Hi. My name is Terry, and I'm the President of Quicksilver Accounting & Consulting,  Wilmington NC.

I created this blog to offer little hints, ideas, strategies and sometimes just silly excerpts from life to help other entrepreneurs gain insight.

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Written in Wilmington, NC


Personal finances can be just as organized as business..

For as many years as I can remember I have used either Quicken, QuickBooks or now QuickBooks Online for our personal finances.   The idea of being able to see all our investment numbers, banking and credit card balances,etc all in one spot was always my goal.  

To that end,  I needed software that would bring everything in automatically, and make it fast and easy, so it didn't become a chore.  I have looked at other programs, but for me, QuickBooks Online made a lot of sense since I knew the program well.    It doesn't do investments, but the companies we have those at have very capable software- no need to bring in more than the ending numbers each month. 

Creating a personalized chart of accounts gives me very detailed information on each home, and all our personal assets and expenses.  Every six months I run a P&L and Balance Sheet (yes, I just said that!).  I've done this for years- and know exactly what our net worth is at any time.  

This might sound like overkill, but should anything happen to me, my family has the full picture at their finger tips. Every account is listed, balances, etc.  And being this organized helps us reach some personal goals I set every five years.  

Run your household like a mini business. Let the software do most of the work.  It doesn't take more than an hour each week to keep up with everything. Automate as much as possible. Set recurring items in your software, and enjoy the process of being super organized.   Intuit's Mint is a good choice if you have never done this and want to see what it might be like if you have simpler needs.

For many of my clients, their personal side of life is very complicated.  Being able to have all this information when needed, for mortgages or loans would be a big time saver in the long run.   Do you know what your personal net worth is today?  Could your family find one piece of paper with all your assets and expenses on it right now?  Come on- try it! In the end you will wonder why you didn't run your personal finances just as organized as your business.


Is your accounting firm becoming a dinosaur?

In the last year, I have noticed there seem to be two kinds of accounting firms emerging.  Progressive firms that have latched onto technology and current trends, and older firms who's partners are probably retiring in the next decade and don't want to make a real effort to stay relevant.

I can personally point the finger at these firms, for I am of that 'certain age' that might have been in the later group, had it not been for my innate curiosity of what's out there and my love of trade conferences which keep me abreast of all the new software and trends.   Efficiency is a driver as well, and the love of the field keeps me wanting to offer the very best available.  

There are several indicators your accounting firm has become outdated. What does a progressive accounting firm look like?

Check their website- Is it well organized and informative?  Are they staying in touch with the latest trends and offering new opportunities to their clients?  If a company hasn't updated their website in several years, its safe to say they aren't staying in touch with the world around them.  Do they have social media accounts that are being updating, like Facebook and LinkedIn?  

Have their offerings to you changed in the last several years or are they doing the 'same old stuff' and stagnating.  Are they upgrading staff, adding younger employees and adding new ways to help you?  Are they talking more about helping you grow, and less about data entry?

Do they seem to be using the latest technology or are they still working on older desktop versions, creating excels, creating massive journal entries? The quickest way to find if they are staying relevant is to notice how they operate internally and how they interface with you.  Are they hoarding your information on their 'proprietary' software so you don't have constant access and they have you at their mercy? That drives me crazy! 

Are they suggesting new ways for you to manage your business?  New apps that help you?  Can they interact with your most recent changes and make valid suggestions for improvement? Progressive accountants are finding ways to add the best service possible.  You become their number one focus, not the other way around. 

Are they a jack of all trades with no specialities? Being all to everyone doesn't help stay on top of the latest trends in certain fields.  Look for a company that has a niche in your speciality.

And last, but the most important, do you have the information you need at your fingertips?  Or are they providing financial reports a month or two later, taking longer to close out your prior month, leaving you to make decisions on old information? 

Progressive firms are finding ways to do more analyzing and consulting, using technology to help with data entry and eliminating duplication.  Don't let your financial needs come at the cost of 'we've always worked with them".  A progressive firm is client-centric and stays current with the latest technology and specialized staff.

Which is your accounting firm? Progressive or dinosaur?


60 is the new 40?

That's the topic of an article from CPA Advisor I found very interesting today.  Seems its so hard to get younger employees to stay long enough, that companies are now being told to look for your 60 something candidate- because they will likely have a great work ethic, plan on staying for quite a while, and have the wisdom for everyone to benefit from.

I always found age relative to how old I was at the time.  At 15 I thought 30 was ancient. At 40, 70 seemed old. You get my drift...  I think we all need to stop thinking about age and more about capabilties.

You are probably going to have to bomb me out of the chair when I'm too feeble to do the job anymore.   I love this work, and though retirement seems like fun- 30 years of it just seems way to long!   I'm here for the long haul, and I know of plenty of friends that are thinking the same way.  Maybe we don't necesarrily want to work 40 hr weeks, but we have no intention of giving up our source of money and accomplishment either since we live much longer.   

Ahh... back to work now.   


Points, points, points= $

Have you ever wondered if you are getting the best options from the points offered by your business credit card?  

There are so many choices, it's a bit bewildering at times.  I've looked at NerdWallet, a bank & credit card information website,  when trying to figure out what's best, and a few do seem to stand out.  

I think it's all about your lifestyle, and what you enjoy on downtime.  If your a traveler, something with airlines miles or points that can be transferred to travel partners that some times get you 25% more is great. If you need or want cash in your pocket- I think the Capital One Spark at 2 points for every dollar spent is the good or Discover which will give you double back on your first year anniversary, cool! 

I'm luck enough to have a family member who travels and has done due diligence on all cards available, so I just ask- hey which card is best for me?   Or sometimes, they just pester me to make the move because I'm being lazy and not really thinking about the benefits.   

Presently I'm switching over to Chase Business Ink Preferred, because they are offering 80K points if you spend a certain amount in the first three months.  That is nothing to sneeeze at, because they will be worth 25% more when I transferred them to our Hyatt account.  I love that because there are beautiful Hyatt's all over the world.  Hawaii- here we come (in November). 

Are you being a creature of comfort, like I was?   When is the last time you really looked at what is being offered and how does that relate to what your carrying around in your wallet right now?  It might be time to take a jump over to something else.  You may not have a family member reminding you, like I do, that there are better options. Don't let that stop you from getting the best deal.

( Thanks Gina!)