How well is your accountant looking after you?
Are you getting the following from your accountant?
- An understanding of your business results BEFORE the tax year is finished?
- A proactive level of attention and a sense that you are their priority?
- A level of service that goes beyond your tax return and BAS statements?
- Education and business mentoring to help you become a business machine?
- A macro view of your business, not just a micro understanding?
Many people have a misconception about what they can expect from their accountant. Your accountant shouldn’t be just a bookkeeper. They should be your business and accounts adviser, proactively working with you to help you keep as much of your hard-earned money as is legally possible.
If you answered no to any of the above questions you really should be considering moving accountants ASAP. With the New Year coming it may also be a good time to make a resolution to just get it done!
Many people are actually quite anxious about changing accountants. They think there will be a lot of work getting documents together, that it may be too hard for the new accountant to get on top of your affairs, or that it may even put you on the ATO radar.
These concerns have no factual basis whatsoever. In fact it is very simple to change accountants and you really don’t have to do anything at all except meet your new accountant and provide your most recent tax return and any year to date management accounts.
The steps to change over accountant are:
- Make an appointment and meet your new accountant (at TRAK the first half hour appointment is FREE). Of course you will want to feel that the new accountant is someone you can trust, but you should also assess if they are the best person to provide you with the best business and accounting advice. Some things to check about your new accountant might include:
- Is he/she a Certified Practicing Accountant (CPA)?
- Has he/she been practicing as a CPA for an extended period of time? The longer the better.
- Has he/she had experience as an accountant in a commercial situation (i.e. have they worked as an accountant within a company)?
- Has he/she had experience running other commercial businesses?
- If you feel comfortable and would like to engage the services of your new accountant all you should have to do is sign an engagement letter. Make sure it contains an estimate of the fees and services that you can expect.
- You should be asked to provide a copy of your most recent tax return and any year to date management accounts.
- Your new accountant should send your old accountant correspondence to let them know that they have taken over your accounts and provide them with a list of what will be needed. You should not have to get involved in this at all.
So it’s a pretty straight forward process and don’t worry, it’s all pretty much accounting 101 when it comes to looking over your history and understanding what has been done. We follow the paper trail to find the information we need.
At TRAK Accounting we pride ourselves on our culture of exceptional service and our ability to provide true diversified commercial accounting and tax accounting expertise to our clients. We strongly value our local community and want to help build strong local businesses around us. Keep an eye open for our local educational seminars that will be starting in the New Year.
For more information, guidance and/or advice on this subject, or for a complimentary consultation to review your affairs contact Mark and the team at Trak on 07 5512 6106 or firstname.lastname@example.org.