5 Ways to Make Yourself Save Money

We’re all good at something, but not everything. And saving money is one of those things that lots of people say they’re not good at doing, But, what if saving money didn’t require lots of “doing?” What if it required only a little effort and almost no time? What if saving money could be built into your current lifestyle? If this sounds good to you, there are at least five ways to save money that require low commitment on your part, but which have the potential to yield bigger rewards than your current efforts to save money.

Sell old items and bank the money

Most people look at their income and reason that they simply don’t have enough money to pay the bills, live and save. Let’s assume that’s true, and so we’ll look somewhere else for money to save besides your paycheck. Look to the items you have stored around your house that are going unused and consider their value if you sold them. Attics, basements, garages and storage lockers are the primary places for valuable — and unused — items to end up. Selling these items online or in a yard sale affords the potential to bring in hundreds of dollars that don’t have to come out of your paycheck to go into your savings account.

Collect and store change

Another way to save money without going directly to your income source is to collect and store change when you make cash purchases. Get a large container, such as a popcorn tin. Every time you feel coins jingling in your pocket or in your purse, throw them in the tin and close the lid. Every now and then, throw a dollar bill in there or a $5 bill. When the tin is full and you count your savings, you may be surprised by how much you’ve saved!

Round up purchases and save the difference

Much like saving coins, a great way to save without feeling too much of a pinch is by using a personal finance app that rounds up your online purchases to the nearest dollar, and then saves the overage to your savings account.

Make a “dream” board

Saving money should always include a goal, so why not make the goal – or dream – come true? Create a dream board that features photos of the item or occasion for which you’re saving. Hang your dream board in an obvious place where you’ll see it every day to remind yourself why you’re saving. Every time you look at the board, put a few dollars aside. Or,when you’re budgeting, look at the dream board to motivate yourself to sock that money away!

Make saving a priority

Whichever one or more methods you choose, you must make saving money a priority if you truly have a desire and a reason to save. Look for additional ways to save,such as using coupons, delaying unnecessary purchases, paying cash instead of using credit, and all the other go-to ways of saving that your parents or grandparents used. In the long run, they’ll free up additional dollars for you to put in the popcorn tin or the savings account and they’ll help you acquire the things you have on your dream board.

Need help managing your finances? Donohoo Accounting Services is a professional accounting services provider, dedicated to helping our clients overcome their financial challenges. To learn more about how Donohoo Accounting Services can help, call us today at 513-528-3982 for a free consultation.

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What You Need to File Your Business Taxes

What could be difficult about filing this year’s business income tax return?Plenty. Not to worry though, Donohoo Accounting Services is here to help! Every business has unique ways to best prepare taxes and you’ll need an accountant to help find all your deductions, but here are some tips about the three kinds of records your accountant will definitely need.

Income/Earnings Records

Because most businesses use electronic means to capture every transaction of the sale of goods or services, income records should be easy – though perhaps voluminous – to collect. Be sure to review your business’s income records, however, to look for any obvious errors such as missing information. Complete income records should include:

• The gross amount of each individual sale,
• Any returns or discounts credited against your business’s income,
• Interest earned from business bank accounts (from your year-end bank statement or Form 1099-INT) and,
• Any other income from non-sales sources.

Documentation of Expenses

Perhaps the most documentation required for your businesses tax filing falls into the category of expenses. You must account for more than a dozen different kinds of expenses on your tax form. These include all employee wages, rent or lease payments (including vehicle leases), insurance, travel, office supplies,and advertising and communications (such as telephone, fax and Internet). Additionally, within these expense categories there are sub-categories. Be sure to consult with a tax professional for a complete list of expense categories to be sure you don’t overlook any potential deductions.

Inventory Details

If your business maintains a physical inventory of goods, you will need to have documentation of your inventory totals at the beginning and end of the year along with its dollar value. As well, be sure you also have records of any inventory purchased over the course of the year. Remember to account for any inventory items that were used for business or personal needs, and the value of any supplies or materials on-hand that were purchased to operate the business. For businesses that track inventory electronically, these records should be easy to access. But again, remember to check – and correct – any errors or irregularities between your inventory records and your actual physical inventory.

The professionals at Donohoo Accounting Services have been helping small businesses file annual tax returns for more than 20 years. For a free consultation, call Donohoo Accounting today at 513-528-3982. Check us out on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for our latest updates and tips!

4 Actionable Tips for Using Your Tax Refund This Year

Even though getting your tax refund can feel like hitting a mini lottery, it’s important to remember that this payment is your money. As a result, the last thing you want is to let it flow out of your bank account just as quickly as it arrives. If you’ve had that experience in the past, the good news is you can do things differently this year. To help you make the most of every dollar that you receive, here are 4 actionable tips for using your tax refund this year.

  1. Make Payments Towards Debt

People from all walks of life struggle with managing debt. What often starts off as a small amount can spiral into a snowball that just keeps rolling in the wrong direction. What makes debt so problematic is that you’re not just dealing with the initial amount. Instead, interest is what really gets people in bad situations.

Because debt can choke someone’s personal finances, using your tax refund to pay off some or all of your debt is an amazing choice. If you’re trying to decide the specific debt to pay towards, the one with the highest interest rate is almost always the best choice.

  1. Prepare for An Emergency

Whether you have been able to stay out of debt or used previous tax refunds to pay it off, anyone who doesn’t have this burden can intelligently use their refund in a number of ways. A great option is to build up your personal or family emergency fund. Having a meaningful amount of money that’s easily accessible but off limits except for an emergency can give you a lot of peace of mind.

  1. Improve Your Home

Let’s say you’re already debt-free and have a comfortable emergency fund built up. One option to consider for your refund is improving your home. As long as you do your research and choose a project with a strong ROI, you’ll be adding to the long-term value of what is likely your largest asset.

  1. Other Investments

The other really good option that’s available for leveraging your tax refund is investing the money. Just keep in mind that even though highly speculative investments like cryptocurrency can seem enticing, they come with an incredible amount of downside risk. Investing your money in a more conservative option and letting it grow for the foreseeable future will likely yield the best return.

If you want to get your tax return filed so that you can get your refund and put it to good use, Donohoo Accounting Services can take of this process for you. All you need to do is call us at (513) 528-3982 to set up an appointment.