• Setting up a Health Savings Account for your small business

    Given the escalating cost of employee health care benefits, your business may be interested in providing some of these benefits through an employer-sponsored Health Savings Account (HSA). For eligible individuals, HSAs offer a tax-advantaged way to set aside funds (or have their employers do so) to meet future medical needs. Here are the key tax benefits: Contributions that participants make…

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  • 6 ways to ensure your marketing plan drives sales

    “Love and marriage,” goes the old song: “…You can’t have one without the other.” This also holds true for sales and marketing. Even the best of sales staffs will struggle if not supported by a well-researched and carefully executed marketing plan. Here are six ways to ensure your marketing plan is likely to drive strong sales: 1. Keep customers aware…

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  • Watch out for tax-related scams

    “Thousands of people have lost millions of dollars and their personal information to tax scams,” according to the IRS. Criminals can contact victims through regular mail, telephone calls and email messages. Here are just two of the scams the tax agency has seen in recent months. Fake property liens. A tax bill is sent from a fictional government agency in…

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  • Laptop battery safety is no laughing matter

    You’d be hard pressed to find a business today that doesn’t have laptop computers listed among its assets. Large companies have hundreds of them; midsize ones issue them to managers to facilitate mobility; and many small businesses rely on them as primary computing devices. Now, in and of itself, a laptop may seem harmless. But they literally hold a clear…

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  • The chances of an IRS audit are low, but business owners should be prepared

    Many business owners ask: How can I avoid an IRS audit? The good news is that the odds against being audited are in your favor. In fiscal year 2018, the IRS audited approximately 0.6% of individuals. Businesses, large corporations and high-income individuals are more likely to be audited but, overall, audit rates are historically low.   There’s no 100% guarantee…

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  • Does your team know the profitability game plan?

    Autumn brings falling leaves and … the gridiron. Football teams — from high school to pro — are trying to put as many wins on the board as possible to make this season a special one. For business owners, sports can highlight important lessons about profitability. One in particular is that you and your coaches must learn from your mistakes…

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  • How to treat your business website costs for tax purposes

    These days, most businesses need a website to remain competitive. It’s an easy decision to set one up and maintain it. But determining the proper tax treatment for the costs involved in developing a website isn’t so easy. That’s because the IRS hasn’t released any official guidance on these costs yet. Consequently, you must apply existing guidance on other costs…

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  • How to research a business customer’s creditworthiness

    Extending credit to business customers can be an effective way to build goodwill and nurture long-term buyers. But if you extend customer credit, it also brings sizable financial risk to your business, as cash flow could grind to a halt if these customers don’t make their payments. Even worse, they could declare bankruptcy and bow out of their obligations entirely.…

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  • Uncle Sam may provide relief from college costs on your tax return

    We all know the cost of college is expensive. The latest figures from the College Board show that the average annual cost of tuition and fees was $10,230 for in-state students at public four-year universities — and $35,830 for students at private not-for-profit four-year institutions. These amounts don’t include room and board, books, supplies, transportation and other expenses that a…

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  • 5 ways to withdraw cash from your corporation while avoiding dividend treatment

    Do you want to withdraw cash from your closely held corporation at a low tax cost? The easiest way is to distribute cash as a dividend. However, a dividend distribution isn’t tax-efficient, since it’s taxable to you to the extent of your corporation’s “earnings and profits.” But it’s not deductible by the corporation. Different approaches Fortunately, there are several alternative…

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