You may be contented covering costs and meeting your annual targets. But on the other hand, do you know what aspects of your business could be causing unnecessary expense? Have you considered which processes you could streamline to save money?
Managing your plumbing company’s finances can seem overwhelming. However, tracking and balancing your finances regularly can be the difference to make your plumbing business more efficient and profitable. We’ve put together a list of practical tips on how you can be on top of your finances.
The first step for balancing your financials: Get an understanding of what you bring in and what you pay out. It is far better to over budget and have an excess of profit. Than it is to underestimate and end up owing money.
Expenses like wages, utilities, supplies, and other overhead costs need to be itemized and accounted for in your expenses. If you have a recurring expense that vary in amount. Estimate on the high end to ensure that this expense is always covered.
Cut waste and costs
Work out your own ways of eliminating waste from your work, eg by using leftover materials from one job on the next one – this is usually cheaper than having to dispose of waste and is better for the environment. Make sure you recycle any waste – this applies to many plumbing materials including copper, steel, lead, cast iron and aluminium.
Purchase pre-fabricated pipework – this will reduce waste generated on site and also cut the cost of labour as installation is much quicker.
Cool down your costs
There’s one reliable way to reduce your plumbing business costs — by increasing efficiency.
You can do the same thing to save money running your business. Investing in a more fuel-efficient van, for example, could make your business more profitable in the long-term by reducing the cost of travelling to and from each worksite. In just a few years, you could save thousands of pounds spent on petrol (meaning there’s more in your pocket).
Reducing your operating costs is something you should regularly re-evaluate. Start with your biggest expenses and then work down to the last fitting. Try and find ways to save a few pence here and there, and then repeat. It adds up fast.
Understand how seasonality impacts your business
The plumbing market can be influenced by a number of outside variables such as location, weather, and holidays. Tracking both positive and negative trends in phone call volume, service requests, and types of service requests can allow you to make forecasts as you go into different seasons. Typical seasonality factors that impact a plumbing business include holidays in which people host large gatherings, cold weather that can cause pipes to burst, home buying season, new construction season (in which new plumbing is needed), and periods of increased rainfall (which can lead to basement flooding). If you know that a busier season is coming, schedule your plumbers accordingly and make sure you have all the supplies you need to meet the demand. For slower seasons, make sure to scale back your costs where possible.
Set revenue goals and plans to reach them
When examining your budget, compare the money that comes in against the money that goes out. Apply some simple logic to make this balance work. If you experience an increase in expenses, you’ll need to also increase the amount of money that comes in. When balancing your books, make note of positive and negative trends in expenses and revenue. Know what your sales and revenue goals need to be for your company to stay on track and remain profitable. Once you have those numbers, plan your strategy for hitting them, whether that means updating your pricing, boosting your marketing efforts, or increasing the efficiency of your operations.
Keep financials up to date
As your plumbing company grows, your budget will change. Setting aside time to review your financials and update your accounts is crucial to staying on top of your plumbing company’s success. Audit your financial information monthly and make sure that you track and record expenses accurately so that you can make sound financial decisions. Staying on top of this information monthly also helps when it comes time to close out the books at the end of the year. Backlogging under a time crunch puts you at risk of missing important information that can negatively impact your taxes and year-end statements. Review your financials every month, and you’ll have plenty of time to make month-over-month comparisons, as well as year-over-year comparisons, helping you spot seasonal trends and track your growth over time.
Invest in accounting software
When your company first starts, it’s easy to keep handwritten records or maintain a spreadsheet of paid invoices and paid bills. However, an uptick in volume can cause these rudimentary systems to quickly fall off the rails. Investing in an accounting software application can help you keep better track of your financials and stay organized. Software solutions such as QuickBooks, Zoho, and others are popular among plumbing company owners for their user friendliness and accessibility. Some of these solutions, such as QuickBooks, integrate with third party add-ons to help manage other aspects of your plumbing company. These include scheduling your plumbers, equipment tracking, routing, and more. QuickBooks plugins such as Smart Service help you manage your plumbing business in one place—making it not only easy to track financials, but also to schedule out your service calls.
Our accounting team understands that you want to spend as little time as possible updating your accounts so that you can focus on fulfilling your contracts, winning new business and enjoying your free time. We will help you on your journey with accountancy support and advice to assist you with growing your business.
We are a partner of Xero and ReceiptBank . Through these applications, we’ll keep your accounts up to date on a monthly basis so you can have a clear view of your business’ monthly performance, which is crucial in your financial decision making.
Our focus on people, advice and technology has created a leading online accounting experience. We have embraced technology, combining online accounting software with help and advice delivered by a friendly accounting team. We are confident that you will find managing your accounts quicker, easier and more convenient.
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