If you don’t want to handle your personal accounting and taxes by yourself, or you need an accountant for your business, you should do a little research before picking a suitable financial professional. This person will be handling your money, so it’s important that you trust him or her. Whether you’re looking for accountants in Melbourne, Australia, or anywhere else in the world ,you should interview several candidates before choosing one.
So what should you know about accountants Melbourne? It’s important to know what types of clients your financial advisor has handled in the past. What is his or her background? If he or she worked as a corporate investment banker, chances are he or she will know less about small business or personal banking. Also, someone that kept the books for a liquor store will have a different experience than someone who worked with a non-profit organization. Applicable laws vary from industry to industry.
What is his or her availability? Some financial professionals only work part time. Some, because they specialize in taxes, only work a specific range of months, depending on the local tax season. You want to make sure the person handling your finances can be available for the hours and the seasons you need. For instance, if you run a resort hotel or vacation spot, you’re more likely to be busy during the warmer times of the year; your bookkeeper has to be available for you during those peak times.
Would you agree to your bookkeeper handing off some work to a third party? If your financial professional becomes busy, or likes to take a lot of vacations, you want to make sure that if he or she contracts out some of the financial work to a third party that you are comfortable with. Depending on how much money this third party is handling, you might want to meet him or her, even if he or she is an adequate backup.
What is the financial consultant’s philosophy of finances? Are they aggressive with investing, or more conservative? Is he or she aggressive or loose with spending suggestions? Does your vision for your personal finances, or your business’s goals, align with what this person is proposing for the future?
How does the consultant like to bill clients? Will he or she charge a flat rate? When will he or she bill—how often and at what time during the month? Some clients want to be billed project by project, some bi-monthly, and some simply have the bookkeeper take a percentage of sales or investments. However often you decide to pay, make sure to get an itemized bill that details how he or she spent time on your projects.
The consultant should also be able to help you with insurance plans. Whether you’re talking about medical, home, accident, or other insurance, the financial consultant should be able to explain your choices to you so you understand them and can make a suitable decision. If he or she can’t explain terms and contracts so you understand them clearly, consider hiring someone else. You want to make sure you’re paying the right amount to cover the right things.
Many people turn to their friends or former colleagues to handle accounting—it’s a trust issue. If you want someone more objective, interview people until you find someone you like. Finances are an important part of any personal situation or business; you want to make sure you’re getting what you pay for with accountants Melbourne.