Jameson has a question for us. He says, “would you recommend looking for a one-size-fits-all professional tax and investment advice, or would you find one person for taxes and another for investments?”
When it comes to taxes, it’s important to be more specific about what you’re asking. For example, are you talking about tax planning or tax preparation? As someone who has worked in the industry as an accountant, I can tell you that these two are not necessarily the same thing. Tax preparation involves the compliance of doing the tax return, while tax planning is more about what will be on the return next year.
There’s also an industry trend where some financial CPAs have the ability to not only do compliance work but also to offer consulting services to add value to their clients. This trend started in the mid-90s when many CPA firms started adding financial planning arms to their firms.
However, I think that it’s hard to be good at everything. Over time, some CPA firms have spun off their financial planning wings because they realized that these are two different businesses. While there may be some financial planners who are also CPAs and can do both, I suggest asking them what they want to be when they grow up. It’s also important to find out if they’re just using this as a bridge method to become financial planners, or if they think they can do it all.
Ultimately, it’s hard for a scalable growth firm to have one person do both tax preparation and financial planning, as it requires hiring CPAs for tax preparation and financial planners for financial planning. I used to have a tax preparation business, but I sold it because my passion was in financial planning. Working a tax season can be grueling, so it’s important to find out what the person you’re working with is truly passionate about.