Inc. 5000 Three Peat for LBA Haynes Strand!

LBA Haynes Strand has been named to its third consecutive Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest growing companies!  Coming in at #1783 place on the list with a 209% 3 year growth rate, LBA Haynes Strand is ranked as the 14th fastest growing company in the Charlotte, NC area.

The list represents a unique look at the most successful companies within the American economy’s most dynamic segment— its independent small businesses. Companies such as Microsoft, Dell, Domino’s Pizza, Pandora, Timberland, LinkedIn, Yelp, Zillow, and many other well-known names gained their first national exposure as honorees of the Inc. 5000.

“LBA Haynes Strand is amazed by the support of our team, clients, and community that continue to help the growth of our firm,” says LBA Haynes Strand Co-Managing Member, John Bly. “We know how hard it is to be named to the Inc. 5000 list, and we are fortunate enough to make it for our 3rd straight year!  It is a true accomplishment that we are proud of.  We consult with our clients on all matters of growth and this recognition shows that we practice what we preach, as one of our core values is the growth of the firm and the team.”

The 2016 Inc. 5000, unveiled online at and with the top 500 companies featured in the September issue of Inc. (available on newsstands August 23) is the most competitive crop in the list’s history. The average company on the list achieved a mind-boggling three-year growth of 433%. The Inc. 5000’s aggregate revenue is $200 billion, and the companies on the list collectively generated 640,000 jobs over the past three years, or about 8% of all jobs created in the entire economy during that period. Complete results of the Inc. 5000, including company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found at

“The Inc. 5000 list stands out where it really counts,” says Inc. President and Editor-In-Chief Eric Schurenberg. “It honors real achievement by a founder or a team of them. No one makes the Inc. 5000 without building something great – usually from scratch. That’s one of the hardest things to do in business, as every company founder knows. But without it, free enterprise fails.”

The annual Inc. 5000 event honoring all the companies on the list will be held from October 18 through 20, in San Antonio, TX. Speakers include some of the greatest entrepreneurs of this and past generations, such as best-selling author and strategist Tony Robbins, SoulCycle co-founders Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice, Cornerstone OnDemand founder, president and CEO Adam Miller, Marvell Technology Group director and co-founder Weili Dai, and New Belgium Brewing co-founder and executive chair Kim Jordan.


The 2016 Inc. 5000 is ranked according to percentage revenue growth when comparing 2012 to 2015. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2012. They had to be U.S.-based, privately held, for profit, and independent—not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies—as of December 31, 2015. (Since then, a number of companies on the list have gone public or been acquired.) The minimum revenue required for 2012 is $100,000; the minimum for 2015 is $2 million. As always, Inc. reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons. Companies on the Inc. 500 are featured in Inc.’s September issue. They represent the top tier of the Inc. 5000, which can be found at

5 Tips For Preparing Your Annual HOA Budget

Preparing a budget for an HOA may seem daunting.  However there are 5 simple tips that can go a long way in making sure your HOA is budgeting correctly:

1.  Start by preparing a “business plan.” 

Set financial goals or objectives for the HOA to achieve.  Establishing short term and long term financial goals that are attainable and span from board-to-board, are essential to the Association when boards turnover.   This can be a simple list of goals and/or objectives for the upcoming year and future years ahead.  Use this list to plan for potential mid-year problems or anticipated major repairs.   This would be a good time to review the reserve study and anticipate those common areas that need to be replaced or repaired. 

2.  Always factor in uncollectible assessments.

Every association is going to have owners that just don’t pay their Association’s assessments.  Budgeting for uncollectible assessments is not only essential but critical to understanding the Association’s potential cash flows. Avoid the simple use of prior bad debt expense as the same amount for the current budget.  Put some ‘weight’ behind this line item in the budget.  A simple method would be to look at historical collection amounts over a five year period, as well as, factoring in any potential external impacts to homeowners.   Remember to include an evaluation of legal and collection costs when you develop an uncollectible amount.  These costs can increase significantly when collections become a significant issue.  

3.  Obtain updated contract costs on all major contracts; don’t just rely on annual renewals.

Landscaping, pool service and maintenance, and association management are typically the largest expenses to an association.  Review these contracts annually and make sure to understand the increases and possible changes.  Many of these contracts will have an automatic renewal clause.  Avoid the ‘autopilot’ approach and negotiate new rates and charges.  Remember, the Association’s income is fixed and a good approach would be to align the major expenses on a fixed basis.  Renegotiating with your major vendors doesn’t mean a full ‘request for proposal’ process.   If the Association is happy with the major vendors, then there is no need to go through the hassle of changing but locking in fees is a prudent approach for both parties.

