23 March 2023

6 Things Farmers Should Do Before Accounts Year-End

We have put together a short checklist for farmers with some key pointers of things you may want to consider before year-end on 5th April 2023.

As this can be a busy time of year for farm­ers, you may be knee-deep in calv­ing, lamb­ing and prepar­ing crops, the last thing you want to be stress­ing about is what you should’ be doing with your accounts now that year-end is just around the corner.

Here at SUM-IT we want to take as much has­sle as pos­si­ble out of your record keep­ing so we have put togeth­er this handy check­list to quick­ly run through any actions you may want to con­sid­er before year end this April.

With our Total Farm Accounts soft­ware, we sort your VAT auto­mat­i­cal­ly so you needn’t wor­ry about mak­ing the right cal­cu­la­tions or sub­mis­sions. All our farm man­age­ment soft­ware gives you access to a range of reports which is a great way of review­ing the exact posi­tion of your farm at year-end and plan­ning where you want to head.

Here’s our 6 points to con­sid­er before year-end 2023.

  1. Do a good stock take
    Now is an impor­tant time to do a thor­ough phys­i­cal stock take of every­thing such as seeds, fer­tilis­ers, sprays, drugs, feed and semen. Do your records match real­i­ty? If not, then you have to make any adjust­ments and make sure the facts and fig­ures you are rely­ing on to make deci­sions are in line with what you’ve actu­al­ly got on the farm.
  2. Tidy up old entries
    Have your records start­ed to get a bit untidy with unmatched invoic­es, old debtors & cred­i­tors and out­stand­ing tasks? Your head will feel a lot clear­er once these have been tidied up and sort­ed out, so put some time aside to get rid of all these pesky out­stand­ing tasks. You may even find your­self in a bet­ter posi­tion if you dis­cov­er some out­stand­ing debtors you weren’t aware of or some invoic­es that have mis­tak­en­ly been replicated.
  3. Pro­tect your prof­it
    No-one likes to be pay­ing any more tax than is absolute­ly nec­es­sary, espe­cial­ly not farm­ing folk! Look­ing at your prof­it and tax oblig­a­tions, you may decide that now is a good time to bring some expen­di­ture for­ward. Per­haps you have been eye­ing up a new piece of machin­ery or replac­ing some well-worn tools. It may be a good idea to get these expens­es through the books now so as to reduce your upcom­ing tax bill.
  4. Cash flow check
    Once up to date, your Total Accounts soft­ware will pro­vide you with an accu­rate cash flow report. This will help you to deter­mine if you need to sell any grain or under­per­form­ing live­stock or indeed if you’ve got the delight of lots of cash’ float­ing around you may want to con­sid­er invest­ing this in things such as your pen­sion or land.
  5. Review gross mar­gins
    The beau­ty of hav­ing all this data from your farm is that you can use it to make strate­gic deci­sions to increase the prof­it of your agri-busi­ness. With Total, you can quick­ly see at a glance the gross mar­gins of dif­fer­ent enter­pris­es and machin­ery. At year end, why not use this as an oppor­tu­ni­ty to down­load these reports and spend some time review­ing gross mar­gins and how this may have changed from the pre­vi­ous year. Per­haps the cost of your feed bill for your sheep flock has increased or your fer­tilis­er total costs. Now is a great time to assess the ways in which you may increase these mar­gins for next year or whether to invest more heav­i­ly in a thriv­ing diver­si­fied area of your farm busi­ness. Is it time to change sup­pli­er, amal­ga­mate sup­pli­ers to achieve economies of scale or look at oth­er ways to achieve a bet­ter price on your pro­duce such as sell­ing direct to con­sumers or focus­ing on more spe­cial­ist produce.
  6. Review sub­si­dies avail­able
    If you haven’t already, it is cer­tain­ly worth spend­ing some time read­ing up about the new envi­ron­men­tal land man­age­ment schemes (ELMs). Farm­ers in Eng­land will be able to receive gov­ern­ment fund­ing for up to 280 dif­fer­ent envi­ron­men­tal-pro­tec­tion activ­i­ties. These include activ­i­ties such as con­serv­ing hedgerows to main­tain­ing peat­lands and enhanc­ing flood­wa­ter stor­age. Find out all the most up-to-date details here.

We wish you all the best with get­ting it all in order before year-end and as always, we are just at the end of the phone if you have any wor­ries, con­cerns or niggles.

If you don’t already use our next gen­er­a­tion TOTAL2 farm accounts pro­gram, check out all it can do for your farm busi­ness and let us take the has­sle out of doing the books.’