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Crunch Accounting Review – Online Accountants & Advice For Startups

crunch_accounting_review

In our Crunch Accounting Review we take a look at the popular cloud based accountancy service and review the services on offer, the costs and overall experience to provide an insight to help you decide if Crunch Accounting would save you time and money for your startup business.

Do you really need an accountant right now?

​When first starting out in any business venture, its vital that you keep your income and expenditure clearly documented to ensure that your accounts are in order for filing with HMRC.

After the initial buzz of planning your business, this stage can often be daunting and raise a number of questions such as Should I be VAT registered?, Limited Company or Sole Trader?, What expenses can I claim to reduce my tax bill? What is IR35 and does it apply to me?

​These questions and the layers of information around these topics can be overwhelming, often to the point where it can cripple important decision making and prevent your business from moving forward.

Get advice now before moving any further with your business

​The standard route to get answers has traditionally been through your local accountant, where a sit down meeting can help establish the proposed structure of your business and then recommendations can be made on the correct procedures. The accountant can then offer a range of services including bookkeeping, filing tax returns and self assessments.

Choose Your Accountant Wisely

You are relying on the accountants individual knowledge of all the latest tax and finance legislation, so its vital that your accountant should hold the correct accreditation and be chosen with care ideally through a colleague recommendation that can showcase the accountants proven track record and professional competence.

crunch_invoice_accounts

Even with an accountant in place offering advice and services to complete your annual returns, it is still your job to manage the day-to-day bookkeeping by creating, sending and tracking invoices, purchase orders, receipts and transactions. This can be done through various software packages like Office and online tools such as Freshbooks or QuickBooks.

Introducing Crunch - To Bring it all Together

​Advancements in cloud computing has now enabled companies such as Crunch to combine online bookkeeping tools and services with the ability to connect to a dedicated team of online accountants for unlimited advice and support.

crunch_accounting_team

Dedicated In-House Accounting Team at Crunch HQ in Hove, East Sussex

Better Service at a Better Price

This concept aims to offer startups and small businesses a higher level of service, allowing for quick setup, instant access to tools and advice and thanks to reduced overheads, saving you money in comparison to the costs of a traditional accountancy service.

​Crunch Benefits

  • Unlimited professional advice on tax, accounts and general finance from a team of accredited in-house experts.
  • Dynamic Tools - Send professional invoices, purchase orders and receipts with 1-click
  • Access to your accounts and tools 27/7 via your secure on-line dashboard and mobile app.
  • No hourly billing or unexpected charges, just a flat monthly fee.
  • Year end filing, Corporation Tax and VAT returns included in your monthly fee.

How Much?

​Get Crunch from just £64.50 +VAT p/m. This works out at a yearly cost of £780 (VAT Registered) or £936 (Not VAT Registered). A traditional accountancy practice would find it difficult to beat this price, do get quotes from local accountants as a comparison, but be aware that a cheap accountant may cost you more money in the long run. Crunch are able to reduce fee's over the traditional accountant due to reduced overheads of office space, remote support and efficient cloud based computing systems.

How Much will you Save?

​To find out, use the Crunch Take Home Pay Calculator, to find out how much Crunch could save you in comparison to a traditional accountants fees.

Upgrade for Additional Features

​The upgraded Crunch Plus Package costs £96.50 + VAT p/m and includes additional services such as employee payroll, bank feed sync, self assessment filing and annual return filing. The Crunch Premium at £156.50 + VAT p/m includes everything plus additional bookkeeping services.

​Subscribers to the Standard and Plus packages are free to cancel the rolling monthly subscription at anytime, only the Crunch Premium package has a tied in yearly contract.

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The Crunch Dashboard

​Crunch also offer a free trial allowing you to see the dashboard and tools on offer with no-obligation.

​Whose Crunch For and NOT For?

Crunch is aimed at any small business with up to 10 employees, so ideal for freelancers, contractors and small startups. Any business over 10 employee would be more suited to either a dedicated accountancy team or in-house accountant that can monitor the larger amount of financial activities.

​Your Responsibilities

Crunch provide a platform and a suite of software tools to help you manage the information that you put into it. As with any traditional accountant, the Crunch experts assigned to you will advise you based on the information you give them and they will file your accounts based on this information. It is still your responsibility to ensure that the financial data entered is correct and that you respond accordingly to any queries from your Crunch team to ensure that all information is accurate ready for your accounts to be filed on time.

Overall Summary

To provide a balanced opinion, we spoke with a range of startups, some currently using Crunch, many using a traditional accountant and some that do everything themselves to gain an insight into their experiences and recommendations.

online bookkeeping guide

One of the key benefits highlighted was the ability to get instant support through the Crunch Interface and answers from a large team of experts. At times some questions raised were extremely specific, yet there would always be at least one expert at Crunch that had the experience and knowledge to provide an effective answer.

This level of unlimited support is invaluable and provides good piece of mind to be able to overcome issues without the worry that any questions would incur additional fees from the accountants.

​This support is also backed up with their growing online resource center full of guides, videos and tutorials that cover everything from defining tax codes to case studies of like minded startups.

​Anyone that has battled with excel and word to send invoices and track figures will understand the pain and headaches involved.

The tools that Crunch offer are easy to use and available to you anywhere through a web browser.

In addition knowing that your annual duties of Year End, VAT, Corporation Tax filing are taken care of, is one less thing to be worrying about, allowing you to concentrate on growing your business.

I was with crunch for the past four years. The accountants are very helpful and quick to respond to my queries. I was very much impressed when my accountant Michael did my year end accounts so quickly to help me draw my capital gains on time to buy my house. Thanks and keep up the good work

Matt
Confirmed Testimonial on Reviews.co.uk

​Further on-line reviews from sites such as Reviews.co.uk echo these points, with a solid 4.59/5 rating and general opinion that Crunch offer an efficient, friendly service that is clearly helping and supporting UK small business owners . The only negative reviews seemingly related to clients misunderstanding of the services included in the packages and its worth mentioning that each negative review is answered quickly and transparently from the Crunch Team.

​Overall, Crunch since their launch in 2009 have clearly recognised that startups demand an accountancy service that provides quick reliable answers with lightweight dynamic tools at a good price. This balance allows the energy of a startup to stay focused on the running and growth of the business, with the piece of mind knowing the accounts are being handled and the financial decisions being made are backed by a team of accredited experts. The free month trial is highly recommended to get a feel for the dashboard and the services on offer to help you make your decision in your own time.

​For a Free Trial Visit : http://www.crunch.co.uk

About the author

David Toon

15 years as a Full-Stack IT developer and consultant, currently working with clients in education, digital marketing and online businesses. Founder of Subscription Radar and Toon Media. Passionate about working with online technology, startups and travel. Big fan of Tim Ferriss, The Lean Startup Model, SAAS and the Subscription Model.