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5 Tips To Protect Your Financial Future

With the ever-changing tax laws, our principal members and staff work diligently to stay up-to-date and keep you informed of strategies that can help save and protect your financial future. As you’re gathering your tax documents, consider some of the tips below that can significantly help in protecting your future!

1. Determine which type of IRA is best for you.

If you’re fairly young, expect to be in a similar tax bracket when you retire, or are concerned about cash flow during retirement, the Roth IRA might be best for you. If you’re older and expect to be in a lower tax bracket, you may be a candidate for a deductible IRA.

For a side-by-side comparison of Traditional and Roth IRAs, click here.

2. Think about the best ways to gradually transfer your estate tax-free.

Consider establishing a gifting program under which you and your spouse can transfer a combined $28,000 each year to any number of recipients.

3. Contribute the maximum amount allowable to a tax-deferred retirement plan.

This includes “catch-up” contributions if you are 50 or older.

4. Create a business succession plan.

On average, only one in three closely held businesses successfully passes on to the next generation.

Click here for succession planning ideas and ways that you can help protect your company’s future.

5. Set up a trust to meet your long-term financial goals.

To get started, view these commonly used trusts.

For other tips and ways to protect your financial future, contact us today for your no-cost consultation!

Non-Profit Tax Guide: Getting To Know The Form 990

The Form 990 is a tax document that tax-exempt nonprofit organizations are required to file each year with the IRS. The 990 discloses potential conflicts of interest, regulatory details, governance, compensation of board members and staff, and other details that relate to financial accountability. Filing the 990 correctly and in a timely matter, allows your nonprofit organization to maintain its tax exempt status. Once the 990 is filed, it is posted for the public to see. Websites such as Guidestar.com allow anyone to look at any organization’s Form 990, in order to get a better understanding of the structure and success of the nonprofit organization.

What’s the purpose of the Form 990?
  • Increased transparency and to provide a realistic view of the organization for the IRS and the public
  • Promote tax compliance by accurately reflecting the organization’s operations
  • Allow efficiency in the assessment of risk of noncompliance

The Form 990 has caused dramatic increases in the cost of compliance for nonprofits. At first, this only impacted the larger nonprofits. However, the smaller nonprofits are now feeling the increased cost of the 990.

Who is required to file a Form 990?

Tax-exempt organizations that have gross receipts totaling at least $200,000 or assets worth at least $500,000 must file the Form 990 on an annual basis.

When is the Form 990 Due?

You must file your organization’s 990 by the 15th day of the 5th month after your accounting period ends. For example, say your fiscal year ends on December 31st, then the 990 is due on May 15th the following year.

What are the penalties for not filing a Form 990?

There are many penalties for failing to file the Form 990 properly.  The list of penalties below can help you be prepared in order to avoid them.

  • The Penalty for not filing is: $20 per day, up to a maximum of $10,000 or 5% of revenue.
  • If revenue is greater than $1 million the penalty for not filing is: $100 per day with a maximum fine of $50,000
  • For failure to include information concerning liquidation, dissolution, termination, or substantial contraction: $10 per day, with maximum of $5,000.
  • Your “tax-exempt” status will be revoked if you don’t file for 3 years.
  • Once you receive an IRS notice and don’t respond: $10 per day on the responsible individual, up to a maximum of $5,000.
  • Failure to comply with public disclosure requirements: $20 per day in penalties, up to a maximum of $10,000.
  • There is no maximum penalty for failure to disclose the organization’s exemption application.
How to be prepared for the Form 990?

Being prepared is the best way to handle any tax situation.  Being proactive and having a tax plan minimizes the risk of any last minute tax surprises and allows you to be a little more stress-free when it comes time to file your Form 990 on an annual basis.  Below is a list of suggestions to help you be prepared when filing your Form 990.

  • Make sure you document as much as possible throughout the year for internal purposes.
  • Track as much information as possible from contributors, including amount, name, location, how they contributed, etc.
  • Track the revenue and expense by each event or by function.
  • Tip: Unrelated business tax income is a big issue!  If it’s not part of the core function, it is probably taxable.
  • Consult your CPA for specifics to your organization.  Every nonprofit organization is different and has different issues.

