Need to know how to find the right CPA for your business? There are several questions you should be asking.
If your small business is growing, congratulations! That’s a big deal—one that deserves to be celebrated. Now that your business is taking off, though, there’s one thing you really need to know: how to find the right CPA for your business.
If your hiring method looks like Googling “CPA in my area” and choosing the first one you see, then you’re doing it wrong. A Certified Public Accountant is an important role in your business, and it’s not one you should take lightly.
After all, your CPA is the one who will advise you on your taxes and accounting. They also help you file your taxes so that you stay in the clear with the IRS while taking advantage of every tax benefit possible.
There are plenty of CPAs out there, but not all of them are right for you. That’s why, at Foray Business Group, we cultivate relationships with multiple CPAs so that we can recommend the right fit for our diverse clients.
So how do you know who the right fit is? To find a great CPA for your business, it’s important you start by asking 5 questions. These questions can help you narrow down your search and make a wise final decision.
1. Do they handle taxes in your state or in multiple states?
If your business operates in more than one state, you’ll need someone who knows how to file taxes in those states. Each state is unique when it comes to tax rules, so it’s important to have a CPA who can navigate you through those various rules.
But perhaps your small business only operates in your resident state. If that’s the case, then at the very least, you need to hire a CPA who handles taxes there. You don’t want to run into issues with the IRS because you hired the wrong professional!
2. Do they have experience in your industry?
I’m not saying your CPA needs to be an expert in your field. But depending on your industry, it’s important that he or she has a basic understanding of how your industry works and the tax laws surrounding it.
For instance, restaurant food and takeout meals are subject to sales tax in some states, though not in others (another reason to make sure your CPA understands tax laws in all states you operate in).
It’s also helpful for your CPA to understand your industry so that you can take advantage of every potential tax benefit. A construction company will have different benefits available than a clothing store will. So make sure your CPA knows how to help you get those benefits.
3. How often will they communicate with you during the off season?
Some CPAs work with you during tax season, and then you don’t hear from them for the rest of the year. We don’t recommend that kind of relationship with your accountant.
The best CPAs will touch base with you every so often throughout the year to make sure you’re on track with your accounting or to answer questions you might have.
Those are the kinds of CPAs Foray Business Group collaborates with!
4. Do they do a Q3 review?
Some small-business owners wonder: How often should I meet with my CPA?
It’s a good idea to meet with your CPA every quarter. But at the very least, you should do a third-quarter review with them. That review can help you make sure you’re on track for the rest of the year. And if you’re not, your CPA can help you adjust.
Pro Tip: Make your reviews and meetings with your CPA as smooth as possible by hiring a good bookkeeper! At Foray Business Group, our accounting team keeps your books clean and organized—something every CPA loves to see.
5. Will they handle your business and personal finances?
As a small-business owner, it’s a good idea to hire a CPA who can handle your personal finances as well as your business finances.
We recommend this because it’s easy for small-business owners to fall into the trap of mixing personal and business money. A CPA who can see both sides of your finances can point out exactly how to separate the business and personal—as well as how to make the most of your personal investments.
If you’d like some extra guidance in finding the right CPA, reach out to us! At Foray Business Group, we maintain close connections with CPAs in our local area and are happy to recommend the right fit for you.