Top Ten Reasons to Switch CPA Firms
1. Their Biggest Claim to Fame is "You were never audited"
The fact is their preparation of your return has little effect on whether you are audited. Yes, they must prepare it accurately and honestly - but their job is not to work for the Internal Revenue Service and discourage legitimate tax strategies and deductions. Even though an audit is a pain in the neck - I would actually prefer to have an accountant who represented me in an audit with no change in my tax liability
2. Their Second Biggest Claim to Fame is They Went to College with the Founder
It is great to be loyal to your friends - but this is business. You owe it to yourself to speak with other CPA firms to see how they can help you develop strategies to minimize your tax liability, protect your assets and increase your retirement benefits
3. Their Fees Seem to Increase in Proportion to Your Profits
It is sad to see how much some of my clients are being charged by their CPA firm for substandard to average work. Many accountants see your financial success as a reason to charge higher fees for their services.
4. They are not Proactive in Saving you Tax Dollars
They never offer advice on how you can take advantage of tax favored retirement plans, savings plans or personal benefits. They simply fill out your tax return, prepare your financial statements and send you a bill
5. They are Unable (or Unwilling) to Explain Things in a Way you Understand
Some accountants are terribly poor communicators and can't explain anything - even to other accountants. Others seem to use the industry jargon as a way of keeping their clients in the dark and making themselves seem all that more valuable.
6. They Always Put Your Tax Return on Extension
Your information is ready by the end of January, but for some reason your tax return is always put on extension and filed 6 months after the original due date. This is an indication that you are not an important client to them. Find an accountant who is willing to file your taxes on time.
7. They Have a Large Personal Tax Return Practice for Non-Business Owners
This is usually an indication that they are more geared to the consumer market rather than the business market. You deserve an accounting firm that is dedicated to the business market.
8. They Love to Tell You Why You Can't Do It
No matter what you suggest, from saving taxes to buying a building to acquiring another firm, their knee-jerk reaction is to tell you why you can't do it. Most accountants are risk adverse to a fault and bask in the glory of telling their clients why they can't do something. They somehow think that this is serving your best interests. The problem is that I already know why I can't do it. What I am really looking for is a creative strategy to help me do it anyway.
9. They Have Been Your Accountant for More than Five Years
Your company has probably grown tremendously over the last five years and so has your need for quality advice. The accountant that could serve a 5 person firm may not meet the needs of a 20 person firm. The accountant that could serve a 100 person firm may not be qualified to serve a 300 person firm.
10. They Have Zero to Few Other A/E Clients
Yes. We are special and so is our industry. We deserve the services of an accounting firm that specializes in the A/E industry.