Well, well, well....Look who decided to BLOG!
In the chaos of tax season, I've decided to take a mental break and post up something new to the website. Some people take walks around the block, others zone out, me? I'll blog...for now.
It's been far too long, but rest assured I've added blogging to my list of goals for 2013 (amongst many), I'll start small, say; once every quarter, then see if I can work up from there. I wouldn't want to set myself up for disappointment, so I'll start small and achieve my goals bit by bit (hopefully). :)
What's happening these days in the BBFS world? Well, for one....something is in the water on this side of town; two employees in the last six months became mothers! Woohooo! We have some new additions to the BBFS family; Teg and Torie; I'm sure many of you have already met them (if you visit us here at the office), for those of you who haven't...come by! Steal our candy! BBFS is also on Facebook...be sure to "LIKE" us. I haven't had much time to ramp up the marketing aspects of the company since we receive so many referrals from our already wonderful client base - thank you all!:)
Hey! We have some new neighbors and they're quite crafty. Sm(art) Studios (http://www.smartstudioslo.com) has moved in next door to our office it surely is one of the most "GREEN" businesses in town; specializing in arts and crafts Sm(art) offers a creative outlet for those who want a place to express themselves. Ran solely on donated goods by the local community, all proceeds paid to Sm(art) benefit the SLO Child Development Resource Center: http://www.childrensresource.org
Come by! Visit us, then head next door to expand the left side of your brain.
What a year thus far...our government continues to make changes to the tax law keeping us on our toes. We're constantly educating ourselves on new changes that will effect our clients. The most frustrating element in dealing with the IRS; this year....tax season didn't actually open until January 30th! Of course all individuals are still due by April 15th, but did they give us any leeway? Nope, unchanged. This results in many tax preparers having their clients bottleneck.
The IRS delay shows us how truly complex the changes are deep down. Taxpayers should note; this is not a year to consider doing taxes alone without professional help and current software.
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Have a great weekend! And remember to schedule your tax appointment...
My apologies to everyone for the lack of blogging I've been able to accomplish over the entire year...
After hearing numerous comments about how disappointed people are that I haven't continued blogging, it's about time I get back on the horse (or so the expression goes). Let's do a recap in three points or less about what has occurred in the past nine months;
BBFS has moved their location! I checked off an item on the bucket-list, and we added a new person to our team!
We are now located on 3591 Sacramento Drive Suite 106, after twenty years of being downtown San Luis Obispo it was time we moved on. Being downtown was always more of a desire as opposed to a necessity, I'll definitely miss the camaraderie found in our bustling downtown, but it's time we branch out and learn about those surrounding our wonderful "outskirts" (which truly is only a mile from our old location, but for those locals driving from Scolaris to Home Depot seems like eternity). I love our new location, its modern, hip, and technologically savvy...I hop on my bicycle and ride to work daily. Not only does it provide a nice wake up call to feel the morning sting, but it forces me to head home before sunset. You'll have to come by and check out our new digs soon!
My bucket-list...#345, check (eh, more like number 12). This summer I had the opportunity to get away for a short stint of time to follow the Tour de France. Being passionate about cycling, this has always been a dream of mine to see the best in the world go team to team on the wildest playground in the world; France. I caught up with the Tour in Montpellier, and followed the race into the Alps, and left after Grenoble. Quite the experience, but definitely exhausting.
Coming home from vacation jet-lag was on my side, I became a normal person for the last month of being home. Waking up at 6:30am, work by 8am, home by 7pm. After a week of working late hours, old habits never die...I'm trying desperately to get back on the above schedule but the mound of paperwork accumulating on my desk is digging my own grave.
Shifting into the big chain ring;
September 15th ends today! Corporate returns who were on extension have all been filed today, and after a few stragglers we, are, done! Now, October 15th is poking it's ugly head around the corner. Have you not filed your personal tax return for 2010? Call the office! 805.544.1656...
To be continued...
City of San Luis Obispo has released it's second quarter sales tax newsletter. You can view it here:
More about the analysis soon! :)
I spent the entire morning on the phone with the State Board of Equalization (BOE). For those who aren't familiar with this entity it's; a public agency charged with collecting taxes (four areas in specific) in California. Whenever you purchase an item in California it typically has some sort of sales tax included in the total. That money is paid directly to our state. The collecting business is required to reimburse the state with that total on a monthly or quarterly basis. The newest issue occurring is that the BOE as of 2011 requires all businesses to pay the sales tax liability through EFT (electronic fund transfer). Without going into detail as to what my issue is, to sum it up; they are implementing this new requirement before placing the appropriate tools necessary to satisfy the requirements of large corporations. My frustration is based on the fact that this new requirement produces more complications for business owners...essentially making things easier on the BOE rather than the business person. So, I felt it necessary to battle the BOE customer service for upwards of four hours. Talking to FOUR different representative who didn't have a solution, then transferred to a supervisor who's answer was: "this should be remedied by March 2011" three months after implementation which could result with clients paying penalties if not executed properly. What a headache...I sent numerous emails to the BOE and agencies which fight for tax payers needs. We'll see if my whining and complaining result in change.