4.  General recurring maintenance costs and utility costs are expense areas that seem to be ignored.

Utility costs are a given and increases annually should be expected, but simply relying on the prior year amounts for the current year budget can be misleading.  Research the anticipated annual increases and compare to historical trends within the Association.  General maintenance is unavoidable but these occurrences are not consistent from year-to-year.    Use the ‘business plan’ that was developed and budget for maintenance costs with a idea of the areas that need the most attention. 

5.  Review the reserve study and the Association’s current balances in reserve.

Then set the reserve contributions to ensure that you are meeting the needed reserve balances for future major repairs and replacements.   The more long term liabilities and obligations you have, the more you should be putting away.  For example, many condo associations have much larger obligations regarding upkeep, maintenance and replacement.   Failing to follow the reserve study or not budgeting for reserves at all can lead to significant financial problems.  Budgeting appropriately and consistently with the reserve study is critical to avoiding that dreaded need for a special assessment. 

To learn more and to speak with a member of the LBA Haynes Strand team. Click here for your no-cost consultation!

Introducing Guidance Planning Strategies (GPS) For Wealth Management

LBA Haynes Strand is proud to introduce a new financial planning program for all of our clients. The tool is called GPS which stands for guidance, planning, strategies, and is offered through our wealth management affiliate, HK Financial Services. It allows us to work with our clients to assess their current financial situation as well as project what it could look like in the future.

GPS is a powerful program and experience because clients can keep track of their financial information while being able to see their “financial life” on a screen through images, charts, and graphs. GPS helps us highlight and discuss questions such as:

  • When might I be able to retire?
  • Will we have enough money in retirement?
  • What could my cash flow be like at retirement?

We incorporate tax and financial planning into the process to make certain our clients’ plans are on track and managed efficiently for tax purposes.

If you are interested in learning more about our GPS program and discussing your financial future, do not hesitate to contact one of our office locations today!

LBA Haynes Strand Named To 3rd Consecutive Charlotte Business Journal Fast 50 List!

The Charlotte Business Journal has released its annual Fast 50 list of the 50 fastest growing private companies in Charlotte.  This program determines winners using a formula that reflects dollar and percentage growth during a three-year period. We are excited to be included on this list for the third consecutive year.

“LBA Haynes Strand is lucky to have such an incredible team.  One of our core values is to be Growth Oriented.  This means growth at every level – the individual, the firm, and the client level,” says Co-Managing Member John Bly. “We are excited to be living this core value every day, helping our people and our clients grow, and in turn – they are helping us grow as evidenced by our recognition as a Charlotte Business Journal Fast 50 Company for the 3rd straight year!”

The rankings will be announced at an awards dinner on December 8th!  You can register for that event by clicking here.

Congrats to the 50 companies who have been honored as a 2016 Fast 50 Company:

  • AddShoppers
  • American Engineering
  • Apex Technology
  • AvidXchange
  • Barton Contracting
  • Brackett Flagship Properties
  • Bull Engineered Products
  • Cameron M. Harris & Co.
  • Carolina Office Solutions
  • Carolina Powertrain
  • CCS Construction Staffing
  • CEO Inc.
  • Command Partners
  • Computer Design & Integration Southeast
  • Costner Law Office
  • Darton Group Consulting
  • Davinci Jets
  • DC74
  • DealCloud Inc.
  • DecisionPathHR
  • DPS Construction Corp.
  • Fab Fours Inc.
  • Greenworks
  • Hissho Sushi
  • Horsepower Site Services
  • Impact Financial Systems
  • InfoSense Inc.
  • Lakeside Project Solutions
  • LBA Haynes Strand
  • MapAnything Inc.
  • McIlveen Family Law Firm
  • MetroTech Automotive
  • Passport Inc.
  • Pediatric Hair Solution
  • PrecisionLender
  • Reimels Dental Group
  • Search Solution Group
  • SeedSpark
  • SignUpGenius
  • SouthEnd Exteriors Inc.
  • SPAN Enterprises
  • Spangler
  • STS Cable Services Inc.
  • T1V
  • Torrent Consulting
  • Tresata
  • Trident Solutions
  • W.M. Warr & Son Inc.
  • XOOM Energy

LBA Haynes Strand Named by SmartCEO as a Top Company Culture in Charlotte

LBA Haynes Strand is pleased to announce that we have been named by SmartCEO as a 2017 Corporate Culture Award winner. The Corporate Culture Awards celebrate 50 companies in Greater Charlotte that have successfully championed a positive, productive and performance-driven culture, and have worked with their employees to develop successful cultural practices. Winners will be profiled in SmartCEO magazine and celebrated at a high-energy awards ceremony on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017 at CenterStage@NoDa.

