Bookkeeping in California

Whats the easiest method of bookkeeping for California? Im just starting out my business.

Hiring a CPA is always the easiest way, no matter the state. For those of us that DYI our taxes and finances, a few Excel spreadsheets does the trick.

And welcome to the forum!

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Thanks for the info, I appreciate that. I’ll check out a few CPA’s.
Thanks for welcoming me!

I agree with Ryan. The bookkeeping is pretty easy, but business taxes are complicated. Once you find a CPA you like, ask them what format(s) they prefer. Mine appreciates Quickbooks, because that is what she uses, but can handle just about anything. You will find Quickbooks to be real pricey these days (wasn’t always the case), so having a CPA that is flexible on format could be important.

Thank you, Brian. I genuinely appreciate the feedback I’m getting. It’s very helpful. I wanna make sure I do this right, so I bow to the experts…

How often do I need to have a cpa come and do the books?

I use a book keeper to reconcile my banking accounts, payroll, quarterly taxes and enter information into quickbooks. Then, at the end of the year send the books over to the CPA for taxes.

Now, you can have all of this done under one roof if you choose provided the CPA offers these services.

But, as others have said, it all starts with a conversation with a CPA who will provide you some guidance.

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You guys are awesome, thanks!!!

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I use a CPA after the end of the fiscal year for taxes. She just happens to also do my payroll, which makes my bookkeeping responsibilities much easier. I just track income and expenses, then she adds the payroll numbers to the tax calculations at the end of the year, then provides me with the year-end accounting numbers and adjustments (so that I can retroactively make my bookkeeping match what was reported on my taxes).

BTW. You can have a CPA do your bookkeeping, of course. But, CPAs are around $100/hour, versus bookkeeper at $25/hour. As you might have surmised, most one- man operations do their own bookkeeping. It does not take much to do, you can track everything on spreadsheets if you want. You just need to be organized and stay on top of it so that you are not rummaging through a bunch of crumped-up receipts at the end of the year.

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And which type spreadsheet? Is it something I already have? Or do I buy it?

If you have access to Microsoft Excel, use it. There are freeware spreadsheet software alternatives as well, such as Google Sheets (free, online) that has much of the same functionality.

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Thanks so much for the information, I truly appreciate it!

For some reason, Google Sheets won’t let me use my business email I already have and won’t let me use the platform. Keeps asking me to set up a new one, then wants to charge me for it.
Excel is too expensive as well

Can you not just sign in with your personal Google account? Who cares what email it is assigned to it?

Yeah, Google sheets says if I’m using it for my business, I need a new business email address to use it. When I try using the email I already have thru Google for my business, it says it’s personal and they want me to pay $6 per month per user.
But I don’t need or want a new email. I already have 3. Idk, I guess I’ll just have to pay…

Ughh. They are like little piranha eating your money one little bite at a time.

I think I bought student home version of excel for around $100, I prefer that.

For years, I used a columnar pad, manual written entries. Still works. Once again, an accountant will offer some direction.

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Copy that. All this info has been invaluable. Thank you for your insight.
Another question, if I may;
Are we allowed to use referral services, like Angie’s List?
Also, how do you pull in most of your business, if I may ask? Just getting started out here in Hemet

All regular personal accounts have full access to Google Sheets, both from a browser and in the field on a phone via an app. You can set up a separate personal google account, if all else fails.

That’s interesting. I just started using Google sheets and docs because my microsoft office license expired. I have no trouble logging in with my business account and it has not asked me to pay (yet).

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Like Brian I have a student version of Excel. In fact its a whole office suite, Microsoft Office. Community colleges (where my wife worked) usually have discount software packages for students (and employees).

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