There are several factors to consider when
selecting an accountant. I have listed below some of the things
to consider when looking for an accountant.
Your relationship with your accountant can
be very personal, at least from a financial standpoint. In the
same way your Doctor knows all of your physical and health related
affairs, you must be willing to share with your accountant all
of your financial affairs. This can be a very personal matter
for most people and as such you must fee comfortable discussing
these matters with your accountant. You do not want to feel intimidated
or talked down to by this person, but rather feel that the communication
process flows freely both ways. Remember that the accountant is
not doing you a favor by preparing your work, you are doing him
the favor by allowing him to work on your file for a fee.
Qualifications are important as it relates
to the type of work you want the accountant to perform. Bookkeeping
can be done by a bookkeeper, but complex tax planning and business
consulting are better suited to an professional accountant. As
a chartered accountant, high quality is assured through strict
entrance requirements as well as ongoing professional standards
to be met and regular reviews by the Institute of Chartered Accountants
of Ontario (ICAO).
I can never get through to my accountant or
he never returns my calls is a common complaint I hear about from
new clients regarding their last accountant. If you can not get
through to your accountant, he is not much good to you. Accessibility
is very key to my success and I can be reached after hours and
on weekends using my regular office number. While I can not be
available to take all calls immediately, all calls are returned
Price in and of itself should not be the sole
determining factor when choosing an accountant, but is none the
less very important. All other things being equal, two accountants
with the same qualifications, that you feel are accessible and
compatible with you, then price would be the determining factor.
In these days of fiscal constraint, price shopping by clients
between accountants if very common and most accountants are more
than happy to discuss their fees with you.