If you want to find a good tax advisor and professional, then you have got to be attentive and determined. There are a lot of tax professionals nowadays that do not provide the value for your money.
Take note of the following tips:
Know the difference between CPAs and enrolled agents.
Certified public accountants are accountants by profession. They have gone through a qualifying exam and have met requirements. CPAs vary in expertise; some are good in income taxes while others are not. On the other hand, enrolled agents are tax professionals that are licensed through the IRS. They also have different specialization.
If you want to look for a tax professional, then you can refer to the following:
Referrals: Referrals from friends, family members, and relatives can say a lot. Words of mouth can be the most effective form of spreading information. As you receive information from people who have first-hand experience with some tax advisors, they can tell you not only the good side of hiring a specific tax advisor but also the bad side of some tax advisors you know. There are also second-degree referrals or those that come from a friends’ friend or a relatives’ relative, co-workers, and so on. It can also be a great place to look for recommendations.
List of tax advisors online: There are online places where you can find tax advisors. This could include Angie’s List, Thumbtack, and so on. Some require premium accounts in exchange for access to local reviews and a wide range of choices.
Organizations of qualified tax advisors. Certain organizations have a database of CPAs. You can find who specializes in what and other important details.
Before deciding on a tax advisor, consider the following points:
Perform a background check. It is very important to have a background check. Background checks usually involve past clients, experiences, education, qualifications, and more.
Verify qualifications and credentials. This is also an important factor in finding a good tax advisor. There are some professionals who do are not honest with their qualifications and credentials. That is why it is also recommended by the IRS that one check the Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) and other credentials.
Look for compatibility. Check if the person you chose fits your tax needs. Is he or she specialized in your area? Do your vacant times meet? Is he or she willing to give out personal numbers for you to reach? How much is his or her charge? Is it good enough for you? Are the services being offered worth the money he or she is asking for? What are the perks or freebies for acquiring his or her services? What does he or she want from you? Does he or she know what to do in case of problems?
Asking questions is very important in finding a tax advisor that fits you best. Do not settle for less. Know that it is your hard-earned money that is involved here. Hiring someone who is not fit for it could cause you more. Take your time.
The most important thing is this: Do not choose someone who lets you sign blank forms. It is a red flag. It could spell your doom.