Whether you’re starting a new business or you’re already well established, it’s essential to stay on top of your finances. But if you don’t love tracking your invoices and spending hours getting your accounts in order, you may need some support. Luckily, help is at hand!
This article takes a closer look at whether you need to hire an accountant. It also shares what accounting software is available, to help you make those dreaded finances a breeze to manage.
Do I need an accountant as a sole trade business?
The first option you may consider as a sole trade business is to seek the advice of an accountant. An accountant can help you file your accounts and work on tax returns. They may even be able to help you identify any cost reduction opportunities and support you with financial planning. However, they do come at a cost. The cost of an accountant will vary depending on the services provided but can be approximately $200 to $300/hour.
If you feel confident with your business money or are just looking for basic management, you may want to save your pennies and use some of the many sole trader accounting software options that are available.
What sole trader accounting software should I use?
There are many different sole trader accounting software choices. Here’s a selection of some of the best accounting software for sole traders:
1. Xero software
Xero currently has over 2 million subscribers and often appears at the top of lists for best accounting software. It’s ideal for sole traders as you can create professional-looking invoices, pay bills, get an up-to-date picture of your finances, plus much more. As the software is online and there’s an app, you can review your finances quickly at any time, wherever you are. If you’re not sure whether Xero is the right tool for you, try their 30-day free trial.
2. Wave Accounting software
If you’re working to a tight budget, Wave Accounting is an excellent choice as it’s completely free! It’s perfect for a sole trade business as you can connect your bank account, manage expenses and get everything ready for tax time. It’s also straightforward to use and simple to set up an account, so you can take back control of your finances in no time at all.
3. Intuit QuickBooks software
QuickBooks is useful for tracking your mileage, storing receipts, sending quotes plus much more. The features you will have access to depend on the specific package you choose to pay for though, so check the feature list thoroughly to decide which package works best for you.
4. Sage Business Cloud Accounting software
Sage Business Cloud Accounting gives you all the features you need to manage your finances more effectively. It offers all the standard services, from creating invoices, providing reports and connecting your account with your bank. You will have access to a free mobile app too so you can manage your finances from anywhere. Use the 35-day trial now to try it out for yourself.
5. Reckon One software
Manage all the basics, such as receipts and budgets. View insightful reports on your finances, easily reconcile bank transactions, plus much more. The features vary depending on the level of package you choose, but you can try out any features with the 30-day free trial. You’ll also get access to Reckon One when you enrol in Open Colleges’ Accounting and Finance courses.
To choose the right sole trader accounting software, make sure you clearly understand what features you require. Next, be clear on your budget, as the packages for the above tools can vary quite substantially. Plus, don’t forget to try before you buy with the free trials that are offered by each company.
If you’d like to improve your accounting and finance practices, we have a fantastic selection of Accounting and Finance courses for you to choose from, such as FNS40217 Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping and FNSSS00014 Accounting Principles Skill Set (Release 2).