How to get te best account cost

If you're on the hunt for a local based accountant but you're not sure where to start then there are a variety of elements to take into consideration before you do so.

Advice from friends, local listings and a wander down the high street will all give you some food for thought however, when it comes to finding the right price it's often better to avoid simply finding the cheapest option.

Just remember that sometimes an initial price won't be what you end up paying for an accountant's services and if you're interested in discovering just how costs might begin to escalate then read on and make sure you check all the financial facts prior to signing on the dotted line.

Time to pay the tax man

Always ask for an accountant's approach to VAT before you sign up for their services. It's often the case that firms with fewer accountants are less likely to be registered to VAT and larger companies with more accountants are more likely to be VAT-registered.

Of course, there are always plenty of anomalies to this rule however, best advice is to find out in advance and then pick the right tax bracket to suit you i.e. if you're VAT-registered then choose an accountant who offers the same and vice versa if you're not registered for VAT.

Let's get things started

Working out whether you'd be comfortable with an accountant looking after your finances is dependant on plenty of key motivators with personality, cost and location just 3 defining factors.

The best thing to do is to arrange an initial meeting so you can iron out any creases and see how you feel in the company of your chosen accounts handler. Almost all accountants will offer this sort of meeting as free of charge and it gives both of you a chance to access how well you'll get on working with each other.

If an accountant doesn't offer this meeting as 'complimentary' then don't run away, check out what you'll get from a first meeting because it maybe better in the long run as the costs might form part of an overall package.

Time to pay the piper

Being open and honest with your accountant about your financial situation is exactly what you need to be if you're hoping to get things sorted out as quickly and efficiently as possible.

If you are concerned about meeting a particular payment then don't be afraid to ask for a credit agreement or perhaps a little breathing space.

Flexibility and understanding are two vital components of every good accountant's role so make sure you discuss these sorts of credit terms prior to undertaking any 'set in stone' contract agreements.

How much and when?

Another essential piece of information related to paying your accountant is when they expect you to pay and how much will be expected on each chosen date.

Finding out the consistency of an invoice schedule is a really important thing to know because getting stung by an unexpected invoice or payment request half way through the month is definitely not something that you'd wish to see happen.

Discuss monthly, one-off and overall costs as soon as possible and don't settle for any surprises that you hadn't been told about in advance.

Cash incentives

As with most money-driven service provider, if you can add a few bonus bucks onto your accountant's pay cheque then they're more than likely to start working just that little bit harder for you.

Get any incentives down in writing first so all parties know where they stand and then set your money-maker some goals which will only be rewarded if you also get to see some significant financial returns too.

Accountants are notorious when it comes to working with more than one client and if you can stand out from the rest as a great investment in time, work and sweat then you're much more likely to reap the dividends further along the line.

Whatever you're looking for from your local accountant just make sure you check out exactly what they're offering first. It's a competitive market place and there are a huge variety of personal, cash-related and location-suited options which are going to make one brand or company stand out from the next. Just remember, an accountant is supposed to save you money and if you can find one who is guaranteed to do just that, with all of their costs up front, then you'll be well on your way to financial success in no time at all.

Andy Nuttall is from The Website Waiter which provides the BEST Accountants service to help identify the right local accountant for specific needs and requirements.

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