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Client Update Newsletter: January 2024

A new year means filing your 2023 tax return is right around the corner!

With tax documents such as W-2s and 1099s arriving soon in your inbox and mailbox, this month’s newsletter has some tips to help stay organized this tax season. This will help you file your tax return (and potentially get your refund!) as quickly as possible.

And with the new year and two years of inflation, why not review some ideas to help set financial goals for the family that addresses the challenges in our current financial landscape? A number of ideas are outlined here for your consideration.

All this and some great ideas to manage your business's cash flow and a general interest article to raise awareness on the business of fake products.

As always, feel free to reach out with any question or comments.


Tips for a Smooth Tax Season

Tips for a Smooth Tax Season imageWith tax season officially underway, here are tips to make filing your return as stress-free as possible:

Ideas to Help Set Financial Goals

Ideas to Help Set Financial Goals imageWith the new year underway, it may be time to come up with a list of goals and that could make 2024 the most financially rewarding year for your entire family. Your motivation can be nearly anything, from saving for retirement or paying for college. Consider these resolutions that can also provide a financial boost:

Financial goals can be a family affair if everyone in your crew understands what you’re working toward and what’s at stake. By keeping communication open and getting your entire family on the same page, you can all work together toward the lifestyle you want.

The Problem with Fakes

Protect yourself from modern-day counterfeiters

Finding brand name products at a great price can leave you feeling like you won the lottery, but there are hidden dangers that come into play if the goods aren't what they seem.

Here are some commonly counterfeited items and what you need to know to protect yourself.

Commonly Counterfeited Items

How to Protect Yourself

Knowing that counterfeit items are out there is the first step to avoiding them altogether. These additional tips can help you avoid fakes and the damage they cause:

Every Business Needs Cash!

5 keys to better cash management

Focusing on sales and profits can create a surprise for your business when there is not enough cash to pay the bills. Here are five practices to help improve your cash management.

  1. Every Business Needs Cash imageCreate a cash flow statement and analyze it monthly.The primary objective of a cash flow statement is to help you budget for future periods and identify potential financial problems before they get out of hand. This doesn't have to be a complicated procedure. Simply prepare a schedule that shows the cash balance at the beginning of the month and add cash you receive (from things like cash sales, collections on receivables, and asset dispositions). Then subtract cash you spend to calculate the ending cash balance. If your cash balance is decreasing month to month, you have negative cash flow and you may need to make adjustments to your operations. If it's climbing, your cash flow is positive.

    Tip: Once you have a cash flow statement that works for you, try to automate the report in your accounting system.
  2. Create a history of your cash flow. Build a cash flow history by using historical financial records over the course of the past couple of years. This will help you understand which months need more attention.
  3. Forecast your cash flow needs. Use your historic cash flow and project the next 12 to 24 months. This process will help identify how much excess cash is required in the good months to cover payroll costs and other expenses during the low-cash months. To smooth out cash flow, you might consider establishing a line of credit that can be paid back as cash becomes available.
  4. Implement ideas to improve cash flow. Now that you know your cash needs, consider ideas to help improve your cash position. Some ideas include:
    • Reduce the lag time between shipping and invoicing.
    • Re-examine credit and collection policies.
    • Consider offering discounts for early payment.
    • Charge interest on delinquent balances.
    • Convert excess and unsold inventory back into cash.
  5. Manage your growth. Take care when expanding into new markets, developing new product lines, hiring employees, or ramping up your marketing budget. All require cash. Don't travel too far down that road before generating accurate cash forecasts. And always ask for help when needed.

Understanding your cash flow needs is one of the key success factors in all businesses. If your business is in need of tighter cash management practices, now is the perfect time to get your cash flow plan in order.

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Please note: Some material may be time-sensitive and may no longer apply.
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