Accounting For Your Money

Donating used items to charity

Question: We’d like to do some general house cleaning around the pizzeria. Can we get a tax break for donating used equipment and other items to charity? Answer: If the pizzeria operates as a Sole Proprietorship, LLC, Partnership or S Corporation, the amount of the contribution deduction for which you’d … More

Accounting For Your Money

Tax law changes could help pizzerias

QUESTION: I hear some changes to tax laws may be in the works. What’s the latest? ANSWER: The Senate Finance Committee recently approved the Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency Act (EXPIRE), and it includes three key provisions for restaurant owners. First, the bill, which had bipartisan support, provides for … More

Accounting For Your Money

Bridging the Communication Gap

QUESTION: It seems like my chef and my accountant are never on the same page. How can I solve that problem? ANSWER: I am convinced that chefs speak a language that’s all their own. The same can be said about accountants, who have their own way of expressing results of … More

Accounting For Your Money

Calculating Your True Pie Costs

QUESTION: My food costs are out of control. What can I do to rein them in? ANSWER: Controlling your food costs starts with better record-keeping and knowing exactly how much you're paying for – and exactly how much you're earning from – each and every item on your menu. To get started, … More

Accounting For Your Money

The Next-Day Financial Scorecard

QUESTION: Why does it take 45 to 60 days after the month’s end to receive my financials? ANSWER: It doesn’t—or, at least, it shouldn’t! Today, more and more accountants have the ability to generate a “next-day financial scorecard.” They can develop tools to provide plate costing, labor costing and overhead … More

Accounting For Your Money

The Value of Real-Time Data Reporting

QUESTION: What is this talk I keep hearing about collecting daily sales data? ANSWER: With increased competition and higher food and labor costs, the restaurant industry’s overall net income is shrinking, and restaurateurs have to pay more attention to every penny. Therefore, the old ways of gathering and analyzing restaurant data … More

Accounting For Your Money

Finding the Perfect Accountant

QUESTION: My accountant doesn’t seem to know the restaurant industry. How do I go about finding a new one? ANSWER: Many accountants service multiple industries as generalists rather than as specialists. However, restaurants’ profit margins are becoming so thin that operators need to have accounting systems that are designed specifically … More

Accounting For Your Money

Generating Accurate Daily Sales Reports

QUESTION: How can I make sure that my POS system generates an accurate daily net sales report? ANSWER: We frequently come across discrepancies between tax filing records and POS reports while gathering details for an audit. Does this matter, and should you care? Yes, you should care. The daily net … More

Accounting For Your Money

Per Diem Rates and Processing Fees

QUESTION: For overnight trips to my various stores, can I deduct a daily travel per diem rate? ANSWER: As the restaurant owner, you may pay a per diem allowance in lieu of reimbursing actual expenses for lodging, as well as meals and incidental expenses (M&IE) incurred or to be incurred … More