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    We want to give you as much value as possible. Our blogs and newsletters cover everything from T slips and tax deadlines, to tips on staying organized, and recommendations on great resources for small business owners.


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    Posts by Matt Peterson

    How to register for CRA My Business Account and My Account

    Setting up your business and individual Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) accounts is not only important, it makes your tax life a lot easier. If you run a business, you’ll need both business and personal...

    Sep 13, 2020

    Step-by-step guide to setting up Xero for your business

    As a small business or entrepreneur, having the right tools to run your day-to-day business is so important. That’s why we love using Xero at True North — it’s accounting software specifically for...

    Aug 09, 2020

    Cybersecurity tips to protect your small business

    Cybersecurity is a big topic, and many small business owners might be surprised to know that your own people are your biggest security threat. Today’s hackers try to lure people into giving secure...

    Jul 27, 2020

    10 questions with Mel McKay: how to build community

    Mel McKay is a freelance ad writer, instructor at AUArts and the founder of Camp Hoo-Ha, a social and skill building club that now spans 12 cities in 3 provinces. The Hoo-Ha journey started in 2017...

    Jul 10, 2020

    Why you need a business plan and how to write one

    Have grand plans for a start-up? Before you quit your job and throw all your energy into starting a business, you should establish a vision of where you want your business to go and how you’re going...

    Jun 08, 2020

    On Tap with Tyler Chisholm: Calgary's new business landscape

    Tyler Chisholm is the CEO of clearmotive marketing, and is obsessed with helping businesses connect with their customers in more meaningful ways. I love picking his brain on how we can gain a better...

    May 31, 2020

    Received your COVID-19 relief money? What now?

    If you've received money from any of the government relief programs, expect to be asked to prove your eligibility. We outline what the government will ask you for, how to be prepared and what to do...

    May 11, 2020

    Tools to take your business remote (like we did)

    Since the COVID-19 outbreak hit in Alberta, we have had to quickly adjust, like so many businesses. We temporarily closed our offices and pivoted to phone calls and online meetings, webinars and...

    Apr 19, 2020

    FAQ about COVID-19 government support for small businesses

    As your small business guide, we’re here to help you navigate through this tough time. We have all been hugely affected by COVID-19 and for small business owners, there are many questions around the...

    Apr 14, 2020

    5 tips for working at home with your partner

    We work with a lot of small businesses run by couples who are familiar with the terrain of working and living together 24/7. As we settle into the new reality of self-isolation, most of us are now...

    Mar 19, 2020

    How to file your taxes online with True North

    We are in uncharted waters with the Covid-19 outbreak. Nothing is more unnerving to small business owners than uncertainty, and there's a lot of it right now. We have big news and lots of important...

    Mar 16, 2020

    2019 personal tax year update

    As we dive into tax season, we want to give you an update on what’s new and different this year. 

    The biggest change this year is a new tax credit called the Climate Action Incentive. We've got the...

    Mar 03, 2020

    Healthcare benefits for small businesses

    As a small business owner, healthcare may be a big question mark for you. A traditional health insurance plan can be expensive. But your kid needs braces, and you have a couple of prescriptions. You...

    Feb 07, 2020

    Do I need a business coach?

    Just as a personal trainer helps you reach your fitness goals, a business coach can help you reach your business goals. A business coach will help you clarify your vision, set the right goals and...

    Jan 28, 2020

    Should I pay myself dividends vs salary?

    As a small business owner, you may wonder if you should pay yourself a salary or dividends? When should you pay it? Is income splitting allowed? This is one of the most important financial and tax...

    Jan 05, 2020

    Six KPIs for 2020

    With the new year on the horizon, you’re probably thinking about setting your goals for the year ahead. Establishing a few key performance indicators (aka KPIs) will give you clarity into your...

    Dec 23, 2019

    22 books for the business owner in your life

    For the holidays, we’ve got a roundup of our favourite business books for the business owner in your life. These are 22 books that I have relied during my journey in business. I highly recommend each...

    Dec 03, 2019

    6 self-awareness tests for small business owners

    Being an effective leader requires self-awareness. It also helps to recognize the behavioural tendancies and personalities of those you work with.

    Nov 14, 2019

    The legal needs of every small business

    As the owner of a growing small business in Canada, there are just a few things you need to take care of on the legal side to ensure you keep yourself protected. Too often, small business owners...

    Nov 07, 2019

    Estate planning: 4 reasons every small business owner needs to do it

    Small business owners have especially complicated financial situations; you want to be sure your loved ones are taken care of if something were to happen to you. A bit of work with your CPA, lawyer,...

