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Xero connects with most banks in the UK, including Barclays, HSBC, NatWest, RBS and more. You may view the full list of banks here.
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How do I open business bank account?
The process for opening a business bank account will vary, depending on the bank you choose to open an account with.
Certain banks may require an in-person meeting, while others may require just an online registration to complete the sign up (we tested out several challenger banks, and found Revolut and Tide to have the smoothest account opening process).
In general, you'll need to prepare the following documents for the sign up:
- Proof of ID
- Proof of address
You may also need to provide the following information about your company:
- Full business address
- Contact details
- Companies House registration number (for limited companies and partnerships)
- Estimated annual turnover
- You may be required to show proof of your personal financial situation, and provide documents to show you have a clean credit history
What banks does FreeAgent integrate with?
Presently, FreeAgent supports over 40 feeds from banks worldwide. You may refer to their resource to see which banks are listed, or search for your bank using the search tool in the Banking area of FreeAgent.
Best contractor accounting software
Software can go a long way in assisting businesses and accountants alike. Often an accountant will have a preferred software that they use which could be something bespoke they have developed themselves or something they love and trust off of the shelves.
Our accountants at Forma have tried and tested many different solutions with FreeAgent being the clear winner in the contractor accounting tool.
5 Key Benefits of Accounting Software when Self Employed
As a self-employed person or small business owner, sing a spreadsheet to manage your accounting may once have sufficed in the initial stages of running your business.
But as your company grows, the following occurs: your financial data becomes increasingly complex, you're adding on new accounts and you may be bringing on additional staff. You now require a scalable solution-and you're wondering if it's time to transition from spreadsheets to accounting software.
If you're still on the fence, and unclear about the value that an accounting software brings to your business, here are five key benefits you'll reap if you make the switch:
7 benefits of Business Bank Accounts over reimbursing employee expenses
The financial services sector has an enormous effect on the economy, people, and businesses.
In 2017, the financial services sector accounted for 6.5% of the total economic output in the UK. The sector added £119 billion to the economy and offered 1.1 million employment opportunities.
In the 2016/2017 financial year, the financial services sector remitted £27.3 billion in taxes. In addition to these benefits for the economy, the financial services industry has huge benefits for businesses. Notably, banks are prominent for helping both big and small businesses to thrive and guarantee their success and survival in the long-term.
Through commercial banking, banks have an array of products and services for enterprises ranging from lending money to foreign exchange, basic accounts, investment banking, and payment and transaction payment. Business bank accounts help businesses manage their finances and cater for expenses.
When do you need accounting software?
In the early stages of starting up your company, managing your accounts via spreadsheets may suffice.
But as your business grows, you may find yourself spending an inordinate amount of time on getting your business finances and accounts sorted out.
Perhaps you're not entirely sure if you should stick with our current practices-or seek out a new way to handle your accounting.
We'll explore this in our article below, where we dive into five signs that indicate it's time for small business owners to make the switch:
Do I need a separate business bank account?
If you're running a limited company, you'll need a separate business bank account as the company is its own legal entity, and its finances must be kept separate from the business owner or director.
While you're not legally required to have a business bank account as a sole trader, there are benefits to doing so. For instance, it enables you to keep your business finances separate, and your business accounting records organised.
Moving to the Cloud: Excel to Accounting Software
With the rollout of Making Tax Digital (MTD) in April 2019, it has become mandatory for all VAT-registered businesses to keep their financial records in digital format, and submit their VAT returns using MTD-compatible software.
While you can continue to use spreadsheets for your business records, you'll need bridging software to make them MTD-compatible. Here's a quick explanation of the term: bridging software is a tool that takes data from your spreadsheet, and "translates" the information digital in the correct format to HMRC's system.
Perhaps it's time to look into online accounting solutions that can manage your VAT processes within a single system.
What should I consider when choosing a business bank account?
For small business owners, freelancers or contractors, there are four important factors you need to consider when choosing a business bank account: features vs cost, sign up process, day-to-day banking experience and customer service.
The best business bank account: Tide, Revolut, Starling or Metro?
We road tested the best business bank accounts out there so you do not have to.
Starting with the four contenders with the best features and costs on paper, we put them through their paces testing usability, ease of sign-up, response times and the day to day banking experience.
The full details are below, so you can experience what each one is like from the inside, without having to go to all the trouble of opening accounts with each of them.
It's a long article, so let's get to the conclusion and summary first for those who just want to see the results.
At the end of the day, different businesses have different needs and there isn't a one-size-fits-all bank account.
Freelancers and contractors have two strong options: I personally recommend you to go with Starling given its ease of use and low fees.
However if you are more of a traditionalist and like the support that a physical branch provides, go with Metro Bank.
For a small business, Revolut is the clear winner.
How do I transfer/ change a business bank account?
Switching business bank accounts can be a tedious and time-consuming task.
But if you're a small business with less than 50 employees and an annual turnover of less than £6.5 million, you'll benefit from a simpler and quicker process-by using the Current Account Switch Service. This free-to-use service is part of Pay UK, and enables the transfer to be completed within seven days.
You'll need to take the following steps:
- Check that your bank or building society is participating in the scheme
- Get your paperwork sorted out. Use this resource to obtain a checklist of the documents you need.
- Apply for a new business bank account. After the security checks have been completed, you'll be able to choose a switch date.
- You'll be able to use the services on your present bank account as usual until the switch date-after which you can then begin using your new account.