LBA Haynes Strand has handled the Form 990 for many North Carolina based nonprofit organizations, and our team is well versed in the nonprofit industry. Our nonprofit accounting team is ready to help your organization maintain its tax-exempt status and provide the accounting advice you need throughout the year to run a successful nonprofit. Contact us today!

Celebrate July 4th In The Piedmont Triad

We are giving you some new and exciting ways to spend the 4th of July holiday in Greensboro and around the Piedmont Triad area! Check out the events below for suggestions on how you can make the most of your holiday weekend!

Friday July 3rd & Saturday July 4th
Fun Fourth Festival

Where: Downtown Greensboro – S. Green, S. Elm, Washington, & McGee Streets (click here for a PDF map)

Time:

  •  Friday: Kickoff Block Party: 7-11pm
  •  Saturday: Freedom Run & Walk: 8am
  •  Parade & Street Festival: 9:30am – 6:30pm
  •  Pops Concert & Fireworks: 7:30pm – 10pm

Description: The Fun Fourth Festival has been presented annually since 1975 as a community celebration of Independence Day for Guilford County and the greater Piedmont Triad Area. This year, over 90,000 people are expected to attend! Fun Fourth events include a Freedom Run, a Kickoff Block Party, a Parade and Street Festival, a Pops Concert, and of course, Fun Fourth Fireworks Finale. Fun Fourth maintains all of the favorite American Independence Day traditions and offers great entertainment and exhibits, many of which are free! For more information, click here.

Saturday July 4th
Uncle Sam Jam

Where: High Point; Oak Hollow Festival Park

Time: 4:30pm – Gates Open; 9:45pm – Fireworks

Description: Celebrate the 4th of July with outdoor live music, food vendors, children’s crafts, entertainment, activities, and fireworks! Parking will be available at the park and in surrounding lots. Come out and enjoy an event that is great for the whole family! **Fee is $10 per car load.

Independence Day Celebration

Where: Winston-Salem; Old Salem Historic District

Time: 9:30am – 4:30pm

Description: Join Old Salem Museum & Gardens for a special Independence Day celebration! Enjoy hands-on activities, demonstrations, music, games and more, including a moving naturalization ceremony at 10am, throughout the historic district. Historic Buildings will close at 4pm for all guests to join together in the Square for a 4:15pm re-enactment of the 1783 celebration of July 4th by the Moravians in Salem! Click here to find out more about this spectacular event!

Winston-Salem Dash Baseball Game & Fireworks

Where: Winston-Salem; BB&T Ballpark

Time: 6:30pm

Description: Spend your Saturday evening at the BB&T Ballpark cheering on the Winston-Salem Dash as they take on the Wilmington Blue Rocks! Youngsters can run the bases after the game, and be sure to sick around for the postgame fireworks show! Click here to purchase tickets.

Stars and Stripes Spectacular

Where: Greensboro; Newbridge Bank Park

Time: 6:30pm

Description: Cheer on the Greensboro Grasshoppers as they take on the Hickory Crawdads! Celebrate July 4th after the game with the Stars and Stripes Spectacular fireworks show, presented by Tanger Outlets. Get your tickets here!

These are some of the most popular events in the surrounding Piedmont Triad area:
  • Greensboro, NC: Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe’s Sky Scream Fireworks Show – Extended park hours are 10am – 9pm, Fireworks at 9:15pm – emeraldpointe.com
  • Kernersville, NC: 4th of July Fireworks and Splash B4 the Blast – Swimming & Giveaways at the Kernersville YMCA, Live Music & Fireworks starting at 6:30 pm at the Kernersville Raiders football field – toknc.com
  • Lexington, NC: Fantastic Fourth Celebration – A great family event for children & kids of all ages; Fireworks begin between 9pm and 9:30pm – visitlexingtonnc.com/fantastic-fourth-of-july-festival

We hope you enjoy your 4th of July! Remember to stay safe! If you’re going to be handling fireworks, please click HERE  for important safety tips! Happy Independence Day!

Greensboro Named A Best Place To Live

According to Livability.com, Greensboro is one of the best places to live in the United States. Greensboro came in at #91 on the list, just ahead of Charleston, SC! Reasons for the ranking included Greensboro’s high quality of health care and education and a continuously improving downtown area. 

