several year-end “Must-Dos” that will help you wrap up 2015 and get you ready to meet with your accountant.

In no particular order, here are my 5 recommendations:

  1. Have W-9s on file for all potentially eligible 1099 vendors. The W-9 helps you determine whether you need to send your vendors a 1099 in January, but it will also provide the information you will need to prepare your own 1099s, if it is determined that your vendors are eligible. Not sure which ones are eligible? Let Sound Business Services file your 1099s for you. We have been preparing and filing 1099s for 9 years and are up to speed on all the latest laws, such as the new 1099-MISC filing requirements.
  1. Account for health insurance premiums. If you have an S corporation and are a shareholder of 2% or more, make sure that any health insurance premiums for you and your family that your corporation has paid for directly, or reimbursed you for personally in 2015, will be included on your W-2 for 2015. If these premiums have not been included in your payroll up to this point, you will want to include them before the end of the year. Not sure how to do this? We would love to help. Give us a call today and we will help you learn how to do this. Sound Business Services provides top-notch payroll services and would love to talk with you about the difference we can make by processing your payroll in 2016.
  1. Count your inventory. If you have inventory as a company – even if it is only a small portion of your business – do a physical count of that inventory on or around 12/31 so that your book balance can be adjusted to actual.
  1. Make large purchases. If you are considering making a large purchase, such as buying computers, office furniture or other assets – especially if you expect to have a large tax liability for 2015 – you may want to consider making that purchase before year end. However, before you do, be sure to check with your accountant to see how much of the purchase, if any, can be deducted on your 2015 tax return.
  1. Record your ending mileage. Although it seems like a small thing, be sure to record your ending vehicle mileage for 2015 on or around 12/31/15. This will help you properly calculate your personal and business mileage for 2015. Now is also the perfect time to make sure that your business mileage log for 2015 is up to date in preparation for your 2015 tax return.

Bonus Tip: Make sure that your books are up to date and accurate. Unfortunately, most people think about their books only when they go to file their tax return, but at that point, most bookkeepers and accountants have very little availability to review your books. Now is the time to make sure your books are up-to-date and accurate. Sound Business Services has provided bookkeeping services for almost a decade and would love to help you and your organization be ready before tax season hits.

Have a safe and happy holiday!