Having a good accountant, for your personal and business finances, is essential. A good accountant can advise you on how to save tax, keep your tax affairs up to date, and help you earn more to keep for yourself.
But How Will You Know Where To Find Someone Who Is Right For You?
So much depends on you and the size of business you run. People running very small businesses are not going to need the sort of complicated work on their accounts that larger companies require. Tax laws are continually changing, however, and a do-it-yourself approach is not advisable unless you really understand the taxation system.
When considering working with a new accountant, it would be a good idea to at least call them to discuss their service before meeting them. The way they answer the phone can give you a good indication of how it would be if you were their client. Many people want to be able to contact their accountant quickly, or at least get called back in a day. If he/she is never in the office and often unavailable this might drive you mad. How you get on with the person concerned is crucial. This is such a personal thing that only you will know. Make sure you get it right.
Don’t They Just Do Tax?
Ask them what services they can offer you. Of course they will do your accounts and tax return. Perhaps they can take over your book-keeping and payroll for you, freeing you to do what you’re best at in your business. Regular management accounts should help you control your business better. Can they provide these for you if you need them? Could they help you grow your business by regular discussions with you on areas in the accounts that could be improved, such as cost reductions or sales improvements?
What’s It Going To Cost?
If an accountant quotes you rock bottom prices they may find it difficult to get your work done on time and could cut corners because they can’t afford the staff. You won’t find they have too much extra time to give you if you need a discussion with them. On the other hand, if they are charging much more than their competitors, are they offering you enough extra services to justify the higher cost?
Why It’s Worth Thinking About What You Want From An Accountant
If you find an accountant you like and trust, who gives you the service you need, you will probably stay with them throughout the life of your business. If you sign up to someone you haven’t thought about carefully beforehand, you could find yourself going through the rigmarole of looking elsewhere later on.
If you are just starting up, or want to change your accountant, call me on 01737 559211. I specialise in small business tax and accountancy.