As far as education goes, Greensboro is home to the third largest North Carolina Community College institution in the state, Guilford Technical Community College. The city is also the home of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Guilford College. In addition to college education, the Guilford County Public School District is highly respected in the area. The plethora of quality educational institutions makes for a great place to raise a family.

You also cannot overlook the health care in Greensboro. According to the survey results, Greensboro ranks 14th in North Carolina out of 100 counties in terms of longevity and quality of life. There are 30 hospitals located within 60 miles of Greensboro and nearly 2,200 doctors within the city limits.

Furthermore, downtown Greensboro has been transformed into a vibrant and lively area that serves as the main center for the area’s commerce and culture. The area is boasting with shoppingdiningentertainment, offices, and neighborhoods – the feel of downtown can best be described as “cool.” In a recent interview Greensboro’s Mayor, John Perkins, was asked to describe his city. He had this to say, “We’re trying to make the town cool.  We have 47,000 college students at seven colleges and universities that are here. We want to leverage off that and keep some of that talent here after they graduate. And the best way to do that is to make your city cool.”

Other Accolades:

This is hardly the first time Greensboro has shown up on a “Best” List. Earlier this year Greensboro made appearances on a number of Forbes lists, including:

Slowly but surely Greensboro has grown to become a very important city in North Carolina. As the 3rd largest city in terms of population in North Carolina, expect great things from “The Gate City”. This nickname comes from the fact that In 1891 the city would see the arrival and departure of 60 trains per day. It became an important transportation hub for manufacturers and people alike.

If you are a business owner in the Triad region and would like a no-cost consultation with an established certified public accounting firm in Greensboro, contact us.  Our team is ready to work with your team and provide you with the  services and benefits you expect.

Best Business Law Firms in Greensboro

We work with many attorneys and law firms throughout Greensboro and the state of North Carolina. Through referrals and working on joint projects, we have found 5 law firms that are especially great to work with.

The 5 best business law firms in Greensboro (in no particular order):
Carruthers & Roth

Carruthers & Roth was founded in 1937 and is located in the heart of Greensboro. They are a mid sized law firm offering big-firm capabilities delivered with the personal attention and responsiveness expected from a small town practice. Their clients include large multinational corporations, closely-held businesses, individuals, and entrepreneurs. To see a full list of their practice areas, click here!

Contact Info:

Phone: 336-379-8651 | Website: www.crlaw.com

Brooks Pierce

Brooks, Pierce, McLendon, Humphrey & Leonard, LLP is a business law firm providing comprehensive strategic counsel and innovative solutions. Their clients include: businesses, individuals, government, and non-profit institutions. The firm’s expertise extends to every aspect of business law (antitrust, mergers and acquisitions, start-up and publicly traded companies, trusts & estates, and many more).

Contact Info:

Phone: 336-373-8850 | Website: www.brookspierce.com

Womble Carlyle

Womble Carlyle is one of the largest and most technologically advanced business law firms in the Southeast. They have been serving the Greensboro region since 2001 after realizing Greensboro to be a key business center in North Carolina. The office includes 15 lawyers whose practices include: specialty areas of capital markets, corporate and securities, health care, intellectual property, and business litigation. The office is also home to several lawyers of the Firm’s Supply Chain Management practice group which provides supply chain solutions to businesses. While the firm was originally established in 1876 in Winston-Salem, it now comprises more than 550 lawyers in fourteen offices across the state of North Carolina.

Contact Info:

Phone: 336-574-8030 | Website: www.wcsr.com

Tuggle Duggins P.A.

Since 1974, Tuggle Duggins P.A. has been serving businesses and business owners with interests in the Carolinas. Tuggle Duggins is a multi-specialty, multi-disciplinary law firm focused on the needs of closely held businesses and business owners. They provide representation in legal matters ranging from conventional, personal, and business issues to complex legal matters. Their goal is to provide long-term client relationships and delivering exceptional services and results to their clients.

Contact Info:

Phone: 336-378-1431 | Website: www.tuggleduggins.com

Hagan Davis

Hagan, Davis, Mangum, Barrett & Langley, PLLC is a well established and trusted group of attorneys in Greensboro, NC. Dedicated to helping their clients achieve their business objectives effectively and efficiently. Hagan Davis has a proven track record for success, particularly in complex legal matters. There is no typical client of the firm, however most of their clients are influential in business, philanthropy, education, and sports. They deliver results to entrepreneurs and high-income individuals alike.

