Small businesses are the heartbeat of the United States economy. Unfortunately, small businesses have been under assault from every direction due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Facing closures, it's important for business owners to utilize every tool at their disposal to navigate the best path forward.
And a certified public accountant (CPA) can help in more ways than one. Let's take a closer look at how a CPA can help businesses navigate their way through COVID-19.
An Educated Approach to Financial Relief
The Federal Government is well aware of the importance your small business plays in the economy. Because of this, the government has initiated several relief programs that may offer assistance to your business. However, understanding which programs are best for your business can be challenging and may qualify as a full-time job on its own merit.
Partnering with an accountant can help you discover the right approach to relief. Your CPA can help you understand which programs should be prioritized and which ones your business may qualify for, such as:
- Potential government grants
- SBA Disaster Loans
- Private sources of funds
- Municipal grants
- State government loan guarantees
- Federal Paycheck Protection Program
CPAs Can Offer Cash Flow Assistance
One of the top ways a CPA can help businesses during COVID-19 is with financial planning and cash flow assistance. A CPA can help you strategically forecast your cash flow and model revenues, which can empower you to make the best possible decisions.
For instance, certain loans will have higher costs than others, and it's critical you have a clear understanding of the short-term and long-term implications when it comes to the cost of funds. At the same time, some types of loans can be forgiven if utilized to continue paying employee wages; while other types of aid may be available for certain industries. By partnering with an accountant, you can rest easier knowing someone is working to create a strategic plan for your success.
CPAs Can Help with Financial Planning
In business, those who fail to plan are indeed planning to fail. And if you qualify for special programs or alternate sources of funding, the best way to ensure these proceeds last is with financial planning. Your CPA can be a highly-valuable strategic partner who can offer assistance and guidance critical to keeping your business afloat. These financial planning services may include:
- Maximizing cash flow by identifying profitable as well as unprofitable customers.
- Reducing costs and identifying opportunities for growth.
- Identifying different loans, leases, and contracts that would be beneficial to consider renegotiating.
- Exploring creative ways to reduce the costs of inventory.
- Understanding which expenses can be reduced to save funds and increase cash flow.
An Accountant Will Keep Your Books In Order
Pandemic or no pandemic, it's critical to make sure your books and records are in immaculate order. However, during the pandemic, it's even more important to keep excellent records. For example, if a new relief program becomes available, it's vital your business records sound and ready for review at a moment's notice.
Stay On Top of Taxes and Implications
Another way CPAs can help small businesses is with tax planning and strategy. For instance, the U.S. Treasury offered a helpful 90-day extension on tax payments if you were due to pay on April 15. However, most businesses would've been advantaged to file their taxes on time to sure up cash flows with a refund. Did you receive tailored tax planning advice designed to help you strategically leverage tax law changes?
Moving forward, there have been talks of offering tax credits, cutting payroll taxes, and more. It's imperative you have an informed ally in your corner who understands tax implications and what it can mean for your business. By partnering with an experienced CPA, you'll be best positioned to remain in front of tax changes and their implications. Most importantly, a CPA can help small businesses use those tax changes as leverage for growth and success.
Contact MB Group for COVID-19 Assistance
If you are a small business owner, partnering with a CPA can open the door to a range of benefits. And the team at MB Group offers the experience and knowledge to help you chart the best path forward.
Contact the MB Group today to learn how we can help you navigate your way through COVID-19.