The answer is… it can differ from one accountant to the next and depends upon many factors and the needs of your business. What’s your annual turnover/sales? Are you VAT registered? How many staff do you have? How many directors does the company have? Do you need management accounts? The list goes on.
We can’t tell you how much other accountants will charge you, but we can let you know how much we charge, which should give you a good idea of how much you can expect to pay.
What do I get for my money?
To help meet your needs, we like to offer clients bundles of services. As a new business you’ll also get a 20% discount to give you an extra bit of help in the early stages.
The lower-priced package, “My Essential Hub”, starts from £79 plus VAT per month (including the 20% discount). It covers all the basics to keep on top of your tax liabilities, filing obligations with HMRC and Companies House, and helps free up as much time as possible for you to spend on other things important to you. It includes:
- Accounts & corporation tax return
- Advice on business structuring
- Company set up
- Registering your business with HMRC
- Access to apps that help with your accounts (these cost over £30 per month if bought yourself. We get discount as accountants and pass the saving on to clients).
- Confirmation statement
- Quarterly dividend planning
- Email and phone support and Adobe Sign.
The next level up is “My Standard Hub”, which is tailored for slightly larger businesses who are VAT registered. The package starts from £149 plus VAT and includes everything in the essential, plus:
- VAT returns and bookkeeping
- Xero standard
- Dividend vouchers
- Annual business review
- Tax credit forms & mortgage applications
Our top package “My Complete Hub” starts from £219 plus VAT and is for business owners that want everything we offer. It includes everything in the other 2 packages plus:
- Quarterly management accounts
- Employment contracts
- Fee protection insurance
- Our address as registered office
- Processing payments to HMRC
The packages are there as a guide to what we believe certain sizes of businesses need and aren’t set in stone, so you can also select any variation you need.
We’ve written a blog explaining each service, which will give you a bit more detail of what’s involved.
That seems expensive!
There’s a lot to consider when starting a new business and trading through a limited company. Having experts to support you can be priceless! £79 plus VAT per month works out at £3 a day. That’s around the price of a coffee in most places or a bottle of your favourite beer! The time saved in not having to deal with piles of paperwork and submitting them to us via an app is worth it alone.
For the bigger businesses, £219 per month works out at £50 per week (the equivalent of paying someone minimum wage for 6/8 hours a week) and covers almost everything you would ever need from an accountant.
How does an accountant work out my fees?
Again, we can’t vouch for other accountants. Methods of figuring out what to charge will differ. We use software that calculates fees based on your turnover, number of staff and services required.
The starting fee of £79 per month is based on the company having turnover/sales of £15,000 to £30,000 and monthly payroll for 1 director:
- Annual Accounts and Tax Return – £36
- Tax and Dividend Planning – £8
- Xero (Starter) – £8
- Receipt Bank Software – £8
- Payroll – £8
- Directors Tax Return – £9
- Confirmation Statement – £2
- Total – £79
As turnover/sales increase, our fees for Annual Accounts and Tax/Dividend Planning go up as sales fall into the following categories:
- (£30 – 70k) Annual Accounts and Tax Return – £44 (new fee), Tax and Dividend Planning – £10
- (£70 – 125k) – £72 & £11
- (£125 – £250k) – £120 & £14
- (£250k – £500k) – £200 & £16
- (£500k – £1m) – £288 & £19
- (£1m – £2m) – £320 & £23
- And so on…..
We increase fees based on turnover/sales, due to there generally being more work involved as the business gets bigger.
It’s similar with payroll:
- (2-5 staff) – £20
- (6-10) – £24
- (11-15) – £28
- (16-20) – £34
- And so on…..
Payroll fees also increase if wages need to be processed weekly (70% increase, 2-5 staff £34) or fortnightly (35%, 2-5 staff £27).
Additional services like VAT returns, Management Reports and Employment Contracts are also charged based on turnover and staff, but listing the price of everything we charge for and how it’s charged will probably bore you to death so we’ll leave it there!
How do I pay my accountant?
Some accountants will invoice you annually for the full amount. Some will make you pay a monthly fee, then invoice for any difference when the work is complete. Some you’ll pay quarterly or half yearly.
We like to make things as easy and transparent for our clients as possible. When a client signs up, they receive a proposal detailing all the services they’ve signed up for and how much everything costs. A secure link is then sent by email to set up a monthly direct debit for the agreed fee and that’s it, all done.
Will my accountancy fees go up?
If part way through the year you decide you need to add something extra, we’ll let you know how much it’ll cost and, if you agree, the direct debit will be changed to cover it. Also, after 12 months we’ll review your turnover/sales and staff levels, and if there’s any significant increase that pushes you up a band, a new fee will be calculated and we’ll let you know of any increase. This can also be a good thing as it shows you’re doing a great job and your business is growing!
Likewise, if your sales and staff are less than what was expected, we’ll lower your fee in line with that.
Do I need an accountant?
Some business owners are capable of dealing with small and simple types of limited companies, but when the business starts to grow it can be too much to handle. You’ll be trying to run the business as well as doing the job of an accountant. And for what? To save the price of a daily cup of coffee? Your time is more precious than that! Rather than spending hours working through receipts, preparing VAT returns and processing weekly payroll, you could be at the gym, spending time with your loved ones or using the time to grow your business.
In our experience and with most cases where directors decide to do their own accounts/tax/payroll/VAT etc the main things that happen are:
- The wrong figures are submitted to HMRC (resulting in paying too much tax or getting fines).
- They don’t realise how much tax/VAT is owed and the business has to go into liquidation because they can’t afford to pay.
- They take too much money out of the business and pay illegal dividends.
- They claim for wrong expenses (we’ve had cases of someone claiming for a pet budgie!).
- They don’t claim enough expenses (and end up paying too much tax).
It takes years to train as an accountant and many more years of experience to know the ins and outs of everything to do with operating as a limited company. Having support will help you with things like getting business loans/credit, limiting the amount of tax you pay and maximising how much you can take out of the business.
You also won’t have to worry about HMRC issuing fines, or making sure you’re paying staff the minimum wage (which increases every year) or dealing with staff pension schemes. Furthermore, having someone look at your business from another angle can help you fix problems and see things in way you might not see on your own!
Overall, you’ve got to ask yourself, “what am I getting for my money?” You could find a really cheap accountant, but what will you get for that fee? Just standard accounts and a tax return? Have you got to spend time collecting and sorting paper work or do you get access to apps that save masses of time? Will you get regular updates on profits and tax liabilities to know where you stand in real time or will you get hit with a big tax bill a month before it’s due to be paid?
You won’t have any answers to this until you do a bit of research or ask some questions. Check out accountants’ websites, reviews, social media accounts, blogs on their website or arrange a meeting or phone call.
We might not be the right accountants for you. You might not like using apps. You may think we’re too expensive. You might even like leaving things until the last minute!
But, if you’re looking to save time in your business, want to have control of where you stand in real time, get credit quickly and generally have no worries with HMRC, we might be perfect for you!
We specialise in startup businesses and can help with a lot of things from the off:
- Business plans
- Access to funding
- Setting up the business with HMRC and Companies House
- Setting up Xero, Receipt Bank, POS system
- Staff contracts
- PAYE, VAT and tax set up and advice
- Auto enrolment pensions
- Cash flow forecasting/budgets
- Set up bank account
- Put you in touch with trusted contacts for website design and development, logo design, printing, workwear, financial/mortgage advisor, social media training/management
You could say we’re the hub for startups! If you need any help get in touch for a quick chat!