The majority of taxi drivers have little accounting or bookkeeping knowledge and the DIY Accounting Cabsmart package for taxi drivers reviewed here requires no previous accountancy experience from the drivers. Data entry basically consists of just 3 records, being an excel spreadsheet for taxi receipts; another for taxi expenses plus a further worksheet in which assets such as a vehicle can be recorded.
Taxi receipts are entered on a series of excel worksheets within the taxi income work book preset with each day of the financial year. Weekly and monthly totals are added and transferred through the linking system from the taxi bookkeeping sheets to the taxi financial accounts sheet.
Taxi expenses are listed on a series of twelve monthly bookkeeping spreadsheets which have preset columns with appropriate headings for taxi drivers to record office and rental costs, fuel bills, other vehicle costs and licence fees. The total of each expense is entered on each row and a single letter used to then analyse the taxi expense to the column required. As with the taxi income sheet the columns are then automatically added which includes a check on data entry accuracy before being transferred to the taxi accounts spreadsheet.
Cash and bank spreadsheets are not provided as not required by taxi drivers as taxi drivers do not need to produce a balance sheet/ In addition to entering purchases on the taxi expense sheet the only other entries required from the taxi driver to produce a set of taxi driver accounts is to also enter vehicle and any other assets purchased on the fixed asset spreadsheet. The fixed asset spreadsheet having already been preset with both depreciation rates and the capital allowances that taxi drivers can claim. The taxi accounts software is then complete. Go to the cabsmart financial accounts file which has already seeded a monthly profit and loss account including taxi capital allowances.
The cabsmart package also has a unique feature in that both mileages covered and vehicle running costs can be entered. The tax rules in the UK state that drivers cannot claim both mileage allowances and vehicle running costs. It has to be one or the other and only at the end of the financial year when it becomes clear which is the most tax efficient. The unique feature of the Cabsmart taxi accounts books package compares both the mileage cost and the vehicle running cost and automatically selects the most expensive. This ensures the highest costs are selected into the calculation of the net taxable profits and highest cost equals lowest tax bill.
Also in the taxi accounts file is an excel spreadsheet designed with the same layout, colour codes and box numbers as the inland revenue self employed tax return. The taxi drivers tax return is completed automatically by the cabsmart accounts software. No entries are required leaving the taxi driver only to click print to produce the self employed tax return ready for filing online or submission of the paper copy.
Finally having calculated the net taxable profit for the year the Cabsmart accounting package also has a tax calculator that calculates the amount of income tax and national insurance to be paid.
The Cabsmart taxi accounting package has been tested many times and the annual receipts and expenses for a full year take approximately 2 to 3 hours to enter, and have been completed in less than 2 hours. The end product is a full set of taxi driver accounts including the self employed tax return.
The taxi accounts software costs less than twelve pounds and produces the end products from entering income and expenses. This package is also suitable for couriers and van drivers.