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Are You Making These 10 Common Bookkeeping mistakes in your business?

Updated: Feb 19

Dear Fellow Business Enthusiasts,

As fall ball season takes full swing (that's baseball for those not fully immersed in the game), I'll keep this post short and sweet. We're a year into player pitch ball, yet my son still has more bruises than hits - but let's hope your bookkeeping game is more successful! In this quick read, we'll dive into a critical aspect of maintaining the financial health of any business. Often a challenging task for entrepreneurs and small business owners, mistakes in bookkeeping can lead to financial discrepancies, tax troubles, and even the failure of your business. To help you avoid these pitfalls, we'll explore ten common bookkeeping mistakes and provide actionable tips on how to steer clear of them.

kid playing baseball

1. Neglecting Regular Reconciliation

One of the most common bookkeeping mistakes is failing to reconcile bank statements regularly. Avoid this error by scheduling a monthly reconciliation of your bank accounts. This ensures that your records match your actual bank transactions, helping you identify discrepancies early.

2. Mixing Personal and Business Finances

It's essential to keep your personal and business finances separate. Combining them can lead to confusion and make tax time a nightmare. Open a separate business bank account and use dedicated credit cards for business expenses to maintain clear financial boundaries.

receipt management

3. Failing to Keep Receipts

Losing or neglecting to retain receipts is a recipe for bookkeeping disaster. Create a system for organizing and storing receipts, whether it's digitally or in physical files. This will make tax deductions easier to claim and help during audits.

4. Not Backing Up Data

Data loss can be catastrophic for your bookkeeping. Invest in regular backups of your financial records. Cloud-based accounting software often offers automatic backup features to ensure your data is secure.

5. Misclassifying Expenses

Incorrectly categorizing expenses can lead to skewed financial reports and potential tax problems. Familiarize yourself with proper expense categories and take the time to review and double-check your entries.

money in jar

6. Ignoring Petty Cash Transactions

Petty cash expenses can add up quickly if not properly recorded. Establish a system for tracking petty cash expenditures, ensuring every dollar is accounted for and recorded.

7. Forgetting to Record All Income

Some businesses receive income through various channels, and it's easy to overlook a payment now and then. Create a structured process for tracking all sources of income, and regularly cross-check your records.

8. Skipping Regular Financial Reviews

Failing to review your financial reports and statements can lead to missed opportunities or early warning signs of trouble. Set aside time each month or quarter to review your financials, and address any concerns promptly.

9. Not Seeking Professional Help

Bookkeeping can become complex as your business grows. Avoid the mistake of trying to handle everything yourself, especially when tax laws change or when faced with intricate financial transactions. Consider hiring a professional accountant or bookkeeper to assist you.

10. Disregarding Tax Deadlines

Missing tax deadlines can result in penalties and fines. Stay organized by using accounting software that provides reminders for tax deadlines, or enlist the help of a tax professional to ensure you meet all obligations.

Filling out taxes

Avoiding these common bookkeeping mistakes is essential for maintaining the financial health of your business. Remember that bookkeeping is not a one-time task but an ongoing process that requires diligence and accuracy. By implementing these tips and developing good bookkeeping habits, you can minimize errors and enjoy a clearer financial picture of your business.

However, it's important to acknowledge that sometimes, despite your best efforts, bookkeeping can become overwhelming or complex. In such cases, bringing in a professional accountant or bookkeeper can be a wise investment. It's often more cost-effective to hire someone before issues become too tangled, as cleaning up financial records can be a time-consuming and expensive process. A skilled professional can not only save you time and money but also provide valuable insights into optimizing your financial processes for the future. Remember, seeking help when needed is a sign of responsible financial management. Now go out there and hit it out of the park!


Caila Carreno

Founder, Polish and Precision

Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as professional advice. Always consult a qualified accountant or financial expert before making any decisions based on the content presented here

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