AFC

Showing 145–160 of 223 results

  • Are you making the most of depreciation deductions?

    Fall 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 731

    Abstract: Dealerships that own real estate may find that a cost segregation study can be an effective way to lower their tax bill. Such a study identifies, segregates and reclassifies qualifying property into asset groups with shorter depreciable lives of five, seven or 15 years. By reclassifying assets, dealers can maximize their depreciation deductions in the early years, improving cash flow sooner rather than later. This article discusses the types of assets that qualify and the kinds of tax savings that can result.

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  • Audit readiness – Get your ducks in a row

    Fall 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 661

    Abstract: Having an outside audit doesn’t have to be a time-consuming or complicated event. The key is to prepare one’s dealership for the audit, so that it will go smoothly. This article explains how to anticipate workpaper requests, assign staff to assist the auditors with inventory test counts, and take advantage of auditor suggestions to improve business operations.

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  • Customer privacy policies can help ward off wrongdoing

    Fall 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 766

    Abstract: It’s surprising how many dealer management systems allow carte blanche access to customer files. This is an open invitation to identity theft. This article shows how to implement important safeguards — whether physical or online — and how to properly retain or dispose of data. A sidebar discusses a situation in which a mortgage broker paid a significant fine for improperly disposing of sensitive customer records; dealers have access to similar information and should take heed.

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  • Take the dread out of manufacturer rebates

    Summer 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 481

    Abstract: The rebate process can be confusing for dealers, who might fear hefty chargebacks and chaos. This article offers some ideas for smoothing out the procedure. It specifically examines adhering to a clear and consistent submissions method; maintaining good record-keeping; and engaging in quarterly self-audits.

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  • Do your ads meet federal lease and credit advertising requirements?

    Summer 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 539

    Abstract: Dealers shouldn’t pass the buck when it comes to reviewing advertisements for compliance with federal lease and credit advertising guidelines. Manufacturers may help out, but it might not be enough. Because dealers are liable for federal lease and credit advertising violations, they can’t afford to let their ads run wild. So it’s critical that they conduct their own independent ad reviews for errors and omissions. This article explains how to maintain compliance with federal regulations.

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  • Smart moves – Consider creating a separate real estate entity

    Summer 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 837

    Abstract: A dealership that owns its buildings and land might find it prudent to separate the legal title of the business from the real estate. It can accomplish this by transferring the title to the real estate into a newly created legal entity such as a corporation, limited liability company (LLC) or trust. After it transfers the real property from its operating business, the dealership simply rents the space from the new legal entity in a landlord-tenant relationship. This article shows that this time-tested management strategy is easier and cheaper than one might think, and offers significant legal, financial and personal advantages for dealers.

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  • Getting the jump on financial statement and tax filing preparation

    Summer 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 988

    Abstract: Proactive auto dealers meet with their CPAs in late summer or early fall to plan for the next year’s financial reporting and tax filing. This helps them anticipate requests for audit or review workpapers, streamline financial statement and tax return preparation, and minimize taxes. This article examines topics such as Section 179 expensing and bonus depreciation, which should be addressed before scheduled tax law changes take effect in 2013. It also looks at fixed assets, inventory accounting, and adjusting journal entries, while a sidebar discusses owner transactions.

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  • Taking care of business – 5 do’s and don’ts for your BDC

    Spring 2008
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 819

    Abstract: A Business Development Center (BDC) can be a multitasking powerhouse for your dealership, helping you retain customers while turning prospects into buyers. The benefits of this enterprise can far outweigh the costs. Whether you’re just starting up your BDC or evaluating an established one, here are five do’s and don’ts to consider. (Updated 4/30/12)

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  • Employee fraud – Many scams start in the finance department

    Spring 2008
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 823

    Abstract: Employee fraud — sadly, it can strike any kind of business, including auto dealerships, and it costs consumers and business owners millions of dollars each year. You can protect against fraud and, in the process, protect your dealership’s reputation and your industry’s. But you’ve got to know how to recognize the beast before you can hunt it. (Updated 4/30/12)

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  • Professional employment organizations – Should a third party handle your most important asset?

    Winter 2008
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 598

    Abstract: In today’s business environment, where ways to cut costs while improving performance are revered, the outsourcing of many operating functions is widespread. But when it comes to the service-oriented world of the auto dealership, should you let a third party handle your most important asset — your people? An increasing number of dealerships are doing just that, turning to professional employment organizations (PEOs) to hire and fire employees, handle the related HR paperwork, and provide employee benefits. Here are some issues to consider before making a decision. (Updated 4/30/12)

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  • Used vehicle departments reap what they sow

    Spring 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 371

    Abstract: Used vehicles are in high demand and short supply. Low-mileage, fuel efficient cars are especially hot. But it’s important to not get caught up in the hype. Discipline is the only way to consistently make money when selling used vehicles. This short article explains how to appraise with care and get salespeople to agree on the worth of a particular vehicle.

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  • Consider plumping up your service menu

    Spring 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 674

    Abstract: Dealerships are finding that it’s easier to sell F&I products at the time of a costly repair, or when the customers’ warranties are about to expire, than it was at the sales closing. As a result, more service writers are being trained to talk about the value of service contracts and prepaid maintenance plans and how to close them. This article discusses sales techniques that work and how to be ready before a customer returns for a visit.

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  • Protecting your assets in a divorce

    Spring 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 787

    Abstract: Divorces can be painful. Hiring an outside financial expert to serve as a consultant can help ease the financial pain. This article shows how an expert can value a dealership and perform other financial tasks to help achieve an equitable distribution of assets that doesn’t spread an owner too thin personally or impair dealership performance. Specifically, it looks at what constitutes a marital asset, the three approaches used to value a dealership, and the distinction between business and personal goodwill.

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  • Is it time to expand? Caution is the name of the game when bulking up for a recovery

    Spring 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 958

    Abstract: Sales are finally recovering in most states, and banks are lending again. So, it might be time for many dealerships to renovate, repair or expand to stay competitive in their market. But how to be sure? This article discusses how to look at market forecasts and examines the scenario analysis tools a CPA can use to evaluate whether an investment makes sense. A sidebar offers some tax reasons why expansion might be a good idea in 2012.

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  • Unclaimed property – It’s not a matter of “finders, keepers”

    Winter 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 504

    Abstract: Every dealership has assets that are in a kind of limbo — long-forgotten checks to customers and other valuables that no one else has claimed. A dealership might be giving little thought to these financial assets, and perhaps improperly treating them as a type of revenue. But the state may try to collect this “unclaimed property.” This article explains the expectations that some states might have of businesses in regard to reporting it.

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  • Retooling pay incentives

    Winter 2012
    Newsletter: Auto Focus

    Price: $225.00, Subscriber Price: $157.50

    Word count: 657

    Abstract: All pay plans should be effective — they need to attract, retain and motivate a talented team. But many fail to meet these objectives, so dealers need to ask whether their pay plans have kept step with recent changes in the labor market. No universal formula works for every dealer, but this article offers six ideas for evaluating a pay plan, such as keeping the plan simple, aligning it with business strategy, and thinking beyond new and used vehicle sales.

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