Groundhog Day, which is celebrated today (2nd February), predicts the onset of Spring. According to folklore, if it is cloudy when the groundhog emerges from its burrow today, then spring will come early; if it is sunny, then the groundhog will supposedly see its shadow and retreat back into its burrow, and the winter weather will persist for six more weeks.
Whatever the groundhogs think, it’s always a good time to get your finances in order.
In the 1993 movie ‘Groundhog Day’, Bill Murray’s character is forced to relive the day over and over again until he can learn to give up his selfishness and become a better person.
Become a better business and start your Spring clean now, by doing the following five things:
1. Credit check your customers – remember it’s your money which is at risk while you wait for the customer to pay. Check their creditworthiness and how likely they are to stay in business, for free at CreditHQ.
3. Chase your invoices and collect your debts – got any money outstanding? Send reminders or contact us for a letter before action template, if reminders aren’t getting you anywhere.
4. Tax entitlement – before you submit your accounts, ensure you have claimed everything you are entitled too.
5. Review your business costs:
Insurance – when is it due, how much is your yearly premium? Auto-renewing isn’t always the cheapest option, so check out some comparison sites to see if you can get a better deal.
Phones – look at how many minutes on average you use and what else you get with your package. A quick look on the internet will give you an idea of the best offering for you.
If you work from home, it can be easy to just use the house phone and forget to expense these as business calls. Look at getting a dedicated business line or a separate mobile account.
Broadband – shop around, you might be able to pay less for faster broadband.
If you use your personal broadband for business uses, you may find a business account is better.
Utilities – like at home, business often stay with the same supplier for gas and electricity, because it’s easier. It may not be cheaper though, so look into switching.
Postage – right now a 1st class stamp costs 62p. So the cost of sending out invoices by post adds up. Sending invoices by email is definitely cheaper, so save them as a pdf and attach them – or better still, your accounting software will probably do all this for you.
If your business involves posting or shipping, then shop around for the best courier, here’s an article which may help http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/shopping/cheap-parcel-delivery
Software – review how much your paying for all your software packages, things change so fast in technology, so there may be better, cheaper options out there. Start comparing!
Bank charges – how much are you paying in bank charges and what are you paying for? Do you have an overdraft or loan? Speak to your bank and other banks to make sure you are getting the best deal.
Remember to examine your statements for any mystery charges, or things that you no longer use.
Whether it’s cloudy or not today, it’s always a good time to get your finances in order, and according to many reports, the groundhogs only get it right 37% of the time anyway!