What you need to know about hiring seasonal workers

June 28, 2016   |   Newsletters

If summertime is a busy time for your business, you may be ready to hire seasonal workers. Here are tax rules to keep in mind. ‚óŹ Affordable Care Act exception. When you employ 50 or more full-time employees, you're considered a "large employer" and are generally required to provide health insurance coverage or pay a penalty. However, the law provides an exception for seasonal workers, defined as those you employ for not more than 120 days ... [Read Full Post]

Summer day care expenses can add up to a tax credit

June 24, 2016   |   Newsletters

Did you know that you can claim a federal income tax credit when you pay someone to care for your kids while you're at work or school? The Child and Dependent Care Credit is valuable because it reduces the amount of tax you owe dollar-for-dollar. Here's an overview of the rules. Child care expenses must be work-related. This requirement means you have to pay for child care so you can work or actively look for work. ... [Read Full Post]

Improve productivity with happy employees

June 21, 2016   |   Newsletters

Happy employees can have a positive impact on your operations, customer support, and profit level. Here are suggestions for keeping your workforce upbeat. Lead by example. Demonstrate the personal discipline and commitment you hope to instill in your workers by showing up every day with a positive attitude. Emphasize the link between attendance and productivity. Absenteeism is a symptom of unhappy employees. Help your employees understand the importance of the role they play in the success of ... [Read Full Post]

Is your child ready for a summer job?

June 14, 2016   |   Newsletters

If your child is planning to work this summer, make sure you know the tax basics. Tax returns. Assuming no other sources of income, your child will be able to earn up to $6,300 in 2016 before a federal income tax return has to be filed. However, if income tax is withheld from paychecks, your child will have to file a return to claim a refund. Federal income tax withholding. When hired, your child will have to ... [Read Full Post]

When disaster strikes, will your business be prepared?

June 07, 2016   |   FeaturedNewsletters

Disaster preparedness involves answering the question: How would a disaster affect your business? If you're not sure, it's time to start planning. Here's a quick look at how you can prepare beforehand, and what relief might be available afterward. BEFORE DISASTER STRIKES Identify key issues. Bring together managers of key areas and brainstorm on the critical steps needed to recover from a disaster. Consider at least two scenarios: a company-specific event such as a fire that affects ... [Read Full Post]

Prepaid debit cards offer benefits and drawbacks

May 31, 2016   |   FeaturedNewsletters

Prepaid debit cards, also known as stored-value cards, can be useful when you lack a traditional checking account. In an increasingly plastic-dependent world, these cards can be substituted for cash, and you can use them to pay for airline tickets, hotel stays, electronics, and groceries. Money is transferred, or "loaded," to the card and is yours to spend until the card runs out of funds or is reloaded. Prepaid cards have several advantages over traditional credit ... [Read Full Post]

Follow these suggestions for better pricing decisions

May 25, 2016   |   Newsletters

The prices you set for your products and services affect every aspect of your business, including long-term viability, short-term profits, market share, and customer loyalty. While the guidebook or financial guru who can provide the perfect answer to this important decision doesn't exist, tried-and-true principles can help. Here are three suggestions to arrive at reasonable pricing for your market and industry. Cover costs. The price you charge for a particular product must at least equal the ... [Read Full Post]

Financial tips to follow when a spouse dies

May 18, 2016   |   Newsletters

The death of a spouse is emotionally and financially devastating. Making decisions of any kind is difficult when you're vulnerable and grieving, but having a plan to follow may help. Here are suggestions for dealing with financial tasks. Wait to make major decisions. Put off selling your house, moving in with your grown children, giving everything away, liquidating your investments, or buying new financial products. Get expert help. Ask your attorney to interpret and explain the will ... [Read Full Post]

Keep track of summer rental income

May 11, 2016   |   Newsletters

Are you thinking of signing up with one of those websites that link travelers to property owners with space to spare? If you plan to offer for rent all or part of your main home, establishing sound recordkeeping procedures from day one is a good idea. In addition to a bookkeeping system to track the income and expenses related to your rental, a calendar detailing the days your home was rented will be useful at tax ... [Read Full Post]

Is this insurance missing from your financial plan?

May 04, 2016   |   Newsletters

What springs to mind when you hear "insurance?" Most likely, you think about auto, health, home, and life. But what if an illness or accident were to deprive you of your income? Even a temporary setback could create havoc with your finances. And statistics show that your chances of being disabled for three months or longer between ages 35 and 65 are almost twice those of dying during the same period. Yet you may overlook disability ... [Read Full Post]