Never worry about
taxes again

From afterthought to taken care of

Most accountants take a once-a-year approach to taxes.

They file your tax return once a year and wave goodbye until next tax season. And, everything that happens in between is your problem.

But, running an agency is stressful. Your taxes are much more complicated than they used to be. And, you could use a support system throughout the rest of the year to answer questions, answer IRS love letters, and do a little proactive tax planning.

Tax essentials is that support system.

Part One: your tax return

A tax return is a tax return. Nothing sexy about it.

We’ll start with your accounting records (which I’ll review), your various tax docs, and a short questionnaire. And, at the end, you’ll get an accurate tax return and quarterly estimates.

I can’t promise you’ll the LaRgEsT rEfUnD eVeR, but you’ll receive the correct refund you deserve after all your deductions, credits, and tax payments have been accounted for.

Part Two: year-round tax support

Most accountants don’t specifically charge for support. They charge you for just the tax return (and maybe the monthly books). Then, y’all hang out in this weird ‘How many questions am I allowed to ask before I get a bill?’ limbo, which doesn’t exactly set you up for success.

Instead, you’ll be able to reach me whenever you have a quick tax question, get a letter from the IRS, or need a hand. And, I’ll reach out every few weeks to check in on things and remind you about important tax deadlines (eg, tax return deadline, W2/1099 deadline, quarterly estimate deadlines, year-end tax review deadline, etc).

Part Three: consult & year-end tax review

We’ll have two meetings per year: a pick-my-brain tax consult and a year-end tax review.

The tax consult is a chance for you to ask all your heavy-hitting questions (eg, how do S-corps work, what should I know about payroll, etc). Bring every question your last accountant told you to Google, I’ll answer it, and you’ll get a copy of the recording.

The year-end tax review is to make sure there’s no surprises during the upcoming tax season. We’ll talk about any changes in your life, make sure you’re eligible for all the good tax credits, plan any year-end tax moves, make any last-minute reimbursements, and do a simple tax projection to double-check your quarterly tax estimates (and give you time to save if you’re behind).

The Details

You’ve heard all the ‘benefits’ other accountants throw around (peace of mind, big refunds, etc), but let’s get really into the details. This is how Tax Essentials works and what makes me different.

So, here’s the deets:

Part One: your tax return

Tax season kicks off in mid-January when the IRS reopens the e-filing system after its winter hibernation – I mean, system maintenance. We’ll get started on your tax return when your accounting records are ready and you’ve received all the necessary tax docs.

S-corporations and partnerships can be started as soon as your prior year’s accounting is ready. Everything else (like sole proprietors, single-member LLCs, side hustles, and ‘1099s’) will have to wait until your personal tax docs are in because those businesses file as part of your personal tax return.

For S-corporations and partnerships:
I’ll review your accounting records, your last tax return (if I wasn’t the accountant that prepared it), and ask you anywhere from a few to a dozen questions about your business. After I’ve finished your return, I’ll send you a copy (via my secure portal) to review. If everything looks good, you’ll esign the efiling authorizations (also via my secure portal) and I’ll file your return. If any of the partners/shareholders are using a different accountant for their personal tax return, I’ll send them a Schedule K1 and basis summary to forward. For the partners/shareholders that’re having me prepare their personal tax return, I’ll just hold onto those docs.

When the rest of your personal tax docs are in and uploaded, I’ll send you a short tax survey (via my secure portal) to answer many of the basic questions. Then, I’ll prepare your return, ask a few clarifying questions, and, after my final review, send you a copy to review and authorize. I’ll also send you rough quarterly estimated vouchers.

For sole proprietors and SMLLCs:
Similarly, I’ll review your accounting records, your last tax return, send you a short tax survey (via my secure portal), and ask you a few clarifying questions. Then, I’ll send you a copy to review and authorize, plus your quarterly estimated vouchers.

If you owe the IRS or state a lot:
If you owe the IRS or state a lot (either due to a prior accountant’s lack of help, because you didn’t pay your estimates, or you had an incredibly good year), I’ll help you sort out a payment plan with the IRS and states and explain how we can prevent tax debt in the future.

S-corporations and partnerships are due March 15th. If they aren’t mostly complete by March 1st, we’ll need to file extensions. There’s no additional audit risk. It’ll just give us 6 more months to file before the late filing penalties kick in.

Personal tax returns (including, sole proprietors and SMLLCs) are due April 15th. If they aren’t mostly complete by April 1st, we’ll need to file an extension for an extra 6 months to prepare and file.

