Crystal Cahill is responsible for the social media and marketing at Cahill CPA. Crystal completed her Bachelor of Arts Degree at Simon Fraser University in English, and has an Education Degree and teaching certification. She enjoys keeping clients updated on new accounting practices, upcoming tax deadlines, and news & events within the Cahill CPA office & staff. She is married to Cahill CPA partner Jordan Cahill, and together they have two young children.
Charitable Giving and Your Tax Return
Charitable Giving and Your Tax Return
For quick reference, we’ve put together this list of CRA links with helpful information & tips on claiming charitable credits. As always, let us know if you have any questions about your charitable giving & donations.
Claiming Chartiable Credits
- How to calculate, which documents you need
Calculate your Charitable Tax Credits
- Eligible amounts, important dates, tax savings
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Charity Giving Glossary
- A more basic alphabetized glossary of charitable giving related terms.
If you’re looking to donate to a local North Vancouver cause this holiday season- and before December 31st (for it to count on next year’s tax return), here is a helpful list of charities shared by Lonsdale Ave.ca. Always be sure to check that you are donating to a registered charity in order to claim it on your return, and make sure to ask for a tax receipt (CRA lists all registered charities and you can search your charity here)
CRA Checklist for Small Business
CRA Checklist for Small Businesses
Did you know? CRA has a great online resource for small businesses- especially if you’re just starting out. They have provided helpful checklists & information to help you with the ins and outs of running a business in Canada. A few of the more popular topics that they provide information on include:
- Payroll deductions
- Business number registration
- Registering for GST/HST accounts
- Reporting business income & expenses
CRA also has excellent online resources about business structure (sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation?), useful e-services for businesses, self-employment information, and more. Visit their website for all these great tips, and more.
There is A LOT that goes into starting, and running, your own business- and that’s where we can help. Cahill CPA specializes in helping local businesses get started, guiding you as you grow, and helping you reach your goals & achieve success.
Call or email us today if you are thinking of starting your own business, or you are realizing it’s time to have some experienced professionals help you out. Your success is our business!
Located in North Vancouver, call us at 604-985-0123 or email
“This man tested Canada’s tax laws by moving in a canoe- and won”
CBC News recently posted an article about a Canadian man who moved by CANOE, when he was fed up with Canada’s tax laws! To read more about how he claimed his very unique moving expenses, we’ve linked the full article here:
https://www.cbc.ca/amp/1.5355436 by Stu Mills, CBC News.
Claiming Expenses on your Income Tax Return
One of the most frequent questions we get when meeting with clients, especially around tax time, is regarding what they can and cannot claim on their return. Canada’s tax laws are extensive on this topic, and can also change, so it’s important to have a professional accountant on your side to make sure you are making the most of your money.
Some frequently asked questions from new clients:
“Can I claim home improvements, if I do the majority of work from my home office?”
“Can I claim gas… insurance… car repairs… if I drive for work?
“Are there any expenses I’m missing out on as a University student?”
“I have a medical condition that impacts my grocery bill- can I claim the food I purchase that’s required for my specialized diet?”
While we often get specific questions FROM clients, our experienced accountants often find expenses that you could be claiming that you hadn’t realized on previous returns. That’s why hiring a professional CPA is so important- our job is to save you money! Accounting is what we do- and we have the experience and knowledge to help you and your business.
And if you ever want to move by canoe, or other unique mode of transportation, now you know you can claim it!
Starting a New Business
Starting a New Business
When you're starting a new business, it's crucial that you start off on the right foot! Being organized, prepared, and set up efficiently is paramount- before you even sell your first product, get that new client, or close the deal.
Having a professional accountant guide you every step of the way can help your business have a successful start, and provide support & advice you as your business grows. Our team at Cahill CPA specializes in small businesses & entrepreneurs, and we have clients in a wide range of industries. We can help set you up with online cloud accounting software, figure out tax rules that might impact your business, guide you in the best ways to manage inventory, help with payroll questions, explain deductions, complete year ends, and more. Getting you set up with CRA online, and helping you manage GST/HST, corporation income taxes, and payroll is also a great service that is provided by our staff.
Our team routinely attends professional development and stays up to date with all the latest changes in tax rules & credits. We make sure to be informed of all things tax related, so that you won't miss out on a new Canadian tax, payment, or credit you need to be aware of. As your business grows, our team also has extensive experience with year end financial statements, review engagements, and other important changes that come up as businesses expand.
We are the experts in all things accounting- and we will find the best ways to save your business money. We focus on your accounting, so you can focus on what YOU do best.
