My top 5 tips for making the most of FreeAgent

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1. Bank

Does your bank account reconcile with FreeAgent? Is the balance on your statement exactly the same as your balance in FreeAgent? For all the bank accounts you use for your business?

You should receive an email or notification every 3 months to refresh the authorisation for your bank to share information with FreeAgent. Make sure you’ve done this.

2. Customers

Are your outstanding invoices correct? Look at your debtors list; are these all still to be paid? It may be that you simply need to explain outstanding transactions in your bank feed, which should be up-to-date if you’ve followed the advice in tip 1 to check your bank is reconciled properly!

3. Suppliers

Do you use the bills section of FreeAgent? If so, are your outstanding bills correct?

The bills part of FreeAgent is an often misunderstood section of the software. You may have seen me talk about it before as a common area people make mistakes.

Often people confuse bills, expenses and bank transactions. If your business is simple with minimal expenses, you may not even need to use bills. A bill is an amount that your business owes but will pay at a later date, whereas an out-of-pocket expense is an amount that your business spends at point of purchase, privately. IMPORTANTLY you do not need to enter an expense in FreeAgent if the expense goes through your linked business bank account.

Bills can get confusing because it’s easy to record them wrongly – if you raise a bill and then explain the bank transaction of the payment, it’s important to record it as ‘bill payment’ not ‘payment’, because the cost would appear twice and the bill would still be shown as unpaid.

4. Accounting dates

Is your accounting year-end date correct in FreeAgent? Sole traders should be 31st March or 5th April. For limited companies, your year-end date is usually the last day of the month in which you registered with Companies House and would then be your year-end date.

If you do not know this date, you will find it on your Certificate of Incorporation. If you can’t find your certificate, you can check the Companies House public register of businesses online on its website.

As always, if you are a client of mine and there is anything you’re unsure of, don’t hesitate to ask.

5. Expenses

This is a big one that, if you implement, will make your life infinitely easier come self-assessment time.

Is your paperwork all in one place? Do you have all of your expense receipts attached to transactions?

If you get in the habit of attaching your receipts, both electronic and paper, to FreeAgent as soon as that expense has been incurred, you won’t have the soul-destroying hours of searching through scraps of paper in January! I absolutely love FreeAgent’s mobile app for this. Download the app on your phone; it’s so easy to use and then there really will be no excuse for your receipts not being up-to-date!

As always, if you are a client of mine and have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. I also run regular FreeAgent training sessions; follow me on socials or sign up to my newsletter here: to see details of the dates of these sessions.

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