February 26, 2013

Financial Statements De-Mystified!

Hands on Workshop for Small Business Owners
Thursday, Mar.14,
4:00-6:00 p.m.
Monte Vista Computer Lab
101 Adams Street on the 2nd Floor of Sunflower Bank

$10 per person
donna@slv-sbdc.com or (719) 589-3682

The San Luis Valley SBDC is partially funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration.  The support given by the U.S. Small Business Administration through such funding does not constitute and express or implied endorsement of any of the cosponsor(s)’ or participants’ opinions, products or services.  Special arrangements for the handicapped will be made, if requested in advance

February 21, 2013

Business filing fee holiday extended through February

$1 business filing fees conclude Feb. 28

Denver, Colo. – Today, Secretary of State Scott Gessler announced the fee holiday for all online business filings and notaries public applications will continue through the end of February. Beginning March 1, these filings will revert to their previous rate or lower, while the non-profit fee holiday remains in place.

“This three-month fee holiday sends a message to local Coloradans and out-of-state businesses that we value their investment and aim to be responsible stewards of their filing fees,” Gessler said. “As we continue to develop our Business Efficiency Suite and soon our Business Information Center, filers will see streamlined access to their records and improved data for business development information.”

The Secretary of State's office takes no state taxpayer dollars. Its operations are funded primarily by filing fees from businesses and non-profits. While the business and notary fee holiday expires at the end of the month, the fee reductions for non-profit filings will continue. These fees will continue to be among the lowest in the country.

Name of Fee
Fees beginning Mar. 1, 2013
Notary Public Application Fee
Periodic Report
Articles of Organization or Incorporation
Amend Articles of Organization or Incorporation
Amend and Restate Articles of Organization or Incorporation
Conversion of Entity Statements
Dissolve or Withdraw an Entity
Statement of Change (online)
Statement of Correction (online)
Reservation of Name
Reserved Name Transfer
Reserved Name Renewal
Trade Name Statement
Trade Name Renewal
Trade Name Withdrawal
Trademark Registration
Trademark Transfer
Trademark Renewal
Trademark Withdrawal
Foreign Entity Authority Statement
Foreign Entity Authority Withdrawal
Statement of Registration of True Name
Renewal of Registration of True Name
UCC Statement
UCC Amendments

February 20, 2013

A New Option For Calculating the Home Office Deduction

If you work from home for business, the IRS has potentially provided you with some relief in the form of less paperwork required to claim the home office deduction. You may soon be able to claim the home office deduction based on a simple calculation.

The home office deduction
The rules for claiming a home office deduction will be staying the same. You still must regularly and exclusively use a portion of your home for your business to qualify (reference: IRS Publication 587). However, instead of claiming the deduction by completing the 43 line Form 8829, taxpayers may soon be able to complete a significantly simpler form. Specifically, the home office deduction is calculated at $5 per square foot. There’s a catch though. Taxpayers will only be able to use this simple option if their home expenses do not exceed $1,500 or 300 square feet. In addition, the new option won’t be available until the 2013 tax year, which you’ll be filing in the beginning of 2014.

What about depreciation, mortgage interest, real estate taxes and other expenses?
You still will be able to claim these expenses as an itemized deduction on Schedule A of your form 1040. In addition, these deductions do not need to be allocated between personal and business use, as is the case with the regular method.  However, you won’t be able to claim any depreciation expense as an itemized deduction, which is allowed under the regular method.

What should I do for my 2013 tax return?
If you run a home-based business, then you need to assess whether the $5 per square foot calculation will be more or less than the $1,500 limit. If it’s below the limit and you don’t have significant depreciation expenses, then it may make a lot of sense to use the new simple form. If the amount is well over $1,500 and/or you have large depreciation expenses, then going through the old Form 8829 will probably be your best option.

What's the best method for our business?
You should work on a mixture of the above, but start with online advertising as that's easiest method to generate leads quickly. You'll need to be mindful of your daily spend, but leads should come through that channel.

February 18, 2013

CDOT Workshop

The San Luis Valley SBDC and CDOT invite you to attend a FREE training opportunity that will teach you the basics of subcontracting on CDOT highway construction projects and becoming certified as an Emerging Small Business (ESB). These two workshops are designed for small business construction contractors and design/engineering firms that are interested in working with CDOT.  

Responsible Subcontracting Workshop
Learn how to successfully perform as a CDOT subcontractor. Topics include; working with prime contractors, negotiating subcontracts, understanding project specifications, subcontractor requirements, contractor compliance, and more. CDOT Resident Engineers will be on hand to provide advice and answer questions.

Date:             Thursday, February 21, 2013
Time:             10:00am – 12:00pm
Location:       Alamosa County Administrative Building
           8900-A Independence Way
           Alamosa, CO 81101
Presenters:   Ed Archuleta, CDOT

ESB Program Orientation
This session provides and overview of the CDOT Emerging Small Business (ESB) Program including certification requirements, benefits and incentives. It will be conducted as an interactive group webinar. Attendance is a mandatory requirement for ESB Certification.

Date:             Thursday, February 21, 2013
Time:             1:30pm – 3:00pm
Location:       Alamosa County Administrative Building
           8900-A Independence Way
           Alamosa, CO 81101
Presenters:   Cathy Kramer, Connect2DOT Program Manager
                       Katherine Williams, CDOT 

**NOTE- You may also attend the ESB webinar from your Internet-connected computer by registering online at:   esb211.eventbrite.com

RSVP with Donna Wehe at 719-589-3682 or donna@slv-sbdc.com