Bookkeeping Basics,

Top Three Basics of Bookkeeping

30 Bookkeeping Basics. "Pick one to begin"

Certainly there could be no harder task than to choose the single best from so many important, yet different, bookkeeping basics. So let me help a little and pick three bookkeeping basics, for different reasons.

#1) Get a business federal tax identification number. Otherwise known as an EIN (Employer Identification Number). Even if you don't have or never plan on having employees.

Why? Quite simply, because it is a smart safety precaution!

This way you can use your EIN for all business matters instead of your individual SSN (Social Security Number), which is something you never want to put in the wrong hands.

Apply for EIN online

You may apply for an Employer Identification Number in various ways, but I recommend online.

This is the quickest and easiest way to go and is a free service offered by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

You may also want to check with your state to see if you need a state number or charter.

#2) Set-up new business checking and savings accounts. (If you haven't done so already).

People tend to underestimate how crucial this is to the foundation of their business. But this is definitely one of the important basics of bookkeeping.

Keeping your personal finances and business bookkeeping accounts separate may sound like more of a headache. But believe me; it will actually save you a headache.

When it comes time to gather all of your income tax information at the end of each year, you are going to be very thankful that you had separate bookkeeping accounts from the beginning. Plus, there are very important IRS rules against the "co-mingling of accounts".

I signed up for my business bookkeeping accounts at a different bank than where I do my personal finances banking. Just personal preference, but I like keeping my interests separate from each other. You should do whatever makes you feel most comfortable.

I do recommend that wherever you decide to do your banking, to also sign up for online access to your accounts.

I know many people are reluctant to do online banking, but I find doing my bookkeeping via online banking to be very convenient and safe.

Downloading transactions can save you a lot of time and energy which you can then put toward the things you really enjoy doing with your business!

#3) Decide on an accounting or bookkeeping software.

The last thing you want to spend your time doing is writing out your bookkeeping the old fashioned manual way.

There really are a lot of computer software programs to choose from.

I definitely would NOT recommend MS Money for your business bookkeeping. MS Money is great for keeping track of your personal finances, (this is what I use and DO recommend for personal finances) just not for business.

Quicken is only recommended for either personal or small business bookkeeping. It's oversimplified and so not very user friendly for larger business bookkeeping.

I'm sure you have all heard of QuickBooks. This is what I use and would definitely recommend to you as well. It is easy to use and comes with many bookkeeping tutorials built right in.

There are several different versions that are business specific. Check out the Bookkeeping Supplies Store for a detailed list of the different software available, all at discount prices.

Of course, there are many more than just three important bookkeeping basics. These were just to help get you started.

You will find all kinds of great bookkeeping tips sprinkled throughout my website. But if you're looking for more specific information, I would highly recommend checking out the bookkeeping 101 page.

For anyone who is interested in learning more about what bookkeepers are getting paid, I have put together some valuable bookkeeping salaries information for you too. Along with Bookkeeping Articles, and Bookkeeping News as well.

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