Contact Info:

Phone: 336-232-0650 | Website: www.hagandavis.com

If you need a business law firm in Greensboro, NC, these five law firms are the best place to begin your journey. Each firm comes highly recommended by the Principal Members at LBA Haynes Strand. If you would like a specific attorney’s information, please contact us.

Top 25 General Contractors in the Triad of North Carolina

Congratulations to the top 25 general contractors in the Triad as reported by the Triad Business Journal! This ranking was based off of 2014 billings in the Triad including Greensboro, Winston-Salem, High-Point and surrounding areas.

The Top 25 General Contractors in the Triad region are:

1. Samet Corp.

2. Thompson Arthur Division of Apac Atlantic

3. Landmark Builders of the Triad

4. Frank L. Blum Construction Co.

5. D.H. Griffin Wrecking Co, Inc.

6. Shelco, LLC

7. Lomax Construction, Inc.

8. Windsor Commercial

9. Brasfield & Gorrie LLC

10. Omega Construction, Inc.

11. D.H. Griffin Construction Co. LLC

12. Parr Construction, Inc.

13. Magnolia Construction, LLC

14. Davie Construction Co., Inc.

15. New Atlantic Contracting, Inc.

16. Signature Development Group, LLC

17. Wishon & Carter Builders, Inc.

18. Whiting-Turner Contracting Co.

19. Sterling Building Group, Inc.

20. LMI Builders, Inc.

21. Miles-McClellan Construction

22. Ramey, Inc.

23. H.M. Kern Corp.

24. D.H. Griffin Infrastructure, LLC

25. Holden Building Co., Inc.

To see the full breakdown of the top General Contractors in the Triad region, click here. Our team would be happy to make an introduction to one of these companies if needed. Contact us today!

Property Management Companies Are Growing Through M&A

Mergers and Acquisitions have become an increasingly popular growth strategy among property management companies. In an earlier blog titled, “What Industries Are Growing Through M&A,” we mentioned property management companies as a top industry for mergers and acquisitions. So let’s dig a little deeper and learn what is being gained by M&A and what trends are driving M&A in the property management marketplace.

What Property Management Companies Are Trying To Gain Through M&A:
  • Size/Proximity to New Locations: In some cases, especially in the Charlotte area, management companies are looking to grow across State lines.  Rather than a Charlotte based management company opening a new location in South Carolina, they will often acquire other established management companies already based in South Carolina.  This is also true within the State as well (Charlotte -> Greensboro, Wilmington, Raleigh, etc.)
  • Economies of Scale: Management companies deal with many different service providers from landscapers and painters, to accountants and attorneys.  As management companies grow and manage additional communities through M&A, they are better able to pass cost savings (via economies of scale) onto their clients.  Doing so, theoretically, makes the management company more attractive in the market place as they are better able to offer attractive rates.
  • Additional Management Offerings: There are many local management companies who specialize in residential communities while others mainly do commercial associations.  Through M&A, management companies may be able to acquire residential work if they didn;t already have it, or vice versa.
What Trends Are Driving M&A In The Industry:
  • Real Estate Brokers Wanting Out: Community management is NOT a glamorous field. In lean times (2008 – 2012) many small/local real estate sales offices turned to property management when they were struggling to sell homes. With real estate “Hot” again, some real estate agents are looking to shed their portfolio of community associations to better focus their efforts on more lucrative selling activities.
  • Lack of Succession Planning: Similar to the CPA industry, some “mom and pop” community management companies simply have no succession plan, while other “younger” management companies are seeing this as a great opportunity for M&A.
  • National Players Coming To Charlotte: Up until 2008, community management in Charlotte was pretty much locally run (i.e. 20 or so management companies throughout the State and SC, perhaps). However, in the past 5 to 7 years, Charlotte has experienced an increase in nationally known management companies who often launch their local office by purchasing a locally-owned community management company.

This may be un-chartered territory for some management companies, and LBA Haynes Strand is here to help. We have a team that understands the needs and the financial issues associated with HOAs and property management companies. If your property management company is looking to grow through M&A, schedule a no-cost consultation with us and we will walk you through the steps for a successful merger or acquisition.