If you are starting a new business or need a professional accountant to support your growing business, contact us. We would be happy to set up a phone or in person meeting, to get to know you and your business needs.
Interview with "Lonsdale Avenue"
Jordan Cahill's Interview with "Lonsdale Avenue"
We were recently featured in Lonsdaleave.ca- a local online source for businesses and events on Lonsdale Avenue in North Vancouver. Our partner Jordan Cahill was interviewed about how Cahill CPA got started, what brought us to the North Shore, what we do here, and more. We've included a portion of the interview below, and if you would like to read the full article, you can find it here.
Jordan was asked How did you get started with Cahill CPA and why did you choose North Vancouver?
Cahill CPA’s foundation is our family. My father Wayne Cahill has been an accountant for over 35 years, and so you can say it’s in our blood!
I went into accounting after completing a business degree at SFU, and I received my CPA designation while working at a firm downtown. My brother Taylor, Wayne and I decided to open an accounting firm together and soon merged with a North Vancouver firm where we partnered with another local accountant Janice Tai. We initially opened an office off Lonsdale on West 17th, but soon grew out of this space, and moved to our current location at West 15th.
Wayne and Taylor were living in North Vancouver, and we all fell in love with this natural paradise! Along with the vibrant and friendly community, and all it has to offer for young families, I moved here 3 years ago with my wife and our young son (and have since added our daughter!).
What can local business owners do to improve their accounting generally day to day?
One of our biggest tips, and simplest, is to stay organized. Using online cloud accounting software and learning the best way to set up your day to day bookkeeping is very beneficial. Our staff is trained to help you with that set up and any trouble shooting you may need. Also, make sure to keep receipts, records of transactions, invoices, etc so they’re available if needed (and try not to make this a grocery bag filled with crumpled papers!)
In addition, stay on top of your taxes and finances. It’s easier to solve an issue or problem when it comes up, instead of letting it build up and snowball into a greater (and often more expensive) problem. When you work with Cahill CPA, we are your accountant all year round. We are here whenever you need us, and we are always staying on top of deadlines and payments, finding ways to save you money, and making sure you avoid unnecessary taxes or penalties.
If you want to learn more about Cahill CPA- check it out! If you interested in staying up to date on what is happening in and around Lonsdale, visit their website to subscribe.
Thanks for reading, and have a great week!
Got Enough Things on Your To-Do List?
Got enough things on your list of reminders?
Don't make your taxes one of those stressful "to do" list items- we've got you covered!
Sign up for our annual "Personal Tax Reminder" email- ONE email, with all the important dates, information, helpful checklists, and more. Just ONE helpful email, and you won't forget anything at tax time again. We send this out in the Spring, as the April tax deadline approaches.
Click on the "About tab" on our website, and go to "Personal Tax Time Reminder". Enter your name & e-mail address, click subscribe and check it off your to-do list!
Planning Your Finances For The Future
Planning Your Finances For The Future
An important conversation to have before it's too late: what happens if the partner who handles the bulk of the financial responsibility passes away before the other? It’s a topic that most people don’t want to talk or think about; however, it’s one of the most important financial discussions you should have with your spouse.
A colleague on LinkedIn (thanks Brandon Chapman!) recently shared an article titled: “How to avoid financial deadlock- or worse- after one spouse dies” (written by Cheryl Winokur Munk, link below). We wanted to share a few of her great tips & advice for avoiding complications if the more “financially dominant” partner passes away first.
- Prepare a Go-Bag. According to Cheryl: “Financial advisors say this should include a comprehensive list of all financial contacts, advisors, attorneys, accountants, insurance professionals, and copies of beneficiary designations. The financially savvy spouse should also prepare a written list or spreadsheet of the couple’s assets and liabilities, including digital assets and passwords to these accounts. The spouse should also note the location of financial records including insurance policies, wills, and trusts.” It’s so important that both partners know exactly what is going on with all aspects of their finances, where all their money is, and how to access it.
- Keep the “Non Financial” dominant spouse in mind. This means making sure that all the information is recorded in a way that he or she can easily understand, especially since they will most likely be emotional and under a lot of stress.
- Do a Trial Run. A source in the article, Joan Crain, suggested: “If possible, it’s a good idea for the less financially involved spouse to meet key advisors and perform some of the ongoing tasks such as bill paying, reconciling statements, and renewing insurance policies for several months.” When the less dominant partner is “trained” on how to do all these financial tasks step by step, it will make the process easier when they have to do them alone.
- Pay attention to income and expenses. Create a spreadsheet or list of all income & expenses, and how the death of one partner would impact the flow of money in & out. What changes would need to be made, if any?
