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CPA tax prep cost?

Old 03-29-2019, 09:56 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by SouthpawHD View Post
No he didn't - he estimated an approximation of what might have been in the bag. As some have stated, it's not as simple as just dumping a few numbers, therefore exact details are what is needed.

Also, he didn't say how he gave them the info and how complete it was. Usually, the data entry is pushed down to the lowest billing rate it can be done competently. If the client brings everything in at the beginning, things go the smoothest. Every time we have to put down the return and stop working on it to fire off an email or make a phone call, that adds time. Depending on who you will allow to call you takes time as well. I have clients who don't like staff or senior staff to call them and only want the manager or partner over their account to call. Now the staff have to stop work, wait on manager or partner to call the client, then get the info and finish the return.

A quarter hour here and there between people with billing rates between $100 - $400 hour plus really adds up. There are so many variables it is hard to say what is fair. I have clients who would insist they are simple returns with nothing on them. They don't mention that they turn in only 50% of the info in the first time. Or their brokerage statements have a few multi-tiered PTPs. Or they refinanced their mortgage and didn't include the settlement statement.

My advice is to fill out the questions on the organizer or at least read them so it can trigger things you haven't thought of, include everything you had before and mark off anything that is gone and include all the supporting documents you have. You can include all your receipts for medical, taxes, charity, etc but also include a summary sheet so I can go off that and maybe scan the support for a minute.



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Old 03-30-2019, 05:13 PM
  #42  
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I will add this on the K1’s, should have been done anyway, but you have to keep up with basis now on the return for QBI

Like couple others said there is a LOT more than just plugging in numbers, lot of stuff we “just know “

Had a client in my office other day and she had tried to do her own return and was kind of bewildered at how quick I can enter information and go through what they have. Keep in mind we have very good software that we use but still a lot of knowledge from school of hard knocks .

I can do most tax returns in my sleep and actually enjoy doing returns that challenge me
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Old 03-30-2019, 05:32 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by SouthpawHD View Post
Well it's not a "simple" tax return. You have K-1s (NOT K-9s as you called them), which can be cumbersome to enter depending on the nature of your businesses.

You also have a 1099-DIV and possibly a 1099-B, which may or may not contain a multitude of dividend and stock/fund transactions.

Plus you have state return to do, which generally includes adjustments from your K-1s.

$800 is a little steep, but not out of line.

I would give $50 to anyone above who said it was an easy return if they would get it done in less than 2 hours!
semd me the 50 bucks. Guarantee I can do it in under an hour provided the taxpayer provides me with all the needed information to accurately prepare. I do nearly identical returns daily. Not a big deal at all. My average return is a MFJ, 2 w2ís, 2 IRAís, and a schedule E or 2. Average time in a return is <1 hour
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Old 03-30-2019, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Erobinson1 View Post


semd me the 50 bucks. Guarantee I can do it in under an hour provided the taxpayer provides me with all the needed information to accurately prepare. I do nearly identical returns daily. Not a big deal at all. My average return is a MFJ, 2 w2ís, 2 IRAís, and a schedule E or 2. Average time in a return is <1 hour
oh and my average fee for that would be 239$ so yes heís high!
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Old 03-30-2019, 06:22 PM
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Thatís a $175-$200 return for me. And if all the info is there it wonít take an hour.

Last edited by Stickbo; 03-30-2019 at 06:45 PM.
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Old 03-30-2019, 07:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Erobinson1 View Post


semd me the 50 bucks. Guarantee I can do it in under an hour provided the taxpayer provides me with all the needed information to accurately prepare. I do nearly identical returns daily. Not a big deal at all. My average return is a MFJ, 2 w2ís, 2 IRAís, and a schedule E or 2. Average time in a return is <1 hour

Damn bro you ainít covering overhead.
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Old 03-30-2019, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Lobstercatcher229 View Post
I spend 1000 for my S-Corp filing and 350 for my personal return.
I think mine went up to 950 combined for those 2 this year. A $200 increase. And for me worth every penny.
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Old 03-31-2019, 04:15 AM
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The lowest we charge is $500..... and that's is a really simple tax return. Lowest business would be $750 ...
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Old 03-31-2019, 04:28 AM
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Originally Posted by LongIslandFisherman View Post
The lowest we charge is $500..... and that's is a really simple tax return. Lowest business would be $750 ...
And that is LI.

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Old 03-31-2019, 05:57 AM
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We keep our business data on a spreadsheet, C form, multiple 1099s from clients, 1099s from mineral payments, SS payments, retirement payments. Total cost $120, TurboTax.
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Old 03-31-2019, 05:57 AM
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Originally Posted by tprice View Post



Damn bro you ainít covering overhead.
And that is why some accountants/tax preparers are better than others - they see and understand the big picture, not only with themselves but also with their clients.

Also, "cheapening" or discounting your services make it nothing more than a simple commodity.
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Old 03-31-2019, 06:18 AM
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I own a LLC Landscaping business with 3 employees plus wife's and mine w-2 and investments and my CPA charges 400 for business and personal. Cant complain one bit.
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Old 03-31-2019, 07:53 AM
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I pay $400 for wife and I filing jointly, all w2 and div, two IRAs, and a multi family and also a separate return for the daughter takes about 50 minutes for everything.
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Old 03-31-2019, 08:21 AM
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If you are paying under your fair share of federal income taxes and you haven't been audited by the IRS, your CPA's is underpaid.
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Old 03-31-2019, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by SouthpawHD View Post
Well it's not a "simple" tax return. You have K-1s (NOT K-9s as you called them)
I file a stack of K-9's every year.
Have 5 dogs - I'm claiming their dependent azzes


To the OP - you are getting zero value from that retainer expense.

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