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How We Help You Set Up QuickBooks

Posted on January 19th, 2019

Are you thinking of switching to QuickBooks to simplify your bookkeeping tasks?

QuickBooks is an innovative and user-friendly accounting software that can streamline your bookkeeping tasks, minimize mistakes, and make tax time easier. It’s a great software solution to meet the bookkeeping needs of small and mid-size businesses.

You do not need to be an expert to use QuickBooks, and once it has been set up, the software is easy for beginners to learn and navigate with confidence. While QuickBooks is quite intuitive, the system should be set up by a professional. Our Manhattan accounting firm provides personalized QuickBooks setup, training, and troubleshooting throughout New York City.

The QuickBooks Setup Process

During the initial QuickBooks setup, our Manhattan accountants will need to meet with you to discuss your current accounting methods, charts of accounts, and how you handle beginning balances. We will give you a list of the information we need to set up your QuickBooks system. This will usually include a list of vendors, inventory, bank accounts, credit cards, and your current books.

We will create a personalized QuickBooks system that will fit your industry and business needs. Also, we offer QuickBooks training, fine-tuning, and troubleshooting to ensure that your new system runs smoothly.

During the setup process, we will create an accounting package that includes a chart of accounts, payroll, accounts receivable, accounts payable, and inventory. We will then load your chart of account and your beginning balances, along with all your inventory for sale. We will also enter your outstanding accounts receivable and accounts payable to balance your books. Finally, we will work with you or your employees so that you are well-versed in QuickBooks and comfortable using it.

Call Today for Your QuickBooks Consultation

At Melzer & Associates, we understand how difficult it can be to switch to a new accounting system, but the great thing about QuickBooks is that once we’ve finished the initial setup, it will save you time, and possibly money. That’s because, with QuickBooks, it’s easy to plan for tax season throughout the year, enabling you to take advantage of deductions that will reduce your tax burden.

Want to learn more about our QuickBooks setup in NYC? Give Melzer & Associates a call to today to schedule a consultation.


Commuter Benefit Issues Facing Your NYC Business

Posted on December 20th, 2018

New York City’s Commuter Benefit Law was created to help employees commute more easily by allowing them to use pre-tax income to purchase transportation fringe benefits. The law went into effect on January 1, 2016 and makes it mandatory for businesses and nonprofit organizations with 20 or more full-time, non-union employees to offer commuter benefits. The law is enforced by the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), which also runs some public education and outreach campaigns. Here’s what you need to know about the Commuter Benefit Law in NYC as an employer.

Do I Need to Offer Commuter Benefits to My Employees?

Unless you have fewer than 20 full-time employees or hire union workers, you must offer commuter benefits. If your business is located outside New York City, you must still offer commuter benefits if you have employees that work in NYC. A full-time employee is any employee who works more than 30 hours a week.

Are there Tax Advantages to the Commuter Benefits Program?

Yes. While the Commuter Benefit Law was created to help employees lower their monthly expenses by using pre-tax dollars to pay for transportation costs, the program also helps employers by reducing their payroll tax.

What Types of Commuter Costs are Covered?

Employees can use pre-tax dollars to pay for train, bus, and taxi fare, vanpooling, ferry rides, ride-sharing platforms (like Uber and Lyft), and metro cards. The costs associated with private cars and bikes are not eligible under the commuter benefits law.

Can Your Firm Help Me Set Up a Commuter Benefits Plan?

Yes, we can work with your company to find a commuter benefit plan that will meet all regulations under the law. We work with small and large businesses on financial strategies that will help them reduce their tax liability and grow their business. Your commuter benefits plan will be set up through a third-party provider, and the overall cost and tax benefits will depend on the package selected through your provider.

Want to learn more about the Commuter Benefit Law and how it affects your business? Give our Manhattan Accounting Firm a call to schedule a consultation.


