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Which Accounting Software for My Needs?

GoldMountainMiningGoldMountainMining subscriber Posts: 4
I have spent the last couple hours reading accounting software reviews on Amazon, CNET, and SuN and find myself ... quite confused!  It is clear that all of the major labels have their downsides, so it`s hard to make a decision.  Our business is really making the jump to light speed now in so many ways and I want to be sure we start this new phase in the right direction in accounting & finance.
* Just started an S Corp so the software should "know" all about this.  Software should be able to generate quarterly payroll forms, like IRS 941.  This alone will save the $500 / year I would have paid my accountant for this. 
* I think QuickBooks is out if only because I do not want pay Intuit $200 a year for the "privilege` of writing paychecks to my employees.  I understand this subscription (read: blood money) is now mandatory with the 2007 version. 
* The business is currently my wife and I both working as consultants.  Our income comes from the webiste I run (I receive consulting fees and commissions) and Gretchen is a free lance illustrator (check her out at www.GretchenRaisch.com</A>).  But there`s a good chance that Phase 2 (the name of our S Corp.) could purchase the website in the next year so the software should be able to handle this transition.
* Phase 2 currently owns two fix & flip properties which will be sold in Spring `07.  Also plan to purchase long-term rental properties under an LLC.  Software should provide support for both of these types of properties.
* In addition to our business accounts, I would also like to be able to keep up with all of our personal banking in this software.  (I`m currently using an old version of MS Money for this, mostly just as a general ledger to keep track of banking transactions and expense categories).
I was surprised to learn that QuickBooks is not a double-entry system.  My layman`s understanding is that any system worth its salt (electronic or otherwise) should be double entry. 
I like working with numbers but am not an accountant.
All thoughts & suggestions will be appreciated!!


  • sreyssreys subscriber Posts: 0

    Confused? Don`t make things more difficult than they need to be.  Quickbooks is currently the hands-down favorite among small business, and Microsoft Small Business Accounting seems to be rapidly becoming every bit as good. If you outgrow Quickbooks or Microsoft then that would be a good problem to have. For now just spend a couple hundred and get your accounting sytem up and running with either QB or MSBA.
    Quickbooks is a double-entry system. Each transaction requires a balanced set of debits and credits. You may have misunderstood what you were reading, or the reviewer misspoke.
    Payroll compliance ("blood money"). Intuit, Microsoft, Sage, etc think that payroll compliance is a value-added service, so they charge for it. I don`t recall seeing a decent accounting software that did not charge extra for payroll support. You don`t have to pay for it if you want to manually prepare your own forms, manually calculate withholdings, manually keep track of the data to fill out the forms, etc. Alternatively, an outside payroll service like PAYCYCLE is about $25 a month, including 941`s, 940`s, W2`s etc.  Weigh that against the value of your time and the cost of errors.
    Your "fix & flip" properties, possible website purchase, etc are just debits and credits to the bookkeeping system. There are more tax issues with this than there are bookkeeping issues, and your CPA can help you identify them.
    Quicken is a good choice for the personal books. Definitely better than an old version of Money.
    Scott Reynolds (CPA)
    Surprise, AZ
    sreys2006-12-4 13:18:42
  • LabelItLabelIt subscriber Posts: 0
    I myself just purchase Peachtree and we love it, It does so much more and its very user friendly. You can create a quote, and it will automatically create a PO and a invoice along side with it. Oh ya did I mention the payroll side of it? Its a great program Quickbooks is good for starting off but once you grow you are going to want to upgrade, my recomendation is Peachtree due the fact that it does everything and more.
  • glgcpaglgcpa subscriber Posts: 0 Member
    Scott has an excellent reply and I would heed his advice.A software package, no matter what brand (QuickBooks, Microsoft Accounting, Peachtree, Sage, MAS-90, Great Plains, etc.), is just a form of database
    (or multiple databases when you add in one for A/R, A/P, P/R, Inv, F/A,
    etc.).Software does not need to "know" how to do anything.  The person inputting the information needs to "know" how to input it properly such that it gets recorded properly, such that appropriate management and tax decisions can be made.Talk to your CPA.  Ask them what package they recommend based on things that do matter to the software like (this is a very short incomplete list):  1.  How many users will be accessing the software at one time?  2.  Do you need remote access?  3.  Will you be tracking your houses as Inventory?Then make a decision. 
  • kizmetakizmeta subscriber Posts: 0
    It may not be as sophisticated as your needs indicate, but we`ve switched to using an online  based accounting software: Less Accounting. It is simple, straightforward, and more powerful than the name would imply. It gets everything we need done and stays out of our way.  I know this is an old thread, but I felt like Less Accounting is worth tossing in as an option for anyone else interested.
    Matt PettyScrap Ease online scrapbook software
  • saravanansaravanan subscriber Posts: 389 Silver Level Member
    Zoho BooksIt is easy-to-use, online accounting software designed for small businesses to manage their finances and stay on top of their cash flow. 
  • Anthony_JoyAnthony_Joy subscriber Posts: 5 Member

    One of the most important things, when you run a small or medium-sized business, is the count of every penny you are spending and all the money you are profited with. For keeping all accounts updated and to manage your books, you need to have accounting software that will manage all the load for you.

    In my opinion, AKT Macs is the best as this provide service plus software which runs the accounting of small business very smoothly.

    1. Save upto 80%:- With AKT MACS you can save upto 80% of Cost which you are spending or will be spending soon on Accounting & Tax Compliance.
    2. Create & send invoice in 1 min.:-Send Professional Looking Invoices in Less than 1 Minute right from your mobile and impress your clients.
    3. Get payment faster:-Never face Cash crunch with in Invoice payment link, to receive payment directly into your Banks. Now no chik-chik of Cheques.
    4. Quick Quotation in 1min :-Speed Up Business deals with Quick Quotation from your mobile and instant approval from your client on the business table itself. Now never depend on Accountants for Quotations.

  • LifeRevivalUniverseLifeRevivalUniverse subscriber Posts: 76 Silver Level Member

    I prefer QuickBooks. It is a web-based accounting automation service for small businesses and freelancers. For those who want to save time by simplifying accounting and an integrated financial system. QuickBooks lets you fully work with up to five users.

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