- Don’t make sudden moves. Probably one of the most important, and often the most common mistake made. Don’t make any big decisions immediately following the death of the spouse, especially without the consult of a very trusted advisor. This is one of the most likely times to fall prey to a scam or be taken advantage of financially.
As much as this is a difficult subject to think about, it only takes a bit of planning to have these measures in place. Checking back, perhaps annually, to ensure everything is up to date is also a good idea.
Cahill CPA helps many clients in wills & trusts situations, and we also have extensive experience in estate planning. Meet with us if you have any questions about the future of your family’s finances. We would be happy to provide information, advice, and refer you to any necessary financial or legal advice if needed.
Link to Original Article: How to Avoid Financial Deadlock-or worse- when one spouse dies. By: Cheryl Winokur Munk
Blog post written by Crystal Cahill
Cahill CPA- North Vancouver
The Impacts of Negative Thinking
The Impacts of Negative Thinking
CPA BC recently shared an article, written by Terry Small, titled “Is Negative Thinking Bad for Your Brain?” (Full article linked below) The article brought up a few reasons WHY negative thinking is bad for your brain, and a few great tips on what you can do to fix it.
Researchers have discovered a link between persistent negative thinking, to an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease, diminished ability to think, reason & form memories, as well as a greater Dementia risk. Another obvious effect of negative thinking is increased stress & depression; two huge issues facing North American society now more than ever.
So- what can you do to prevent negative thinking from impacting your brain? How can you attempt to “turn off” negative thoughts? The study points out a few ideas:
- When you feel negative thoughts coming on, try to push the pause button. Stop what you’re doing, focus your attention on your thoughts, and find something positive to focus on instead. There’s a whole field of brain research devoted to this- and simply put, it’s a way to retrain your brain & your thinking.
- Try to go a whole week (or even a whole day) without complaining. Watch how this positively impacts your own mood, as well as the moods of those around you. Notice how it changes the topics of conversations with coworkers, friends and family. Enjoy how it brings you more peace, and less stress!
- And one of our own tips- start a gratitude journal. This could be a quick jot on a notepad at your desk, using a simple app on your phone, or in a special journal beside your bed each night. Every day, write down three things you are thankful for. They could be as simple as a tasty latte you bought on your way to work, or something bigger, like landing a new job or big promotion. Every day, try to call to mind three positive things that happened and write them down. Look back and read those positive, good things weekly or monthly. You’ll be surprised how much you have to be thankful for, and how great it feels to be reminded of the positive.
Have another tip to share?! We would love to hear it. Join us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and comment on our post.
Facebook: CahillCPA Instagram & Twitter: Cahill_CPA
Think positive, and have a great day!
Blog post: Crystal Cahill
Original Article: “Is negative thinking bad for your brain?” by Terry Small.
North Vancouver Accounting Firm: Cahill CPA
CPA Firm Directory & Frequently Asked Questions
Our firm was recently added to the Canada CPA Firm Directory. You can access the information here:
CPA Firm Listing- Cahill Professional Accountants
With this listing you can find more information about some of the Vancouver industry sectors we handle, the services we offer, and the variety of languages spoken by our staff. Along with these services, below are some questions we have been asked lately about what we do here at Cahill Pro!
Frequently asked questions:
Q:I have a new, small business. Do you assist very small businesses just starting out?
A: Yes! We can provide bookkeeping services, as well as provide advice about what small business owners can claim at tax time.
Q: I oversee a non-profit charity organization in North Vancouver, and we are looking for some information for this upcoming tax deadline. Do you assist charities?
A: Yes! We have clients that are involved with not-for-profit and charitable organizations, and would be happy to assist you.
Q: I recently had a close relative pass away, and I am now in charge of their estate. Do you provide help with estates & trusts?
A: Yes! We can certainly provide advice and assistance with the dealing of estates, trusts and tax planning.
Small Business Resource: Effective IT Risk Management
To our small business clients: do you understand the IT risks that face Canadian small businesses? CPA Canada provides a great resource- free of charge- for small businesses who may need help preventing and preparing against technology-related risks. It gives some great practical strategies to improve your IT security and safeguard important online data. This is an excellent reminder to small business owners of the issues & risks that can arise related to technology, and provides recommendations for prevention and trouble-shooting.
You can download the PDF from the CPA website here.
Some of the great tips in this resource include:
Having a business continuity plan
Needing effective management of IT vendors
Actively managing the security of data
Updating anti-virus & anti-malware
Considering & Preventing cyber threats
Creating IT Risk Mitigation strategies
Source: CPA Canada Wesbite