The Advantages of Our Consulting Services

Posted on September 20th, 2018

Are you a new or aspiring entrepreneur, hoping to succeed in New York City’s competitive business market? Are you hoping to grow your established business, develop new markets, or expand your offerings? At Melzer & Associates, we specialize in business consulting for new and established businesses in the five boroughs of New York City, including Manhattan and Long Island. Our goal is to help your business thrive in a competitive market. Here are some advantages of using our NYC business consulting services.

We Know New York City

Establishing a business in New York City can be challenging, as there are local codes and regulations specific to your NYC community, as well as the industry you work in. Our team of Manhattan accountants knows New York City regulations inside-out. We are happy to help your new business succeed by providing personalized business consulting services tailored to your location, business goals, and industry.

Our Services are Affordable and Convenient

As a new business owner, we understand that time and money are in limited supply. That’s why we go out of our way to make our services affordable and convenient. At Melzer & Associates, we offer a convenient client portal that is operated through our website. This makes it easy to send data and sensitive financial information. We are also very flexible with our scheduling, and always available to answer questions or address your concerns.

Our Manhattan accountants use a simple and honest method of billing, charging by the consultation, and not by the hour. We strive to keep our services affordable so that you can take advantage of our expertise without a financial struggle.

Our Accounting and Tax Strategies Will Save You Time and Money

We work to educate new and small business owners on the tax and accounting issues they are likely to face while doing business in New York City. We host a variety of seminars where we can work with you to improve your business strategy, identify tax laws that apply to your location and industry and help you get your business up and running successfully. By taking advantages of our year-round tax strategies, we can help you reduce your tax burden and keep more of your hard-earned money.

Ready to take your NYC business to the next level? Let our team of financial experts work with you to create a business strategy that will help your business grow and thrive. Give our Manhattan accounting office a call today to learn how we can work together.


The New Tax Law

Posted on August 1st, 2018

Wondering how the new tax law will affect you for the 2018 tax season and beyond?  Learning about the changes will help you plan for tax time and allow you to reduce your tax liability in the coming years. How the new tax law will affect you personally will depend on your income, your filing status, and the deductions you take advantage of. Here are some of the biggest changes to the tax law, and what you can do to prepare for them.

Standard Deduction Increase

Under the new tax plan, the standard deduction will double for taxpayers. This will reduce the number of people who itemize deductions and make filing simpler for most people. The standard deduction for single taxpayers rose from $6,350 to $12,000. For married taxpayers filing jointly, the deduction went from $12,700 to $24,000.

State and Local Tax Deduction (SALT) Changes

In the new tax law, many itemized deductions have been capped or eliminated entirely. One of these changes is in the state and local tax deductions that taxpayers have claimed earlier. In past years, taxpayers could deduct all state and local taxes with no limitations. The new tax laws will cap this deduction at $10,000 for those that itemize.

Lower Individual Tax Rates

The new tax law will adjust income brackets for inflation, starting in 2018, making the overall tax for individuals a bit lower. Positioning yourself in a lower tax bracket is the best way to reduce your tax liability. The easiest way to do this is by planning strategically for tax season so you can take all the deductions you’re eligible for. This will enable you to reduce your taxable income and possibly save thousands of dollars. At Melzer & Associates, our tax planning services will help you reduce your tax burden and keep more money in your pocket come tax time.

Lower Corporate Tax Rate

Under the new tax law, corporations will pay a flat rate of 21%, which amounts to savings for most companies. Lawmakers are hoping that corporations will spend their tax savings on investing in domestic business ventures.

The best way to prepare for these new tax regulations is to plan for the changes ahead of time. This will allow you to take advantage of new tax deductions, and to be prepared for any new tax liabilities. At Melzer & Associates, we are dedicated to providing you with the best tax advice in the five boroughs. Give our Manhattan accounting firm a call to learn how you can take advantage of the new tax law.


Why Our Clients Use QuickBooks

Posted on August 1st, 2018

One of the most time-consuming chores for the entrepreneur or small business owner is keeping track of and preparing financial records. From basic bookkeeping tasks and payroll to preparing financial statements and reconciling bank accounts, accounting is one the most important aspects of running a business.

