Filing your GST, or any tax for that matter, should not be a nightmare. True, the process can be long and complicated, but the more you understand the better prepared you can be. This will in turn make the process more manageable. Here are some really easy ways to simplify your GST filing; the best part is, they can apply to almost anything.
Simplifying GST Submissions
1) Do Your Research
You have to know what goods and services will require you to charge GST, how to treat certain transactions, how to account for the GST you collect etc. Therefore, do as much research as you can to ensure that you start on the right foot. Make notes as you go along and save the links to your resources, or print them so you have them to refer to. The aim is to avoid errors that could cost you once it is time to file your BAS.
2) Speak with the ATO or a tax agent for clarification
The notes you make should help you to see what you do not understand. You can then raise your queries or concerns with a representative at the ATO or consult a tax agent so he or she can simplify the information. A tax agent will also be able to tailor the information to you.
3) Invest in an Accounting Package
Nothing simplifies a process like having all the information on hand. A good accounting package like MYOB not only achieves this, it also has a function to calculate your GST so you are already on your way. This means that updating the information is fast and easy; plus, you do it daily (or as often as you choose input data into the program).
4) Hire a Bookkeeper
A bookkeeper can help you keep your day-to-day financial information safe as well as give you some guidance on tax matters. Outsourcing to one means that you are always aware of your daily sales and purchases, you get to see the full picture of your accounting operations, and you can get your GST reports generated as often as you need them (remember that it is possibly for the ATO to ask you to make monthly submissions).
5) Start Early
The sooner you start working towards meeting the GST deadline, the better it will be. This way, you will not have to rush to get things done which should greatly minimize the panic and confusion. Additionally, you will not miss the deadline which would result in having to understand what the consequences are and what to do.
There are other ways to make your business tax filings simpler, but these are the most basic and can be a tremendous help. Fortunately, having a bookkeeper takes away most of the burden so you can approach the subject with confidence. This is why you need to be careful about who you choose to handle your bookkeeping tasks as well as the tools you use throughout each sale period. In the end, you have to choose the most efficient method to run your business.