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What to look for in a new CPA Firm

Author: Brittany Olsen

When it comes to things we aren’t experts in ourselves, it’s in our best interest to turn to the experts. If your car breaks down, the majority of us go and get it looked at by a mechanical expert. If your teeth get knocked out, the majority of us go and get them looked at by a dental professional. So when your taxes start to get more and more complex, why would you not look to find an experienced tax professional? The world of tax is more of a mystery to most than it is understandable. It’s engrained in literally everything we do. With tax laws changing all the time, sometimes even monthly, it is almost impossible to stay on top of everything without it being your full time job. The common perception of hiring a tax professional is that it is going to be your mom and dad’s accountant, or you’re just going to be another numbered client in a large firm’s tax mill.

Customer Service & Client Satisfaction

What you need to look for in a new CPA firm is their dedication to client satisfaction and customer service. The one main pain point I have heard time and time again is “I sent my accountant an email, or left a voicemail, asking them a few questions and never heard back.” Finding a firm that is committed to being respectful of your time and cares about your concerns is on the forefront of what you should be looking for. When you begin looking for a new firm and reach out, they should be genuinely interested in who you are as a person and how they can help you grow. You are more than just a tax return! If the firms qualifying questions are on an online form or are based on how much money you make alone, then that should be your first red flag. Most importantly, you want to find a firm that wants to help you for the long haul. The tax world is complex, and just as you have the same primary care physician for your health, you’ll want someone you can trust and who knows your background preparing your returns year after year.

Tax Specific Specializations

Another key factor to look for is what the firm offers. Are they catering to other fields outside of just tax? You wouldn’t want a doctor who is also a veterinarian and runs a donut shop. You want to find someone who is focused solely on their trade. Finding a firm that focuses solely on tax is extremely important, and a lot of the time rare. Within that, having CPA’s and tax professionals who are individually specialized in certain tax areas adds a whole other layer of knowledge. For example: trust and estates, donor advise funds/private foundations, all things real estate, inherited wealth, etc…

Team Mentality

Lastly, you want to find a firm that has a team approach. So many firms out there call themselves firms, but are just silo solo practitioners. When your tax team works with a team approach at their firm you can rest easy knowing they can tap in to the collective knowledge of the whole firm. You’re not just pigeonholed to one person and their skill set. With most things in life, coming at it with a team approach will yield the most effective and successful results.

At Kingsbery CPAs, we understand that hiring a CPA is a difficult and long term decision.  We spend hours with our potential new clients making sure it is a good fit for both parties and that we can deliver the value our clients deserve.

To learn more about this topic contact Kingsbery CPAs today.