In northeastern Ohio, this is the time of year when our windshields are either covered with snow and frost, dew, or the sunlight just after sunrise or just before sunset is blinding us. Whatever it is, we can’t see much until we take some time to clear off the windows – or wait till the sun gets off the horizon. Visibility while driving is critical. What about visibility when you’re working on your IFTA filing?
Freezing Your IFTA Filing? Procrastination
There is a school of thought that we don’t pay the government a single penny more or a single minute before it’s due. As a procrastinator, I might justify my “I’ll do it later” with that mindset. But I have to be honest. I’m just a procrastinator. I push things off to the very last minute.
Is that so bad when it comes to your IFTA filing?
It can be if I’ve waited till the end of the month and maybe don’t have enough cash to pay it. Or my credit card balance is too high to cover it.
If you have to wait to get paid, or to pay down your credit card to make your IFTA payment, that’s not the same as procrastination. The first is managing your cash flow. Maybe it’s been a bad month, or you’ve got an outstanding invoice from a client who hasn’t paid you in a timely manner. You know – because you’ve checked – how much your IFTA filing will cost and you’re handling it maturely and carefully. My procrastination is not the same thing. I can be an ostrich with my head stuck in the sand when I have to pay IFTA. I just don’t wanna do it.
So how do people know what their IFTA payment will be?
Wiping Off the Dew – Not Paying Attention to Details
It’s spring here in Ohio. At least, that’s what the calendar tells. There’s no predicting what’s going to be on our windshields when we come out in the morning. Frost – we have to deal with it. Scrap it off and get going. But dew? It’s so… wet. You can’t really scrap it off. And you know that in a few minutes, you’ll be moving and it will all evaporate, so maybe it’s not worth trying to find a paper towel or spare napkin to wipe them off. Or, you might try the trick that I use every day: lower the passenger and driver-side windows so that the seals will take care of the dew.
I try it every day. I didn’t say it worked.
Windshield wipers take care of the long view out the front of our vehicles. But the side views?
Your IFTA filing takes two perspectives.
First: The direct view. We all know that we must file on specific dates and you’ll pay attention the day before. Or the night it’s due. Whatever. That’s fine. But what if you could take a snapshot of what’s going on with your IFTA beforehand and prepare yourself for it?
Second: A sideways perspective. Instead of just doing the next thing – pay IFTA – you get prepared on a weekly basis. This short-term view of your IFTA filing takes the sticker shock out of IFTA when you file.
Set aside the cash regularly. By using an IFTA report that’s based on routings and ELD, you know to the penny what you owe. And you may be able to help reduce that IFTA bill by making choices about where to buy fuel. It doesn’t seem like it’s an important detail where you buy your next tank of fuel. You may choose to buy from states that have lower taxes. But once you drive through those other states, you’re going to pay IFTA for those miles.
Sunlight Shows Us the Truth
We believe it’s key to know all the details about your trucking business. It’s when we can see how much money is coming in and how much is going out (and where it’s going) that allows us to build a successful owner-operator trucking business.
Having immediate access to your IFTA filing report gives you tools to manage your cash flow and prepare for future payments. That’s only one part of what a good trucking software package can do for you.
Using a software package that handles your IFTA is a no-brainer. But you need a total package that does more – and does it together with a one-time data entry process.
Putting all the pieces of a trucking business for either an owner-operator or a fleet means you have access to all the details clearly and in a format that makes sense to you. A trucker’s business reports should include a report that shows miles per state, revenue per mile, and expenses per mile.
Does your trucking business software show you all those details? And do your IFTA?
Make the brilliant choice to try out TruckingOffice trucking software.
Try out TruckingOffice PRO trucking software today for free. You can even enter last quarter’s data and get an immediate IFTA report for your IFTA filing – no charge! Give it a try now and get started on building your trucking business. You’ll see that this software is what you need to grow!