Spring has officially sprung and the start of the 2018/19 tax year is just around the corner - bringing with it a new way for Boox clients to view and manage their payment breakdowns in the Boox app.

Why change the pay breakdown?

Don’t worry, the breakdown itself will still provide the same great, easy to follow information that it always has done but the way it is accessed and produced is changing a little. These changes are designed to ensure that we are always utilising the most up to date information that you can provide us – especially in relation to the date that you are paying yourself up to. We've created a helpful tutorial video to walk you through to pay yourself using payment breakdowns in the Boox app, or read on for further information on the changes.

Two main changes

1. Up front pay date selection Up to now, the pay breakdown is produced for a specific date and you then tell us when you are paying yourself. We are now asking you to confirm the date you are paying yourself up to at the start of the process, so that we can recalculate the data if necessary to take account of any new information that may affect the recommendations. For example, if you choose a date that falls in a different pay period or tax year to the date the breakdown was originally produced for then we will update the recommended information to bring you up to date to the new period (once confirmed). You are still able to choose the earlier date if that’s what you need to record, but you will need to bear in mind that there is a potential for late submission penalties by HMRC if any salary information is not reported on or before the salary pay date. 2. One breakdown at a time Marking a pay breakdown as paid is critical to ensuring that we record accurate information in your accounts and make and necessary submissions to HMRC. Therefore, you now need to mark the current breakdown as paid before you can receive a new one. Once you choose a pay date and view a breakdown, if you go to move away without marking it as paid, you will get a warning as below. As you can see, it’s not a good idea to leave a breakdown as unpaid. If you do want to come back to it later you can, but you must ensure that you haven’t paid out any of the amounts recommended, as these are only recorded in your accounts when the breakdown is paid and will therefore lead to discrepancies further on.

A few important things to note

  • Salaries (including payslips) and dividends (including vouchers) will be created and updated in your current position when the breakdown is paid.
  • A new pay breakdown will not be produced until the previous one has been marked as paid, or removed.
  • If your next scheduled processing date passes with the previous breakdown still unpaid, then a “ghost” line will be added to the breakdowns page (as below), advising that a new one can’t be created until the previous one is actioned.
  • When the previous pay breakdown is marked as paid or removed, the new one will be generated for “today”.

A quick word on pay dates

These changes to the pay breakdown in the Boox accounting app will take effect for any breakdowns with a pay date from 6th April 2018 onwards. The pay date is the date the salary or dividends are posted to the current position and when NI / PAYE liabilities are calculated. This may not necessarily be the same day that funds are transferred to your company bank account. For example, it is possible to be paid for a period up to the end of the month and then not actually transfer the money until a few days later. In that case the date that will be reported to HMRC for salary purposes will be the end of the month and that is the date the payment breakdown should be generated against. Don’t forget: The pay date is the date when the company pays salary and dividends are declared, not when invoice income is received from an agency or client or when the cash is actually transferred from the company account.

Help with the Boox app

The Boox accounting app is an agile accounting tool built for contractors and freelancers. All clients are offered a detailed walk-through of the app shortly after joining Boox. This can be done by phone or video call, whichever you prefer. Thereafter your dedicated accounting team will be there for any support you need. Not a Boox client? Take a tour of the Boox app to see how it could help you manage your business finances from any device, anywhere, anytime.
Following our recent app update communications, we’re delighted to report that the updates to the MyBoox mobile app have now been approved for release into the app stores. We will be pushing the updates live by the end of next week (14th October).

Highlights

Anyone already using the web app on a mobile device will already be familiar with the new layout and options, but here’s a few of the features you will find in the new app: To access your menu options, choose the ‘Menu’ button in the top right: MyBoox 2.0 As with the existing MyBoox app you will be able to easily create Invoices, Expenses and Customer and to review your pay breakdowns and mark them as paid. However, you will also have access to:
  • A dashboard summarising your recent invoices and expenses, your latest pay breakdown and your accounting position:
MyBoox 2.0  
  • A summary of your company’s Profit & Loss and Balance Sheet:
MyBoox 2.0  
  • Access to summary company and personal income reports, including an estimate of any projected dividend tax for the year
  • And much more...