On another note; I've created fliers to be attached to the outgoing billing that read "Take Branden to Lunch!", in an effort to really develop more of a working relationship with our clients, I'm replacing the boring office meeting with a lunch! With that, I'll enable clients to fully understand their financial statements by learning how to analyze them and make appropriate changes. In the ten years that I've been in the accounting field, I'm all too familiar with the client who receives their financial packet on a monthly basis and places it in a drawer never to be looked at again. I'll give you the tools to see the importance of analyzing your financials. I'm excited to see if any clients take advantage of such an offer. Contact me here at the office if you'd like to book a lunch: 805.544.1656 x 13
Have a great week!
What, a, day!
My morning kicked off at 7am, I was mentally preparing for the exhausting day ahead - over eight hours of income tax return updates for 2010 (Spidell Gear-Up). The seminar covers EVERYTHING; what has changed, what remains, and what we need to be aware of as accountants and tax preparers when dealing with government agencies. Although I personally am not credentialed in preparing tax returns just yet (I'm actively working towards my EA license - please refer to the "credentials" page for more information on EA's) it's advantageous to be aware of the issues you as clients will face. Michelle (who is the owner of BBFS and also an EA) and I were in attendance, it's great to have another person to consult with regarding blurry concepts. Equipped with a pen and a binder with over three hundred pages of information it kicked off at 8:30am. Lunch was provided and wrapped up around 4:45pm. Each time I attend these seminars I wonder; why would anyone want to live in California? With over a quarter of a million people moving to California each year (calchamber.com), it's amazing. It's cruel what our state does to it's population relating to taxes. Think you can carryover the federal earned income credit to your state return? No. Think your HSA contributions are treated as non-taxable income in California? No. These like many other credits offered federally are not accepted in California - non-conforming - leaving us one of the most highly taxed states! It's unfair.
Think you can simply leave the state and become a citizen in another right away? Think again, California says in order to be declared a non-resident you have to live in another state without ties to California (kids, mail, work, visiting, etc - all outside of CA) for 546 days!
Quite depressing! But, where else is the sun shining in the middle of November? I think the Beach Boys said it best! :)
Till next time...
Living in the age of technology, everyone is utilizing the internet to function. I find myself more than often using the internet to get directions, contact information for local stores, and researching to further my knowledge in business. Here at Better Business Financial Services we feel that adding a personal presence on the web is crucial for client retention, and also prospective ones. So we've developed a blog!
Who are we? At BBFS we pride ourselves in being approachable, developing a relationship with our clients, and not being your average, dull, boring accountants and payroll people. We are a diverse group here at the office; parents, athletes, musicians, and artists. We truly enjoy the people we work with, from our coworkers to our clients. Many of us are involved with non-profits throughout the community and rotarians. Giving back to the wonderful area we live in is our mission. I'm utilizing this blog not only to keep you posted on accounting, tax, and payroll tips but to maintain the personalization we strive for at BBFS. So at times it will purely be "what did Branden do today?".
Before I continue on, I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce who I am...who is R. Branden Welshons?
Born and raised in San Luis Obispo, I attended SLO Highschool, and went on to Cal Poly SLO. Majoring in political science/pre-law I worked at BBFS throughout my highschool and college career. I had every intention of becoming a lawyer but soon realized that such a path wasn't very fitting for my personality. I find that my college education is helpful at our firm, many times we have to deal with the legal ins and outs of business issues. Being able to understand contractual obligations gives us the edge up on how to treat diverse companies. After college I took advantage of a rare opportunity to travel. Being an avid cyclist I wanted to tour. I boxed up my bike, packed a tent and sleeping bag, then caught the next flight to Vancouver, British Columbia. I spent two months traveling from Canada to Mexico on my bike, only me, my thoughts, and my bike. I visited close friends and made a ton of new ones, all of which I keep in contact with today. When I find myself stressed I look back on my experiences, the tranquility I found, the peace, and the reflection. In those two months I learned more about myself than in the 24 years prior. Since that trip I've made it a goal to work on self-development, last year I walked across Spain with two friends for a month, covering over 300 miles by foot. I've been lucky enough to travel and realize what a great area we live in. I appreciate the bubble I call home. My goals are to take an even more active role in our community and grow Better Business Financial Services beyond the already phenomenal reputation we hold as being the best firm in town.