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How Do I Choose A Good Tax Accountant

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  • Accountant, Tax, Business Tax
  • Posted date:
  • 28-04-2022
How Do I Choose A Good Tax Accountant

How do I choose the best tax accountant for me?. This article looks at how tax advisers are advantageous for your business and how to pick the right one.

You've decided to hire an accountant to manage your business finances, but the question remains on finding the right accountant for you. 

Every business is different and requires an experienced tax accountant for filing taxes. This article will cover what to look out for when considering hiring an accountant.

The world of UK tax is challenging and confusing. How much tax you owe and when it's due catch many small businesses out annually, so keep reading this article if you find yourself dealing with a self-assessment tax return for the first time.  

How Do I Choose A Good Tax Accountant?

Chartered accountants and tax accountants assist small businesses and the self-employed with their bookkeeping, accounting, and tax returns to HMRC, ensuring no deadlines are missed. 

As the business grows and develops, an accountant or tax adviser will complete other services such as payroll, business planning, financial reporting, and compliance.

While almost any accountant will benefit a business, finding an accountant with relevant qualifications and experience in your business type is ideal. 

It would be best if you were looking for someone you can have a continuing professional relationship with through your business's development, ensuring all the services they offer meet your requirements.

Do I need an accountant for my small business?

While you may understand tax law and can manage your personal taxes, hiring professionally qualified advisers and tax professionals for your business can be an excellent investment. You can expect yourself to work with at least one accountant during your working years. 

Whether your business expenses are at the right stage or not currently, you can get ahead of the game and assess the accountancy situation. 

Let's look at some of the top reasons why you may want to bring a tax adviser onto your team: 

Business Taxes Are More Complex

There is no doubt that business taxes are more complicated than personal, especially as a business develops. Certified accountants have experience working with sole traders and self-employed individuals to establish a business plan, which is invaluable expertise.

How Do I Choose A Good Tax Accountant?

Accountants Are Up-to-Date With The Tax World

Any good accountant with a good reputation will know about the ever-changing tax world, ensuring you never lose money from a personal mistake.

 Receiving tax advice from a professional body means you never miss on deductions or credits or file your tax return incorrectly, receiving a hefty fine from HM Revenue and Customs.

Their knowledge of the financial world means your business gets the most up-to-date information.

Avoid Mistakes

Perhaps the most common reason people use the services of a tax accountant is to prevent themselves from experiencing penalties and steep fines. If you incorrectly complete your self-assessment tax return or are late to the deadline, you are liable to be fined a large amount from HMRC.

Hiring an accountant to complete your tax planning and ensure all kinks are ironed out will mean you are only paying what you owe. 

Tips For Choosing An Accountant

You should consider a few tips before hiring an accountant, such as the accountant's fees and their location, along with the accounting software to be used.

If this is your first time using an accountant for this particular business or start-up, you should look for professional indemnity insurance, as this will cover the cost of compensating clients for loss or damage.

 When they hold professional indemnity insurance, you are more protected as a business owner in the event something goes wrong.

Is this accountant right for me?

Depending on your personal circumstances, you will require unique services from your accountant. 

While there is no legal requirement for accountants to hold completed relevant qualifications, you should check they are recognised with ACCA, CIMA, ICAS or ICAEW - or another one of the leading UK professional bodies.

You must ensure they are familiar with your business or industry to receive adequate business advice in the future. Of course, accountants do and can learn on the job, but if your budget is stretching to pay an accountant, you want to have peace of mind they know what they're talking about.

Size Of Your Accounting Firm

The firm's size will affect how suited they are to your requirements, as smaller firms will have more experience working closely with sole traders and self-employed. Of course, there are a few different types of accountants. 

You should always work with one involved with a professional body, and they hold professional indemnity.

Your options are:    

  • Certified Public Accountants
  • Chartered Accountant
  • Member of the Institute of Financial Accountants
  • Member of the Institute of International Accountants 

The highest qualified members are Chartered Accountants, having completed a degree level in their studies and significant workplace experience.

This isn't to say that hiring a certified public accountant (CPA) will not provide you with financial and business advice, but not all CPAs will have relevant experience in bookkeeping, financial management and tax preparation that you may need.

Ratings And Reviews

One of the most important factors to check before hiring an accountant is their existing clients and reviews. You should ask during your initial meeting whether they have worked with anyone else in your trade sector or something similar, ensuring they are qualified enough to provide tailored advice.

Chartered Accountants

They may provide you with testimonials from previous clients, showing background checks of their work with similar sectors. Ideally, you can ask them how they have dealt with company growth in the past, giving you an idea how they will handle your needs in the future. 

Another thing you can do is contact your local Chamber of Commerce. They can provide you with a list of tax accountants in the area via professional networks, meaning they are credible and trustworthy.

The National Association of Enrolled Agents and the National Association of Tax Professionals are the two most noteworthy.

Location Of Your Accountant

Your accountant should be near your business in an ideal world, as you will occasionally meet for face-to-face conversations. However, a lot of their work can be conducted remotely, but the right adviser will encourage you to meet in person to discuss your business in greater depth. 

Since Making Tax Digital (MTD), a lot of the work is submitted and filed online, with your accountant having access to accounting software you would not otherwise. 

This gives companies the option to access their financial information online, simultaneously with their accountant, to receive up to date information.

Depending on how you want to contact your accountant and remain in touch, you can work with one on the other side of the world - but this is for you to decide. 

If you are regularly travelling, it may be in your interest to work with an accountant in another country with a firm of a similar size to your company, as this will come in handy when you are being audited or applying for a loan.

What can an accountant do for my business?

The depth at which an accountant can benefit your business varies between sectors and how much you want them to do. A good accountant will provide bookkeeping, payroll assistance, improve your tax efficiency and much more.

In terms of tax, hiring an accountant to manage your tax returns and business tax means buying yourself insurance and a professional opinion. 

A tax expert can ensure you are not paying more tax than you should be, or less, as this will get you in trouble with HMRC. 

There are legitimate tax-efficient strategies you can use to reduce tax bills, and your accountant will know of these. There are many forms to complete annually for your tax returns and other legal documents, which an accountant can handle effortlessly and efficiently.

What can an accountant do for my business?

Your business's cash flow will also improve as your accountant establishes a better system for your annual accounts and bookkeeping. 

Daily and monthly bookkeeping are essential, especially when regularly working and trading with suppliers and customers.

Outstanding invoices must be paid regularly and on time, which can be easily forgotten when you have to do this yourself. 

If you find yourself and the business in a state of insolvency, you can receive insolvency advice from a good accountant, but this is less likely to happen when your cash flow is improved.

The most important thing to finding the best accountant for you is to ensure you are honest in the first meeting with them and discuss their workflow and previous experience. 

If you want to have more phone calls with your accountant than in-person, be sure to disclose this before you sign on with them.

Get In Touch With our Tax Accountant Today

Are you looking for accounting and payroll in Cheadle Hulme and the surrounding areas of Manchester and Cheshire?

Follow the link below for professional accounting near you.