How to Find a Business Accountant for Your Startup

how to find a small business accountant

For some businesses with a physical presence, a full or part-time accountant in-office makes sense. This person can handle payroll, accounts payable and receivable, balance bank accounts and calculate cash flow projections. For more flexible or service-based business types, either an in-office or remote accountant can suffice. An accountant is essentially the financial backbone of your business. Accountants may be involved with creating business processes, which include controls to ensure that assets are managed properly.

Seeking out the cheapest option can leave you with subpar service and without the support you really need. Part of your accountant’s job is keeping up with tax law changes and leveraging them to save you money. If you want to make the smartest possible decisions for your business, you’ll need a knowledgeable financial resource. There are several crucial reasons to hire a small business accountant, but finding the right one can be a challenge. Read on to learn if outsourcing accounting is a good idea for your organization and how to find a small business accountant. Kelly Main is staff writer at Forbes Advisor, specializing in testing and reviewing marketing software with a focus on CRM solutions, payment processing solutions, and web design software.

How much does an accountant cost?

CPAs and accountants tend to focus on particular niches or specialties, such as small-business owners, high-net-worth individuals, or clients who work in certain industries. “For example, if you’re a doctor, talk to other doctors and ask who they use,” he said. You’ll need someone with experience preparing tax returns and financial documents for companies of a similar size and revenue to yours.

how to find a small business accountant

Any company that must highlight cash flow retained earnings, or any other changes in a position financially must use a double-entry accounting system. However, if your business is incorporated, or if it’s your sole source of income, the single-entry method just won’t cut it. The double entry method leaves less room for error, making it the better choice for balancing complex books. With the help of cloud accounting software for small-business bookkeeping, you can pretty much automate the process. A business accountant is your expert in managing financial information because they’re trained in the fine details of assets, debts and revenue. With a strong business accountant reviewing your finances, your company can develop informed business strategies that promote growth, and you’ll be organized year-round — not just at tax time.

How to Find the Best CPA or Tax Accountant Near You

If you have a complicated accounting situation, you probably don’t want someone who just graduated from accounting school. Look for an accountant with at least two years of experience under their belt, if not more. When searching for an accountant, you want to be sure that they have the proper credentials. If they claim to be a CPA, this means that they have passed the exam and are licensed by your state. CPAs also fulfill continuing education requirements to keep their licenses active, and they stay up to date on all federal, state, and local tax laws.

When you account for deferred expenses, your bookkeeping will reflect the month you actually enjoy the benefit of the expense rather than the month in which you paid it. As illustrated above, between the two basic methods of accounting (cash or accrual), you can best account for prepaid expenses using the accrual method. This means you’ll have an accurate valuation of the item and your expenses related to depreciation are accurate.

Tax Benefits

For example, if you are a real estate business, it is best to engage a firm that has accounting expertise in real estate. If you would prefer to work in person with your accountant—whether that’s at your office or their location—it’s important to ask about their communication style and how the tasks will be performed. Another consideration is their availability—can they work on their own time or would you prefer someone to be available for specific hours each day?