Rental Properties

How to manage your own rental property

Real estate can be an amazing wealth building tool, but it has a lot of challenges and easy traps for beginners to fall into. Fortunately, they are mostly avoidable if you are careful. I work in property management in addition to being a bookkeeper. The following is exactly what we do, including our actual screening … Read more

Managing Expectations

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This is a highly underappreciated concept and I see a lot of small businesses do themselves a lot of harm by not managing expectations properly. They want the sale so they promise the sun and the moon and end up being the reason they disappointed their own clients. It’s much better to under-promise and overdeliver. … Read more

When Business Owners are Too Proud to Take Advice

This is a very common and extremely damaging trait for a small business owner. I have seen more than a few business owners who think they have to be right all the time. They think that if they accept someone else’s input that they’re not the genius business owner they think they need to be. … Read more

Success Can Cause Sloppiness

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Of course this is a problem we’d all like to have, but I have seen some people do well enough that it can cause them to get sloppy. This is most likely to happen when you make enough money that you don’t feel the pain of being sloppy with other things. For example, letting your … Read more

When It’s Time to Close a Business and Move On

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This is probably the last thing you’d expect to hear from your bookkeeper, after all, most will be happy to take your money as long as they can. But having done this enough, I can say there have been times where the best thing to do was accept that the business had run its course … Read more

When Expenses Don’t Matter

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One thing I’ve learned over the years is that sometimes it’s important to not care about certain expenses. Yes, this contradicts all sorts of teachings, but let me explain. I’ve done the books for people bringing in over $600,000 per year. Those same people wanted me to call Verizon to question $2.51 on a $250 … Read more

Your Business Checking Account

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This seems simple enough, but having done enough bookkeeping, it needs to be said. Have a separate checking account for your business. All money the business makes should go into the business checking account and all expenses should be paid from the business checking account. This alone keeps your bookkeeping much simpler, much easier, and … Read more

Small business websites

This one is pretty simple, but please make it so people can easily read and remember your website. Use initial caps when you list your website. is a lot easier to read and remember than which just looks like a long German word. Also, you don’t need the www. because they will still … Read more

Expensing Your Home Office and Cell Phone

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This one can be a little tricky, so you need to double-check with your tax preparer what is best for you, but if you run your business from home or even just have a home office in addition to your business location, you probably should be deducting for it. The exact amount can be done … Read more

Health Insurance for the Self-Employed

One of the biggest reasons people hesitate to leave typical employment and start their own business is health insurance. This is a very valid and good reason to hesitate, but there are solutions. Even very small businesses can qualify for health insurance. As little as two full-time employees can be enough to get health insurance … Read more

Growth Can Kill

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I know, every business owner wants to grow. No one starts a business in hopes it stays the same. But growth can also be harmful. Here are a couple of examples of how I’ve seen growth kill or at least hold back and harm businesses. Case Study 1: A Small Restaurant Wants a Bigger Space … Read more