Below you can view all 50 winners and event details.

2017 Corporate Culture Award Winners:

Alfred Williams & Company

Autobell Car Wash Inc.

AvidXchange, Inc.

Ballantyne Medical Associates

Barringer Construction

Better Car People

Bojangles’, Inc.

Burgess Insurance & Financial Services Inc.

BURKE Communications, Inc.

Carolina Connections Inc. dba Unique Background Solutions

Carolinas HealthCare System/

Continuing Care

CaroMont Health

CCS Construction Staffing

Charlotte Plastic Surgery

Command Partners

Costner Law Office, PLLC


Davinci Jets

Girls on the Run International

Goodwill Industries of the

Southern Piedmont

Henderson Properties

Hilliard Studio Method and HSM | Core

Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region

Huber Engineered Woods, LLC



Joe Gibbs Racing

LBA Haynes Strand, PLLC

Lwin Family Co. dba Hissho Sushi

Metrogreenscape, Inc.


Mueller Die Cut Solutions

NarmourWright Architecture

Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein LLP

Passport, Inc.

Rare Roots Hospitality

Red Moon Marketing

Red Ventures


Search Solution Group


Showmars Restaurants

S&ME, Inc.

SPAN Enterprises


Teguar Corporation

Viking Mergers & Acquisitions

Wayne Brothers, Inc.

Wooden Robot Brewery

Woolpert North Carolina, PLLC

“The 2016 Corporate Culture Award winners have realized that running a company is more than head count and the bottom line. It’s about creating a place where creativity, energy and ideas are cultivated. Through this they are able to not only enhance performance and sustain their companies’ competitive advantages but also enrich the lives of those they employ and inspire them to make a greater impact on the world,” says Jaime Nespor-Zawmon, President of SmartCEO. “We’re honored to celebrate with the leaders of Charlotte’s top company cultures and recognize them for building true performance-driven cultures.”

The Corporate Culture Awards ceremony on Feb. 7, 2017, is an expected sell-out event where the leaders of Charlotte’s top companies will gather to mingle, celebrate and share stories about their collective successes. The event will kick off with a high-energy networking reception, complete with fun activities, including ping-pong, a putting green and a basketball shootout. Accompanying the fun is a video-packed awards ceremony that will honor the leaders of Charlotte’s top company cultures.

LBA Haynes Strand Has Acquired SeeRisk Management Advisors, LLC

LBA Haynes Strand is excited to announce the acquisition and combination of SeeRisk Management Advisors, LLC to our family. Effective December 1, 2016, Dave Recchion, President of SeeRisk Management Advisors, LLC, has joined the LBA Haynes Strand team as a Principal and leader in our Greensboro office. Dave brings 30 years of professional experience to our Firm. After working as a Partner with Ernst & Young for 13 years, he founded and ran a highly profitable Risk Management Firm in High Point known as SeeRisk Management Advisors, LLC for the past 4 years. Dave will join Johnny Wood as the Principals of the Firm leading our Greensboro Office.

The combination with SeeRisk Advisors will greatly expand our client service offerings to include: Risk Assessments, Internal Audit outsourcing, Internal Controls, Sarbanes Oxley, Process Improvement, and a specialization in Risk Management Strategy. In addition, Dave brings a unique service offering for family and privately owned businesses called, “Exit By Design”.  LBA Haynes Strand clients will have immediate access to this offering which includes a design session and strategy development for a successful transition for clients ready to exit their businesses. Many business owners struggle with the decisions related to selling, merging, and handing down their family and privately owned businesses. The “Exit By Design” offering helps clients identify and build the greatest value for their business, while designing the best exit strategy from their business.   

