Who Will Write Your History?
Ernie Neve, CPA
August 21, 2019
Once upon a time, a married couple with two small kids moved out of their starter home. They both work and make decent money. They sold their house for $250,000. And moved into a $600,000 house—their dream home. Now they have a big mortgage with a big interest. And even bigger household expenses. They also have a higher property tax. They now have a dedicated home office, and the wife started a small business. They don’t know it but their tax situation has changed dramatically. If they plan now, they can instantly put more money in their pockets.
With planning, the couple in my example could end up fine. But like many people—as well as many businesses—they're not sure how to make that happen. That’s where we come in.
I love to be the financial quarterback, and that starts with planning. Are you talking to your financial and investment advisors? Is your trust will or estate plan in place? What’s coming up later this year? Are you moving into a bigger house? Selling any rental properties? Buying or starting a business? Those are just a few of the questions I might have for a client.
I have clients with three employees and clients with over three hundred. Big or small, every client wants to be successful—but most don’t want to be bookkeepers or accountants. So we do it for them. We ask, “What numbers do you need to know every day, every week, and every month to run your business?” Then we give them those numbers and handle the rest ourselves. We run the back office so they can run the business.
That comes full circle—back to being a little proactive. When we know the score, we can plan for the next tax bill. Back in 2010, I came up with “three seasons” of our year. They’re a little different than the ones on your TAX calendar, but this is how we think of things:
January 1 to April 15 is “tax season”, but its really “tax preparation and compliance season” That’s the time when we’re preparing business and personal tax returns for our clients.
April 15 to September 15 is “tax resolution season.” From trouble paying taxes to IRS audits, we solve our clients’ tax problems. We make sure each client is 100 percent compliant and in good standing with all taxing authorities, third party creditors, banks, etc.
October 1 to December 31 is “tax planning season.” We’re making sure that our clients take the required steps, proactive, to minimize the tax bill come next April. Every client is offered our tax planning service.
By working with clients year-round, we help them plan for success—so you keep more of what you earn. That’s our Unique Selling Proposition (it’s where we ADD value). We’re proactive. Where other accountants record history, we help our clients write their history.
Remember the couple from the example? If they come in before they move, there’s a lot we can do. We’d start with a tax plan and tax projection. There’s a lot we can do for them—and for you—if we start planning now.