This year has been challenging. And, while September doesn't seem like the end of the year, 2020 is dwindling down. December is just around the corner, and September is an ideal time for business owners to start thinking about end-of-year preparations. It might seem early, but consider this; December is nearly a lost month - with the holidays, family vacations, and family obligations, no matter how good our intentions are, the month slips through our fingers. Trying to get on someone's calendar is almost impossible in December, and the last few weeks of November are just as bad.

This is why we advise our customers to start strategically planning for the new year in October; lay the early groundwork to set your essential meetings in the fall to avoid losing people in the holiday fog. Don't get too stressed - year-end preparation is one of those tasks that can seem more daunting than it really is—preparing for next year don't have to be complicated, especially if time is in your corner.

Fall Deadline Extensions

The fall extension deadline is nearing, and your tax accountant can begin the process. While dates may be adjusted due to COVID-19, these Fall dates are your final due dates. You can file before these dates, so don’t think you need to wait until the due date. We recommend trying to file well before these dates if you want a better experience with your tax accountant. If you wait until the due date is very near, they will be overwhelmed once again and harder to get ahold of.

Plan for Revenue Growth

September is the perfect time to start reviewing the future of your business. You need to understand approximately how much revenue your business makes throughout the year to determine your cash flow and how much growth your business may experience. While revenue forecasting isn't intended to provide exact figures, it gives your business several methods to help forecast revenue as accurately as possible. These numbers will allow you to determine what growth investments to make in 2021.

Make Your Tax Plan

You can't plan for next year until you know how this year went. For example, you need to understand your situation and where to take action to avoid a crazy tax bill. It's easier to take action in September than December. We can guarantee you are not your tax accountant's only client. If you don't start thinking about your upcoming tax bill now, there is a decent chance you won't get an in-person meeting until early next year, which means you will have limited time to make the proper decisions concerning your tax burden.

Ramp Up for the Holidays

If you work in eCommerce, now is the time to identify your top sellers; these are items with the highest sales volume or how many inventory units sold during any given period. The calculation is easy, you add up the items sold, and most inventory management systems keep track of year item sold. Consider investing in these items now, at least six weeks before cyber Monday.

Starting in September gives you the freedom to make good decisions, and we're big fans of good decisions. If you're feeling overwhelmed, reach out to your controller. Our goal is to provide you with everything your tax accountant will need to file your tax return without hesitation. Early preparation will help remove your financial stress before the leaves begin to fall.