Q: “Denise, I need to buy some bookkeeping software. I am committed to getting my business paperwork and expenses under control before the end of the year and I need some help.”
This is really a three-pronged process that starts with your accountant. If you don’t have a good accountant, take the time to find one. Ask other agents that you respect in your office to see who they use. Interview a few accountants and go with the one that feels like the best fit for your personality and needs.
Once you have done that (or if you already have an accountant you like), I recommend you now look for a bookkeeper. And since you have an accountant, this might be easier than you think. Ask your accountant who they recommend for a bookkeeper and start there first. The easier you can make the relationship between the bookkeeper and the accountant, the better.
Now that you have a bookkeeper, discuss software with them first. You want to make sure that the software you buy does two things:
- It is easy for you to use.
- It needs to be something your bookkeeper can extract information from.
What is even better, I recommend that you work with your bookkeeper to set the original file up. Then work with the bookkeeper to determine your monthly plan to get your information over to them. It might be as simple as handing over a batch of receipts that you have categorized OR it might be as complex as you input the information and then provide the bookkeeping file to the bookkeeper who then does what they need to do. You and the bookkeeper can work together to create a system that works for your time and your budget.
My advice? Even if the bookkeeper charges $200 a month, this might be very well spent. Could you get another transaction for this time and energy that you are saving by not doing your own bookkeeping? I think so!