An accountant can help you analyze your income and expenses to give you control over your cash flow. Your accountant is a financial advisor, providing professional services that businesses need all year long – not just at tax time. Consult him or her when you first decide to start a business, for an annual check-up, when considering an expansion, or when you need ongoing support.
How can an accountant help you?
- By setting up and maintaining efficient record-keeping systems.
- By showing you how to handle payroll.
- By preparing tax returns and advising you on tax-related questions.
- By helping you prepare budgets and forecasts.
- By helping you prepare financial documentation.
- By helping you determine your current financial picture.
- By helping you secure financing through a banker.
- By helping you develop a business plan.
- By giving you objective help to evaluate the business.
Tips for selecting an accountant….
- Ask for references.
- Select an accountant with whom you feel comfortable talking. Like other professional affiliations, your relationship with your accountant is long-term.
- Avoid the “brother-in-law” syndrome. Select an accountant who is professional and thorough.
- Try to find an accountant who has some experience in your field.
When you meet with an accountant…
- Bring current business records and tax returns.
- Bring your business plan.
- Bring payroll reports and records, if applicable.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
To maximize the results of meeting with an accountant, come prepared with a list of questions and topics you want to discuss. Bring all paperwork needed to present an accurate picture of your business and be candid with the accounting professional about your needs.