    Oct 14, 2019

    Get the most out of your corporate tax accountant

    We know that working with an accountant is an investment. We want our small business clients to get the most value possible from us. That means doing the obvious things: getting everyone’s taxes done...

    Sep 26, 2019

    12 entrepreneur courses / schools

    We’ve all got back to school on our mind. Getting back to brainy endeavours isn’t just for the little ones - there are tons of opportunities for small business owners to level up their leadership,...

    Sep 06, 2019

    Do I really need to pay tax instalments?

    When you start your own business, you realize how great it was to have taxes magically lifted away from your paycheque. Now, rather than doing your taxes once a year, you’ll have to make tax...

    Aug 29, 2019

    Bankruptcy: how to get in and how to get out

    Nobody wants to go into bankruptcy, but it happens. The good news is that bankruptcy may not be as bad as you think, and it can be an opportunity to reset and learn. Here’s a clear-eyed look at how...

    Aug 11, 2019

    An inside look at ATBX with Empowerment Inc’s Shelley Hayes

    If you’re a small business owner, you may have heard of ATBX, an accelerator program for businesses that want to grow. The free (!) program offers weekly workshops, mentorship, co-working space and a...

    Jul 08, 2019

    Mid-year small business financial check-in

    We often hear from small business owners that they wish they heard from their accountants throughout the year. This year, we invite you to make a meeting with us for a mid-year small business...

    Jun 20, 2019

    Big marketing tips for small businesses

    This post comes from our Marketing Director, Erica O’Donnellwho has worked in the digital marketing world for nearly 15 years.

    Jun 05, 2019

    What is a personal services business?

    A friend was recently offered a contract position with an oil and gas company, but there was a catch: he needed to form a corporation and get a GST number before he could start working. If you work...

    May 26, 2019

    Small business investing strategy with financial planner Mitesh Patel

    Money. Like it or not, we all need it to live and thrive in this world. Understanding the investments available to you, how markets work and the ins and outs of taxes is super important so that you...

    May 01, 2019

    5 best free apps for small business

    Here are five apps that will make your business sturdier and more organized. There’s so much to track as a small business owner. Stacks of unorganized papers, making up numbers for your accountant,...

    Apr 14, 2019

    Home office organization: Love your home office again

    Remember when you first set up your home office? New desk, shelves, and filing system. Stationery and pens were all organized. Wasn’t it a nice place to be? Weren’t you excited to do some work?

    Apr 09, 2019

    Rental properties and rental property tax

    Landlords, need a breakdown what to do come tax season? Find out exactly what you can write off and why you should expect to owe taxes. What happens when you sell a rental property or do major...

    Mar 27, 2019

    What is tax planning?

    Accountants, lawyers, financial planners and insurance advisors all throw this term around: tax planning. But what exactly is Tax Planning? And how is it done?

    Mar 07, 2019

    Q&A with Megan Sutherland, financial planner in Calgary

    With the RRSP deadline coming up this Friday, March 1, we wanted to bring in the perspective of an investment advisor to shed some light on the topic of investing and taxes. Megan Sutherland is an...

    Feb 24, 2019

    2018 personal tax update

     As you get ready to prepare your 2018 taxes and think about the tax year ahead, here are the big changes to personal taxes. Many of them will keep more money in your pocket, so make sure you’re...

    Feb 13, 2019

    6 tips to getting financially fit

    What does a financially fit business owner look like? They confidently take advantage of every write-off and have a tight paper trail. They've automated their instalment payments and save enough from...

    Jan 30, 2019

    True North Accounting: The best in small business accounting and bookkeeping

    At True North Accounting, we’re proud to provide accounting, bookkeeping and small business advisory services for small businesses in Calgary and Okotoks, Alberta. 

    Jan 25, 2019

    Canada Pension Plan (CPP) changes for 2019

    Last week I sent an email out to all our clients telling them January 15 is their last chance to make their 2018 CPP remittance. The maximum amount for 2018 is $5,187.60. I hope you got in while it...

    Jan 15, 2019

    Small business owners: celebrate your 2018 accomplishments!

    The year is winding down. Although it’s a good time to look ahead, make resolutions and plot goals for the new year, we encourage you to take a moment to reflect on and celebrate the year you’re...

    Dec 19, 2018

    The universal gift of beer

    Did you know that beer is becoming one of the most appreciated holiday gifts? Beer is really an all-season beverage, but in my house it’s become one of my favourite Christmas traditions; this...

    Dec 04, 2018