A good Sarasota CPA can be a huge benefit to your business, but a bad CPA can have just as big of an impact. From saving you money on taxes to helping you manage the financial aspect of your business, a CPA is a smart investment for your company, especially if accounting isn’t your area of expertise.
Not all CPAs in Sarasota are created equal, though. Read on for a list of things that you should ask when hiring a CPA.
1. What Types of Clients Do You Work With?
Your accountant should understand your business and know the ins and outs of your industry. An accountant who primarily works with retail businesses, for example, may not know much about the hospitality industry and likely may not be an expert on tips and wages and how they should be reported.
Ask a potential CPA if they have experience working with your particular type of business and if they have references from current or past clients in your industry.
2. Are You Licensed in My State?
To call themselves CPAs, accountants must be licensed to practice public accounting by the state they are operating in. A licensed CPA firm is held to specific state standards and is bound by their CPA license.
If you want someone who can actually be held accountable by the state for any type of misconduct, you need a licensed CPA.
3. Who Will Be Handling My Financials and Taxes?
If your CPA is going to be outsourcing any of the work, you want to know that upfront. The person that they outsource to might do a fine job, but it will be difficult to communicate with them if you don’t know who they are.
Knowing who is going to be handling your particular financials and taxes is important, as that can have a big impact on your business.
4. What Are Your Fees and How Do You Bill?
Before you hire a CPA, get a cost estimate from them. If they are familiar with your industry, they will likely be able to give an accurate estimate on how much it will be for regular bookkeeping and tax preparation.
Some accounting firms bill hourly while others charge a flat rate. The amount of work you have for them and how often you will utilize their services will inform what the best approach is for you.
5. Are You Cloud-Based or Paper-Based?
Which type of CPA you choose is based on your preferences. If you prefer a more old-school, paper-based approach, where you give your accountant hard copies of documents for tax returns and tax planning is done in person, then a cloud-based CPA that is tech-savvy and does everything virtually may not be the right choice for you.
Hire a Sarasota CPA for Your Business
A Sarasota CPA can help you get your business financials on track, handle your taxes, and make sure that your books look good. Hiring a CPA doesn’t have to be overwhelming if you do your homework and use our list of questions to make sure they are a good fit for you.
If you’re ready to hire a CPA in Sarasota, contact us at Sterling Tax & Accounting today. You can use our easy online scheduling tool to book an appointment with us.
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