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We do the math so you can do what counts

 

Nonprofit Accounting image at Good Sense Accounting

 

There are more than 40,000 nonprofits in the Seattle and Puget Sound area, and all of them have special accounting needs. As experts in preparing form 990 and exempt status applications, we can help your nonprofit concentrate on its main purpose.

How we help nonprofit organizations:

  • Expert form 990 preparation
  • Nonprofit tax planning
  • Prepare exempt status application
  • Increase program expenditure percentage
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Nonprofit Services

Exempt Application

“Because it’s nonprofit, we’re not obligated to put the criteria of commerciality on it. That was one of the reasons for starting it.” Robert Redford

Starting a nonprofit is a means of serving the local community, the country or the world.  It provides the means of support enabling others to help those in need or particular causes.  By nature it is different than a business but nonprofits can be more complicated than a business.

One of the early steps is obtaining tax-exempt status from the IRS.  Exempt status enables the organization to be exempt from income taxation (with some exceptions) and allows the donors to reduce their income taxes by deducting their contributions.

The exempt application is a complicated form.  It must clearly spell out your activities and goals and how they serve an exempt purpose.  The end result is a long application with attachments. Good Sense Accounting has the experience of successfully completing numerous exempt applications for nonprofit groups. In fact, the owners of GSA have been members of several nonprofit boards.  With so much riding on your exempt status, it makes sense to have an accountant who is experienced in this specialty area handle the paperwork.

 Annual Filing – Forms 990

“We go out and solicit money by talking needs.  That’s fine.  But both donors and people who work for a non-profit inevitably ask – What are the results?” Peter Drucker

The various 990 forms are designed by the Internal Revenue Service to gather information to protect the public and to ascertain that the organization is functioning for an exempt purpose.

Those who prepare the forms with only that in mind are missing a huge opportunity.

Private Foundations and large donors will review the 990s with an eye toward determining how effective and efficient an organization is in fulfilling its purpose.  It is important to prepare and present information with that in mind.

A properly completed Form 990 can actually improve the organization’s ability to raise funds.

 Nonprofit Bookkeeping and Accounting

“Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.” Peter Drucker

A key measure of efficiency and effectiveness of nonprofits is the Program to Total Expense Ratio.  Charity Navigator indicates nonprofits should have at least 75% of their expenditures for Program Expenses.  Naturally, the higher the number the better. We can help you meet and exceed that goal.

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RELATED NEWS

Tax-Exempt Organizations Must File or Lose Status

Exempt organizations are required to file with the IRS annually regardless of the amount of gross receipts they receive.  Those whose gross receipts are normally under $50,000 file Form 990-N electronically. If you miss 3 years in a row, you will automatically lose your…read more

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