Note: extensions don’t give you additional time to pay

⏰ Timeline: within two weeks of receiving all your documents
☎️ Number of calls: none
📑 Your pre-homework: completing your accounting records (unless you’ve hired me to handle that) and uploading all your tax docs

Part Two: year-round tax support

Outside tax season and year-end tax review season, we’ll have a very low-touch relationship. I’ll check in once a month to see if you have any questions, received any letters, or just need any general help. I’ll also send you reminders (with instructions) to pay your quarterly estimated tax payments.

If you have any questions, you can always email me and I’ll usually respond within 24 hours. And, if you receive a letter, you can forward it to me and I’ll answer it (even if the letter wasn’t due to my error).

Note: email support and letter protection is included. No surprise bills.

⏰ Timeline: recurring, all year
☎️ Number of calls: none
✨ Async communication: via email

Part Three: consult & year-end tax review

We’ll have (at least) two meetings per year: a tax consult and year-end tax review. In my experience, that’s been enough for tax clients that don’t want heavy-hitting financial consulting, but you’re always welcome to schedule (and pay for 😓) extra meetings.

You can schedule your pick-my-brain consult whenever you want. That can be immediately after signing on the dotted line. Or, you can save it for when you’ve got some really big questions. And, the agenda is totally up to you. Bring the questions and I’ll bring the answers (plus, whatever resources I have that may help).

We’ll schedule your year-end tax review in November/December. Before our call, I’ll ask you to forward me your most recent paystubs and finish your year-to-date accounting. Then, during our call, we’ll talk about any major developments and make sure there aren’t any tax surprises. Afterwards, I’ll do a rough tax projection and let you know if you’re on track to owe or receive a refund and if we should make any year-end tax moves.

Here’s a list of topics we’ll discuss during your year-end tax review:

🤓 new developments (eg, kids, moves, marriages, new rental properties, new side hustles, investments, retirement distributions, etc)
🤓 your quarterly estimates
🤓 major deductions and credits (eg, Section 199a, Child Tax Credit, Education Credits, etc)
🤓 year-end reimbursements
🤓 S-corp status
🤓 qualified accounts (ie, retirement accounts and HSAs)
🤓 W9s for contractors
🤓 whatever questions you have

⏰ Timeline: consult as scheduled, YETR in November/December
☎️ Number of calls: two
📑 Your homework: for the YETR, upload your (and your spouse’s) most recent paystubs and year-to-date accounting

🤔 General FAQ 🤔

What kinda clients do you work with?

I typically work with small marketing and creative agencies (including freelancers and consultants) with up to 25 employees.

Can I expect confidentiality?

Yes. I do not share my client names, client list, or any details regarding my clients with anyone. The only way someone will know we’re working together is if you mentioned it to them or you’ve left a testimonial.

* I may draw inspiration from our conversations for LinkedIn posts or newsletter emails, but will never specifically name you, use details that might connect it to you, or shame you.

What’s the minimum commitment?

Both ‘Finance Partner’ and ‘Tax Essentials’ packages are 12-month commitments.

à la carte tax returns (both personal and business) are just that season’s tax return. 

Do you offer one-off consulting calls?

Sure do. You can schedule one here.

Do you prepare à la carte tax returns without a monthly retainer?

Yes, but they do not include any year-round support, check-ups, letter support, or tax consults.

What factors affect your pricing?

‘Tax Essentials’ pricing depends on:

  • your gross revenue
  • number of partners
  • number of states
  • general complexity

‘Finance Partner’ pricing also depends on:

  • how frequently we meet (you can choose monthly, quarterly, or something in between)

‘Bookkeeping & Reconciliations’ pricing depends on:

  • the number of transactions
  • how many checks you write
  • complicated journal entries
  • how frequently you’d like your books updated (you can choose monthly or quarterly)

What happens if I get audited?

‘Finance Partner’ and ‘Tax Essentials’ packages include letter protection. I’ll write letters and defend you at no additional charge to you.

Why a Chat instead of a Discovery Call?

Discovery calls are so formal.

I’m supposed to follow a discovery checklist and sales script. And, ask all sorts of big value questions

But, that ain’t me.

And, in all my years as an advisor and accountant, no one has ever wanted to jump right into full-blown discovery. Everyone has a preliminary few questions they wanna ask.

So, instead of slapping you with discovery right out of the gate, we’ll take it easy — schedule a call, you’ll ask your questions, and, I’ll ask mine. If you like my vibe, I’ll explain the next steps and discovery process.

(Note: This is an opportunity for you to ask about me, my practice, and how I can help you. And, while I might answer a few quick tax or finance questions because I can’t help myself, this isn’t a consulting call.)