Prior to founding SeeRisk Advisors, Dave was a Partner with Ernst & Young, where he held a key leadership role in their national advisory practice. In his role as Advisory Markets Leader for the Americas he managed strategic client relationships on a national and global level, where he developed and executed the firm strategy surrounding Risk Advisory Services. 

John Bly, CEO of LBA Haynes Strand, PLLC, while expressing his excitement for the combination and addition of Dave was quoted as saying, “Process improvement and Risk Strategy methodology will enable us to dig deeper into the challenges that face our clients and help identify and mitigate their strategic, financial, compliance, operations, and reputation risks before they impact the business. The addition of Dave to our leadership team demonstrates our commitment to provide a complete and holistic view into the needs of our clients”. 

Please join us in welcoming Dave Recchion to the LBA Haynes Strand family! 

Recent Change For Small Business: Something You May Want To Do

The President signed the 21st Century Cures Act on December 13, 2016. This law allows small businesses with fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees to use health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) after 2016. HRAs allow employers to pay or reimburse employees for qualified medical expenses. Employers can deduct the expense on their business tax returns but employees generally do not have to include the expense in their income.

Employers must offer the arrangement to all employees and distribute a written notice to all employees at least 90 days before the beginning of each tax year. For 2017, a notice must be distributed before March 13. The amount of the expense may not exceed $4,950 ($10,000 for family) per year.

No mention was made on how to treat 2% owners of S corporations.

Please click the button below for a no-cost consultation to discuss more detailed information on health reimbursement arrangements.

2016 Year in Review: Tax Highlights

As the LBA Haynes Strand staff gears up for tax season, we wanted to share a few highlights from the annual tax summary provided by Wolters Kluwer:

  • Overall, there are not a significant number of changes from 2016 to 2017 which will impact most of you.  However, political and tax experts are all anxiously awaiting the first days of President-Elect Trump’s to see how things kick off.
  • Tax season officially kicks off January 23, 2017.  We’ll all be here working hard to make sure you get your returns filed by April 18th.  By the way, did you notice that it’s a different day this year?  Here’s why.
  • Mileage reimbursements continue to slide slightly.  Business rates will be 53.5₵ and Medical/Moving rates will be 17₵
  • For 2017, the IRS announced a variety of inflation-adjusted tax amounts.  Some examples include, Standard Deduction for a Single Filer went from $6,300 in 2016 to $6,350 in 2017.  The one that I thought was interesting was the Social Security Wage Base.  In 2016, the base was $118,000 but in 2017 the base increased to $127,200

For more Highlights from this Report, please CLICK HERE!

QuickBooks Online: Is It Right For Your Business?

QuickBooks Online has become a widely used alternative to the traditional desktop versions of QuickBooks. With up-to-date bank and expense information that is accessible by both the business owner and CPA (once the CPA is granted accountant access to the company) it’s easy to see the immense benefits. Business owners have no down time as they wait for their CPA to do monthly, quarterly or yearly work and CPAs have the most recent data in order to efficiently and effectively assist their clients in day-to-day business dealings.

Unlike the desktop versions of QuickBooks, QuickBooks Online provides users with the most current version without the yearly added cost of upgrading software. The highly secure QuickBooks Online servers provide immediate backup of your company files and is accessible from virtually anywhere you can access the internet. There is even an awesome app for the iPad that enables you to take photos of receipts and enter them into your bank or credit card register on the go. The portability and functionality of the program makes keeping your company’s financial records a breeze.

QuickBooks Online is allowing us at LBA Haynes Strand to stay ahead of the curve by achieving results through a fully engaged approach and diligent planning. To see a visual guide on converting to QuickBooks Online, click here or contact our office for additional information on the benefits and limitations of the software. 

3 Design Tips For Your Exit Strategy

A successful and effective exit from a business usually takes more than a miracle. I do believe in miracles, however gaining the greatest value for your company doesn’t usually happen without a solid design and execution. As a business owner contemplating a future exit, you should be focused on a plan that includes the following 3 design tips:

1. Timing

Is the market right? Are other parties interested in acquiring your company? Do you have plans for after your exit? Do you have more passion or anxiety over the business?

Timing is everything if your objective is to maximize the value of your company. Don’t be a statistic, too many company owners run the company up the growth curve, and down the other side before relinquishing control and exiting the business. Companies frequently grow beyond the capabilities of the owner, so all these considerations will help you determine the right timing.