Upgrading to MyBoox 2.0

If you currently have the MyBoox app installed and you have auto-update enabled, then your app should be upgraded to MyBoox 2.0 for you, otherwise please manually update from the relevant store. The app is compatible with devices running iOS 8.1 and above and Android 4.1 and above. When you have updated, you will need to re-authenticate by entering your username and password. You will then be asked to choose a 5 digit PIN for future access. We hope the new app makes it even easier to manage your company finances while you’re on the go. Our future innovations depend on your feedback, so if you have any comments, we’d be delighted to hear from you. Get in touch
We’re excited to announce the latest release of the Boox app. Our tech wizards have added some great new features, which we are confident will add even more value to your user experience.

Notification Centre

This will provide you with real-time important updates and messages to help with the day-to-day running of your company. These include:
  • Advice when a new pay breakdown is due to be produced and when it has been created
  • When a new VAT return is ready to be reviewed and paid
  • When a new Health Check report is ready
  • When a new VAT period has started and what we need from you to progress your return
  • When new accounting and tax years have started
  • If you are approaching VAT registration / de-registration thresholds
  • And many more...
App_Notifications   What’s more, you won’t even need to be logged into the Boox app to get these notifications. If you are using Chrome on Android, Windows, or a Mac then you can opt to receive push notifications from us, which means you get these alerts instantly without having to access the Boox app first. We will be working to enhance and develop this system on an ongoing basis. As always we welcome your comments on how we can improve the app and move our service onwards and upwards.

Even better mobile device experience

The Boox web app has been developed to work equally well on any type of mobile device, desktop or tablet for quite some time now, but this next release will complement our next generation mobile apps (more on these below) to enhance the mobile experience even more. IMG_1726   IMG_1727

MyBoox 2.0

We’ve had great feedback on our “MyBoox” mobile apps, but as the web app (the one you access here), has continued to evolve we need to ensure that users of the dedicated mobile apps get  the benefit of these enhancements. We are now in the latter stages of updating MyBoox to ensure that it stays in sync with the web app and that the user experience in going from one to the other is seamless. We are retaining the key features of MyBoox 1.0, such as quick PIN access and a simplified set of options to cover your core day-to-day activities (invoices, expenses, pay breakdowns), but these will be supported with some key accounting data and dashboard widgets. The new release will also see a consistent interface, layout and options across MyBoox and the web app.

When’s all this happening?

The release is scheduled for 20th September and we’ll let you know when it has gone live. We’ll be submitting MyBoox 2.0 to relevant app stores by the end of the month and it will be available for download / update shortly after that. Only you know what makes your life easier. We’d love your feedback on the Boox app so we can continue to enhance its functionality.  Tell us your thoughts.
Anything do to with numbers fascinates us here at Boox. As Rio 2016 gets underway, we take a look at the eye-watering sums attached to staging the Olympic Games, and some of the trivia that goes along with them. This year’s Games will cost Brazil an estimated US$12 billion (approx GB£9 billion), which has sparked protests throughout the country, including these scenes as the Olympic torch arrived in Rio de Janeiro ahead of the opening ceremony. But how does this compare with the cost of other Olympic Games staged so far this century? Russia 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics - US$51 billion Even though it was was the most expensive in Olympic history, much of the Olympic park and village in the Russian city now lies deserted and overgrown. UK 2012 London Summer Olympics - US$10.4 billion A further US$90 million was spent on converting the main stadium at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to a football ground, which will be the new home of West Ham United from the 2016/17 season. Canada 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics 2010 - US$1.3 billion China 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics - US$8 billion A budget only surpassed by Sochi Winter 2014. Italy 2006 Turin Winter Olympics - US$700 million The Italian government ingeniously created a lottery game to cover the hosting costs. Greece 2004 Athens Summer Olympics - US$9 billion The games have been cited as a contributor of Greece’s debt crisis.Much like Sochi, many of the venues have been left unused and left to ruin. USA 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics - US$2 billion Addition funds were invested in increased security measures in the wake of the 9/11 terror attacks Australia 2000 Sydney Summer Olympics - US$5 billion Notwithstanding the cost, there’s no doubt that the Olympics is a massive global spectacle and we are sure that the world’s eyes will be on Rio for the remainder of the summer. Best of luck to all the Olympians and Paralympians taking part in Rio 2016. Come on Team GB!

Your personal numbers might not be quite to the scale of those above, but see how the Boox app helps you get your head around your finances.