At Melzer & Associates, many of our clients rely on QuickBooks to simplify their accounting and bookkeeping tasks. QuickBooks is designed to be used by novice bookkeepers, and it has many advantages over spreadsheets and other accounting software. Here are some of the benefits to using QuickBooks for your small to mid-sized business.

First, What Exactly is QuickBooks?

QuickBooks was developed by Inuit in 1998 as a suite of computer software applications for bookkeeping, budgeting, and payroll. It was designed to make these tasks easier for small business owners, and since its creation, dozens of versions have been created to meet the specific needs of different industries. Besides basic bookkeeping software, QuickBooks provides tools to help you manage inventory, assets, vendors, and invoices.

How QuickBooks will Simplify Your Bookkeeping Tasks

QuickBooks is great for small business owners, even if you don’t fully understand accounting. Here are a few ways that QuickBooks will help simplify your accounting procedures.

  • QuickBooks automatically enters your transactions – QuickBooks software syncs with your bank accounts and credit cards to keep track of transactions, including payroll, payments from website customers, and credit card payments. Your books are automatically balanced whenever new transactions are entered.
  • Create and send invoices – You can create and record invoices with your QuickBooks software to simplify your accounting tasks and increase your cash flow.
  • Work from anywhere – Using the QuickBooks app, you can keep track of your finances from any computer or mobile device.
  • Automatically categorize expenses – Analyze your spending habits by using QuickBooks to quickly enter and categorize all your expenses.
  • Be Prepared for Tax Season – Instead of spending days and weeks preparing your taxes, you will be able to seamlessly transition your financial records to your tax software or your accountant. QuickBooks will also help you track potential tax deductions for more savings opportunities.

Want to learn more about using QuickBooks for your business. Our Manhattan accounting firm specializes in complete QuickBooks services, from setup and training to maintenance and troubleshooting. Call Melzer & Associates today to schedule a QuickBooks consultation.


Unique Challenges of the Manhattan Marketplace

Posted on March 22nd, 2018

When you run a company in Manhattan, you can expect several challenges. Some of the more common ones in our area are issues with business plans, starting capital, and taking on too many functions. Melzer & Associates, CPAs, PC helps you navigate these obstacles.

Have a Solid Business Plan

To launch a new venture in Manhattan, you need to have a business plan. But, is your plan thorough enough? Did you make sure that you have a set focus for your products and services so that you are not distracted by investing in too many markets? Are your sales projections based on accurate numbers?

If you want to make sure your business plan is functional, come to our firm and have us review it.

Ensuring Enough Capital

Our borough is a crowded place to start a new business. You can run into more trouble than you might expect when it comes to drawing in customers, putting you in a difficult situation.

Too often, businesses collect capital based on how successful they think they are going to be. When things do not go as planned, they do not have the financial resources to survive. If you want a successful venture, you need to have enough capital to get you through the worst-case scenario. Melzer & Associates, CPAs, PC helps you get the right lending agreement that helps you survive the ebb and flow of running a new company.

Getting the Right Assistance

Running a business takes a lot of work. However, hiring a lot of people to do that work can cost a lot of money. As a result, many owners attempt to take on a lot of these duties themselves.

This approach only seems cost efficient because it requires paying less money. However, any money saved would then be counteracted by penalties. Trying to fulfill all regulatory needs without the support of a specialist can open you up to common business mistakes that lead to fines and other problems. This is especially true in Manhattan; New York City has some pretty tough regulations affecting it.

While your business may not need a large workforce at launch, you should have a business attorney and our accounting firm at your disposal. We help you maintain compliance throughout your company’s operation.

Call Us for Business Planning

Melzer & Associates, CPAs, PC provides accounting to the Manhattan marketplace. Our services are tailored to help you survive our complex marketplace. For more information, schedule a consultation today!


When Should I Restructure?

Posted on March 5th, 2018

Every business must choose one type of entity to operate as when they launch. Yet, few businesses stay within one structure forever.

