Bookkeeping advice and services
Bookkeeping advice and services

5 Tips for great Business Record Keeping

The following list is very important to consider if you are


  • thinking of starting a business
  • the owner and responsible for keeping the business records
  • responsible for managing the records of small businesses; for example, you are the bookkeeper or a tax agent

Tip 1  Legal Requirement

It’s a legal requirement that you must keep good records. The law states you must keep business records for

– for 7 years after they have been prepared or the transaction completed, whichever occurs latest

– in English or a type of form that can be accessed and understood to determine the amount of tax you need to pay

– Capital Gains records for assets that depreciate over long periods of time

– You have a choice whether to store records in either paper or electronic form

– It can be as simple as using an exercise book or commercial cash book that can be purchased from a newsagent or stationery store.

– If you choose the electronic form, you need to be familiar with accounting principles and how the software calculates and treats the information

Tip 2  Sales records

– sales invoices, including tax invoices

– sales receipts

– credit card statements

– cash register tapes

– bank deposit books and account statements

Tip 3  Purchases/expenses records

– Bills or Supplier invoices, including tax invoices

– purchase receipts which include an ABN

– cheque butts and bank account statements

– credit card statements

– records showing how you worked out any private use of something you purchased

Tip 4  Records relating to payments made to your employees

– tax file number declarations and withholding declarations

– withholding variation notices

– worker payment records

– PAYG payment summaries

– annual reports

– superannuation records

– records of any fringe benefits provided

Tip 5  PAYG Withholding records

– records of any amounts withheld from payments where no ABN was quoted

– a copy of any PAYG withholding voluntary agreements

– records of voluntary agreement payments

– PAYG payment summaries

– PAYG payment summary – employment termination payments

– annual reports

Reference: Australian Taxation Office

If you would like to discuss your bookkeeping requirements or how to improve your record keeping, contact

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