Back in April, we talked at length about the government’s new rules on dividend tax which came in to force at the start of the current tax year. Now that we are 3 months in, we have been getting some calls from clients as they start to see the first effects of the new rules and pass into the threshold where they owe some personal tax on the dividends they take. We thought this would be a timely opportunity for a quick refresher on the rules as well as how the Boox App estimates and communicates your personal liability.

How are dividends taxed now?

The old system of tax credits was abolished and all dividends declared on or after 6th April 2016 are subject to tax under the new system. After your personal tax allowance has been taken into account (£11,000 for the 2016/17 tax year if you are entitled to the entire amount), you can receive £5,000 of dividend income with no tax liability. To work out what your dividend and tax obligations are for the current tax year, use our handy Dividend Tax Calculator Therefore, if your entire income for the year is £16,000 or less, you will pay no dividend tax at all. However once your dividend income reaches £5,000 per year, the following rates apply:
  • 7.5% (basic rate)
  • 32.5% (higher rate)
  • 38.1% (additional rate)
It is important to note that the £5,000 “dividend allowance” is actually a zero rate tax band just for dividend income, and it forms part of the existing tax band(s) within which an individual’s dividends fall. It is not provided in addition to the existing tax bands.

A quick example - £11k salary, £50k dividends

  • £11,000 salary takes up your entire personal allowance
  • First £5000 of dividends takes up the dividend allowance
  • Next £27,000 of dividends are taxed at 7.5% (basic rate) = £2,025
  • Remaining £18,000 of dividends are taxed at 32.5 (higher rate) = £5,850
  • Total dividend tax liability = £7,875

Alerts from the Boox App

As soon as you (or one of your shareholders) withdraws dividends that exceed the tax free allowance, you will receive a “word of warning” in your pay breakdown. How this notification looks is shown below: dividend tax We will also notify you by email. These alerts give you the opportunity to start setting aside funds from your personal account to cover this liability. Don’t forget that dividend tax is a personal liability so funds cannot be set aside from the business. If and when you exceed the higher or additional rate thresholds, we will communicate this to you in the same way. If you have received this “word of warning” in your pay breakdown and have any questions, get in touch with your Boox accountant.
Switching your online accountant sounds like a hassle. Digging out ancient files and receipts, shopping around for an alternative, and having that awkward “it’s not me, it’s you” conversation. It can be tempting to just avoid the bother and stick with your current accountant, even if it’s not working. But if you are really not happy with how your accountant is managing your business affairs, it’s probably time to take the bull by the horns and look to switch. Look no further. Switching to Boox is easy. Find out more or contact us for further info.

Reasons to Switch

Communication and availability

If you have more chance of scheduling tea with the Queen than speaking to your accountant, it’s safe to say there’s a communication issue. If you have an urgent problem and the best solution they can offer is a telephone call a week on Thursday, it’s time to look elsewhere. You should never feel like your accountant is too busy for you. Likewise, if they can’t break things down and explain things in a way you understand, find a company who can. Yes, there’s a lot of industry jargon involved in accounting, but it shouldn’t feel like they’re speaking a different language.

Poor relationship management

Sometimes you meet people you just don’t get along with. It’s a fact of life and can’t be avoided. That being said, you should never feel worried or apprehensive about talking to your accountant. It’s important to maintain a good relationship, which means your accountant should make you feel relaxed by being easy to talk to. If they ever belittle you or make you feel like you’re asking stupid questions, show them the door. People like to deal with people, not faceless brands; your online accountant should know this and make themselves approachable and accessible.

They just don’t “get” you

Not being understood is frustrating. It’s even worse when someone is trying to help you, but doesn’t “get” what you’re all about. This can lead to all sorts of problems if that person is your accountant. Our dedicated accountants and support staff at Boox are not only knowledgeable and passionate about accounting, they’ll take the time to fully understand what makes your business tick, using all their expertise to help you flourish.

Cost and perceived value

Sometimes it just comes down to the most simple element: price. Feel like you’re paying more for a service than you think it’s worth? Look around for a cheaper alternative and ask your friends or colleagues for recommendations. If you’re having issues with your current online accountant, leave it with us. Our friendly, experienced client accountants are there to offer advice and guidance and to help you every step of the way.

Got a friend who is itching to switch?

Bring a friend or workmate onboard with Boox and we’ll give you £100 cash if they sign up for one of our accounting services. There is no limit to the number of people you refer, and you don’t even have to be a Boox client.