Hello - advice please

Terri Registered Posts: 1 New contributor ?
Hello all

This is my first post on the forum. My name is Terri, I am 28 years old, from Sheffield and I with effect from April this year, I started working as a self employed bookkeeper from home. I currently have one client and I just did some work for an accountant which may lead to more work in the future.

I have my level 1 certificate in Basic Bookkeeping with the ICB, I have my level 2 exam next Wednesday and am studying for my level 1 and 2 computerised (using Sage Instant Accounts) at the moment.

I am thinking of now going the AAT route as it has been recommended by several people that I know but I am unsure of where to start and how far I would need to go.

I don't intend on becoming a fully qualified accountant, I love bookkeeping but would also like to offer more services in the future, including year end accounts, vat return, self assessments and payroll. I would also like to know everything there is to know about bookkeeping as I feel that the course that I did just scratched the surface and there is lots more that I think I could learn.

Before starting my bookkeeping course I had no previous experience, like I say I have one client at the moment but am finding it hard to get anymore clients. I have two little boys aged 3 next week and 8 and a half months and the plan is that when my youngest starts nursery in January 2012, I will have loads more time on my hand and even more the following year when they are both at full time school. Between now and then I want to study so that when I go full time I will have a good few qualifications under my belt.

Apologies for the very long first post, but I would really appreciate any suggestions. Should I start on the foundation course and then a bit further down the line do the Payroll? How far will I need to qualify to be a self employed bookkeeper who can basically do everything so that my client wouldnt have to go to an accountant?



  • Gem7321
    Gem7321 MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,438
    I wouldn't bother with foundation, the PLB exam is mainly just double-entry which I assume you're already confident in as a bookkeeper! You may as well start at Intermediate.

    If you want to offer self-assessment I would definitely recommend both of the tax units at the Technician stage, however it's probably not necessary for you to complete the PEV and PCR exams (management accounts & reporting). And depending on the type of clients you have/want you may not want to do DFS (financial statements for companies but in International Standards with consolidations and cashflows).

    Without these exams you won't be AAT qualified or achieve the NVQ level 4, but Intermediate will give you NVQ leve 3 if you decide to do the NVQ route.

    I'm afraid I don't know much about payroll though, this is a completely seperate AAT qualification.
  • mikes
    mikes Registered Posts: 254
    Hi Terri,

    Welcome to the forums. As you already have the bookkeeping course, then don't start at the foundation level, as you are excempt from that, as you will only be doing the same subjects as before. The next level, the exams will cover costing and more appropiately for you, Financial records, which cover doing incomplete accounts, extending the trial balance to produce Profit and loss accounts and balance sheets. If you are doing the computerised accounts, then i would suggest speaking to the AAT Student services and asking to see if you are also excempt from doing units covering computerised accounts.

    To become a registered accountant with the AAT as a member in practice, then you will need to pass this and the Diploma/Technition level. You may need to have a more closer look at the subjects, to see if you really want to do them, if you are just working for yourself and are not bothered, if you are registered or not, although being so, will give you a more professional look, when chasing new clients. The technition level also covers studying tax for both indivduals and businesses.

    The payroll, is a seperate qualifiction from the other AAT exams, which is done over 2 levels.

    How far you want to do your studies, will be up to you, as each level is a qualification in it own right, however only passing the final level, will give you right to use MAAT after your name. There may be other exams, which can offer the subjects that you feel that you need.

    All the best

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