Changing your entity is an involved process that can provide significant long-term benefits. But, those rewards depend on if you are transitioning to the right entity at the right time. There are a couple of questions you should ask if you want to restructure your business.

Is Higher Operation Possible?

Usually, if you want your business to operate as a new entity, you are looking at transitioning to a higher level of operation. For example, an LLC would benefit from becoming a corporation. Each entity above your current level provides more opportunities for growth and success.

However, each higher structure also requires more resources for daily operation. The main question to ask is whether you have the means to operate at a new level. If you do, restructuring is possible. If you do not, you must wait a little while longer.

What Is Constraining You?

The two most obvious obstacles every business faces are regulations and taxes. Changing entities will change how these affect you.

Most lower-tier business structures have a tax obligation that is only paid once. To balance this benefit out, they also have rules that limit their growth.

For example, the least regulated pass-through entity is a sole proprietorship. You may not have to pay taxes twice or follow rules that limit your development as a proprietor. But, your personal property is also at stake for paying off your taxes and business debts. Meanwhile, S-corporations and LLCs—pass-through structures that separate business and personal assets—have several regulations imposed to limit their progression. The only structure without roadblocks to progress, the C-corporation, is also the only to face double taxation.

When restructuring, consider: “Am I feeling constrained by regulations? Are new tax responsibilities too expensive to let me increase profitability?” If higher taxes are offset by new avenues of growth, restructuring is wise.

Contact Us for Business Consultation in Manhattan

Melzer & Associates, CPAs, PC offers business consulting services throughout New York City. All companies in Manhattan and Long Island better succeed with a CPA’s frank advice. Call today and schedule your consultation!


How Does QuickBooks Help My Business?

Posted on January 2nd, 2018

Businesses often need help when keeping their books and accounts balanced. Some of the best items for providing this support are the QuickBooks® line of accounting software platforms, and we find QuickBooks Desktop to be one of the most useful among these. QuickBooks Desktop is a valuable accounting tool for a few different reasons.

Efficient Accounting Operation

Accounting is a messy process. Daily transactions are difficult to track and can easily throw off the accuracy of reported cash balances. Long-term goals that seem reasonable often don’t incorporate the unforeseen costs a business can face, putting a company in a difficult operational position. If a business were to rely on either a manual approach to bookkeeping or a less-robust software for balancing the books, they could face more obstacles to their continued success than necessary.

QuickBooks Desktop is an accounting software that is thoroughly designed to help all businesses perform their bookkeeping, payroll, and tax functions. Not only does the system accurately and efficiently calculate the numbers behind your books, but it can also automate many of the transactions that are difficult to maintain by yourself.

Flexible Accounting Approaches

When we say QuickBooks is built to help all businesses, we mean it.

QuickBooks Desktop is a multi-purpose tool. It helps any business in any field navigate the accounting realities unique to their operation; even nonprofit organizations turn to this system for revenue tracking and IRS tax-exempt filings. This versatility is a result QuickBooks’ flexible internal coding and the fact that it is designed to accept specialized plugins, which can further tailor the system to your industry’s particular accounting requirements.

Remote Access Support

Even with QuickBooks at their disposal, many companies can still benefit from having an outsourced accounting firm look at their books. This creates a challenge when trying to get that information to an accountant. An accountant cannot always be physically present at a business’ location, but trying to share records via a cloud accounting system can create real or perceived security issues that owners and managers want to avoid.

With QuickBooks Desktop, you neither need an accountant physically present nor have your information stored in a cloud. Instead, an accountant can sign into your account from a remote computer. This form of access gives you a similar level of convenience as you could find from cloud accounting software with minimized security risks.

Contact Us for QuickBooks Support

{company_name} offers QuickBooks Desktop support in {city}. We make sure that you are getting the most out of your accounting software tools. For more information about the various types of accounting support we offer, call us and schedule a consultation today!


When Does My Business Need a Loan?

Posted on November 1st, 2017

Business owners may not be able to take advantage of important opportunities unless they secure a bank loan. One way to make sure your enterprise is successful is to know the right times for seeking added financing.

