How to find a local accountant

Choosing the right accountant is an important decision so it makes sense to do some research before engaging anyone’s services. Working with a good accountant can make a significant difference to the success of your business so take the time to make the right choice. Here is a checklist that will help you:

  • Working with a local accountant makes sound business sense. You don’t want to be travelling the length and breadth of the country to have meetings and a local accountant will be more established in the community that you work in which could potentially be beneficial to your business.
  • Research online and in your local press to find accountants that are well established, have a professional looking website and have a good reputation. Ask other local business owners and people in your network to see if they can make a recommendation.
  • Check for qualifications. You need to ensure that the accountant you choose has the necessary qualifications to do the job and that they are part of a professional body, which is always a good indicator of their competence.
  • Narrow your list down to 2 or 3 accountancy firms and arrange meetings with them to discuss your requirements.
  • During the meetings identify if they offer the full array of services that you’re looking for.
  • Do they genuinely seem interested in your objectives and what you want to achieve with your business? Do you think you will get on with them? Both of these questions are crucial for establishing long term relationships. You need to work with somebody you like and trust who has your best interests at heart.
  • Ask questions about outsourcing. Some accountancy practices outsource tasks to other countries so you need to be clear on this and decide whether you have any concerns.
  • Will you work with your accountant throughout the year or just at year end? To get the most out of tax management and wealth protection then it makes sense to have an ongoing business relationship that is pro-active rather than re-active.

Adding value to your business

Finding an accountant that shares your vision for the business and where you want to take it is vital. You need to be open-minded to advice and sometimes be told things you don’t want to hear but that’s all part of the business relationship.

The costs associated with working with an accountant will depend on whether you’re a sole trader, partnership, limited company and how complex your business affairs are. A good accountant will be able to tailor a service that is appropriate for your business and will be constantly looking to add value.

If you would like an informal chat to discuss you’re accounting requirements then please do not hesitate to give us a call.