Accounting Software for SME’s

I don’t suppose if you guys know of any accounting software that either integrates w/ bank accounts or requires manual entries that will work out the HMRC payment as well as VAT?


There’s lots of options
What type of business is it for?

It’d be online services I guess - like a subscription, although part of the business model would involve integrating with companies in ways of affiliate marketing

In that case look for whichever suits the tracking of sales with the least work as that’s where there bulk of the work would be manually. The expenses side will be pretty simple.

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Personally I’d use Xero. It full
Integrates with GoCardless and Stripe which is great form payments (manual and automated) and it’s fully compliant with HMRC.

Does anyone have a Starling integration or am I hoping for too much?

Actually - does it even matter if they do? Surely they’re working with Xero rather than the bank itself? Just noticing these marketplace partners have listed banks

Xero do real-time integration with Starling which is pretty neat. Most other banks sync with Xero once a day

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On a slightly related note, is there anything that can take some of the hassles of a limited business away

Or is that a stupid idea before any money is made?

Like what?

I have a business partner that knows nothing about IT but everthing about running the financials for a company. That takes the hassle of managing finances away from me.

The financials and the filing and compliance requirements…

Those are the scary bits!

It’s simple and takes hardly any time. If you earn over a certain amount your accountant does the accounts, so you don’t worry about that, if not, creating company accounts for a small business takes a few hours at the most if you keep track of everything.

Filing is simple, the companies house website is easy to use.

The government gets a lot of stick but companies house and HMRC give you all the info you need

Providing it’s possible and easy enough skipping an accountant would be smashing

Definitely possibly and easy enough. An accountant becomes beneficial once your business gets a bit complicated or you are at the point where you earning enough to make it worthwhile

I use FreeAgent, which is great. And it hooks in to my Starling account, so transactions automatically come through.

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Unless you’d need to do anything complicated i’d say its perfectly possible. The likes of FreeAgent and Xero make it so straight forward. As long as you have them set up and use them it’s literally a worst case scenario of copypasta’ing the numbers across from the calculations the packages have already done for you into the same box on HMRC/CH’s online form.

I did accounting as part of my degree and had to learn to do it from scratch with a pen and paper and hated every single second of it so was dreading when i first had my own business and had to do it all myself, but was surprised at just how easy it really is. Once i’d done something stupid and put a number in the wrong box, i have no idea how because i’m absolutely obsessive about checking and double checking and triple checking, but i literally had an email back from a lady at HMRC saying 'I’m pretty certain you’ve put this in the wrong place, but it’s very obvious so if you agree i’ll go ahead and move it for you." which impressed me no end when they could have just rejected it.

When things get more complicated a good accountant is a godsend, but those first few steps it’s certainly not compulsory for most people.

Seconded FreeAgent, i’ve been very impressed since I used your referral to give it a try @Hatticus :+1::grinning:

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Thanks for that, by the way!

I’ve also always found HMRC to be very helpful. They’re not scary at all, in my experience.

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Yeah obviously I would be a lot more comfortable getting an accountant further on in the business’ life, but early on it would free up some nice capital to invest into the business rather than giving it to an accountant

I’ll have a look at FreeAgent and Xero

The only things that are left to confuse me about Ltd companies now are the compliance parts in regards to keeping shareholder information physically inspectable, which is weird to me as surely that stuff could be kept online? Is that not allowed?

I get the boil-down is “keep a record of everything and a record of your record of everything” though

One thing that is worth bearing mind is that if you want to rent or get a mortgage then you may be asked to show 3 years worth of accounts. I had to get a proper accountant just for this purpose, when I rented.

thats a shame, but if it’s required I’m sure I can meet whatever security deposit + provide the records

what happens if you don’t have 3 years of accounts though?