Physical Location Expansion

The need to move your business location to a larger space can arise before you gather the funds necessary for the move. The same can be said for acquiring a second location.

A loan helps businesses undergo physical expansion. However, this lending agreement will only work if you consider the change in revenue caused by expanding. The loan will be worth your commitment as long as you can pay off the loan, afford the larger or multiple locations, and still make a profit.

Building Future Credit

New companies and their owners often lack a strong credit history. This can make the application process difficult for large lending agreement. A short-term loan will help you build up your credit history for loans you establish at a later time.

Inventory and Equipment

The cost of inventory is one of the more significant expenses your enterprise can make. On occasion, a company will be required to restock their inventory without having the cash to do so; seasonal businesses like the snow removal industry are particularly susceptible to this situation. Businesses reliant on certain equipment, such as moving companies and their trucks, might need to buy additional high-cost equipment they cannot afford on their own.

A lending agreement helps businesses refresh their inventory and obtain necessary equipment for successful operation.

Taking Advantage of Opportunities for Further Profit

There is truth to the adage, “You have to spend money to make money.” Many of the service contracts your business can apply for require a significant investment in time, manpower, and other resources. However, not every company who could benefit from these contracts has the resources available to take those jobs.

A loan can be beneficial in this case, so long as the principals and interests you pay are low enough that you are still making money from your contact. If you took a loan that, after interest, required you to pay $250M across two years in order to fulfill a $1MM contract, you would still make $750,000 in profits; the money you make far exceeds the money you spend.

Contact Us for Bank Financing Support

Melzer and Associates offer bank financing support in Manhattan, Long Island, and other areas in New York City. We will gladly help you determine the right time to get a loan and provide all support necessary to obtain this lending agreement. For more information, call our firm today.


Three Common Payroll Mistakes

Posted on August 22nd, 2017

Business tax obligations are a crucial factor to consider when establishing your business’ budget, and payroll taxes are a key cost within that expenditure. However, when a company files its payroll taxes, it’s possible to make one of several commonplace mistakes. Unless you are aware of and work to avoid these errors, you may find yourself owing more than what you have forecasted.

Not Properly Classifying Your Workers

Unlike when they hire an employee, a business is not responsible for payroll tax withholding when they hire an independent contractor. As a result, it may seem cost-effective to hire an independent contractor to fill the role of an employee.

However, the IRS is not bound to this understanding and may consider the hired person an employee. The ability to choose where, when, and how a hired person completes their work is an indicator of an employer-employee relationship. If you hired what you thought would count as a contractor but maintained control over these limits, then your worker might count as an employee under federal law.

Not Using Accountable Reimbursement Plans

If your company requires its employees to travel or purchase their own supplies, you probably have some manner of reimbursement plan to help your workers cover the cost of gas, tools, and other business-related expenses. However, if the reimbursement plan is not accountable, then the money given back to the employees counts as pay for their income taxes and your payroll taxes.

An accountable reimbursement plan directly deducts the expenses employees make so that they do not count as income. Certain parameters have to be maintained for the plan to be accountable, but doing so will help you reduce your payroll tax withholdings.

Mismanagement of Payroll Records

Every company is expected to maintain payroll records so that they can be presented to the IRS at any time. However, many new business owners do not hold onto time sheets, expense accounts, Form I-9 and W-2 copies, and other pertinent records as long as they should. Additionally, any business owner can forget to track the activities of an outsourced company that handles their payroll for them.

All payroll records are critical to keep for at least four years, if not longer. Not only should you hold onto the records directly pertinent to payroll, but you should also make sure that you have records of your outsource payroll service’s activities. That way, if your payroll tax returns are investigated, you and your payroll provider can compare records to better demonstrate their accuracy.

Contact Us for Payroll Support

{company_name} provides payroll services in Manhattan, Long Island, and the rest of {city}. We manage your payroll records after the fact and plan for your payroll tax returns for better budget management. For more information about our various accounting services, call our firm and schedule a consultation today.