2. Value

Have you completed a valuation on the company? Can the value of the company be improved? Will the exit event provide the revenue, cash and stability you desire and need?

Value is the number one driver for most executives contemplating an exit. However, value is nearly impossible to change if you have one foot out the door. Value creation is difficult but will yield the greatest financial reward for each dollar invested. Reducing costs, improving processes, increasing margins, managing debt, hiring the right resources and growing the top line are all important factors in gaining the greatest value for your business. A good business advisor can help you navigate through the projects that offer the highest return on value.

3. Succession

Do your leaders have the skills, interest and passion to carry on and improve the business? Do you financially need the business to perform after your exit?

Succession is not an issue if you are emotionally and financially detached from the exit event. In this scenario, succession is the problem for the acquirer and the seller can take the money and run. However many small business owners can’t afford to detach financially and therefore must be concerned about the quality of the successors (family members or employees). Complicated exit scenarios tend to create succession challenges and as a result will have a negative impact on the value.

Exiting a business is not an event, it is a process. Albeit an emotional process, it requires a proper design to get the most out of the final exit event. Exiting your business is much easier when you understand the 3 design tips and  have a plan to answer the tough questions regarding. . . Timing, Value and Succession.  Then you can ” Exit by Design”,  and not exit by mistake or miracle.

Exciting News: Chad Stafford Has Been Promoted To Principal

LBA Haynes Strand is pleased to announce that effective January 1st, Chad Stafford has been promoted to Principal. Chad joins the principal team, where he will remain focused on providing tax planning, tax preparation, and tax research for clients of LBA Haynes Strand.

John Bly, Principal and CEO of the firm, had this to say, “Chad is a long term member of our team in Mt. Airy.  As a firm we are excited to have him become a principal with the firm.  It’s an exciting step for both Chad in his career path and for the firm’s continued focus on developing our people.”

Having been with the Firm for over 20 years this promotion is a result of Chad’s hard work, loyalty to the Firm, commitment to our team, and dedication to providing top-notch tax services to his clients.

Please join us in congratulating Chad Stafford on this exciting promotion! To arrange a meeting with Chad, contact us!

Here We Grow Again! LBA Haynes Strand Adds Charlotte based CPA Firm McArthur, McKeiver, & Vaughan, PLLC to The Firm

The 2017 year is here and LBA Haynes Strand has rang the proverbial growth bell again!  For the past 4 months, LBA Haynes Strand has been working to complete a deal with, Ballantyne based CPA Firm, McArthur, McKeiver and Vaughan, PLLC to unite as one combined firm.  The combination will add three Principals to the LBA Haynes Strand team with the additions of Brad McKeiver, Steve Vaughan, and Patrick Coleman.   This will increase the total of Principals to 13 and number of employees to 80 across the three North Carolina offices of the Firm.  The Firm will continue to operate under the LBA Haynes Strand, PLLC name, where the three incoming principals and the incoming staff members from McArthur, McKeiver, & Vaughan will join the Firm in the Matthews, NC office of LBA Haynes Strand.

McArthur, McKeiver, & Vaughan has been a part of the Charlotte community for over three decades, since its inception in 1978.  The mission of the firm was always to deliver pro-active and client-centered services to its clients aimed at adding value and helping their clients reach their goals.  These same ideals of being proactive and client-centric are pillars of LBA Haynes Strand, thus creating a unified Firm culture.  The addition of McArthur, McKeiver, & Vaughan will add not only a strong culture piece to the LBA Haynes Strand Firm, but also a strong dental accounting and consulting practice,  a forensic accounting offering,  and a profitability consulting service offering.

John Bly, Principal, CEO of LBA Haynes Strand had this to say regarding the combination, “We are thrilled to be able to add such a strong team of talented and driven Principals to LBA Haynes Strand.  The additions of Brad, Patrick, and Steve to our Matthews office is a natural fit for us as we seek to grow our Firm and grow the service offerings that we can offer our clients.  We strive to become a one stop shop for all middle market business owners’ accounting and financial needs in North Carolina and the Southeastern US.  The ability to ring in the New Year with such an exciting announcement can be attributed to both Firm’s hard work and dedication to a unified vision of what a modern accounting firm should be.”

In addition, LBA Haynes Strand recently announced the acquisition of Dave Recchion and SeeRisk Management Advisors out of High Point, NC.  Dave Recchion joined the Greensboro office as a Principal on December 1, 2016.